Tag: New Mexico State Aggies

New Mexico State is back for a fourth straight year (AP Photo)

Introducing Cinderella: Meet the New Mexico State Aggies

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New Mexico State is back for a fourth straight year (AP Photo)

Conference: Western Athletic

Coach: Marvin Menzies

Record: 23-10 (13-1)

Ratings and rankings:

Kenpom: 89
RPI (per NCAA.com): 108
AP/USA Today: Not ranked

Seeding: In our most recent bracket the Aggies are projected to be a 13 seed.

Names you need to know: F Remi Barry (13.3 ppg, 4.8 rpg), F Pascal Siakam (13.0 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 1.8 bpg), G Daniel Mullings (12.6 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 2.8 apg, 2.0 spg), C Tshilidzi Nephawe (10.4 ppg, 7.6 rpg)

Stats you need to know: The Aggies have shot the ball well from the field, as they’re making 46.6 percent of their shots and they’re also shooting nearly 37 percent from beyond the arc. New Mexico State doesn’t rely heavily upon the three, scoring just 20.6 percent of their points by way of that shot per kenpom.com. But they get the foul line (23.7 percent of their points come from there), and they’re also a very good offensive rebounding team. They’re one of the best at defending the three, as teams are shooting just over 29 percent from distance.

Tendencies: Menzies’ Aggies are going to look to work the ball inside, and when you have a front court that features the likes of Barry, Nephawe and Siakam that’s a good strategy to use. Barry is also this team’s second-best three-point shooter, with guard Ian Baker leading the team in makes (58) and percentage (47.2 percent). As for the defense NMSU will play man the majority of the time, and in Mullings they’ve got a perimeter defender who would rank 33rd nationally in steals had he played in enough games.

Big wins, bad losses: New Mexico State’s best non-conference win came against UTEP, avenging a loss to the Miners earlier in the season. Outside of that there aren’t any major wins, although it should be noted that the Aggies played Wichita State, Saint Mary’s, Wyoming, Baylor and Colorado State. As for bad losses, Oral Roberts was the worst non-conference defeat (they also lost twice to rival New Mexico) and they lost at Seattle in mid-January.

How’d they get here?: Some of the defeats above came as a result of the Aggies playing a significant stretch without seniors Nephawe and Mullings for injury reasons. Mullings missed 12 games with a broken finger and Nephawe missed 12 games with a deep bone bruise in his foot. While the team struggled without those two (7-5 without Mullings, 6-6 without Nephawe), players such as Barry and Siakam were able to use that as a springboard of sorts. Once everyone was healthy the Aggies ran through the WAC and won games over Bakersfield and Seattle in the WAC tournament.

Outlook: This is a dangerous team, as they have tournament experience and some talented pieces who can make things difficult for opponents on both ends of the floor. As a 13-seed New Mexico State is certainly capable of pulling off an upset.

How do I know you?: New Mexico State has become a fixture in the bracket, as they’re making their fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA tournament. Last season the Aggies took San Diego State to overtime before losing by four, and in 2010 they lost by three to Michigan State.

Saint Mary’s takes care of New Mexico State despite committing 22 turnovers

Anson Winder, Brad Waldow
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New Mexico State and Saint Mary’s met early Tuesday morning, and something that wasn’t an issue for either team was energy as both teams played hard from the start. What was an issue, however, was the teams’ ability to execute offensively as the Aggies and Gaels combined to commit 38 turnovers. Saint Mary’s was the better of the two teams in regards to how they executed when they didn’t turn the ball over, shooting 54.2% from the field in the 83-71 victory.

Randy Bennett’s Gaels managed to score 1.1 points per possession despite turning the ball over on 29 percent of their possessions, with the team assisting on just over 69 percent of its made baskets. Emmett Naar (seven assists) and Kerry Carter (six) were responsible for 13 of Saint Mary’s 18 assists, with Carter also accounting for 12 points, nine rebounds and three steals as he just missed out on his second double-double in as many games.

By comparison New Mexico State shot just 36 percent from the field, with reigning WAC Player of the Year Daniel Mullings scoring a team-best 18 points to lead Marvin Menzies’ Aggies.

Mullings was one of three headliners to be hampered by early foul trouble, with teammate Tshilidzi Nephawe and Saint Mary’s forward Brad Waldow also picking up two first-half fouls. And while Nephawe was unable to get going in the second half the same couldn’t be said for Waldow, with the All-WCC player tallying 14 points and ten rebounds in the final 20 minutes.

Waldow finished the game with 16 points and 12 rebounds, and that performance combined with those of guards Carter and Aaron Bright (21 points, four assists) and forward Garrett Jackson (16 points, six rebounds) proved to be too much for the visitors from Las Cruces to overcome.

Saint Mary’s will undoubtedly look to clean things up offensively moving forward, as they committed 22 turnovers on the night. But even with that being the case, the Gaels’ work when they were able to take care of the basketball proved to be the difference.

2014-2015 Season Preview: Can Grand Canyon, Seattle catch New Mexico State in the WAC?

Daniel Mullings (AP Photo)
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Daniel Mullings (AP Photo)

Beginning on October 3rd and running up until November 14th, the first day of the season, College Basketball Talk will be unveiling the 2014-2015 NBCSports.com college hoops preview package.

MORE: 2014-2015 Season Preview Coverage | Conference Previews | Preview Schedule

The past three seasons have seen the same outcome for New Mexico State: lose out on the WAC regular season title, string together a few wins in March to win the tournament title and an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, and proceed to get bounced from the Big Dance after just 40 minutes. And while Marvin Menzies will be moving on without massive Sim Bhullar this season, the Aggies appear to be the favorites to snap at least one part of that three-year streak and win the WAC title.

It starts with Daniel Mullings, a talented, 6-foot-3 guard that will enter this season as the WAC’s reigning Player of the Year. KC Ross-Miller left the program after last season — he was suspended for the NCAA tournament after fighting with Utah Valley fans on the court after a loss — meaning that Mullings will be asked to play as more of a point guard this season. With DK Eldridge (11.2 ppg, 40.5% 3PT) and Tshilidzi Nephawe (11.1 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.4 bpg) both returning as well, there will be plenty of firepower for the Aggies. Their x-factor? Former top 100 recruit Anthony January, a 6-foot-8 forward who will join the program this season.

It won’t be a cakewalk for the Aggies, however, as Grand Canyon will give NMSU all they can handle despite losing double-double machine Killian Larson to graduation. Jerome Garrison, a 5-foot-11 scoring guard that averaged 16.9 points last season, is back, as is 6-foot-9 Texas A&M transfer Daniel Alexander (11.2 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 2.9 apg). Alexander, in particular, is expected to make a marked improvement this season, one that will be aided by the additions of Tobe Okafor — a 6-foot-11, highly-regard JuCo transfer — as well as Washington State castoff Royce Woolridge.

RELATED: UMKC’s Martez Harrison helping to fill a void that’s three decades old

The Antelopes have size, depth and talent and they play in a rowdy home environment, but the good news for the Aggies is Grand Canyon won’t be eligible for the NCAA tournament until the 2017-2018 season.

The rest of the WAC is a crapshoot. Seattle loses Clarence Trent, but they bring back three of their top four scorers, including the league’s leading returning scorer in Isaiah Umipig. They struggled with injuries a season ago, however, and will be dependent on Deshaun Sunderhaus, a potential all-league front court player, to return to 100% after tearing his ACL last season. Utah Valley is the WAC’s reigning regular season champ, but they lost three of their top four scorers from last season — including leading scorer Hulton Hunsaker — and will likely slide back into the middle of the pack this season.

UMKC sophomore Martez Harrison will end up being a WAC Player of the Year before he graduates — maybe even this season, as he averaged 17.2 points and 3.8 assists as a freshman — but the Kangaroos lost quite a bit to graduation from last year.


  • IN: None
  • OUT: Idaho

PRESEASON BIG WEST PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Daniel Mullings, New Mexico State

Mullings, a 6-foot-3 senior guard, is the reigning WAC Player of the Year after averaging 16.8 points, 4.9 boards, 3.5 assists and 1.9 steals as a junior. He’ll be asked to take on even more of a leadership role this season, sliding over to spend more time running the point for the Aggies.


  • Martez Harrison, UMKC: Harrison was the best freshman in the conference a season ago, averaging 17.2 points and 3.8 assists in his first season in Division I.
  • Isiah Umipig, Seattle: The 6-foot-1 senior is the WAC’s leading returning scorer after averaging 19.5 points. He also took for than 15 shots per game and shot 38.8% from the field.
  • Daniel Alexander, Grand Canyon: A sharp-shooting, 6-foot-9 senior that began his career at Texas A&M was GCU’s third-leading scorer last season.
  • Tshilidzi Nephawe, New Mexico State: Losing Sim Bhullar will make Nephawe be the centerpiece of NMSU’s front court. He’s the best returning offensive rebounder in the league.



1. New Mexico State
2. Grand Canyon
3. Seattle
4. Utah Valley
6. Bakersfield
7. Chicago State
8. Texas Pan-American