#78 New Mexico State Men's Basketball 2019-2020 Preview

New Mexico State Aggies
2019-2020 Overall Rank: #78
Conference Rank: #1 WAC
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New Mexico State has been to seven NCAA Tournaments in the last eight years. Once again the Aggies cruised through the WAC last year with a 15-1 record. It should be just as impressive in 2019-2020. Coach Chris Jans returns four starters and more than enough depth to not just win the WAC, but be a team that can give somebody trouble in the NCAA Tournament.
2018-19 Record: 30-5, 15-1
2018-19 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Chris Jans
Coach Record: 58-11 at NM State, 79-23 overall
Key Departed Players:
Eli Chuha, Forward, 9.7 ppg
JoJo Zamora, Guard, 7.5 ppg
Mohamed Thiam, Forward, 4.5 ppg
Keyon Jones, Guard, 3.0 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Terrell Brown, Senior, Guard, 11.3 ppg
AJ Harris, Senior, Guard, 9.5 ppg
Clayton Henry, Senior, Guard, 5.4 ppg
C.J. Bobbitt, Senior, Forward, 4.6 ppg
Ivan Aurrecoechea, Senior, Forward, 9.6 ppg
Trevelin Queen, Senior, Guard, 7.8 ppg
Johnny McCants, Junior, Forward, 6.2 ppg
Jabari Rice, Sophomore, Guard, 3.4 ppg
Shunn Buchanan, Senior, Guard, 2.1 ppg
Key New Players:
Rashaun Agee, Freshman, Forward
Dajour Joseph, Junior, Guard, JC Transfer
Carl Lewis, Freshman, Center
Wilfried Likayi, Junior, Forward, JC Transfer
William McNair, RS Freshman, Forward
Tennessee Owens, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Alabama-Huntsville
Jihaun Westbrook, Freshman, Guard
Evan Gilyard, Junior, Guard, Transfer from UTEP, not eligible
Terrell Brown was the only player on the team that averaged over ten points per game last season. The senior guard is a prolific outside shooter and connected on 42.0 percent of his attempts from long range. AJ Harris, Clayton Henry and Treveling Queen are all capable shooters as well and NMSU should again be a very prolific three-point shooting team. The frontcourt returns seniors C.J. Bobbitt and Ivan Aurrecoechea and junior Johnny McCants. Aurrecoechea is the most proven scoring threat of the bunch, averaging 9.6 points and 5.3 rebounds last season. With the departure of Eli Chuha, the team’s second leading scorer and top rebounder, the frontcourt will need to step up. The addition of junior college transfer Wilfried Likayi will add another solid option to the frontcourt. This is a very experienced New Mexico State squad and that spells trouble for the rest of the WAC. Eight of the nine returning players from the regular rotation are upperclassmen and this is a squad that can win 30 games again in 2019-2020.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 78.1 (52nd in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.5 (28, 1)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.0 (77, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.9 (73, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 9.3 (45, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.4 (231, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 67.8 (283, 6)
Rebound Margin: 9.7 (3, 1)
Assists Per Game: 14.7 (72, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.0 (86, 1)