With the postseason behind us and a new national champion crowned, it is time that we take a look back at how the Mountain West performed in the biggest tournament in college sports. Here are the good, bad, and ugly performances from March Madness.
San Diego State
The Aztecs became a national darling after beating Alabama in the Sweet Sixteen, eliminating a team that is surrounded by controversy. The Aztecs then went on to defeat Creighton in the Elite Eight after a last second free throw. The Aztecs are a perfect example of what can happen when you play great defense. This is not the most talented San Diego State squad I have seen, but they drew some really good matchups and played with a chip on their shoulder. This might be the most impressive athletic feat from a Mountain West team in the history of the conference. I am sure the PAC 12 was keeping a close eye on the performance of the Aztecs.
The Broncos did just enough to hang around with Northwestern for the majority of the contest, but a slow start and lack of depth were ultimately too much to overcome. Boise State relied far too heavily on their starting five and the toll it took on the team started to show when March rolled around. It was a disappointing loss for a program that is still looking to get its first win in the tournament. Addressing depth issues and production in the post will be the top concerns for Leon Rice and his staff this offseason.
The Aggies live and die by the three, and despite some poor shooting, they managed to put up a solid fight against Missouri. Similar to the Broncos, it seemed like the size and athleticism of their counterparts were just too much to overcome. The Aggies showed a lot of progress as a program this year, but they are now looking for a new head coach and have whispers of some key players possibly transferring. It will be interesting to see how this program responds next season.
The Wolf Pack were a case of a team that peaked too early. It seemed like this team was exhausted as the season went on which showed in the Mountain West Tournament and their first round game against Arizona State. Nevada was dominated from the opening tip and had no answer to the athleticism and shooting ability of the Sun Devils. Many fans did not feel like Nevada deserved a spot in the tournament, and their performance did not do anything to prove the doubters wrong.
What stood out to you about the performance of the Mountain West in March Madness? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.