A busy time ahead for an unbeaten Aztecs basketball team.
SDSU is (3-0), coming off a big emotional win over BYU up in a hostile environment in Provo, and now they play 5-games in a10-nights, starting with the cross city rivalry game against outmanned USD.
A lot of history with the Toreros, last year’s USD win on the Viejas Arena floor. The win in the upset game at Petco Park years ago.
An interesting start to the season for a Brian Dutcher-led team with so many new components. 4-potential new starters and guys off the bench.
Young center Nathan Mensah and senior Matt Mitchell are the returnees. 3-transfer guards, a 6-10 transfer from Vanderbilt, and a gifted freshman.
And yet, the team has come together quite quickly and now the challenge, the 5-games in 10-nites, the 3-non conference games with USD, LIU and Tennessee State, then the games in the Las Vegas tourney against Creighton and Iowa. All this before conference play gets underway.
Coach Brian Dutcher’s comments:
Feels like we’ve been off for a month….now we play 5-games in the next 10-days
Players dream-short practices-lots of games
BYU was great win..on the road…gave up lead…got it back
Nothing emulates being on the road in hostile environment
We saw the resolve of our team
USD is a crosstown game..not really a rivalry
Conference games are really our rivalry
USD building empty most of time till we come to town there
With a week off-I watched every game they played
Last year, they had such veterans they could slide players into different roles
They are not as versatile as last year’s team
We cannot be cocky, after losing a game like this last year
Environment will be good and raucous..and we must maintain our poise.
I like playing gym full environment.
No one wants to play in an empty gym.
New faces-new players-new systems on our team
Basketball is basketball…they’ve played a lot of college basketball
They are used to playing in space..used to sacrifice part of your game
We scored 35-baskets…25-assists last game at BYU-coming together
Our tone is defend and rebound first
Tough to get teams to buy into my system on defense
Harder to get them to play Aztecs defense when they are scoring so well
I have to push mindset-not going to score, be that way, all the time..
We must have something to hang out hat on when ball does not fall..it’s defense.
5-games in 10-days….after off week…play..consume next scouting report
We could not find right opponent to come here this past week.
We can’t wear them out in practice…so this team now has to show it can get ready
Schedule USD in future…does our conference go to 20-games…don’t know.
Try to decide if we play UCSD and USD in same season.
Would like home and home with USC or UCLA
UCLA policy won’t play team from California on the road outside conference.
Most of other PAC 12-teams will come play here, but not UCLA.
The Mountain West is considering going to a 20-game conference schedule