The way things have been going this season in the Mountain West,
the conference could be renamed the Wild West.
With the back-to-back overtime games at CSU, the wacky finish to
Monday night’s New Mexico-Brigham Young game and the emergence of
the long time conference whipping boy Air Force, the MWC is
anything but over.
Air Force (14-2, 4-0 in the MWC)
Coach Joe Scott’s flyboys are quickly becoming the newest
Cinderella story in college basketball. On Monday, the Falcons
capped off a sweep of the Utah schools, Utah and BYU, by defeating
Utah 62-49. The win was a team-record 12th in a row.
The Falcons have not had a winning season since the 1977-78
season, but are almost guaranteed to post one this year and
possibly grab their first MWC conference title ever.
BYU (12-6, 2-3)
The Cougars lost a heart breaker Monday night to New Mexico, in
what could go down as possibly the best and wackiest game of the
MWC season so far.
After tying up the game with 4 seconds remaining a technical
foul was assessed when BYU’s Mark Bigelow ran onto the court after
teammate Kevin Woodberry’s tip-in.
New Mexico missed the two free throws, but the Lobos retained
possession. With star Danny Granger near the baseline under the New
Mexico basket, Troy DeVries threw the ball to him and Granger beat
BYU center Rafael Araujo to the basket, and put in the game winning
shot to stun the Cougars.
CSU (10-8, 2-3)
The Rams were able to pull out back-to-back overtime victories,
but will be without the services of center Matt Nelson, who
re-injured his knee in the Rams 89-83 victory over UNLV on
New Mexico (11-6, 2-2)
New Mexico was fortunate to be on the winning end of that wacky
game with BYU, and now must use that momentum to carry them through
the rest of the season.
“That was a great college basketball game. Just in terms of how
competitive it was, each team just tried to take away the others
strengths and players making plays down the stretch,” Lobo head
coach Ritchie McKay said in a press release. “I am really pleased
with our guys and I credit BYU.”
San Diego State (11-8, 2-2)
After starting off 2-0 in conference play, the Aztecs have lost
two straight on the road and, like every other team in the
conference, must find a way to steal a game or two away from
“You must win wherever you play,” head coach Steve Fisher said.
“This is a very good conference, and to win on the road would
definitely give us an edge.”
UNLV (9-6, 1-3)
After losing to CSU, the Rebels fell to last in the MWC, but
after playing their last three games on the road the team will get
to finally play their next two games at home.
“It feels like we have been on the road for about a month,” head
coach Charlie Spoonhour said. “I hope we can improve on the way we
have been playing when we get home.”
Utah (15-5, 3-2)
The Utes lost their second straight conference game Monday to
Air Force, and must find a way to win on the road.
The Utes have one of the youngest teams in Division I basketball
this season with just two seniors and no juniors on their roster,
so the younger guys must learn as they go.
Wyoming (9-9, 2-3)
Four words can explain how the Cowboys can improve in their
standing in the conference: Win on the road. The only bad news is
that their next two games are on the road against CSU and Air