Team preview: Utah State
Blue Ribbon Illustrated previews the 2004-05 college basketball season, exclusively on Insider.
For coach Stew Morrill and his Utah State Aggies, the job is to look forward. Utah State did seemingly everything a team could possibly do to earn an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament last season. The Aggies went 25-2 during the regular season, were ranked in the Top 25 for seven weeks and went 17-1 in league play. Did we mention the team had performed admirably in two recent NCAA appearances, advancing to the second round in 2001 and losing to Kansas by just three points in 2003?
Despite an impressive resume and pedigree, the Aggies were relegated to the NIT when Cal State Northridge, a team Utah State had beaten by a combined 48 points in two regular-season meetings, drained a last-minute three-pointer to earn a 63-62 win in the semifinals of the Big West Conference Tournament.