San Diego State vs. Air Force Series Preview
Aztecs looking to bounce back from Utah State series.
Air Force is what SDSU needs
Game: San Diego State at Air Force
Location: Clune Arena; Colorado Springs, Colorado
Game 1: Friday, 11 p.m. ET
Game 2: Sunday, 10 p.m. ET
STREAMING: Both games can be streamed on FuboTV – Click here for a seven-day free trial.
The hard times keep coming for San Diego State, but better things have to be ahead for Coach Dutcher’s program.
The Aztecs lost two straight against Utah State and lost their senior forward Matt Mitchell due to injury. Mitchell will be out for a couple of weeks with a hyperextended knee and bone bruise, so the task just gets tougher for the Aztecs.
The Aztecs played their first game without Mitchell last Saturday, and transfer Terrell Gomez and talented freshman Lamont Butler benefited the most from his absence.
Gomez, a Northridge transfer- had 16 points off the bench including four three-pointers, and Butler had 13 on 6-8 shooting to go with five steals.
— San Diego State Men's Basketball (@Aztec_MBB) January 16, 2021
The minutes will ramp up for both of those guys until Mitchell comes back, and perhaps one of them will be inserted into the starting five.
Butler’s defensive ability was his calling card in high school, and everybody knows how much the Aztecs value defense in the game.
Feels safe to say that San Diego State has its future at the point guard position in Lamont Butler. Pesky on defense, excellent burst and has really taken over today in Matt Mitchell’s absence.
— Eli Boettger (@boettger_eli) January 16, 2021
Brian Dutcher hinted at some potential lineup changes for the Air Force series, so that’s something to keep an eye on.
— Jon Schaeffer (@jonschaeffer) January 19, 2021
The good news for the Aztecs? Air Force is just 2-6 in conference play thus far, and the Falcons shouldn’t be too much trouble for the Aztecs- hopefully.
Junior guard AJ Walker (13.9 ppg) and senior guard Chris Joyce (12.3) are the only Air Force players averaging double-figures this season.
The Falcons got swept against both Boise State and Utah State, and split series against Nevada and Wyoming.
While Air Force doesn’t exactly pose a serious threat to the Aztecs on paper, you never know in the Mountain West Conference.
Clune Arena is always a tough environment and dealing with the altitude in places like Fort Collins and Colorado Springs always presents extra challenges for teams like the Aztecs.
However, the Aztecs are still figuring out how to make life work without Matt Mitchell, and it will be interesting to see the lineup changes Dutcher implements for this series.
Can the Aztecs bounce back and win a pair, or will the injury of Mitchell be too much to overcome?