Suddenly we find ourselves in March, and that means the madness is just about to begin. Both Wyoming and San Jose State will try to play big roles in the making of the madness, aiming to upset the top seeds in upcoming conference tournament.
First, they will be playing each other Wednesday night (6 P.M. PT) in Laramie.
Wednesday night will be senior night at Arena-Auditorium and the last time for fans to see lone senior Josh Adams finish off one of the best years in Wyoming basketball history.
Adams is averaging a conference-high 24.2 points per game, a statistical number he has held throughout all of the season. Ask any Mountain West fan, follower, or statistics person, who is the most electric player? If they don't say Adams, it should come as a gigantic shock.
Adams has shown consistently he can pour in over 30 points a game, while leading his team in all major categories, being the sole manufacturer of offense and getting his own shot. It's easier to say NBA ability.
San Jose State finds themselves last in the conference once again at 3-13. On the bright side, the Spartans, have matched their conference win totals over the last two years and have not shied away from competition.
SJSU got their biggest win in recent memory on February 2nd verse second place Fresno State. Eight of their 13 conference losses have been by fewer than 10 points.
Keys to the Game
Wyoming: Drive to the Basket
Both Josh Adams and Jason McManamen have shown they can win games courtesy of their three-point shot. The San Jose State defenders know that and will come to out to guard them tightly on the perimeter. Driving to the basket will help to avoid contested shots while putting pressure on big men Frank Rogers and Ryan Welage not to foul. Rogers and Welage are the Spartans two biggest offense threats, so having them on the court is vital.
San Jose State: If it works, Don't Fix It.
The first time these teams met in San Jose, the Spartans beat Wyoming 62-55. The recipe for success in that game was slowing the tempo and avoiding self-inflicted wounds. San Jose rebounded well in that game and made clutch free throws down the stretch to ensure the victory. One note to make it that Wyoming shot 27.3 percent from beyond the arc and just over 35 percent for the entire game in the first meeting. A performance like that is not likely the way the Cowboys have been shooting as of late.
If the Mountain West Tournament started today, San Jose State would be matched up against UNLV in a virtual home game for the Rebels. Sitting at ninth in the standings, Wyoming would square up against eighth-seeded Utah State.