Aggies Return Home to Host Northern New Mexico, Saturday, Dec. 21
Courtesy: New Mexico State University  
Release:  12/19/2013

NM State at New Mexico Coverage

Television: NONE

Radio: KGRT 103.9 FM (play-by-play: ‘Voice of the Aggies’ - Jack Nixon)

Live Stats: www.NMStateSports.com (click on live events link)

Twitter: @NMStateAggies

The New Mexico State men’s basketball team (9-5) returns home after a four-game 10-day road trip to take on Northern New Mexico, Saturday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. (MT) in the Pan American Center.  The game against the Golden Eagles will air over the radio waves on KGRT 103.9 FM.  Fans can listen to the radio coverage provided by NM State Hall of Fame inductee, Jack Nixon starting at 6:30 p.m. (MT) on the Aggie Sports Network.  Live stats are available online at www.NMStateSports.com under the live events link and in-game updates will be given on Twitter @NMStateAggies.

Looking Ahead

The Aggies have a week off before taking on South Alabama, Saturday, Dec. 28 at 7 p.m. (MT) in the Pan American Center.  The game is scheduled to air on the radio with ‘Voice of the Aggies’ and Hall of Famer, Jack Nixon giving the play-by-play action

About the Aggies

Currently, the Aggies are 9-5 on the season, after beating Drake in overtime and in-state rival New Mexico in Albuquerque. On the road, NM State is 4-3 overall, while holding a 4-1 record while playing in the Pan American Center.

As a team, The Aggies are averaging 74.7 points per game, outscoring their opponents by 4.6 points per game. NM State is shooting 45.8 percent from the field, 34.2 percent from behind the 3-point arc and 69.0 percent from the free throw line. On the boards, NM State are pulling down 37.1 rebounds a game, while recording 5.8 blocks, 4.9 steals and 11.9 assists a game. Four Aggies are shooting over 80 percent from the charity stripe.

Daniel Mullings leads the Aggies with 16.6 points per game, shooting 45.3 percent from the field. He also leads the Aggies in steals with 25. Sim Bhullar is shooting a team leading 65.8 percent from the floor, while also leading the team in rebounds (104) and blocks (47). K.C. Ross-Miller second on the squad with 48 assists, while shooting a team leading 89.2 percent at the free throw line. DK Eldridge is hot from the 3-point line, making 43.9 percent of his attempts, while Renaldo Dixon is second on the team at the free throw line, knocking down 83.3 percent of his attempts.

Aggies versus Northern New Mexico

The Aggies have a 2-0 all-time record against Northern New Mexico. The first time the teams met on Feb. 14, 2012, the Aggies swept the scoreboard, 100-68. The last meeting between the NM State Aggies and the Northern New Mexico Eagles was on Nov. 21, 2012 with a win by the Aggies 67-37 at home. With only a two-game game history, NM State has an all-time record of 2-0 both wins being at the Pan American Center. The NM State Aggies take on the Northern New Mexico Eagles on Dec. 21 at the Pan American Center marking the third time in history of the two teams meeting.

Scouting Northern New Mexico

The Northern New Mexico Eagles have an overall record of 10-6 this season with a majority of those wins coming on the road. The Eagles longest and most recent winning streak is three games. Matthew Brito is the Eagles offensive leader with a .442 field goal percentage while AJ Peralta leads the team in total rebounds recording 117 for the season. The Eagles most recent win against Concordia College Alabama ended with the Eagles on top by one point, 62-61.

Aggies against South Alabama

The Aggies are 8-6 all-time the South Alabama Jaguars while going 3-3 at home, 5-2 on the road and 0-1 at a neutral site.  The Aggies defeated South Alabama last year 58-52.  The teams first met on Dec. 12, 1976 when the NM State Aggies experienced their first loss to the Jaguars, 83-85.

Scouting the South Alabama Jaguars

As of Dec. 18, Sun Belt Conference member, South Alabama, has an overall record of 6-5, including 0-3 on the road.  The Jaguars average 74.5 points per game while shooting 40.7 percent from the field and 37.7 percent from 3-point range.  South Alabama also averages 40.9 rebounds per game while only allowing 36.7 rebound per game.

The Jaguars are led by forward Augustine Rubit, who leads the team in points per game (18.7), field goal percentage (49.3), 3-point field goal percentage (47.8) and rebounds per game (9.8).  The 6-foot-7 senior already has a Sun Belt Conference Player of the Week award under his belt this season. 

Aggies at Home

NM State is currently 4-1 at home this season with its only loss coming from New Mexico on Dec. 4.  The Aggies currently have a 550-146 record in the Pan American Center with 43 winning seasons in 45 years. NM State has marked at least 15 wins in the Pan American Center seven times and have gone undefeated at home three times (1969-70, 1970-71, 1989-90).

The Aggies defeated I-25 rival UTEP, 86-73, Nov. 15 in from of 10,009 fans.  That was NM State’s home opener and it gave the Aggies a 105-100 advantage in the 205 meetings between the two rivals.  NM State shot over 50 percent in the contest, sinking 25 of 44 shots to finish with a 56.8 shooting percentage while holding UTEP to 46 percent on the night.  The Aggie advantage in the paint was also noticeable as NM State out-rebounded the Miners, 37-23.

The Aggies are shooting 49 percent from the field, while out-rebounding their opponents 192-159.  NM State has also out-blocked its opponents 33-7 in the Pan American Center with Sim Bhullar posting 19 in front of the Aggie crowd.  Bhullar broke the school record for blocks in a game when he tallied 10 during a 91-60 win over Prairie View A&M , Nov. 27, 2013.

Aggies in the WAC

Of the nine teams in the Western Athletic Conference, the Aggies have the second best record at 9-5, while Seattle U is 7-3.   

NM State leads the league in many different categories individually. Center Sim Bhullar, is first overall in field goal percentage recording at .658 and blocked shots with a staggering 3.36 average blocks per game, which is 1.91 above anyone else in the WAC. Complimentary to his ranking in blocks and field goal percentage, Bhullar is stands up to the competition by ranking second in rebounds, with 40 offensively and second with 104 boards, just seven behind the leader Killian Larson from Grand Canyon.

Other standout players for the Aggies are KC Ross-Miller and Daniel Mullings, who are in the top 10 in scoring, free throw percentage, assists, steals, assist/turnover ratio and minutes played. Both Ross-Miller and Mullings were ranked for assists. Ross-Miller enters the game against Northern New Mexico with 48 placing him in fifth and Mullings is just ahead with 50, standing in fourth.

Mullings is the highest ranking Aggie in scoring (fourth), steals (third), and minutes played (second), while for free throw percentages, Ross-Miller places in second in the league with a .892 percentage recorded.

Aggies in the Nation

Coming into the week of Dec. 17, NM State leads the nation in free throw attempts and free throws made out out of 345 teams ranked. The Aggies are also top contenders for blocked shots per game and are ranked No. 38 nationally with 5.6 blocks shots per game while the national leader St. John’s from New York records a 9.9 per game.

Individually, center Sim Bhullar and guard Daniel Mullings are ranked in the top 20 nationally for blocked shots per game, total blocks and total points. Bhullar is sixth in the nation for total blocks out of 250 players ranked. He came into the week with 42 blocks while the national leader Jordan Bachynski from Arizona St. has posted 50. He is 17th in blocked shots per game (out of 250 players ranked) with 3.23 per game. The national leader Chris Obekpa from St. John’s is averaging 5.22 per game. Mullings went into the week of Dec. 17 ranked 18th in total points with 219.  The national leader, Antoine Mason from Niagra had 315 as of Dec. 17.

Ross-Miller from the Charity Stripe

Junior K.C. Ross-Miller leads the Aggies and is second in the WAC with an 89.2 shooting percentage from the free-throw line.  Ross-Miller has only missed seven of his 65 free-throw attempts on the season and has gone a perfect 26-of-26 from the line during NM State’s last eight games.  Included in the streak is an 8-for-8 performance at the charity stripe during the Aggies’ last two games, at Drake (Dec. 14) and at New Mexico (Dec. 17).  Against the Lobos, Ross-Miller sank six of his eight free throws during the final 30 seconds of the game to thwart a UNM comeback and give NM State its first win against its I-25 rival in over two years.

If Ross-Miller keeps up his current pace at the free-throw line, he will have a legitimate shot at breaking Eric Channing’s single-season free throw percentage record of 89.4 percent, which he set during the 2001-02 season.  Ross-Miller is also nearing Jahmar Young’s record of 36-consecutive free throws made, which he set in the 2009-10 season. 

Mullings Climbs the Assist List

This season, guard Daniel Mullings leads the team in steals with 25. Currently, he ranks tied for fourth on the all-time list with 162. He is tied with former Aggie great Randy Brown. Mullings is averaging 1.8 steals per game this season. In 14 games, Mullings has recorded eight games with at least two steals, including four games with three steals. Against New Mexico, Mullings had a season-high four steals. If Mullings keeps his current pace of 1.8 steals per game, by the end of the regular season he will rank third all-time with 194.

Mullings Reaches 1,000 – Moving up the all-time scoring list

Junior guard and Canadian native, Daniel Mullings led the NM State men’s basketball team with 483 points during the 2012-13 season. During the 2011-12 season he tallied a total of 334 points. Prior to the start of this season Mullings needed 183 points to reach 1,000 points for NM State. 

Mullings’ 1,000-career point came at the 17:32 mark in the second half when he made two free throws. He finished the evening going 5-of-14 from the field while also making 6-of-9 free throws. He now has 1,029 points during his time in the Crimson & White and surpassed former Aggie guard Billy Keys on the all-time scoring list. 

Mullings has scored 233 points this season and now has 1,050 points on his career.  He is currently averaging 16.6 points per game this season and is looking to climb the all-time scoring list.   Mullings moved up two spots to No. 26 on the all-time list with seven points against Drake and 14 points versus New Mexico. He needs one point to tie for the No. 25 spot.  Brandon Mason (1999-03) scored 1,051 points in 115 games with NM State.

Eric Channing is NM State’s all-time scoring leader with 1,862 points. Channing played for the Aggies from 1998-02. Former Aggie guard Hernst Laroche is No. 15 on all-time points scored. He was under coach Menzies from 2008-12 and scored a total of 400 points his first two years at NM State. George Knighton was the first Aggie to ever reach 1,000 points. He played for NM State from 1960-62 and scored over 1,000 points his first two years. The most recent Aggies to enter the 1,000 Point Club were Wendell McKines, Hernst Laroche, and Hamidu Rahman in 2012.  Former Aggie Billy Keys is currently No. 31 on the 1,000-point list with 1,004 points in 65 games played (two seasons; 1999-00).

Bhullar with another Block

Sophomore center Sim Bhullar broke the school record for blocks in a single game when he tallied 10 blocked shots in a 91-60 win over Prairie View A&M, Nov. 27 in the Pan American Center.  That day the Aggies tallied 14 blocks as a team, which is also a new school record at NM State.  Former Aggie All-American James Moore is the former record holder for blocks in a game as he tallied eight blocks against North Texas on Feb. 7, 2004.  The previous school record for blocked shots by an Aggie team was 12.  NM State marked 12 blocks against Creighton, Jan. 12, 1978, and against UTSA, Feb. 2, 2013.

Bhullar currently has 132 blocks on his career and is in the No. 3 spot on the all-time blocked shots list at NM State after marking five blocks against New Mexico.  Bhullar can move into the No. 2 spot on the all-time list with five more blocks.

Fourteen games in last season, Bhullar only had 23 blocks, compared to his 47 blocks after 14 games this season. At his current pace of 3.4 blocks per game, Bhullar is on track to block 108 shots this season, smashing the current-single season blocks record at NM State, which he currently holds (85).

Blocked Shots (career)

1. James Moore (2000-03), 200

2. Hamidu Rahman (2008-12), 137

3. Sim Bhullar (2012-Present), 132

4. Slab Jones (1976-80), 124

5. Charles Gosa (1995-99), 116

Foreign Players at NM State

Out of 524 NCAA Division I players, the Aggies are recognized for a team that has a large amount of foreign players on the roster. With seven foreigners, NM State is joined by Eastern Washington, Maine and Nicholls St. as having the most amount of foreign players, a majority coming from Canada and Australia.

Center Sim Bhullar from Toronto, Ontario, Canada leads the team in total rebounds averaging 7.4 with 104 actual rebounds made. He is also a leader by a large margin for blocks with 47, compared to the second closest player, Renaldo Dixon a forward from Toronto, Ontario, Canada with 11. Tshilidzi Nephawe, the Aggie center from Johannesburg, South Africa, totals 96 rebounds just under Bhullar’s 104 mark, giving Nephawe a 6.9 average, which places him second for the team. He also marks the highest field goal percentage with .511, which is .11 above Dixon and foreign forward Remi Barry from Paris, France. Both Barry and Dixon are top three for the team in free throw percentages with .840 from Barry and .833 from Dixon, which are just under he .892 percent coming from guard KC Ross-Miller. Also from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Daniel Mullings leads the team in total points made with a 16.6 percent average and 233 actual points.

Mullings Climbs the Steals List

This season, guard Daniel Mullings leads the team in steals with 25. He is currently tied with former Aggie great Randy Brown for fourth on the all-time list with 162, and is 12 away from the No. 3 spot held by former Aggie All-American James Moore. Mullings is averaging 1.8 steals per game this season. In 14 games, Mullings has recorded eight games with at least two steals, including five games with three steals or more. If Mullings keeps his current pace of 1.8 steals per game, by the end of the regular season he will rank third all-time with 186.

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