Monday, January 21, 2013
Colorado State's biggest skill
By Luke Lapinski
With a big victory over UNLV on Saturday, Colorado State is now 15-3 on the year (2-1 in conference play). That puts them ahead of both the Rebels and San Diego State in the hotly contested Mountain West at the moment. What's more, the Rams have made Fort Collins a tough place for opponents to play, turning aside 24 visitors in a row.
So what are CSU's chances in the second half of the season? Not bad at all. This team made a trip to the NCAA Tournament a year ago and, while they did lose head coach Tim Miles in the offseason, they kept a number of key players from their 2011-12 roster. And Larry Eustachy has done an excellent job stepping into the role of coach without letting his team experience much of a drop-off during the transition.
One of the main key's for the Rams has been their ability to dominate on the glass. In the victory on Saturday, they outrebounded a UNLV squad that features top end talent up front in Anthony Bennett, Khem Birch and Mike Moser. In fact, Eustachy's group has outrebounded every single team they've face this season. Kenpom.com rates them as the best defensive rebounding team in the country and No. 2 when it comes to hauling in offensive boards. For the most part, that's a skill that doesn't just suddenly disappear in the middle of the season. And if they keep grabbing the majority of missed shots in their games, they're going to have a good shot at plenty more wins.