[our resident comedian, and SDSU grad/expert, Dave Rich, has a few thoughts on the Aztecs. And away we go – bp]
So many experts thought… ohhh hey, they lost Jamaal to the Grizzles, Tapley to graduation, and Rahon to whatever its Rahon is doing right now. I’m guessing door to door solar panel sales. (No idea why I said that, he’s probably a great guy and I loved how he played. I wish him the best. Just kind of had that classic dumbface that lends itself to solar panel sales. I love him.) Anyway, experts said that there is no way they’ll be able to do anything of real merit this year. That they are rebuilding ’til the golden class of 2014 shows up. Picked 4th in the Mountain West, everyone just assumed… well up to this point, they are wrong.
The Aztecs are running strong. Over the weekend they beat two ranked teams, back to back, for the first time in school history. Yes, this is probably because it was the first time they played two ranked teams in a row, but nonetheless, it’s impressive. It’s also impressive that I used the correct spelling of nonetheless (one word). SDSU beat no. 20 ranked Creighton. This team, with the coach’s son “Dougie McBuckets”, and a supporting squad that makes BYU look like G-unit (or an appropriate 2013 reference of a bunch of trend setting, cool looking gangsters). They run a finesse game with set play after set play. SDSU wins 86-80. Creighton pulls their shorts up even higher and goes on to lose the 3rd place game.
Next, Marquette. These guys were ranked 25 and they are all bashers. They are huge, tough, huge and also huge. They play hard, they play physical. SDSU wins 67-59. JJ O’brien had a busted right hand that was wrapped so heavy it looked like a giant marshmallow. This didn’t stop him from being a crucial part to this team’s victory. He played a lot of minutes, hurt, but going hard. Coach Fisher, in the post-game interview, dropped this little gem. “We aren’t afraid to bang.” I know, you thought it was going to be “Werther’s for everyone! Where the heck is my chapstick?” This pretty much sums it up. Not afraid to bang, not afraid to finesse, not afraid to win.
So over the Thanksgiving weekend SDSU raised expectations and the first ever Wooden Legacy trophy. If things keep going right, and there is no stumble in the next few cupcake games, SDSU will enter into conference play with one loss. That loss? Oh that loss comes from our pals currently at no. 2 in the nation, U of A, by only a few points. SDSU will continue to get better. They will gel as a team lead by MWC player of the week X Thames, and that all important “chemistry” will improve into something really great. JJ’s hand will get better, and he’ll be back to his old “do everything right” self. Winston will start to realize that he is the best athlete on the floor no matter where they play. He’ll start to understand that dunking is waaaaay easier than a fade away lay-up looking for a foul (which he hates to make).
On the 5th of January SDSU will play one of the best teams in the country at their house. No. 6 Kansas with their super freshman Andrew “I wear a cape under this jersey” Wiggins. You know, that kid they’re comparing to Wilt Freaking Chamberlain.
It won’t be easy, but it’s good to know that this team does not back down. They get as dirty as they need to, and clean up real nice. They have great promise and potential and it will be a great year. So up to this point… Go Aztecs