Colorado State Men's Basketball 2015 NIT Tournament Capsule

Colorado State Rams
Mountain West (27-6, 13-5)


Colorado State quickly got on the national radar after winning their first 14 games of the season. The schedule was not too difficult though and the best wins came at home against UTEP and on the road at Colorado. Once conference play began Colorado State was more up and down. Most of their losses came against the top teams in the Mountain West and on the road though.

Big Wins: 12/31 Boise State (71-65), 1/24 San Diego State (79-73), 2/7 UNLV (83-82)
Bad Losses: 1/3 at New Mexico (53-66), 1/7 Wyoming (54-60), 2/4 at Wyoming (48-59)
Coach: Larry Eustachy

Why They Can Surprise:
Coach Larry Eustachy did a superb job of bringing in talent to compliment his two returning superstars, Daniel Bejarano and J.J. Avila. Bejarano, a 6-5 guard, was the team’s leading scorer back in 2013-2014 and followed it up by averaging 11.3 points, 2.9 assists and 7.1 rebounds during his senior season. Avila, another senior, is the big body in the paint and has emerged as the team’s top scorer and rebounder this season. Those two may be the stars of the team, but Stanton Kidd, a transfer from North Carolina Central, has proven the he can play with anybody in the country. He is a great scorer both inside and out and a very difficult forward for most teams to defend. Tiel Daniels, a transfer from Southern Illinois, John Gillon, a transfer from Arkansas-Little Rock and junior college transfers Gian Clavell and Fred Richardson have all been very productive.

Why They Can Disappoint:
This is a very big team. The shortest player in the regular starting five is Bejarano at 6-5. That size has been extremely helpful on the glass, but it has not been so productive in the shot blocking department. This is a very good defensive team, but that is typically only in the halfcourt set. If a team can create turnovers and get fast breaks, or just pushes the ball up the court exceptionally quick, the Broncos defense suddenly becomes average at best. The Rams also have a habit of hoisting up a few too many three-pointers. In their two losses against Wyoming, Colorado State went 5-for-39 from beyond the arc. At some point Colorado State will have to force long balls to come from behind since they do not create too many fast breaks for themselves, but they must remember to work through Avila in the paint as long as possible.

Probable Starters:
Daniel Bejarano, Senior, Guard, 11.3 ppg, 2.9 apg, 7.1 rpg
Joe De Ciman, Junior, Guard, 8.1 ppg, 1.7 apg
Tiel Daniels, Junior, Forward, 5.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg
Stanton Kidd, Senior, Forward, 11.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg
J.J. Avila, Senior, Forward, 16.6 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 2.8 apg, 2.0 spg

Key Roleplayers:
Gian Clavell, Junior, Guard, 9.2 ppg, 1.2 apg
John Gillon, Sophomore, Guard, 8.1 ppg, 3.3 apg
Fred Richardson, Junior, Guard, 3.0 ppg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.0 (49th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 63.9 (104, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 44.7 (102, 5)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.0 (124, 8)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.3 (77, 4)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.4 (122, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 67.8 (227, 5)
Rebound Margin: 6.2 (24, 1)
Assists Per Game: 14.9 (38, 2)
Turnovers Per Game: 10.8 (33, 3)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NCAA    Second Round win over Missouri
2013    NCAA    Third Round loss to Louisville
2012    NCAA    Second Round loss to Murray State
2011    NIT    First Round loss to Fairfield
2010    CBI    First Round loss to Morehead State
2003    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Duke
1999    NIT    First Round win over Mississippi State
1999    NIT    Second Round win over Colorado
1999    NIT    Quarterfinal loss to California
1998    NIT    First Round loss to Minnesota

*all team stats through 3/8


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