When the New Mexico State Aggies return home this week to take on San Jose St. and Hawaii, they will have to defend one of the toughest mental hurdles in all of sports: boredom.
The Aggies will take on teams that aren't as talented and don't have as much to play for at this stage of the year. For San Jose, they're looking to rebound from a minnie slump that has seen them drop three straight games. Hawaii has been hurting as well, coming off home losses to Idaho and Boise State and before that a Bracketbuster loss to UC Riverside as well as a road WAC loss to Fresno St.
Both of these teams looked like conference sleepers two weeks ago, but things have changed quickly - as they tend to do in college basketball. NMSU has proven that they can take care of business against inferior competition - for the most part. They have been pretty strong against the lower-tier WAC teams at the Pan Am. The Aggies have been a good home team in conference period. The one exception is when they played Nevada in late January. And the two games NMSU played against the Wolf Pack will be burned in their memory until they meet them again this year - if that ever happens.
While they should knock off San Jose and Hawaii, one should be concerned about boredom setting in, especially when considering the Aggies know that talent-wise, they are a step ahead of the two programs coming into town. It seems like that's when this team gets into trouble. There has seemed to be a lack of focus at times this year. Nothing would make Aggie fans happier to see NMSU take care of business this week, quickly and harshly at that. They got lambasted at Hawaii this year and barely escaped San Jose with a win. Truthfully, that is a tough WAC swing and the team has played much better since then. But you know the group is still bitter about Nevada. Sometimes that can be dangerous. NMSU can't overlook anyone at this point in time. One game at a time for the Aggies. That's what good teams do. We'll see what happens.