The Daily Aggie :: 10/22/12

It was another rough weekend for Aggie sports as the football team fell 41-7 to Utah State and the soccer team lost both of their conference matches over the weekend thereby eliminating them from WAC tournament contention. The lone bright spot of the weekend was the volleyball team's 3-1 victory over Louisiana Tech on Saturday afternoon.

But the good news is that it's a new week and it's a big one for Aggie sports. On Saturday the cross country teams will head to Ruston, LA for the WAC Championship meet. The men are seeking their first ever WAC title while the women are hoping for a second WAC title in four years. Individually, Courtney Schultz is seeking her fourth consecutive title, with only Aggie men's golfer Tim Madigan coming close to matching the feat (Madigan was a part of four consecutive conference team titles).

Aggie volleyball faces in-state rival UNM tomorrow in Albuquerque. The Lobos are 18-5 overall with a win over Colorado State. This is the Aggies' last chance for a high-RPI win, though at this point, the Aggies will need to win the conference tournament in order to reach the NCAA tournament, particularly after suffering "bad" losses to UT Arlington and Texas State.

Aggie football hosts Louisiana Tech on Saturday for homecoming and it will be a big challenge for the Aggies. LA Tech just hung 70 points on Idaho, a team that defeated the Aggies 26-18. Idaho's loss also marked Robb Akey's final game as head coach of the Vandals. Akey was fired yesterday afternoon, though the loss to Idaho was not the main reason, it certainly did not help his cause. The Aggie defense has been porous this season and LA Tech's offense is the best in the WAC. It'll be a challenge for the Aggies just to keep LA Tech under their season average of 50 points.

Hoops season is just around the corner and that means it's time to unveil our preseason picks and all-conference team picks which we submitted on Friday to the WAC office.

On the men's side our picks look like this:

1. Utah State
2. New Mexico State
3. Denver
4. Louisiana Tech
5. UT Arlington
7. Texas State
8. Idaho
9. Seattle
10. San Jose State

Now, it's important to note that these are our regular season picks and they're based strictly on what teams have coming back and we actually feel like any of the top three teams are interchangeable (as are the bottom three teams). We also believe that in the end, New Mexico State will win the WAC tournament which is really all that matters because the WAC is unlikely to be a multi-bid league.

These are our picks for the Preseason All-Conference teams as well as Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year:

Player of the Year:
F Chris Udofia - Denver

Newcomer of the Year:
G K.C. Ross-Miller - New Mexico State

The remaining four Preseason All-WAC picks:
G Raheem Appleby - Louisiana Tech
G Daniel Mullings - New Mexico State
G Preston Medlin - Utah State
F Kevin Butler - UT Arlington

On the women's side these are our predictions for the regular season finish as well as the All-Conference teams. Again these picks are based strictly on what teams have (or don't have) coming back.

1. Texas State
2. Utah State
3. Louisiana Tech
4. Denver
5. Idaho
6. Seattle
7. San Jose State
8. New Mexico State
9. UT San Antonio
10. UT Arlington

Player of the Year:
G Devyn Christensen - Utah State

Newcomer of the Year:
G Stefanie Gilbreath - New Mexico State

The remaining four Preseason All-WAC picks:
F Alyssa Charlston - Idaho
F Kacie Sowell - Seattle
G Diamond Ford - Texas State
F Ashley Ezeh - Texas State

It should be noted that on both sides, there are so many question marks it's unreal. The WAC this year represents essentially four different conferences, the WAC (NMSU, USU, Idaho, SJSU and LA Tech) the Sun Belt (Denver), The Southland (UTSA, UTA, Texas State) and an independent in Seattle. Additionally, nearly every team has massive turnover from last year's squads and in almost every team's case on the men's side, the leading scorer from a season ago is no longer there or a big chunk of last year's starting five is gone. That's what makes this year's league so difficult to predict but it's also what will make this league fun to watch. Much like in volleyball this year, you may see unprecedented parity from top to bottom with any team being able to knock off any other team on any given night.

Today's Links...

Aggie Football
Zack Ponce of The Round Up recaps the Aggies' loss to Utah State.

Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News recaps the Aggies' loss.

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