Nov 18, 2011
The boys from the South venture North; Aggies vs. Thunderbirds
Here at TSS, we've been all for supporting in-state rivalries and acknowledging them as such. Southern Utah makes that difficult when looking at the bigger picture, because over the last decade while Utah State, Weber State, BYU and yes, even Utah have all been racking up conference championships and NCAA Tournament appearances, SUU has been left out of that party. Even Utah Valley have gotten in on winning conference championships, even if that conference is the Great West (which seems to be as much, if not more geographically confused than the Big East). The Thunderbirds haven't tasted conference supremacy since 2001, while all the other teams in the state have been busting out such honors on almost a yearly basis.
SUU doesn't look to join that party anytime soon either. They were picked to finish eighth in the Summit League preseason poll this year and did not put any players on the all-conference teams. Still, they're off to a 3-1 start to the season, beating UC Davis, Bryant and most recently Montana State Billings, where former Aggie Jaxon Myaer is currently playing. SUU barely pulled that game out, winning 63-60 in a game that was tied in the last minute.
Really, there isn't much to be said about this game other than it should be a good tune-up for USU after Tuesday's loss to Weber State. This needs to be a game where the Aggies take those lessons learned and try to improve. As much as I'd like to give credit to SUU, they got beat by San Diego State 70-37, and I can't imagine mercy is the first thing on the Aggies' minds after Tuesday. Not to mention, Preston Medlin is probably going to run a train on SUU again, kinda like the last time he played them. Pre-Med scored his first career points against SUU in The Spectrum two years ago, ending the game with 17 points, which is still his career-high.
Not returning for this game unfortunately is Australian big man Matt Hodgson, who cried on the bench two years ago. His Aussie PIC Matt Massey is back though, and is one of four double-digit scorers for the Thunderbirds.
Honestly though, who SUU has and doesn't have probably won't matter. There won't be many games where I'll feel good about being outright cocky going into a game, but this is one of them. USU is still a good team, and they showed some serious heart in making that game Tuesday interesting, which is an encouraging aspect for them to have.
Prediction: Medlin tops his career high that he set two years ago against these guys, Brady Jardine gets a double-double, Adam Thoseby finally gets a shot to fall and Brockeith Pane has a 2-to-1 A/TO ratio.
Aggies by 18.