1. #13 San Diego State
Record: 12-1 (1-0) MW Standing: 3rd-T Last Week’s Ranking: 1
Last Week’s Results: @ Colorado State W 86-80, @ #16 Kansas W 61-57
Top Performers: Xavier Thames (16.2 ppg, 48% 3PT) Winston Shepard (12.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 2.3 apg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 15: @FS, March 1: @SDSU
The most impressive showing in the first week of conference play came in a non-conference game. San Diego State won at #16 Kansas and held the team to under 30 percent shooting. Add a conference win at Colorado State and the Aztecs continue to distance themselves as the conference’s best team.
2. New Mexico
Record: 10-3 (1-0) MW Standing: 3rd-T Last Week’s Ranking: 2
Last Week’s Results: Colorado State W 80-73
Top Performers: Cameron Bairstow (20.1 ppg, 7.2 rpg) Kendall Williams (18.6 ppg, 5.2 apg) Alex Kirk (14.8 ppg, 9.6 rpg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 18: @FS
New Mexico played just one game last week and won 80-73 versus Colorado State. Cameron Bairstow kept his breakout season going with 29 points and 14 rebounds in their conference opener.
3. Boise State
Record: 11-3 (1-0) MW Standing: 3rd-T Last Week’s Ranking: 2
Last Week’s Results: Fresno State W 86-79
Top Performers: Anthony Drmic (19.5 ppg, 4.5 rpg) Derrick Marks (15.4 ppg, 2.7 apg) Jeff Elorriaga (11.5 ppg, 55% 3PT)
Remaining Schedule vs Fresno State: Feb 26: @FS
Boise State played a dominant first half versus Fresno State and won their only conference game of week one. The Broncos put their team to the test at San Diego State on Wednesday.
4. Air Force
Record: 8-5 (2-0) MW Standing: 1st-T Last Week’s Ranking: 9
Last Week’s Results: Utah State W 73-72, @ UNLV W 75-68
Top Performers: Tre’ Coggins (16.7 ppg, 43% 3PT) Max Yon (13.5 ppg, 3.8 apg) Marek Olesinski (13 ppg, 5.1 rpg)
Schedule versus Fresno State: Jan 8: @FS, Feb 5: @AFA
Air Force was the biggest surprise in the Mountain West’s opening week. The Falcons won a one point game over Utah State who was without starting center Jarred Shaw. More impressive was Air Force’s 75-68 win at UNLV. The Bulldogs face a tougher test than expected on Wednesday when they host AFA.
Record: 10-5 (1-1) MW Standing: 6th-T Last Week’s Ranking: 4
Last Week’s Results: @ Fresno State W 75-62, Air Force L 75-68
Top Performers: Roscoe Smith (12.5 ppg, 12.7 rpg) Bryce Dejean-Jones (14.4 ppg) Khem Birch (11.7 ppg, 9.9 rpg) Kevin Olekaibe (10.9 ppg)
Remaining Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 25: @UNLV
UNLV showed their talent in a double digit win at Fresno State but their seven game winning streak came to an end versus Air Force. The Rebels have the talent to make a run in the Mountain West but have to win the games they’re expected to.
6. Utah State
Record: 11-3 (1-1) MW Standing: 6th-T Last Week’s Ranking: 5
Last Week’s Results: @ Air Force L 73-62, San Jose State W 86-67
Top Performers: Jarred Shaw (15 ppg, 7.9 rpg) Spencer Butterfield (14.1 ppg, 6.4 apg) Preston Medlin (14.2 ppg, 47% 3PT) Kyle Davis (10.3 ppg, 8.8 rpg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Feb 22 @USU
Utah State lost in their Mountain West debut at Air Force by one point. They have since gotten Jarred Shaw back on the team and look to be hold down their home court advantage going forward.
7. Colorado State
Record: 9-6 (0-2)MW Standing: 9th-T Last Week’s Ranking: 6
Last Week’s Results: San Diego State L 71-61, @ New Mexico L 80-73
Top Performers: J.J. Avila (18.9 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 3.5 apg) Daniel Bejarano (15.1 ppg, 9.4 rpg 3.1 apg) Jon Octeus (12.2 ppg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 11: @FS, Feb 15: @CSU
Colorado State faced the two toughest teams that the Mountain West has to offer last week. The Rams competed with both of them and managed to stay within 10 points in each game. The Rams have two opportunities to get in the win column this week with games at San Jose State and versus Fresno State.
Record: 7-8 (2-0) MW Standing: 1st-T Last Week’s Ranking: 6
Last Week’s Results: @ San Jose State W 62-50, Wyoming W 61-58
Top Performers: Deonte Burton (21.8 ppg, 3.7 apg) Jerry Evans Jr. (14.1 ppg, 6.1 rpg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 22: @FS, Feb 12: @UNR
Nevada is off to a 2-0 start to conference play but they didn’t exactly face the strongest teams in the MW. The improved play of forward A.J. West combined with Deonte Burton’s scoring ability could separate the Wolf Pack from the weaker teams and into the middle of the Mountain West.
9. Fresno State
Record: 7-8 (0-2) MW Standing: 9th-T Last Week’s Ranking: 7
Last Week’s Results: UNLV L 75-62, @ Boise State L 86-79
Top Performers: Marvelle Harris (16.8 ppg, 5.4 rpg) Cezar Guerrero (14.3 ppg, 4.4 apg) Tyler Johnson (13 ppg, 6.8 rpg) Paul Watson (10.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg)
Fresno State’s lack of depth and experience has them off to an 0-2 start. Head coach Rodney Terry will have to push the right buttons to get his young team going for 40 minutes. If the Bulldogs can’t get a win against Air Force or at Colorado State this week, they could be looking at an 0-6 start with games at San Diego State and versus New Mexico the week after.
Record: 9-5 (0-1) MW Standing: 8th Last Week’s Ranking: 8
Last Week’s Results: @ Nevada 61-58
Top Performers: Larry Nance Jr. (16.1 ppg, 9.1 rpg) Riley Grabau (11.6 ppg, 54% 3PT) Josh Adams (11.4 ppg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Jan 29: @FS, Feb 18: @WYO
The Cowboys opened conference play with a three point loss at Nevada. Wyoming will have games versus New Mexico and at Boise State this week.
11. San Jose State
Record: 6-8 (0-2) MW Standing: 9th-T Last Week’s Ranking: 11
Last Week’s Results: vs Nevada L 61-58, @ Utah State L 86-67
Top Performers: Rashad Muhammad (16.6 ppg, 45% 3PT) Jaleel Williams (11.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg)
Schedule vs Fresno State: Feb 8: @FS, March 8: @SJSU
San Jose State opens their first season in the Mountain West with two double digit losses. The Spartans will have to adjust to the higher level of competition, but freshman Rashad Muhammad continues to be a bright spot with 20 points versus Utah State.