Basketball in the Mountain West Conference is becoming synonymous with producing NBA talent. Over the past few seasons the programs themselves have climbed up into national prominence. This year is no exception with five teams more than likely to find themselves in the NCAA Tournament. The San Diego State Aztecs coming into the season were looked at as a bubble team, but they have now proven to the committee that they are a lock to get in.
San Diego State with only one regular season game remaining have very nice 21-8 record. That includes wins against UCLA and at USC. Two of their losses came at the hands of Syracuse and Arizona both nationally ranked. The Aztecs have respectable 9-6 MWC record which includes splitting games against top 20 ranked New Mexico, splitting games against Colorado State but losing both to UNLV. All three are guaranteed spots in the tournament.
Rumors have five teams getting in from the MWC therefore the Aztecs would be safe no matter what happens in their last game and in the MWC tournament. If the NCAA selection committee only takes four teams then there might be a problem. Their final game is in Idaho against Boise State. The Broncos only sit one game behind the Aztecs in the conference and in overall records. No matter what happens in Idaho both teams will meet again in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament. If the Aztecs lose both games to the Broncos and the committee takes only four from the MWC then they will be on the outside looking in.
The Aztecs have an RPI of 31. Add to that having over 20 wins and under ten losses the Aztecs should get in no matter what. To make it safe, all they have to do is make the MWC tournament semifinals. It’s as simple as that. That will tie the committee’s hands and the Aztecs will have to be chosen. I know that funnier things have happened and smaller conference schools always feel overlooked compared to the big schools in the big conferences, but this selection should be a lock
When the Aztecs do get into the tournament they will be a handful for any team in the nation. If they don’t get into the tournament there will be outrage in San Diego and in the entire MWC conference.
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