The Mountain West Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament will be hosted in Las Vegas for the 14th straight year. No. 4 San Diego State became the outright Mountain West regular-season champion thanks to a stellar 17-1 record, setting the highest winning percentage of any team in conference history. The Aztecs, who are a projected No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, are a prohibitive favorite to win the Mountain West Tournament this year. San Diego State has historically dominated the postseason tournament, taking home the hardware five times.
This tournament will take place at the Thomas & Mack Center over four days commencing on Wednesday and culminating with the championship game on Saturday afternoon. A different school has won the tournament every year since 2014, with Utah State entering as the defending champion. The No. 2 seed has won the tournament eight times, the most of any seed.
San Diego State (28-1 SU, 18-10 ATS), led by leading scorer Malachi Flynn, continue to open eyes around the country with their strong play and enter the Mountain West Tournament with just one loss at the hands of UNLV. As the No. 1 seed, the Aztecs will await the winner of the first round matchup between Fresno State and Air Force.
San Diego State, who are ranked No. 4 in both the NCAA’s Net rankings and in the Kenpom rankings, will not have an easy path in their pursuit of a second title in the last three seasons. Flynn was disappointed when the Aztecs lost their status as the lone remaining unbeaten team in Division I following the 66-63 loss on February 22 to UNLV: “Although, that was the first time it happened, it sure didn’t feel good.”
With that loss still fresh in their minds, head coach Brian Dutcher believes it’s his team’s chemistry that is his club’s biggest asset.
“There’s metrics for both offense and defense, which we’re good at. But there’s no metric for chemistry, and that might be our strongest attribute. We have a great connection with this team. They play for each other and they love each other.”
Last season, Utah State won their first Mountain West title, but the sharps feel the tournament is the Aztec’s to lose, with Nevada (16/1) posing as a long shot threat. The wiseguys are backing San Diego State at -180, because they will be highly motivated to play at an elite level if they desire any chance to change the minds of the committee and perhaps earn the No. 1 seed in the West as opposed to heading far away from home. Gonzaga has mostly likely already made a stronger case for the No. 1 seed in the West, which will force the Aztecs to avoid taking any conference rival lightly. San Diego State understands the benefits of avoiding cross-country road trips that often derail the hopes of deep runs in the NCAA Tournament.
The information straight from Frankie Taddeo, Sports Illustrated’s Gambling Vegas Insider, is currently on an amazing 38-11-1 ATS (78%) run on all released plays. The sharp information out in Vegas supplied only to Sports Illustrated was on point going a perfect 7-0 ATS in the NFL Playoffs, culminating with a winning selection of Kansas City in Super Bowl LIV. Since November, the sharps have absolutely crushed the sportsbooks. Be sure to follow here at SI Gambling for the best, proven wiseguy action throughout March Madness!
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