Jan 24, 2013, 9:28 AM EDT
No. 15 New Mexico jumped out to a 35-25 halftime lead on Colorado State and pushed that deficit to 20 midway through the second half.
The Rams made a run, but it was too little, too late, as the Lobos moved to 17-2 on the season with a 66-61 win. Tony Snell had 23 points to lead the way, which included putting Pierce Hornung on a poster.
Perhaps more impressive is that New Mexico is now 4-0 in the Mountain West, which, on the surface, isn’t all that impressive. There are 31 teams in the country that are still undefeated in league play. Getting off to a quick start against conference rivals isn’t exactly unheard of.
The difference with the Lobos, however, is that UNM plays in the meat-grinder that is the MWC. Five of the nine teams are in Kenpom’s top 40. Six of the nine are in every bracket projection you saw this week. There are no truly bad teams in the league, either. And just two weeks into league play, eight of the nine teams in the conference already have at least two losses.
Everyone except New Mexico.
“We’re pretty good,” Alford said after Wednesday’s win. “We’re a pretty good basketball team and I think we’re getting better because we beat a really good basketball team.”
Now, if we’re being completely open, the Lobos have had a slightly easier schedule than the other teams in the league. The two toughest opponents they’ve played — UNLV and CSU last night — both came at home, and only one of their four league games was away from the Pit. The road win — at Boise State — is nice, but while the Broncos are improved, that’s not exactly like getting a win in Viejas Arena in front of The Show.
New Mexico still has to visit UNLV and Colorado State. They still have home-and-homes with San Diego State and Wyoming. The Lobos are going to take their lumps. That’s just the nature of the MWC this season.
But a two-game cushion two weeks into league play sure is a nice way to start things off.
I don’t think there’s any question as to who the favorite to win the league is right now.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.
Mar 11, 2014, 12:43 AM EDT
In less than 36 months, Manhattan head coach Steve Masiello has taken the Jaspers from 6-25 to the NCAA tournament.
Mar 11, 2014, 12:05 AM EDT
Get to know the eighth entry into the 2014 NCAA Tournament field, the Wofford Terriers.
Mar 10, 2014, 10:47 PM EDT
Cameron Bairstow spent his offseason toiling in international competition, and return to New Mexico with a chip on his shoulder. After a season spent toying with the other Mountain West frontcourts, Bairstow’s efforts might not get the necessary recognition.
Mar 10, 2014, 10:05 PM EDT
Highlights of Delaware’s win in the CAA title game, as seen on the NBC Sports Network.
Mar 10, 2014, 9:56 PM EDT
Get to know the sixth entry into the 2014 NCAA Tournament field, the Delaware Blue Hens.
Mar 10, 2014, 9:43 PM EDT
Get to know the fifth entry into the 2014 NCAA Tournament field, the Manhattan Jaspers
Mar 10, 2014, 9:26 PM EDT
Joel Embiid will miss the Big 12 tournament and likely will be out for the first weekend of the NCAA tournament. What does this mean for Kansas?
Mar 10, 2014, 8:23 PM EDT
This is great. The bench mob for the Colby College Mules has extensive choreographed sideline celebrations. Their best is the “El Toro Tres Puntos”. Without a doubt. (h/t Colby’s finest)
Mar 10, 2014, 6:53 PM EDT
Louisiana Tech is fighting to stay on top of Conference USA after four teams tied atop the league standings with a 13-3 record during the regular season.
Mar 10, 2014, 6:45 PM EDT
The CAA Tournament title will take be played in Baltimore on Monday evening. League champ Delaware will square off with Williams & Mary, who is looking to make their first ever trip to the NCAA tournament. The game will tip off at roughly 7:00 p.m. You can watch the game live on NBC Sports Live Extra. WATCH…
Mar 10, 2014, 6:31 PM EDT
UConn’s Shabazz Napier elevates the conversation for the American Athletic Conference’s player of the year discussion.
Mar 10, 2014, 5:57 PM EDT
Despite an arrest for a driving under the influence charge, Oregon State’s Langston Morris-Walker will play in the Pac-12 tournament, and his addition means the Beavers are the conference’s ultimate sleeper pick for a tourney title.
Mar 10, 2014, 5:21 PM EDT
Jason Capel was reportedly fired today, which may put one of the best available class of 2014 recruits on the market again
Mar 10, 2014, 5:14 PM EDT
Joel Embiid has missed the last two games, and Bill Self shines some light on when the center will next play.
Mar 10, 2014, 4:47 PM EDT
What do you expect from a conference that could feature eight NCAA tournament teams?
Mar 10, 2014, 2:59 PM EDT
Creighton and Villanova are the Big East’s two darlings, but which other teams are best positioned to separate themselves from the conference’s middle and earn a bid?
Mar 10, 2014, 1:34 PM EDT
MAAC, CAA and Southern all at stake tonight.
Mar 10, 2014, 12:43 PM EDT
Justin Bieber and Rick Barnes! I shouldn’t have to say more.
Mar 10, 2014, 12:12 PM EDT
Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, Newcomer of the Year and All-Conference teams for every league in the country.
Mar 10, 2014, 11:44 AM EDT
Regular season champion Southern’s ineligible for the NCAA tournament, which could open the door for Texas Southern to grab the league’s automatic bid.
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