WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi offers his weekly Mountain West men’s basketball power rankings. Look for these rankings once a week through the end of the regular season. As always, your feedback is encouraged.
1. No. 25 New Mexico (21-5 overall, 12-2 MW: The Lobos jump San Diego State this week based on their home win over the Aztecs last Saturday. Junior post Cameron Bairstow is the leading candidate for Player of the Year in the conference.
2. No. 13 San Diego State (23-3, 12-2): Drops out of No. 1 for the first time this season. The defense is still there, but the inconsistencies shooting the ball will hurt the Aztecs if that doesn’t straighten itself out.
3. Boise State (18-9, 8-6): The Broncos are making a run up the standings, and wins at Colorado State and at home against UNLV in overtime were huge. They seem to be finding ways to win close games, a problem early in the season.
4. UNLV (17-10, 8-6): A rough week for the Runnin’ Rebels with two losses. When the Rebels are good, they are really good. When they’re not, well …
5. Wyoming (17-10, 8-6): Wins will be hard to come by without junior forward Larry Nance Jr. A win Tuesday at home against Air Force is much-needed.
6. Fresno State (14-14, 7-8): Wyoming ended its five-game winning streak, but the team bounced back with an impressive road win at Utah State. Bulldogs are playing their best basketball.
7. Nevada (13-15, 8-7): The Wolf Pack are not any higher based on a home loss last week to last-place San Jose State. It snapped a five-game losing streak at Air Force, but this team is tough to get a read on right now.
8. Colorado State (15-13, 6-9): If the Rams shoot like they did in their 82-69 home win over Wyoming last Saturday they will be tough to beat. A road game at UNLV Wednesday will be a big test.
9. Utah State (15-12, 5-10): Never thought the Aggies would be this low, and they have road games at New Mexico and San Jose State this week.
10. Air Force (10-15, 4-10): The Falcons are reeling, but have to feel they can go up to Wyoming Tuesday and win. A somewhat dangerous team if they can make some shots, but that has been a struggle lately.
11. San Jose State (7-19, 1-13): Great to see the Spartans get their first MW win at Nevada last week, but that wasn’t enough to get them out of the basement of the rankings.
This week’s picks (teams in bold are predicted to win)
Air Force at Wyoming, 7 p.m. (Root Sports)
Utah State at New Mexico, 7 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
San Jose State at San Diego State, 9 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
Boise State at Fresno State, 7 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
Colorado State at UNLV, 9 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
UNLV at Air Force, 2 p.m. (ESPN3)
Boise State at Wyoming, 4 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
Utah State at San Jose State, 6 p.m. (Root Sports)
San Diego State at Fresno State, 8 p.m. (CBS Sports Network)
New Mexico at Nevada, 4 p.m. (ESPN3)
Last week: 6-4