Men's Basketball Ready for Houston in NCAA First-Round Matchup
March 12, 2018
SAN DIEGO -
NEWS AND NOTES (Through games of Sunday, March 11)
* The Aztecs-Cougars game will be broadcast nationally by TBS and the contest can be heard on 101.5 KGB, XTRA Sports 1360 and FOX Sports IE 1350. Westwood One Radio will have the national call.
* San Diego State is making its ninth NCAA tournament appearance in the last 19 seasons, all of which have occurred with first-year head coach Brian Dutcher on the sideline. The first eight NCAA berths, however, were with Dutcher as an assistant to former head coach Steve Fisher.
* The Aztecs are in the postseason for the 12th time in the last 13 years after finishing their schedule with nine straight victories. SDSU rattled off six consecutive wins to put the finishing touches on its regular-season slate before heading to Las Vegas for the Mountain West Championship where it took down three higher seeds in No. 4 Fresno State (quarterfinal), No. 1 and 22nd-ranked Nevada (semifinal) and No. 3 New Mexico (final). The Aztecs were the fifth-seeded team.
* SDSU claimed its Mountain West-leading 11th conference title and broke a tie with New Mexico by claiming its fifth MW tournament crown. The Aztecs, who were playing in their fourth Mountain West championship game in the last five seasons, won the tourney for the first time since 2011.
* San Diego State’s nine-game winning streak is tied for the seventh longest in school history and tied for the fifth longest in the nation with Michigan. Only Gonzaga (14), Murray State (13), South Dakota State (11) and Loyola Chicago (10) have longer current streaks. The Aztecs last suffered a loss on Feb. 10.
* San Diego State has won nine consecutive games with the average margin of victory during that stretch of 13.3 points. Five of the nine wins have occurred away from home.
* The Aztecs’ nine-game winning streak has coincided with senior guard Trey Kell’s return to the active roster. The San Diego native missed three straight games due to a left ankle injury and has done a little bit of everything, averaging 11.0 points and 4.1 rebounds to go with 50 assists and just 11 turnovers.
* Kell enjoyed a strong performance at the Mountain West Championship, averaging 18.3 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists en route to MVP honors. The guard went off for a career-high 28 points on 10-for-16 shooting with 21 points coming in the second half vs. New Mexico. Kell has scored in double figures in four straight games for the first time since November when he did it six consecutive times.
* Joining Kell on the Mountain West all-tournament team was junior guard Devin Watson. A local product from Oceanside, Watson averaged 12.7 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists, while hitting 50.0 percent from three (5-10) and 90.0 percent from the free-throw stripe (9-10). His best outing of the tourney came against top-seeded and nationally ranked Nevada in the semifinals when he turned in 20 points on the strength of a season-high four treys.