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How Can the New Mexico Lobos Get More Respect?

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Josh H. Holmberg USA TODAY Sports

In my Rodney Dangerfield voice, “The New Mexico Lobos cannot get any respect!” Let’s run down the list of their accomplishments and feats from the current season. Their overall record is 20-4.

Notable victories include wins against the Davidson Wildcats, the Connecticut Huskies, the Indiana State Sycamores, the Cincinnati Bearcats, the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) Runnin’ Rebels and the Colorado State Rams. New Mexico sits in first place in the Mountain West Conference with a 7-2 record. New Mexico is the 19th-ranked team in the nation.

Although New Mexico sits in first place in the Mountain West Conference, they are ranked sixth in scoring offense at 65.6 points per game. However, they are ranked second in the conference in the scoring defense category. New Mexico holds their opponents to an overage of 59.8 points per game.

The catalyst for New Mexico’s offense is their defense.

They lead the Mountain West Conference in steals with an average of 7.2 per game and turnover margin of +2.00. There is an old saying that goes, “Defense wins championships.” I am not going to say that New Mexico is poised to win a national championship, but I can see them winning the Mountain West Conference Tournament championship and making some noise in the NCAA Tournament next month.

In regards to the player personnel, New Mexico has five players who average between eight and 13 points. Junior guard Kendall Williams is No. 2 in the conference with 4.6 assists per game. Outside of Williams, New Mexico does not have any players leading any statistical categories or coming close to doing so.

New Mexico represents an ideal depiction of what a team looks like. Although there are no dominant players on this team, New Mexico manages to be the best team in the Mountain West Conference.

So, I ask you again, when they get respect? New Mexico may possibly be a Cinderella story in mid-March.

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2014 NCAA Tournament Preview: No. 7 New Mexico vs. No. 10 Stanford





Both the New Mexico Lobos and Stanford Cardinal got a tough draw in the 2014 NCAA tournament. Both teams are capable of making a Sweet 16 run, but only one team will have the chance of doing so after this contest.

These No. 7 vs. No. 10 seed matchups are always very hard to predict. You don’t know if it is going to be a close one or a complete blowout, but that’s kind of how the entire NCAA tourney works out.

The Lobos just got done winning the MW tournament and have won nine of 10. The Cardinal have lost four in their last seven.

What to Watch For

Chasson Randle, Kendall Williams and Cameron Bairstow. There will definitely be other talented players on the court in this game, but those three are arguably the best.

Randle is leading Stanford with 18.7 points per game and can drop 20+ on any team in the tournament.

Williams is averaging 16.4 points per game and is shooting 40.4 percent from the three-point line. Bairstow could be the best player in this contest, though. He is putting up 20.3 points per game and has had quite the breakout season for the Lobos.

Prediction

I am going to have to go with the mid-major in this one. Both teams entered the season with relatively high expectations, but it is New Mexico that is coming off of a tournament championship and it is New Mexico that lost in its first game of the  dance last year as a No. 3 seed. You better believe that this team will be trying to avenge its loss from last season.

New Mexico 78 Stanford 62

Trevor Lowry is a Senior Writer and Copy Editor at RantSports.com. If you’re a tweeter feel free to follow him @TheTrevorLowry or add him to your network on Google.

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