The New Mexico Lobos (20-8) will host the (#22) San Diego State Aztecs (22-8) on Saturday night. The Aztecs have won ten of their last 11 and possess one of the best defenses in the country. They are destined for March Madness regardless of whether they win the MWC tourney next month. New Mexico continues to stumble in February, losing five of their last six and is now considered outside the field of 68 if the NCAA Tournament was to start today. A win over a ranked SDSU squad on Saturday would do wonders for their tournament resume.
San Diego State vs. New Mexico
|San Diego State Aztecs||-2.5||o147.5||-147|
|New Mexico Lobos||+2.5||u147.5||+120|
Odds are courtesy of BetMGM Sportsbook
San Diego State vs. New Mexico Match Details
Fixture: San Diego State Aztecs at New Mexico Lobos
Date and Time: Saturday, February 25th at 10:00 PM ET
Venue: The Pit
ShotQuality Tale of the Tape
Below, we will highlight essential ShotQuality data for this matchup, including Adjusted Offensive and Defensive SQ, strengths, weaknesses, and frequency. SQppp is a player’s average ShotQuality points per possession.
Thus, SQppp = Total SQpoints/Total No. of Possessions.
The San Diego State Aztecs own a 1.13 AdjOFF SQ this season, good for 37th in the nation. New Mexico has the 140th-best AdjDEF SQ at 1.00. SDSU does well in all key stats except in the open three rate and the rim and three rate metrics, where they are among the bottom 30 teams in the country. Conversely, the Lobos are fantastic in the defensive open three rate metric and just outside the top 100 in the defensive rim and three rate metric. The Aztecs do have a slight advantage in shot-making and shot selection.
The Aztecs own high-frequency numbers in isolation, midrange, off-screen, P&R ball screen, post-up, and transition shot types. They are between 110 and 230 in SQ PPP for those shot types. They are best in the P&R and transition but have struggled in the post-up. Conversely, the Lobos are outside the top 200 in defending all those shot types.
The Lobos have a 1.14 AdjOFF SQ, the 34th-best mark in the country. SDSU has posted a 0.93 AdjDEF SQ this season, clocking in at 21st in the country. The Lobos are in the top 30 in shot selection, FTR (free throw rate), and the rim & three SQ PPP metrics. However, the Aztecs are just inside the top 160 in those defensive key categories.
New Mexico is in the country’s top half in frequency regarding these shot types: cut, finishing at the rim, isolation, midrange, P&R ball screen, and transition. San Deigo State is outside the top 250 in defending the P&R, the midrange, and isolation shot types. However, they are above average in defending shots off the cut and near the rim, two strengths of the Lobos (top ten per SQ PPP in both metrics).
San Diego State vs. New Mexico Prediction
ShotQuality loves the Aztecs and has a slight lean on the under, but the model needs to consider how significant some home court advantages can be. The Pit in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is one of the most intimidating atmospheres in the country and should be rocking Saturday night. SDSU is the better team, but New Mexico is hanging on by a thread regarding their NCAA Tournament chances. So grab the Lobos on the first half spread and expect them to come out hot.