Monday, May 28, 2012

Aggies receive NCAA Tournament berth

(The Aggie baseball team celebrates alongside head coach Rocky Ward, right, during an NCAA Tournament selection show watch party at The Game Sports Bar and Grill/Photo by Niki Rhynes)

First off, congratulations to the New Mexico State baseball team for receiving an at-large berth into the NCAA Tournament — it's always a good accomplishment for an NMSU sports program to get into such a postseason tournament.

It also goes to show what a challenging out-of-conference schedule can do for a team.

The Aggies obviously didn't get into the NCAA Tourney because of their last month of the reason, rather because of their early-season wins over quality programs, which established an unshakable RPI and solidified their overall body of work.

They took three of four from Wake Forest to begin the year; took three of four from the University of New Mexico during the year; played Rice tough, as well as Baylor; won games against Minnesota and Texas Tech; and swept Sacred Heart and split with Kent State — two teams that also made the NCAA Tournament field.

Yes, NMSU tailed off badly late in the season — although their RPI didn't — which made them a bubble team — or were they?

I believe they were, although they'll be the No. 2 seed in their Regional in Tucson — Arizona is No. 1, Louisville is No. 3 and Missouri is No. 4.

This will not be an easy road for NMSU.

Arizona and Louisville both won their regular-season conference championships, while Missouri won their conference-tournament championship.

In other words, these are good teams, and the Aggies will have to shake their late-season slide.

An odd year: That it was in the world of Aggie sports.

To think NMSU went to NCAA Tournaments in men's basketball and baseball, and are still in limbo in terms of their future conference?

And it's not just that. Football was improved this year too — really, the only two sports that were very down were women's basketball and softball.

We've said it before, conferences are looking for markets, football success and overall financial investments in the athletics department. You can't tell me that NMSU's football history isn't playing a factor, and yes, the Aggies just haven't developed and produced enough resources — in other words, money — to be attractive at this point. I think if both of those areas were solidified, in many respects the market would take care of itself.

I'll also say this though — overall the Aggies have a good group of coaches. In short, they get more with less, as seen this year.

A link: Former Aggie forward Wendell McKines' workout with the Golden State Warriors went “Wenderful” — click here for more.

Follow me on Twitter @TeddyFeinberg


Anonymous said...

Seriously Theodore isn't it time that you look for a job in a city that has successful collage sports instead of covering the wannabes ?

Don't you ever get tired of going to work everyday and having to write lies about NMS athletics,how dumb do you think we are sir ?

Don't waste your life and talent in Las Cruces, be all that you can be if I may borrow a slogan from the US Army.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:12

Obviously you keep looking at Teddy's column with interest because he's writing about Aggie sports. Wannabe's? Having a basketball team and baseball team make it to their respective NCAA tourney's must not much of an accomplishment to you. Name another school in the region that has done the same with a such a small budget or national exposure (recruiting). You can't. U of A is a national powerhouse in several sports and has a MUCH larger budget. NMSU has done so much with nothing. You're obviously a disgruntled utep mINOR fan. How about backing up your claims regarding "lies" instead of making baseless accusations.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:12 a.m.

I'm thinking he knows you are pretty dumb.

And just what is a successful college sports city? Albuquerque? El Paso?

Seems to me that NMSU had a winning overall record versus both cities this year. Wouldn't surprise me if last year was the same. Now, if by successful you mean Austin, Norman, or Tuscaloosa or the like, then sure. If you mean successful as compared to our nearest rivals, then you are indeed "dumb" as you put it.

Don't waste what little life you have on sports analysis. Flipping burgers, yeah, maybe you could do that...

Anonymous said...

LOL,everything with Aggie fans is always compared to UNM and UTEP.

Anonymous said...

For the two defenders of NMSU...well said!