San Diego State Basketball: Keys to an Aztec Victory against Brown
San Diego State meets Ivy League, Brown on Saturday.
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This is how San Diego State beats Brown.
San Diego State hosts Brown at Viejas Arena for the only second meeting between the two schools. The Aztecs are coming off a rejuvenating win against BYU after losing 2 of the last 4 games to California and University of San Diego. Devin Watson and Matt Mitchell dropped 20+ points in the 90-point victory against BYU.
Brown makes their longest trip this year, maybe even in over a decade. From Sports-Reference.com, Brown hasn’t made it to the west coast since a scheduled home-and-home with UC Davis in 2007. The Bears off a beating Marist, 78-53, have to travel across the country to face off a hot-shooting team. Brown sits currently third in the Ivy League standings behind conference-leading Penn and Harvard.
On paper, San Diego State and Brown match up. The Aztecs average about 77 points/game and hold opponents to around is 66 points/game. Compared to Brown’s average around 74 points/game and 66 points/game. Brown’s noteworthy opponents have been double-digit losses to Butler (15) and Rhode Island (20). Despite the elite academic stereotype, Ivy League schools have upset St. Marys, Villanova, and Miami (FL).
For San Diego State to send the rich kids back to Rhode Island let’s break down how they win.
Contain Desmond Cambridge
Desmond Cambridge is Ivy League Player of the Week who dropped 30 points on Marist. Cambridge is their leading scorer at 6’6″ playing guard and the offense runs on him. Cambridge puts points on the board, so if the Aztecs can’t put a proper body on him they need to get him into foul trouble. If you can get Matt Mitchell or a long body on him, you can get Cambridge to shoot under 40% and fluster him.
Embrace the Identity
Matt Mitchell downed 6-of-8 3-pointers in the game against BYU. This team has had problems scoring for years, but played suffocating defense to compensate. The 2018 Aztecs is better suited for position-less offense and all five are capable to shoot the three-ball. Shots beyond the arc aren’t enough. San Diego State has to get better at defending and boxing out before going into conference play.
Earning an at-large bid means they have to defend against the upper tiers in the conference like Nevada, Utah State, and Fresno State.
San Diego State heads into the final stretch of non-conference play. After Brown, they host Cal State Northridge before opening up conference play against Boise State at the Taco Bell Arena. The Aztecs have to play smart and not let these guys upset you on home court.
USD played better ball at Viejas and Cal broke down the Aztec defense in the final minutes at Berkeley. San Diego State has to stay focused for 40 minutes, and not overestimate the Ivy Leaguers.
San Diego State 80, Brown 68