Forgive us this brief nod to a time when we thought we were going to be a sports-oriented blog as suggested by the Figurehead above and also an orientation to which the majority of you wish we would have stayed.
To our San Diego St. Aztec basketball fan friends who feel slighted that the team did not move up from their #6 spot in the AP poll after 4 teams above them lost this past weekend: quit whining and enjoy the ride.
The Aztecs, currently 27-1, are having unarguably their best season ever so why not just sit back and take in the sights... and get ready for the biggest regular season game in the program's history Saturday as the team has a chance to avenge their lone loss with a home tilt against BYU, themselves ranked right behind State in the AP poll and being the recipient of 2 first place votes while the Aztecs did not receive any. Ha! Looks like that East Coast bias crests and then ebbs in the Wasatch Range.
Seriously though, if you watched their last three games you might understand how it is that the AP voters were reluctant to move up St. We're confident that all the AP voters probably have not seen State play and "bias", however you want to measure it, probably had a lot to do with voter reluctance to move upward a largely unknown quantity over knowns like Texas, Kansas, Pitt and Ohio State who all lost this past weekend.
But having seen this team play of late, we would be reluctant ourselves to move St. up from the #6 spot. To wit, in its last three games, St. has managed just one field goal over the last 8-10 minutes in each of those games. It's a double-edged sword: on one hand it's a testament to playing great defense, knocking down clutch free throws and displaying the mental fortitude to grind out wins against quality opponents (two of which were on the road). On the other hand, it points to a serious shortcoming with respect to this team's inability to create easy shots for itself.
D.J. Gay (whose name, you can imagine, generated some rather unfortunate results in a Google image search) is a fine, fine point guard who manages the game efficiently and takes care of the rock with impeccable care but averaging just over 3 assists a game he does not create well off the dribble to set up his teammates for easy looks. Each trip down the floor on the offensive end, particularly in the home stretch of games, becomes a grind where just getting a decent look at the bucket and not turning over the ball causing an easy run-out by the other team becomes a moral victory of sorts.
Now, don't get us wrong - we're not hating. But we've observed this game for many years and what we see in front of us is blatantly obvious. We, along with seemingly the rest of San Diego, have bought in and we'll be rooting for State as we have been all along and we would love to be proven wrong but the inability to create easy looks in the half court set is just the sort of thing that could bite State in the rear come tournament time.
Relish this year, gang, because 27-1 and a #6 ranking hasn't ever made any stops in these parts over the years.
Programming note: In a first for both San Diego St. and the Mountain West Conference, the game will be played in front of a national audience when they take on BYU Saturday on CBS at 11 A.M. (PST). We've sent maps and road atlases to the CBS crew as this trip west of the Mississippi, though not a first, is certainly a rarity.