SAN DIEGO — The San Diego State men’s basketball season is here, and the Aztecs have checked in as #19 in the preseason Associated Press Top 25 ranking.
This is the fourth time in program history that the Aztecs have started off the season ranked in the preseason polls and with another ranked season, comes more expectations for this program to reach a standard that has been set for this program.
With expectations comes pressure to live up to the bar that has been set, especially since Aztecs Head Coach Brian Dutcher said this is one of the deepest rosters he has had.
The Aztecs return four starters from last year's team: senior forwards Nathan Mensah and Keshad Johnson, senior guard Matt Bradley and Butler, a junior guard. Bradley, Mensah and Johnson started all 32 games last year, while Butler started 25 times in 27 games. Bradley was the leading scorer at 16.9 points and Mensah, the MWC Defensive Player of the Year, was the leading rebounder at 6.9.
The Aztecs were picked as the favorites to win the Mountain West in the annual media poll, getting 16 out of 20 first-place votes.
Matt Bradley, the senior guard, has been included on the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame's initial watch list for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, the most prestigious individual honor a collegiate shooting guard can earn.
CBS 8's Marcus Greaves had a chance to sit down with some old faces and a new face on this Aztecs roster to talk about the upcoming season, the pressure they face, and what it means to be an Aztec.
Bradley, the senior guard, has been included on the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame's initial watch list for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, the most prestigious individual honor a collegiate shooting guard can earn. Last season he led the Aztecs in points per game (16.9), 3-pointers (57), free throws (113) and minutes (1,007).
Mensah returns as a defensive leader to the Aztecs after being named the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year last year. The senior from Ghana started all 32 games in 2021/22.
Johnson started all 32 games in 2021/22 and averaged 7.2 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, establishing new career highs in almost every statistical category.
Trammell, a Senior transfer from Seattle University joins the Aztecs for his 4th year after leading the Western Athletic in several categories and being named to the WAC First-Team as a Junior.