Just how good are the 2-0 Jackrabbits?

Travis Kriens

Travis KriensJackrabbits Guru

The SDSU men’s basketball team defeated Iowa on Sunday 79-69 to the surprise of many, but don’t include the players or the coaches in that group.

Point Guard Nate Wolters had the best game of his short career with a career best 25 points and nine assists, earning him Co-Summit League Player of the Week, a first for SDSU since they joined the conference. Wolters is a unique player, the likes of which hasn’t been seen at SDSU in a while.

Clint Sargent is the steady senior assassin from the outside, putting up 19 points in the season opening win at Eastern Illinois and 16 at Iowa.

Add to that the freakishly athletic senior Dale Moss, along with the most highly touted recruiting class in school history and SDSU has all the makings of an exciting and winning team on the rise.

The question now is how will the Jacks back up this win and prove that they are among the elite in the Summit League.

Last season, SDSU opened with an impressive 77-61 win at Wyoming, but then went on to lose five of the next six. Also, Wyoming finished only 10-21 losing 10 of their last 11.

In 2008-09, the Jacks had their signature Division I win up to that point with a 65-58 defeat of Iowa State, who finished at 15-17. SDSU went on to lose their next two games, both in conference, by a combined 39.

In 2007-08, SDSU defeated Northern Iowa at home 61-55, and then proceeded to lose four of the next five.

The difference between those years and this year is that the Jacks begin the longest home stand since 1991 starting this Thursday against Southwest Minnesota State. With marquee matchups against Nevada on Nov. 30th and North Dakota State on Dec. 4th, anything less than a 5-2 home stand and a 7-2 start overall would be seen as a disappointment in my eyes. Although if you ask the players and coaches, they will probably tell you that they expect to win all seven, which they very well could.

Ever since the jump to Division I, many sports at SDSU have exceeded expectations. Whether it’s volleyball making the NCAA Tournament in their first eligible year, football getting better after moving up a class and making the playoffs for the first time in 30 years last season, or the women’s basketball team staying steady and transitioning from a Division-II national title to back-to-back NCAA Tournament bids and four straight years of postseason action.

The only thing missing is Jackrabbit men’s basketball getting back to the glory days, where Frost Arena filled with over 4,000 fans every game and leading D-II in attendance. For four years in a row, the SDSU women have outdrawn the men, something that only a handful of colleges can say.

If men’s basketball can become a winning program again, hopefully the crowds will come back to Frost for good.