The Aggie baseball team is riding a 13-game winning streak and has broken into the national rankings this week. The Aggies are ranked 20th by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper. The Aggies are back in action tomorrow after a week off and they'll be taking on in-state rival New Mexico in the third game of the season-long four game series. The Aggies have won the first two games between the two clubs. The Lobos are coming off a 2-1 series victory over Fresno State in Fresno.
On Thursday the Aggies open up conference play and with Nevada. This year the WAC has gone to a three-game conference series and with just seven teams in the league, the title will be decided with just an 18-game schedule. That leaves very little margin for error in trying to win the regular season title. The winner of the league will in all likelihood win all six series that they play and we'd venture a guess that the league winner will have no more than four losses. That means sweeping at least two of the series and perhaps even more importantly, protecting home field. The Aggies' conference schedule is favorable in that they host Nevada, Fresno State and Louisiana Tech while traveling to San Jose State, Sacramento State and Hawai'i. The Aggies have had success at all three of those road venues.
The Aggies also head into WAC play with an RPI of 15 and while the rest of the league does not have a particularly stellar RPI (though Nevada and Hawai'i are both inside the Top 100) we don't think the Aggies' RPI will take as big a hit as one might think. Since the WAC will only play an 18-game schedule which means there are fewer opportunities for the Aggies' RPI to take a hit. The Aggies also have two games against Baylor who currently has an RPI of 10 plus another game against Texas Tech (RPI 88) and as long as New Mexico continues to do well in Mountain West play, the Aggies' wins over them will continue to help bolster the Aggies' RPI as well as the Aggies' two wins over Arizona and their RPI of 6.
With all that being said, the best thing the Aggies can do is just continue to win.
The Aggie softball team faces a critical road WAC series this weekend as they travel to Louisiana Tech. The Aggies lost all three games against No. 16/18 Hawai'i this past weekend and now sit at 0-6 in WAC play. The Aggies sit two games behind Louisiana Tech and Utah State in the win column and only the top six teams make the WAC tournament. The Aggies could pass Louisiana Tech with a sweep and could even pass Utah State who plays Fresno State this weekend.
The Aggies need to pick up at least two wins to feel comfortable heading into the final four series of the WAC season. The Aggies can ill afford to start conference play 1-8 or 0-9. It would make the Aggies' task very difficult, however, not impossible.
In 2010 the Aggies got off to exactly the same start they have this season and in almost identical fashion. The Aggies opened on the road at the league newcomer (Boise State) and lost all three, then came home and lost all three to Hawai'i before going to Louisiana Tech and winning one of three. The Aggies would eventually start 2-10 in WAC play and were forced to win five of their final six to squeak into the WAC tournament which they were hosting (just like this year).
Suffice to say that the Aggies would really like to avoid that scenario again this year and winning at least two games this weekend would really help avoid that situation.
Jason Groves of the Las Cruces Sun-News recaps the Aggies' two losses on Saturday.
Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News takes a look at the quarterback position.
Teddy Feinberg also blogs his thoughts on the first week of practice.
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