Progress Report: Mountain West

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Tied for first place in the Mountain West, Wyoming and San Diego State tangle late tonight to settle the score on the court – at least for now.

Wyoming

The Cowboys currently sit in the No. 1 spot atop the Mountain West (tied with San Diego St.). With the fourth-best defense in the nation in points allowed, the Wyoming’s strength lies in its defense. Wyoming is also great at controlling the flow of the game. Ranked as the fifth-slowest offensive pace in the country, the Cowboys completely dominate time of possession, using as much of the shot clock as they can.

  • Key Wins: Colorado State, Boise State
  • Key Losses: San Diego State, SMU
  • Player to Watch: Larry Nance Jr., 16.2 ppg, 7 rpg, .554 FG%
  • Schedule: at SDSU (Feb. 11), San Jose St. (Feb. 14)

San Diego State

With one of the longest home game win streaks in the nation – 27 in a row and counting – SDSU has has one of the best defenses in the nation. Ranked at No. 3 nationally in points allowed, the Mountain West is the only conference to have two teams in the top five in this defensive category. SDSU has the toughest schedule in the Mountain West. In their three games against ranked opponents, the Aztecs have come away with two wins.

  • Key Wins: No. 25 Utah, BYU, No. 25 Wyoming
  • Key Losses: No. 3 Arizona, Cincinnati, Colorado State
  • Player to Watch: Malik Pope, 4.5 PPG, 2.4 RPG, .433 FG%
  • Schedule: Wyoming (Feb. 11), Colorado St. (Feb. 14)

Colorado State

With its best 22 game start since 1997-98, the Rams have a record of 21-4, which started with a run of 14 straight wins. Currently on the bubble of the NCAA Tournament, the only real hope the Rams have is to win out the rest of the season. All three teams mentioned for the Mountain West (Wyoming, SDSU, Colorado St.) have been ranked in the AP Top 25 this season; this makes it the 5th season out of the last 6 that three different teams from the conference have been ranked in the Top 25.

  • Key Wins: Boise State, SDSU, Wyoming
  • Key Losses: Wyoming, Boise State, UNM
  • Player to Watch: JJ Avila, 15.5 PPG, 7.6 RPG, .549 FG%
  • Schedule: at SDSU (Feb. 14), at Fresno State (Feb. 18)

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