It has been an exciting couple of weeks of basketball in the Western Athletics Conference as conference play start, with two different teams are undefeated against conference rivals.
Utah State has a 4-0 record in conference play and following just behind is Louisiana Tech at 3-0. The two teams are set to meet head-to-head on Jan. 26 in Logan.
USU’s most exciting wins came last week against Seattle University 75-66 that put the Aggies at 3-0. Two days later, Idaho traveled south to meet up with Utah State where USU defeated in overtime 82-75.
Louisiana Tech had three exciting conference games in a row between Dec. 29 and Jan. 5. LTU’s most recent win came in a low-scoring win against UT Arlington 55-52. The two competitions before that were wins against Denver and New Mexico State. The Pioneers are 3-1 in conference play while New Mexico State sits 2-2.
Denver isn’t the only one with a 3-1 WAC record. San Jose State shares the same record and also took home a win over Seattle University on Jan. 5.
Besides the Louisiana Tech matchup against Utah State, Jan. 11 presents another exciting contest, with SJSU against the Aggies of Utah State.
Other big matchups next week in the WAC will include Seattle heading to San Jose to take on SJSU on Jan. 17 and New Mexico taking on Utah State in Las Cruces, N.M.
Here are the current WAC standings:
1. Utah State 4-0 (13-1)
2. Louisiana Tech 3-0 (12-3)
3. San Jose State 3-1 (9-6)
3. Denver 3-1 (7-7)
4. Idaho 2-1 (6-7)
5. New Mexico State 2-2 (8-8)
6. UT Arlington 1-2 (6-6)
7. Seattle U 0-3 (5-8)
8. UTSA 0-4 (4-10)
9. Texas State 0-4 (4-12)
School: Utah State University
His versatility is evident from both ends of the court. Medlin has proven he can make plays on defense and offense. Medlin averages 15.8 points per game and is fourth in scoring overall in the WAC. His momentum was perhaps jumpstarted by WAC’s Preseason Player of the Year award this season, but either way he’s only expected to get better.
Up next: A rebounding Maverick
School: UT Arlington
Last season Reves was a top-five rebounder in the league, and currently leads the WAC in rebounds at 9.3 per game. The success puts UT Arlington in the number one spot in the WAC for offensive rebounds. UT Arlington will look to Reves to help improve their scoring on the season and move up in the WAC standings as they sit seventh.
Up next: An Eastern Utah transfer
School: San Jose State
Kinney came to San Jose from College of Eastern Utah. Kinney makes scoring look easy — he is averaging 20.6 points per game. His average is the highest in the WAC and shows a four-point margin between him and second place. SJSU would love to see Kinney’s scoring continue like it did against Kansas University in November where his 11-for-26 shooting helped him to 30 points that night, despite the loss.
Up next: A giant who doesn’t miss
School: New Mexico State
It’s not a typo: Bhullar actually looks down on seven-footers. It’s hard to block in the paint when you’re opponent is a 7-foot 5 athlete. Bhullar is a huge asset off the bench for the Aggies. He has only started in seven games and played 291 minutes, but is the conference leader in field goal percentage, sporting a .674. Only two players have scored more than he has for New Mexico.
Up next: A Utah State all-around asset
School: Utah State University
The California-native can create a huge push for Utah State and the numbers speak for themselves. USU is third in the WAC for blocks, and Reed’s 1.7 blocks per game helped them get there. On offense, Reed’s .602 field goal percentage is the second best in the WAC, averaging 12.6 points per game.
Up next: The 19-year-old LTU leader
School: Louisiana Tech
Louisiana has only fallen to three teams this season while taking the victory in each of the three conference games played. Appleby is the leading scorer for LTU averaging 15.7 points per game. The 19-year-old sophomore is responsible for 23 of the team’s assists and still has room to grow.
Up next: A sophomore ball thief
School: Texas State
Texas has yet to prove itself in conference play. With an 0-4 conference record and only four wins on the season, its opponents have only small threats. But count Davis as one of them. The starting sophomore averages 8.3 points per game and 34 steals.
Up next: A diamond in the Rockies
School: University of Denver
The Pioneers have a 50 percent overall record and have won three of their four conference contests this season. Denver will be a strong contender for the WAC title and as their lead shooter O’Neale will be a facilitator to get them there. As a starter, O’Neale is averaging 13.4 points per game.
Up next: A high-percentage Idaho shooter
Barone has started in all 13 games played this season and has led the team in scoring averaging 16.1 points per game. From within the field he sports a .586 percent and has helped Idaho with 22 assists.
Up next: A versatile Tech
School: Louisiana Tech
Johnson knows how to score points for Louisiana Tech, especially down the stretch. His .366 three-point shooting average is the highest on the team and he holds the second highest points per game for the team at 10.9.