Chris Murray has posted his selections for all of the various WAC honors. Read 'em and agree, weep, say "maybe" to yourself, feel your blood pressure elevate, (insert your choice of reaction)
Monday, February 28, 2011
Boise State's La'Shard Anderson has been named the Verizon Western Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week for Feb. 21-27. The honor marks the second WAC Player of the Week award of the season for Anderson.
Anderson, a senior guard from San Diego, Calif. (Irvine Valley College), led Boise State to a pair of road wins last week at Fresno State (70-56) and Nevada (72-66). With the team's road sweep last week, Boise State moved from fourth place to second place in the conference standings.
Anderson scored a career-high 33 points at Fresno State on 11-of-14 shooting (.786), including 4-of-6 from three-point range (.667) and 7-of-8 from the free throw line (875). He also recorded a game-high four assists and a team-high three steals. He scored a team-high 23 points at Nevada, going 7-of-11 from the floor. He was 2-of-4 from beyond the arc and 7-of-10 from the charity stripe against the Wolf Pack. His five assists and three steals tied for the game highs in both categories.
For the week, Anderson averaged 28.0 points, 4.5 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game. He shot 18-of-25 (72.0 percent) from the field, 6-of-10 (60.0 percent) from three-point range and 14-of-18 (77.8 percent) from the free throw line.
* Hawai'i junior Zane Johnson
* Idaho senior Jeff Ledbetter
* Nevada junior Olek Czyz
* San Jose State senior Adrian Oliver
* Utah State senior Tai Wesley
Dayton Morinaga reports on Senior Night for Bill Amis, Hiram Thompson and Douglas Kurtz.
Brian McInnis offers up his island nominees for WAC Player of the Week.
Joe Santoro goes long in detailing how Nevada is in crisis mode at the present -- it's an in-depth very informative read.
Chris Murray's Wolf Pack Week in Review is up.
Mark Rauh has posted his photos of the Nevada - Boise State matchup and the highlight is Carp diem.
Get your New Mexico State seeding scenarios, courtesy of Sam Wasson.
Jason Groves serves up a handful of quotes from Coach Marvin Menzies, plus some analysis all about the state of Aggie basketball.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Really, we're not. But with the direction momentum is flowing right now, it doesn't seem possible that Troy Gillenwater will make the All-WAC first team.
The shooting percentages are creeping down, as is his rebounding average, plus there's the 12/29 assist-to-turnover ratio.
* 33 minutes, six points and three boards versus UH
* 38 minutes, 18 points, right rebounds, no foul shots, a game winning miss at the end in OT against San Jose State University
Possibly his ankle is hurting him more than he is letting on but he sure doesn't seem to be having any fun on the court. There's no fire, no coalescing of the team around him as times are toughening.
But Nevada's Dario Hunt is also having a bit of a dry spell. This when the Wolf Pack needs a leader.
Last night, it was 16 minutes, two points, five boards and four fouls. Against Idaho, it was 34 minutes, six points but a monstrous 19 rebounds. Versus Hawaii , he put up seven points and five boards in 26 minutes, hindered by foul trouble again and ending with four whistles.
Hunt is at 11.5 points and 9.9 rebounds a game in WAC play, with a league-leading 31 shotblocks.
Jason Groves has posted a blog entry all about the WAC tie breaker rules. Currently, it seems only Utah State will be immune from such involvement.
As an example:
Fresno State and SJSU are both at 5-9.
* SJSU lost 75-62 in Fresno but won 78-66 at home.
* as for next games: the Spartans face Hawaii at home and then Boise State on the road -- Fresno State is at Idaho and then hosts Hawaii
Here is what I have located about tie-breakers for the WAC:
17. Tie-Breaking Principles
a. General Procedures
The following procedures are to be used to determine seeding for a Conference tournament...
 Ties for all places in the standings (between two teams or three or more teams) which can be broken based upon head-to-head competition are broken before the implementation of further tie-breaking procedures.
b. Tie-Breaking Procedures
 Two-Way Tie:
[i] The winner of the head-to-head competition is the higher seed.
[ii] If the tie is for first place, compare the tied teams
So, Fresno State lost twice to Utah State and twice to Boise State while SJSU has lost twice to Utah State and once to Boise State.(who is in second place right now) with the final game of the regular season being BSU hosting SJSU.
So these remaining games are going to be important to everyone, minus USU.
The Spartans certainly have more momentum right now as Fresno State is stumbling.
Go here for Jared Eborn's (remember him?) photo of last night's post-game celebration at The Spectrum.
Think about it: four WAC titles for Tai Wesley and Tyler Newbold. Talk about a great college sports experience
Hawaii did it and definitely possesses the mighty mo heading into the last week of the regular season. What a turnaround for a team with a large contingent of newcomers. So much so that Gib Arnold just might grab some Coach of the Year votes if UH keeps moving forward.
Dayton Morinaga, Brian McInnis and Sam Wasson provide reports of the host Rainbow Warrior win over New Mexico State. Bill Amis and Vander Joaquim earned double-doubles. Has the latter played himself into Newcomer of the Year contention?
Dayton also has the news of a prep commit to the UH hoops program. Dave Reardon contributes a column and we catch up with a Ferd Lewis column we missed the other day.
Boise State didn't mind any road woes, taking down a fast-slipping Nevada last night as La'Shard Anderson again led the way.
Mark Littlefield, Chris Murray and Joe Santoro fill us in on the 40 minutes of play.
Nick Jezierny was in Reno (thanks from us goes out to the Idaho Statesman management) and we benefit from his game report.
Mental readiness, or the lack thereof, is missing from the Wolf Pack, as Chris Murray covers. Here is Chris' notes article about the game.
Host Utah State has no trouble in the rematch with Idaho.
Josh Wright, Kraig Williams, Shawn Harrison and Tony Jones.
Also, here are 21 Alan Murray game photos and 26 Craig Peterson photos. Craig also offers another gallery of 65 photos.
Tony Jones also writes about the duo of Wesley and Pane.
No newspaper report of the host San Jose State University - Louisiana Tech matchup was available so we're going with the SJSU athletics game report of the 72-60 Spartan victory.
Daniel Lyght looks at the state of Bulldog basketball.
Saturday, February 26, 2011
There was no pressure, well, at least not any more than usual. The opportunity for revenge buoyed Utah State regardless of any denials of such. Also, wanting to maintain RPI and Big Dance momentum had to be a factor, while playing in The Spectrum was a boost.
So Utah State downed Idaho 84-68 tonight. Josh Wright did some game tweeting as did Kraig Williams.
At the USU Fans Stew's Spectrum forum, there is a long string started by Thelonius about one Dominique Rutledge, a power forward by trade, being in the house for tonight's Utah State - Idaho game. The post it titled Students and Fans need to help us close a recruit...
Jim Weber at Rivals writes more about Wild Bill Sproat.
Channeling our inner psychic (no, not psycho, you peanut gallery-ers), we see "Dancing With The Stars" on the horizon for Bill.
Let's start the push.
The Idaho edition -- a two pager at that -- of The Refraction is up and what might be the last edition goes out with a bang. No, wait........the spawn of Kraig Williams and Matt Sonnenberg are in place so there will not be a void next season in our WAC basketball lives. The Refraction lives! But there are big shoes to be filled.
Josh Wright leads off the UI - USU preview coverage. Here are Kraig Williams, Shawn Harrison and Tony Jones also are present and accounted for.
Don't forget that it is going to be Senior Night for six Aggies, another obstacle for the Vandals. Shawn Harrison highlights this sextet.
The Irish in the Rainbow Warriors comes out as Dayton Morinaga reports. Dayton also offers a UH - New Mexico State game preview. NMSU is rocky and Hawaii is rolling so don't count Gib Arnold's squad out on this one.
Brian McInnis reports that it's senior night in Honolulu and that should give the hometowners even more fire in the belly. Brian also serves up a WAC tourney outlook at his Court Sense blog.
Jason Groves quotes Coach Marvin Menzies about must-win games in his preview of tonight's matchup. Jason also has posted a "Luck of the Aggies" (as we continue with the 'Irish' theme) blog entry.
Daniel Lyght writes that Fresno State is in the WAC tourney but it's certainly been a conference run of streaks for the Bulldogs.
A hot (even in this weather) Boise State team finally made it to Reno as Nick Jezierny reports. Say La'Shard Anderson continues his points barrage and the Broncos win their last two games -- does that top shelf him into most valuable player consideration?
Here is a preview of the host San Jose State University - Louisiana Tech matchup.
Mark Rauh at Silver and Blue Sports has posted a bevy of Nevada - Idaho game photos.
Friday, February 25, 2011
Chris Murray has posted his four keys to the game and a prediction on the Boise State - host Nevada matchup. The Broncos are fighting for second while the Wolf Pack needs the game to remain over .500.
Jeff Portnoy checks in with his latest blog entry on UH hoops. Is it really true that Hiram Thompson played for three head coaches while at Hawaii? (as a commenter has written)
Sam Wasson offers a commentary at his Bleed Crimson site (go there and scroll past the initial paragraph) of which we unabashedly concur. How can any player not get 'up' and be 'excited' for a conference game especially this time of year? Maybe coaches need to start doing pulse checks.
We somehow missed this earlier -- Jason Groves' game prediction for the New Mexico State - San Jose State game. PTW would type (and I guess we are going to) that he puts Miss Cleo to shame but MC did a mighty fine case of that to herself. So we'll go with The Amazing Kreskin instead.
Jeff Ledbetter is receiving a lot of media play prior to the USU - Idaho get-together on Saturday -- here's Tony Jones, The senior did hit some crucial shots in the earlier win for the Vandals but went 3-14 overall, 2-12 from long distance. PTW predicts the senior's accuracy will be better in the upcoming matchup but it goes against sanity to predict that Don Verlin's squad can do it again and we would like to at least keep up the charade that we are still in possession of ours.
Courtesy of Joe Santoro, meet new Wolf Pack starter Adam Carp.
As New Mexico State gets ready for Hawaii, Jason Groves looks back at the Aggie loss to San Jose State.
Daniel Lyght posted a blog entry that contains a pair of links to the past and the future.
Now that they are champs once again, will USU dial it back down as Idaho comes to town? Answer: unlikely, plus The Spectrum-ites provide so much energy that it makes any time in neutral impossible.
Shawn Harrison looks at Aggie hoops while Tony Jones asks if Utah State can improve? Tony also writes about payback.
With the Idaho triumph over host Nevada (and we thought about making this idea a separate post), will Don Verlin be crowding Stew Morrill for Coach of the Year honors? Really. Do think about it. The Vandals are epitomizing one of the truths of basketball -- that the whole can be greater than the sum of its parts.
About the game, Chris Murray is here, here and here. Liz Margerum offers 30 photos. Mark Littlefield is here with Josh Wright here and Joe Santoro here (which probably sets a PTW record for using this particular four letter word).
Another road winner was La'Shard Anderson-led Boise State in the Save Mart Center. Fresno State was Tim Steed-less but his availability more than likely wouldn't have made any difference. Daniel Lyght provides a game report as does Nick Jezierny, who made the road trip (a tip o' the hat goes to the Idaho Statesman suits).
Did anyone predict UH to have a winning season this go-around? Uh, the show of hands seems as miniscule as some of Lady Gaga's outfits.
Dayton Morinaga serves up print, video and photos of the Rainbow Warriors win over Louisiana Tech. Brian McInnis has a game report, one with a clever headline.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
6-foot-9 German prospect Martin Breunig, at a prep school in the northeast, has given a verbal to Maryland. The wing drew interest from Hawaii and Boise State -- to what degree and still present is unknown. Here's a link.
We love Wendell McKines because he is a reporter's dream. We also enjoy the intensity he displays and his banging of bodies in the paint. With W, it's "yes, matter of fact I do own the damn rim and I'm going there now -- try and stop me."
But this is not a good idea.
Maybe another distinctive outfit but not one -- at least what is pictured -- that denigrates the actual game. The show is on the court and nothing should supersede that. Coach Marvin Menzies and AD McKinley Boston need to prevail.
Not to over-cover it but it certainly seems the WAC most valuable player honors are down to Tai Wesley and Adrian Oliver.
This appears contradictory but did Wesley's performance against non-conference foe St. Mary's sew up the honor for the Aggie senior? It has to be influential even though it shouldn't be a factor.
Plus, now that USU has bagged another championship, can Wesley be denied?
There are no hard-and-fast "rules" for naming a most valuable player but it almost always is a performer from a winning team and being on a championship squad has to hold some sway.
However, Oliver's numbers are certainly more impressive. he's averaging close to 10 more points a game than Wesley and behind by one and a half in per game rebounding. All the other numbers from each tend to balance each other out.
Sam Wasson has a game report from last night's New Mexico State loss to SJSU.
Here is our one-game snapshot take of the pairing last night:
Does Wil Carter desire to be an astronaut? Because he sure has some liftoff as Tyrone Watson experienced ... the white SJSU uniforms are apparently mothballed ... Justin Graham has a new BFF (check the urban dictionary if you are over 30) in Matt Ballard with those passes that led to a dunk and then a layup ... Troy Gillenwater: if he's not hitting, what does he offer? TG's run at WAC MVP ended last night with that last shot ... Tyrone Watson's dribble-drive proficiency surprised us ... New Mexico State's freshman center Tshilidzi Nephawe has the most effortless free throw shooting technique we've witnessed in a very long time for a college big ... The absence of Jahmar Young and Jonathan Gibson is apparent for the Aggies -- an outside sniper/individual creator is missing ... we think television agrees with AO, that is besides "Entourage" ... And finally, to ESPN: a shot of a cable car? Really?
The Aggie defeat makes it official -- Utah State wins another WAC basketball championship.
Dayton Morinaga previews the UH - Louisiana Tech matchup tonight in the islands, complete with print, video and photos. All games probably qualify as such now but the Bulldogs especially cannot afford any more losses or it's no Vegas for them.
Beian McInnis covers Hiram (No Drama) Thompson. Brian also offers a Court Sense post on UH scheduling and names a name in recruiting.
Gotta like Nevada's chances for the two spot in WAC tourney seeding, as Chris Murray details. Here is Chris previewing the Wolf Pack - Idaho contest tonight in Reno. For the trifecta, Chris offers a notes column.
Joe Santoro also checks in with his look at tonight plus the remainder of the season.
Nick Jezierny profiles a Boise State walk-on who is producing more than anyone expected.
Shawn Harrison writes about Pooh Williams and shooting, especially at the line.
So, it's UH hosting LT tonight, Nevada welcoming Idaho and Boise State in Fresno.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Tonight at 8 p.m. Pacific time, San Jose State hosts New Mexico State. Broadbrushing it, we're calling it the backcourt versus the frontcourt.
Jason Groves previews the matchup. In it, TG says the Aggies must limit turnovers and hit the boards. The Spartans don't usually force a lot of TOs and the Aggies are -0.2 in rebounding margin to -0.9 for SJSU.
Can host Hawaii hold off Louisiana Tech, which will be minus DeAndre Brown? Brian McInnis takes a look. Dayton Morinaga goes in-depth with Hiram Thompson (print, video and photos).
Josh Wright writes about Idaho's next challenges -- facing Nevada and then Utah State on the road. That has the makings of a road trip to hell.
Tony Jones lauds the often unappreciated or under-appreciated contributions of Tyler Newbold.
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Brian McInnis reports that JT is back practicing. The turmoil is over for now.
Shawn Harrison has a lengthy column today all about USU basketball, including an anecdote about the almost Thriller in Moraga -- that being Tai versus Matthew.
Hopefully, the 'right' people have taken notice of Utah State -- there has certainly been plenty of talk and media reports. Here's Tony Jones on that aspect.
Do we call them the Swagger Ags now?
We missed this set of Nevada - Irvine game photos by Mark Rauh.
Monday, February 21, 2011
Brian McInnis offers the latest on Joston Thomas' status.
Chris Murray reports that David Carter likes the new WAC tourney format and would really like to end up the regular season in second place.
Kraig Williams looks at wiggle room for the Aggies in making the Big Dance.
Utah State's Tai Wesley has been named the Verizon Western Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week for Feb. 14-20. The honor marks the fifth career WAC Player of the Week award for Wesley and his third of the season.
Wesley, a senior forward from Provo, Utah (Provo HS), led Utah State to a pair of wins last week as it defeated Montana Western (100-66) and No. 23 Saint Mary's (75-65) on the road, snapping the Gaels' 19-game home winning streak.
Against Montana Western, Wesley had 20 points, eight rebounds, three assists and one blocked shot in just 21 minutes. Against Saint Mary's, he posted his sixth double-double of the season and 15th of his career with 22 points and 11 rebounds, to go along with two blocked shots and one assist.
For the week, Wesley averaged 21.0 points, 9.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 blocked shots per game. He shot 16-of-27 (59.3 percent) from the field and 9-of-13 (69.2 percent) from the free throw line.
* Boise State senior guard La'Shard Anderson
* Fresno State sophomore center Greg Smith
* Hawai'i junior guard Zane Johnson
* Idaho sophomore center Kyle Barone
* Louisiana Tech freshman guard Kenyon McNeaill
* Nevada freshman guard Jerry Evans, Jr.
* San Jose State junior forward Wil Carter
Courtesy of Dayton Morinaga and with some teammate assistance, Bill Amis captured the sights and sounds resulting from a Rainbow Warrior victory.
Jeff Portnoy looks backwards and forwards at UH hoops.
Mark Rauh has posted his Nevada - Irvine game photos at Silver and Blue Sports.
Chris Murray's Wolf Pack week in review is up.
Jason Groves also looks in the rear view mirror and then ahead.
Shawn Harrison writes about the four better halves of the Aggies and no, he isn't describing a quartet of the top 20 minutes of play for USU.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Remember Jordan Vandenberg? The 7-footer out of Australia who was apparently strongly considering Boise State at the time (the Greg Graham era) with some mention of Nevada?
He's a sophomore at North Carolina State and averaging 1.2 points and 1.6 rebounds a game this season. Vandenberg has played in 17 of 25 games,.149 minutes in total while shooting 57% and having 11 blocked shots.
Vandenberg needed to gain weight and he is now listed at 7-foot-1 and 248 pounds but his PT is obviously still very limited..
Bigs do tend to take longer to develop and there's no guarantee things would be any rosier at BSU but it looks like the young man overreached. But if he is happy, then so be it.
Chris Monter at the Minnesota sports GopherHole site, has an interview up with Yuba College Coach Doug Cornelius and it's all about backcourter Julian Welch. Utah State is mentioned in it, as are others, as having looked at Welch. Head here.
Here is a 2007 feature article on Welch as a HS senior.
Cribbing off James Cameron, the WAC answered the 'who's your daddy?' question with an exclamation point over this weekend.
Shawn Harrison was on press row and has a lengthy account of the USU victory over St. Mary's. Tony Jones also took in the game and here is his account. Tony also posted a blog entry. Ben Enos looks at the outcome from a St. Mary's perspective.
Daniel Lyght reports that Greg Smith went extra large on the court as a Steed-less Fresno State manhandled UC Riverside.
It took a little extra time but Boise State went into Gaucho territory and grabbed a victory. Rod Couch has the story.
Here's Jason Pugh with the scoop on Louisiana Tech's win over Georgia State.
PTW doesn't have a term for it but Zane Johnson was beyond en fuego as Hawaii battered host UC Davis. Dayton Morinaga and Damin Esper fill us in on the UH triumph.
Nevada played well in spurts and it was good enough to easily nab a victory against visiting UC Irvine. Mark Littlefield offers a game report. Mark also captured post game video from the contest. Joe Santoro provides his take.
Josh Wright covers Idaho's rather easy win in Bozeman against Montana State.
In the sole loss, New Mexico State hosted Northern Colorado in what PTW termed a 'big against small' matchup and NC surprisingly came away with a two point triumph. Jason Groves has the details and also serves up a post-game blog entry.
Saturday, February 19, 2011
* We're going to send a text message to St. Mary's because the word obviously hasn't hit Moraga -- "Brockeith Pane likes to dribble-drive and penetrate"
* Minus Omar Samhan (and Ben Allen to a degree), St. Mary's is distance jumpshot dependent
* Utah State is the much more physical team
* I like the menu at MickeyM's -- it's giving Stew Morrill indigestion
* Jimmer who? All in for the Mickster.
* Tai Wesley was just cast in a re-make of "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" -- his single line of dialogue: "I don't need no stinkin' mask"
* A flash of unselfishness (actually it was on display quite often tonight): with 4:16 left in the first half, Matthew Delladova caught a pass and was wide open for a three but he hit Mitchell Young, who was coming down the key, with a pass for a layup
* Speaking of Young, PTW sports his hairstyle every morning as we lumber out of bed
* St. Mary's lives or dies by the jumper and we're envisioning rigor mortis soon
It didn't matter if Brown couldn't do anything for them as Louisiana Tech, spurred by Olu Ashaolu's 18/11 double-double, still took down Georgia State tonight 51-45.
Three in a row for the WAC.
Idaho handled host Montana State by 15, 65-50.
Four in a row.
Utah State went into the den of the Gaels and turned it into a clubhouse via a strong second-half offensive and defensive performance. The Aggies won 75-65 as St. Mary's struggled with both Tai Wesley and Brockeith Pane who both scored 22 points and the former added 11 boards. Tony Jones tweeted the game.
Make that a quintet of WAC wins.
On the mainland, Hawaii was impressive in an 83-69 win over UC Davis.Zane Johnson totaled 32 points on an en fuego nine treys (9-15). UH shot 61% overall, 55% from long distance. It also featured a Kurtz versus Kurtz matchup.
Now, we're counting on two hands as the roll continues.
Northern Colorado enjoyed the hospitality and took down New Mexico State 82-80. PTW thought the Aggie size would prove too much but we were wrong.
The first L.
Boise State is leading UC Santa Barbara 51-47 with seven minutes remaining.
Fresno State is 20 ahead of UC Riverside, 64-40, with five minutes on the clock.
Chris Murray already has a pair of game reports up on the Wolf Pack handling the Anteaters (which mascot-wise sounds like mismatch). Go here and then here.
Make it two in a row for the WAC in BB games.
Anthony Ray @ Arizona Preps has a post up today (Rivals sub required) on 6-foot-9 Jonathan Underwood, a transfer out of Missouri who was supposedly headed to San Diego State but not anymore.
PTW mentions this because Utah State and Louisiana Tech -- among many others -- are listed as pursuers.Jonathan Underwood
Here is Underwood's time at Missouri. Here is an article about his departure from Missouri (which was apparently due to his old brother's illness).
San Jose State University cooled down a surging Weber State last night -- head here for the game report. Roy Burton of the Ogden Standard-Examiner also has an article posted.
Gotta set aside time to watch the Utah State - host St. Mary's tussle. Shawn Harrison (who is there), Kraig Williams,and Tony Jones all check in.
Brian McInnis offers an interesting game preview as the Rainbow Warriors are at UC Davis today.
Northern Colorado is in Las Cruces and PanAmmunition is all over the matchup. Jason Groves also serves up a look at the pairing plus the inside story of Tyrone Watson which will give opposing fans pause about ever booing the sophomore.
Mark Littlefield previews host Nevada welcoming UC Irvine to Reno. Joe Santoro checks in, too.
Daniel Lyght writes that familiarity is the byword when UC Riverside shows up at Fresno tonight.
Boise State is on the beach at UC Santa Barbara for what should be a fast-paced game -- Nick Jezierny has the details.
Also, Louisiana Tech hosts Georgia State and Idaho matches up with Montana State in Bozeman.
Friday, February 18, 2011
Dayton Morinaga previews the UH - UC Davis matchup. The Aggies should have trouble with Bill Amis and Vander Joaquim upfront plus Davis also has difficulty with backcourt quickness.
Jeff Portnoy asks where's JT?
Chris Murray doubles up with a Nevada - UC Irvine game preview plus his usual four game keys/prediction. We're going with the host Wolf Pack in the afternoon contest. This one doesn't seem like a quality pairing but, of course, we'll see.
Opening the weekend of WAC BracketBuster play, SJSU takes on Weber State tonight:
Wildcats not fazed by Bracketbuster challenge
February 17, 2011
Bracketbusters? Not this year.Go here for the remainder.
The only brackets Weber State and San Jose State need to bust to get to March Madness will be the ones outlining the Big Sky and Western Athletic Conference tournaments, respectively.
Neither team will have its bubble burst for an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament with a loss in tonight's ESPNU Bracketbusters game at The Event Center at San Jose State tonight at 8 p.m., because neither is on the bubble. The only path to the NCAAs for WSU (15-9, 9-4 Big Sky) and SJSU (12-12, 3-9 WAC) is through their conference tournaments and this simple phrase: Win and you're in...
Brian McInnis reports that Rainbow Warrior player personnel questions have scooted ahead of Saturday's UH game against UC Davis.
Mark Littlefield offers video of the various Wolf Packers at a news conference after returning from Hawaii.
Get to know USU's Matt Formisano, courtesy of Shawn Harrison.
Craig Hislop warns 'fear the Mick' (as opposed to the SF Giants supporters chant of 'fear the beard') because Brockeith Pane and Mickey McConnell will be a most intriguing matchup of power versus guile.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
The Wolf Pack players probably will deny it but Nevada had to re-route to Las Vegas coming back back from Hawaii -- Chris Murray has the details. Pack fans apparently are split over this turn of events with a minority melting down and offering " no Vegas, never, that's enemy territory."
Is Joston Thomas going Anthony Salter? Brian McInnis offers what is known.
Jeff Portnoy says it's time for the WAC to sell its BracketBuster stock.
Jason Groves has the scoop on the Aggies going to Anchorage next season.
Daniel Lyght writes that it's a homecoming weeks of sorts next Saturday when Riverside pulls into town.
Tony Jones tell us the Utah State - St. Mary's matchup took on even more importance for the Gaels because of a game last night in San Diego.
It's probably much ado about nothing -- except maybe to E.J. Farris -- but PTW caught this tweet from Tony Jones:
"James Walker has been banished from the sidelines after getting into an argument with the coaching staff"
Dayton Morinaga reports that Coach Gib Arnold is mining southern California -- no surprise there -- and one prep forward in particular.
Brian McInnis offers more on the injury status of Hiram Thompson.
Chris Murray names the dandiest dunkers in Wolf Pack history.
Want some Chili for breakfast? Then go here.
It's not quite accurate but we'll label the New Mexico State - Northern Colorado matchup as big versus small and Jason Groves preview the Saturday contest. Jason also offers a blog entry on the status of Troy Gillenwater's ankle.
Fresno State owns the San Joaquin in basketball as the Bulldogs have taken two from the Bakersfield Roadrunners this season -- the latest last night due to their trusty Steed.
Daniel Lyght has a game report as does Jeff Evans.
Utah State treated Montana Western in the same fashion Tai Wesley did the backboard in a lopsided victory.
Kraig Williams, Shawn Harrison, Tony Jones and Weston Mangum formed a crowd on press row. Craig Peterson provides 56 photos for you cheerleader fans.
Wayne Nelson of the Grand Forks Herald covers the Louisiana Tech loss to North Dakota. Kenyon McNeaill sank seven treys for the Bulldogs.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
We've been sitting on this for some time so here goes:
So who will be awarded WAC MVP honors this season?
Granted, all the hay hasn't been harvested as yet but here is what we know right now:
Adrian Oliver is tops in scoring at 22.1, followed by Troy Gillenwater at 21.8 ppg. La'Shard Anderson ranks fifth at 15 a game. Tai Wesley is ninth at 14.3. Olu Ashaolu is averaging a double-double but it seems that the lamb will lie down with lion and still be baa-ing the next day before a player on the team currently caboosing it is lauded as the most valuable player.
Dario Hunt is putting up 12.8 points, grabbing 9.5 rebounds and blocking 2.4 shots a contest. Hawaii's Bill Amis checks in at 13.8 and 7.8 plus 2.6 blocks. Wesley is nabbing 7.4 rebounds a game, Gillenwater 6.7 and Oliver 6.2. Anderson is at 4.5 assists and a league-leading 2.6 steals per game.
To make comparisons easier:
* Oliver: 22.1 points, 6.2 rebounds
* Gillenwater: 21.8 points, 6.7 rebounds
* Anderson: 15.0 points, 4.5 assists, 2.6 steals
* Wesley: 14.3 points, 7.4 rebounds
* Ashaolu: 13.5 points, 10.1 rebounds
* Hunt: 12.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, 2.4 blocks
* Amis: 13.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.6 blocks
Plus, here are the current standings (if that will factor into your decision):
Utah State 12-1
New Mexico State 8-4
Boise State 7-6
Fresno State 5-8
San Jose State 3-9
Louisiana Tech 2-10
So who gets the nod as the conference most valuable player? Does it only go to a player for a top-of-the-division team?
We'll take a look soon -- it should be at the same guys -- at who will land an All WAC First Team spot.
Checked in and saw that all the games scheduled for tonight are completed:
* 100-66 -- Utah State in a squeaker over Montana Western in The Spectrum
* Host North Dakota topped Louisiana Tech 76-73
* Fresno State traveled a bit south and completed a sweep of Cal State Bakersfield 73-55
ESPN's Diamond Leung re-visits the bubble-izing of Utah State and others.
Kyle Whelliston travels similar territory.
The latest edition of The Refraction is posted. Heirs have apparently been located to continue the dastardly deed next season and we have it on good authority that the proprietors-to-be are not the product of a laboratory experiment gone awry.
Remember when Faisal Aden was at New Mexico State, albeit briefly? He would be a great help in the backcourt if still in Las Cruces as he is Washington State's second-leading scorer at 13.3 points per game..
Justin Young profiles Aden, including his stay in Las Cruces.
Host San Jose State University got by Montana State last night -- head here for a writeup.
Brian McInnis features the status of Hiram Thompson in his article today -- is there any other candidate in the WAC for having the worst luck than the Hawaii senior?.
With a hat tip to Sam Wasson for spotting it, Dave Reardon offers some "blather" about the change in fortune of UH hoops.
Montana Western enters the Colosseum, er, make that The Spectrum, tonight and Shawn Harrison and Kraig Williams tell readers what they need to know while Tony Jones reports that Tai Wesley and Bill Sproat have a bromance.
Daniel Lyght writes about the Fresno State matchup at Cal State Bakersfield tonight -- the Bulldogs 'coyote-d' the Roadrunners by 30 earlier this month.
It's Louisiana Tech up in Grand Forks to take on North Dakota this evening and Ethan Conley has the preview.
Josh Wright covers Coach Don Verlin eyeing the second seed in the WAC tourney and talking about controlling one's destiny.
Tyler Huskinson offers his WAC team basketball rankings.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Tony Jones writes about what Nate Bendall brings to the Aggies, healthy or not.
Jeff Portnoy looks at where UH hoops is today and also has a note about an injury to Hiram Thompson.
Brian McInnis blogs at his Court Sense blog on Thompson's status and also provides a link to Coach Gib Arnold's ESPN chat.
Chris Murray offers Coach David Carter's analysis that it was a frontcourt showdown last night and Nevada's was a MIA.
Here's Nick on his Twitter account: "To my WAC media friends: The rate for the Orleans Hotel during WAC Tourney is cheaper w/out using the special code. Just an FYI."
What are the odds that Nick's OH room reservation disappears into the ether?
AW Prince highlights a Nevada (and another WAC team) recruiting target.
Sam Wasson's Daily Aggie contains a large basketball component (after the initial three paragraphs. Sam also offer this link in which Sir Troy is examined by a consortium of NBA scouts. Jason Groves provides a blog post on the Shakespearean dilemma facing Coach Marvin Menzies: to sit or not to sit the injured TG in the BracketBuster matchup.
It's a Big Sky week as San Jose State University hosts Montana State tonight prior to its BracketBuster matchup with Weber State on Friday.
Vander Joaquim and Bill Amis served up double-doubles, easily winning the frontline battle.
Dayton Morinaga offers video, photos and print of the Rainbow Warriors victory over visiting Nevada. Brian McInnis has his game report and Dave Reardon tweeted the contest.
Nevada is in third place, 7-5 in WAC play, while Hawaii is now a sixth place 5-7.
Nevada’s Malik Story has been named the Verizon Western Athletic Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Week for Feb. 7–13. The honor marks the first career WAC Player of the Week award for Story.
Story, a sophomore center from Pasadena, Calif. (Indiana), scored a career-high 29 points to lead Nevada to just its second road win of the season in its first overtime game of the year, 84-76 at San Jose State.
Story’s 29 points are the most scored in a single game by a Wolf Pack player this season. He made 11-of-21 (52 percent) shots from the field, including three baskets from three-point range. He also made 4-of-5 free throws. Story dished out a career-high six assists and grabbed four rebounds with two steals. He scored 21 of his 20 points after halftime, including three in overtime.
Other nominees included :
* Boise State senior forward Paul Noonan
* Fresno State freshman forward Bracken Funk
* Idaho senior guard Jeff Ledbetter
* New Mexico State junior forward Troy Gillenwater
* Utah State senior forward Tai Wesley
Monday, February 14, 2011
Jeff Portnoy plays Carnak the Magnificent in envisioning how the remainder of the WAC regular season plays out.
Tony Jones has praise for James Walker's latest effort and also advises readers to focus on Newbold and Williams challenging McConnell and Delladova (and vice versa) come BracketBustin' time.
Chris Murray has again tapped into his prolific gene. Here's more Dario Hunt (who sounds like a fascinating person to have a conversation with), the quintet of best-ever WAC teams and Chris' weekly WAC team rankings.
Jason Groves writes about the recent contributions of B.J. West.
With a tip o' the hat to Sam Wasson, Teddy Feinberg makes mention of a pair of in-state Land of Enchantment prospects of interest to the Aggies.
It's on to a less banged up Hawaii tonight for Nevada in what seems to be a pick-em game. The Dario Hunt - Vander Joaquim matchup should be fun to watch.
Chris Murray is offering a pair of posts, here and here.
Brian McInnis has posted his pre-game entry and Dayton Morinaga's is also up.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
Visiting Fresno State had the unfortunate timing of following the Utah State loss to Idaho and Tai Wesley was mask-less. That's pretty much all you need to know.
Weston Mangum, Tony Jones here and here, Shawn Harrison and Kraig Williams all have game reports. Jennifer Meyers serves up 32 game photos. Plus, Craig Peterson provides 42 photos but we have to ask why none are game-specfic? And who is the Christoper Lloyd-like gentleman?
Daniel Lyght covers the matchup from the Fresno perspective. Marek Warszawski' column leads with a few Fresno State basketball items.
Chris Murray goes prolific: here, here on the Wolf Pack overtime win in San Jose and in a lengthy feature on Dario Hunt that crystallizes the individual, the one off the court, for the reader. This one should be nominated for an award -- yes, it's that good. Mark Littlefield also provides a solid game report.
In what was another great game and one witnessed by a crowd in double-figures, host Boise State turned back Idaho in a close one throughout. Nick Jezierny was there and Josh Wright has his game report.
Earlier, we missed this Nick Jezierny feature on Idaho's Kyle Barone.
Minus Sir Troy, New Mexico State still managed to get past Louisiana Tech in Ruston. Sam Wasson, Ethan Conley and O.K. Davis furnish the background.
Wanna be introduced to Bill (Mr. Media) Amis? Start with Dayton Morinaga's feature. Brian McInnis gives the same treatment to Douglas Kurtz who may be coming to a squared circle near you.
As requested, here are the current standings from the WAC sports site:
Utah State 12-1
New Mexico State 8-4
Boise State 7-6
Fresno State 5-8
San Jose State 3-9
Louisiana Tech 2-10
Saturday, February 12, 2011
At halftime, Utah State is leading Fresno State 40-19.
Kraig Williams is tweeting the game -- here's one of his posts: "Fresno defense providing as much resistance as a layup line right now"
Tony Jones is also tweeting the contest. Make it a tweetfest as Daniel Lyght is also nimbly working it, too.
A Troy-less New Mexico State just got by host Louisiana Tech 50-49.
Hamidu Rahman scored 14 points for the Aggies while the Bulldogs were led by Kenyon McNeaill's 17.
The shooting numbers were strange. LT put up just 36 shots (to NMSU's 52) but took 24 attempts at the foul line, making 16. Marvin Menzies' squad totaled just 13 foul line attempts.
Daniel Lyght tweeted this: "In Fresno State news, freshmen Bracken Funk and Tyler Johnson will start in place of F Ned Golubovic and PG Steven Shepp 2moro @ Utah State"
Just asking: does anyone know if Coach Steve Cleveland is hot after a recruit by the last name of Wagnalls? Because...
As New Mexico State heads to Ruston to tangle with Louisiana Tech, the assisting of Hernst Laroche is featured in Jason Groves' latest.
This pairing should bring out the best in creative animosity -- we hope. Nick Jezierny covers the buildup to the host Boise State - Idaho get together tonight.
Referencing a couple of cultural icons, Joe Santoro writes about Nevada and the road this season. The traveling Wolf Pack match up with San Jose State University this evening.
Daniel Lyght unveils that Fresno State's Bracken Funk will start tonight in a venue where the freshman forward is undefeated. Here are Shawn Harrison, Kraig Williams and Tony Jones. Tony gets to the point with this. Does BillS have a make-fun-of-a-Bulldog costume?
Dayton Morinaga has been busy with a post about a European point currently playing back East who is interested in UH (as well as Utah State) and another focus of Gib Arnold's this week. Brian McInnis has posted an entry at his Court Sense blog.
Friday, February 11, 2011
So you're Fresno State. You get to play against Utah State, Bill Sproat and the Spectrum-ites Saturday night after the Aggie loss to Idaho. That the angle of Tony Jones' latest.
Chris Murray is already all over the Nevada - San Jose State University rematch in Silicon Valley. It's worth noting the David Carter's squad has only beaten Boise State on the road so far this season -- a two-point win over on January 15 -- and the Nevada helmsman talks about the changes his team will see from the Spartans.
Also, Chris offers his keys to the game and a final score prediction.
A double tip o' the hat to Sam Wasson/Bleed Crimson for forwarding PTW these links:
Remember Jaycee Carroll and Spencer Nelson? No, don't panic, neither has been discovered to have further NCAA eligibility. Both former USU basketballers are playing together in one of the nicest areas in Europe where it is 64 degrees and partly cloudy today Credit Rhett Wilkinson at the Utah Statesman for this fine article.
Plus, here's an Eli Lucero Herald Journal timelapse video of the crowd filling up The Spectrum when USU hosted Nevada. Is that the student section filling in the earliest?
Nick Jezierny has the game report of the BSU win over Fresno State. Here is the Fresno Bee offering.
Gaylen Woods/Go Vandals recaps Thursday night's Idaho triumph over Utah State. So does Pat Hauge.
Chris Murray reports Coach David Carter has no fear about the youthful Wolf Pack wearing down as conference play enters. the backstretch.
Sam Wasson offers up his weekly Coach Marvin Menzies interview.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
It's way past trite but the WAC is wacky. Boise State. losers of four straight. hosted Fresno tonight and came away with a 75-61 victory. Paul Noonan (five treys) led the Broncos with 19 points while Tim Steed's 13 carried the Bulldogs.
FSU was on a three game win streak, all home contests.
Zack Moritz totaled 10 points and four boards in 14 minutes of play for BSU.
Kevin Olekaibe, back from a wrist injury scored six points. Greg Smith finished with 12 but had just five shot attempts.
Chris Murray notes a reunion of sorts Saturday in San Jose (besides the one last Saturday).
Jeff Portnoy writes about last night's game and upcoming ones.
Jason Groves checks in with Coach Marvin Menzies on the Aggie walking wounded.
Brad Rock offers a feature on Coach Stew Morrill.
Eamonn Brennan goes for the kill with this headline -- "Utah State waves farewell to an at-large bid" but PTW thinks that statement is premature. Running through the remainder of the WAC season and then the tourney and including a win at St. Mary's will do it for USU. Mediocrity truly abounds this season, including a number of name programs which aren't deserving of a bid. Let's see what USU's RPI is next week.
BillS makes SI as the subject in a Seth Davis-penned article lengthier than the total pixels of publicity of all the other WAC basketball teams combined have received in Sports Illustrated this season.
* How does Idaho win when Jeff Ledbetter shoots 3-14?
* This is telling: points in the paint -- USU 26, ID 30
* Don Verlin's squad was whistled for just 14 turnovers
* Idaho shoots 10 more free throws than USU
* Tai Wesley obviously was affected by the broken nose -- when was the last time he shot a single free throw in a game?
* Wesley also totaled six turnovers
* Not a number but PTW still says Kyle Barone has the potential to make major money down the line if he can finally add weight and strength. Plus, Brandon Wiley was missed last season and it will be the same next season. He's not the Vandal MVP but what he provides will be very hard to replace.
Boise State hosts Fresno State in an intriguing matchup. The Broncos are definitely in need of a W while a road victory would obviously enhance the Bulldogs jostling for position in the final conference rankings. Here's Daniel Lyght previewing the matchup.
Brian McInnis has posted a new Court Sense entry. Dayton Morinaga reports that a week off couldn't come at a better time for the Rainbow Warrior basketballers.
Nick Jezierny fills us in on the multi-faceted Reggie Arnold.
Sam Wasson has a look back at New Mexico State's downing of Louisiana Tech.
The sun rose in the west this morning.
Hosni Mubarak just settled in for a peaceful reign.
And Idaho toppled Utah State.
Well, two out of the three don't pass the sanity test but you make the pick.
Here are Josh Wright, Shawn Harrison and Tony Jones (congrats to the bean counters at the latter two newspapers who gave the nod for Shawn and Tony to be in Moscow).
Here is the PTW running commentary throughout the game:
* Utah State spaces so well on offense, a trait that is difficult to get each of the five players to perform simultaneously.
* Tyler Newbold is a rhythm shooter (as are most players) and the key against him is to cause a moment's hesitation or a minute adjustment in his form.
* It's an apples and oranges comparison but Brockeith Pane is more effective being in motion and even off balance in his shooting style.
* In the first half, Idaho had the more difficult shots whereas USU was simply missing.
* Why do opponents forget that Brandon Wiley is lefthanded?
* It was just momentary but the Vandal backcourters after a miss and an defensive rebound beat USU down the court twice in a row -- a very uncommon sight.
* Not taking anything away from a great Vandal effort but USU is missing shots that are normally buried by the Aggies.
* Did Brian Green have one open look all night?
* Put Nate Bendall on the back of a milk carton -- was he hurt or ill because the senior was noticeably absent?
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
It's host Idaho and Utah State tonight on ESPN2.
On the court, let's begin with Josh Wright who digs deep into Deremy Geiger's background and also offers a Q-and-A feature involving Don Verlin and Stew Morrill.
Kraig Williams, Shawn Harrison and Tony Jones are all present and accounted for with game previews.
Plus, Brad Rock has Stew Morrill talking about Aggie recruiting -- it's a very interesting piece.
Jason Groves fills us in on Saturday's New Mexico State - Louisiana Tech rematch, this one in Ruston.
Dayton Morinaga has Bill Amis channel his inner Jack Kerouac with another "On The Road" video segment.
Jeff Portnoy will have Jay Bilas, Eddie Fogler and Jim Donovan on his radio show tonight.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Did you know that Chris Murray's middle name is Prolific? Actually, PTW is guessing but the evidence is mounting. Chris has an article up on a luncheon Q-and-A featuring Coach David Carter and another piece covering Wolf pack basketball subject matter.
Tony Jones reports that Tai Wesley's nose collided with Brady Jardine's elbow and, yes, a break has occurred.
Remember for Nevada Wolf Packer Ahyaro Phiilips?
He is now at Southern Mississippi averaging nine minutes a game in 21 games, with two starts, posting 2.6 points and 2.6 rebounds a game and shooting 47% (25-53).
Remember Vonchae Richardson, a prepster out of Washington who was associated with Idaho during last year's recruiting go-around?
He ended up at Saddleback College in California. In 25 games this season, he's averaging 2.5 points per game, shooting 33% overall, 32% from long distance and 68% from the foul line. He is also putting up these numbers: 2.9 rebounds and 1.5 assists a game. (47/35 assists-to-turnovers ratio) along with 15 steals.
As requested, here are the WAC standings as of today:
Utah State 11-0 22-2
New Mexico State 7-4 13-12
Nevada 6-4 9-14
Idaho 6-5 13-10
Boise State 5-6 12-11
Fresno State 5-6 11-12
Hawai'i 4-7 13-10
San Jose State 3-8 11-11
Louisiana Tech 2-9 11-14
New Mexico State had no trouble with Louisana Tech last night. Jason Groves offers a game report as does Sam Wasson. Sam also serves up video highlights and game photos.
Minus points sparkplug Kevin Olekaibe, host Fresno State played Wile E. Coyote and easily quagmired the Roadrunners of Bakersfield. Daniel Lyght has the details as does Jeff Evans of the Bakersfield newspaper.
All eyes are on the second seed in the WAC tourney as Chris Murray reports.
Brian McInnis also digs into the desire for the second seed in the conference tourney. Jeff Portnoy covers the past, present and future of this season's UH schedule. Remember Julian Sensley? If not of if so, Dayton Morinaga has an interview wit5h the former UH star.
Shawn Harrison features Brady Jardine, who will always have a spot with the Globetrotters at hand besides overseas ball.
Monday, February 7, 2011
To the best of our knowledge (which makes it sound like we're testifying before Congress), Steve Cleveland didn't fill the opening when Senque Carey abruptly resigned as an assistant coach earlier this season.
Now, he will have the opportunity to bring back Heath Schroyer if each party wishes to do so because Schroyer was just let go as the head coach at Wyoming.
From a longtime UH basketball fan:
The point guard scenario at Hawaii has been such a revolving door.
During the preseason workouts, Hiram Thompson and Salter (what was his first name? hahaha, I had to go look it up...oh yeah, Anthony) were neck and neck for the starting position. Then Salter had a bad ankle and sat for three weeks leading into the opener.
He miraculously recovers two days before the first game. Gib gave him a lot of minutes that first game. However, it was very evident to the trained eye that Salter appeared to play a one man game and did not hustle on defense. His minutes dimished real fast. Having been disgruntled, he took off and left the team. In his wake went Jordan Coleman who should have been very appreciative of the fact that the Gibber kept him since he was a Bob Nash recruit.
Ostrowski was summoned but was quite rusty for sure.
Thompson kept making mistakes, offensive charging, more turnovers, and such. He’s also a half step slow on defense. He tries and gives a lot effort, however, it is what it is.
Bobby Miles was given a lot of opportunity. But tentative play on his part was very evident. Miles we all know was not a point guard in high school and more of a scorer. We kept waithing for Bobby to unleash his game.
Meanwhile, Miah Ostrowski was slowly returning to form. One could see that he had a clue as to how to run this team. Finally, a few days after his dad passed away, Miah showed everyone what he could do.
Hiram got injured against Boise St. and missed a lot of game. In the Idaho game, Hiram was nearly missing in action at the point. Although it was never disclosed, perhaps Hiram was not himself after that knock on his head. More Miah minutes.
It looks like to most that Miah is the point guard of the Rainbow Warriors. His shot is coming back and when he is in full swing he will start averaging 12-14 points consistently. He’ll make everyone better as he did for four years in high school. He looks like the future for now.
Oh, yes many are calling for a contract extension already.