NCAA Tournament Predictions: West Region: 6. Murray State vs. 11. Colorado State

By: Kels Dayton

 6 Murray State (30-1, 15-1 OVC)- Murray State began the year at 23-0 and looked like it might run the table all the way to the Big Dance. The Racers boast an incredible backcourt, including All-American candidate guard Isaiah Canaan, who leads the team with 19.6 points per game. Canaan could very well win the Bob Cousy Award, which is given to the best point guard in the nation.

All Murray State has done this season is win. (AP Photo)

It’s not all about Canaan, though. Backcourt mate Dante Poole averages 14.2 points and 3.7 rebounds per game, and forward Ivan Aska (11.6 ppg, 5.9 rpg) gives the Racers some muscle down low.

The Racers know about success, having dominated the Ohio Valley conference en route to an incredible 30-1 mark. This is an extremely athletic and talented bunch, and the confidence that comes with winning that many games cannot be overstated. Murray State probably feels a little undervalued at a 6-seed despite their record, so expect the Racers to come into the NCAAs with a chip on their shoulder.

That’s not a good thing for opponents.


23rd Field Goal Percentage (.447)

19th Steals (8.5)

40th Points Per Game (74.2)

Stats courtesy


 11 Colorado State (20-11, 8-6 Mountain West)-The Rams were an excellent team at home this season, but struggled on the road, particularly in big games. Colorado State defeated Mountain West rivals UNLV, New Mexico and San Diego State at home, but lost all three of those games on the road. It will be interesting to see how that trend plays out in the NCAA Tournament, where CSU will have to face tough teams outside of Fort Collins.

Guard Wes Eikmeier (Dallas

The Rams aren’t a very big team, and did not rebound the ball well during the season, finishing 300th in rebounds per game.

6-3 junior guard Wes Eikmeier leads Colorado State in scoring at 15.6 points per game.

Dorian Green, from Lawrence, Kansas, averages 13.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.5 assists for the Rams.


300th Rebounds per game (31.3)

25th Field Goal Percentage (.476)

101st Points per game (71.0)

PREDICTION: Murray State 

Stats courtesy of

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