2022 Mountain West Basketball Preseason Poll Takeaways
The Aztecs take the top-spot once again
The top-two of the Mountain West preseason rankings wasn’t stunning.
The preseason Mountain West poll and all-conference teams came out on Wednesday. That means one thing: It’s time for College basketball! But who is the team to watch out for in the Mountain West and who is the biggest contender to knock them off? Let’s find out.
Here's your first look at the 2022-23 #MWMBB Preseason Poll and Players of the Year 🏀#AtThePEAK pic.twitter.com/bgBSvWQ4HE
— Mountain West (@MountainWest) October 19, 2022
Player of the year: Graham Ike – Wyoming
The junior center broke out in a major way last season, averaging 19.5 points, 9.6 rebounds and notched first-team all conference honors.
The man @Graham_Ike5
The @MountainWest Preseason Player of the Year 🤠🆙 pic.twitter.com/9qc8L7MjhI
— Wyoming Cowboy Basketball (@wyo_mbb) October 19, 2022
Freshman of the year: Joseph Hunter – Fresno State
Hunter was the 72nd ranked recruit in the 2022 class, coming in as the Bulldogs highest-rated recruit in the past decade.
Newcomer of the year: Darrion Trammell – San Diego State
Trammell fills a role that desperately needed fixing. When you add a secondary scorer next to Bradley, who can also score 15+ on any given night then it’s tough to figure out how to contain both high-end scorers.
Graham Ike – Wyoming
Hunter Maldonado – Wyoming
Matt Bradley – San Diego State
Jamal Mashburn Jr – New Mexico
Isaiah Stevens – Colorado State
San Diego State received 16 out of 20 possible first place votes, while Wyoming received the other four votes.
I get why Wyoming got some votes but in my estimation, there’s a sizeable gap between San Diego State and Wyoming. The Aztecs improved with adding Darrion Trammell (Seattle), Micah Parrish (Oakland) and if the burly forward JaeDon LeDee is as good as some believe then I don’t see how the Aztecs don’t win the conference. This team is deeper than Wyoming, have a better defense and a more proven track record than the Cowboys. I more than respect Jeff Linder turning Wyoming around so drastically in two seasons but Brian Dutcher deserves a little more respect.
On the top step.
The No. 19 Aztecs have been picked first in the preseason Mountain West media poll, while Matt Bradley has been named to the preseason all-MW team, and Darrion Trammell has been named preseason newcomer of the year.
📰: https://t.co/tX3WEXTu4j#TheTimeIsNow pic.twitter.com/UVxeFDxbr8
— San Diego State Men's Basketball (@Aztec_MBB) October 19, 2022
It’s a little surprising Bradley isn’t the preseason player of the year considering San Diego State is nationally ranked and how poorly Ike played in the final two months of last season.
Perhaps the biggest surprise is Colorado State sliding into the fourth spot. We have ZERO idea when Stevens will return but it doesn’t seem like he’ll play basketball for quite some time. Without him, the Rams roster is worse than New Mexico and UNLV.
The one sleeper team? I’m going with Utah State. The Aggies lose top-scorers Justin Bean and Brandon Horvath but return important ancillary pieces and brought in St Joe’s forward Taylor Funk, who is the perfect replace for Horvath as a floor-stretching forward.
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