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Emptying the notebook: Fouls, ties, Cotton Eyed Joe and other odds and ends from UNM’s win at Wyoming

LARAMIE, Wyo. — Here are some notes, quotes, stats, tweets and videos from Tuesday night’s wild night in Wyoming where the UNM Lobos beat the Wyoming Cowboys 119-114 to move into fourth place in the Mountain West standings:

More like the Ome of Oom, amiright?

On a night when two teams combine to score 233 points, the most ever in a game in the Arena-Auditorium, which opened in Feb. 1982, it was clear the arena’s usual nickname of the “Dome of Doom” wasn’t going to work.

UNM’s 119 points was the most ever scored by a Wyoming opponent in the building and the most UNM scored against a Division I opponent since November 1977. On the national level, UNM still has this season’s highest point total in a game of 147 vs. Northern New Mexico on Nov. 11, but that was an NAIA cupcake that should have never been scheduled by the Lobos (at least play one of the state’s three Division II schools next time, not the NAIA program).

In term of Division I foes, Tuesday’s 119 points vs. Wyoming is tied for the third most scored against a DI team this season.

• 138 — Virginia Tech vs. The Citadel on Nov. 12
• 124 — Duke vs. St. Francis, Pa., on Dec. 5
• 119 — UNM vs Wyoming on Tuesday; Auburn vs. Winthrop on Nov. 24

It should be noted that of those four DI games, only Tuesday’s was a conference game.

Oh, and the two teams combined to shoot 59.7 percent and when there was defense being played at all, it often wasn’t without fouling. The game had 64 fouls called and 81 free throw attempts.

The Lobos had six players score in double figures and three scored 20 or more. Wyoming had three players also score 20 or more, including a reserve (Louis Adams) go off for 31 points. There were 26 combined made 3-pointers.

The offense was amazing.

That’s all well and good, but they also allowed 114 points, which is the second road game in a row the Lobo defense allowed a team to reach the century mark (Air Force beat UNM 100-92 on Feb. 10).

“Very concerning. Our defense is an issue,” Lobos coach Paul Weir said. “I wish I could tell you otherwise. Our offense is clicking, and it’s been clicking for awhile. We’ve got a very good offensive basketball team. Whether that means we’re going to have to give some things up because some of these guys are good offensive players and not good defensive players, I don’t know. But our defense can’t be this way for us to continue to win games.”

Then again…

“As I say all that,” Weir added, getting hit with some perspective on just how big picking up Tuesday’s road win was at one of the league’s toughest venues, “I usually say we’ve got to be able to defend enough to be able to win on the road and we just won on the road against a team that beat Nevada and Boise here.”

If interested in the actual game story posted Tuesday night before deadline…

From a fan

And how do games like Tuesday’s make some Lobo fans feel watching them on television, especially just 10 days after another defenseless effort on Feb. 10 led to the Air Force Falcons also scoring 100 points and beating the Lobos?

When a tie is really a win

Now he’s just toying with us.

Sure, maybe Paul Weir wants you, and certainly his players, to believe winning is all about hard work and executing on the court. But I know better. In fact, I even did some Pulitzer-worthy reporting on it last week …

Here are the numbers: Entering Tuesday’s game, Weir wore a tie in four of the Lobos’ previous eight games (Jan. 17 – Feb. 14). The team’s record in those games?

Weir with tie: Lobos were 1-3

Weir without a tie: Lobos were 4-0

So why in the world would he wear a tie on Tuesday night and risk it all?

“There goes your next newspaper article,” Weir said when asked the hard-hitting question about the neckwear choice, still keeping to himself whether he really put any thought into the superstition.

Baby, it’s cold outside

First off, the drive up U.S. 287 from Fort Collins, Colo., to Laramie, Wyo., on Tuesday was gorgeous and remains one of the best parts of being lucky enough to cover Mountain West hoops.

But make no mistake, it was colder than… It was cold in Laramie.

That temperature, and icy/snowy roads, is why the generously announced attendance of 4,321 didn’t shock me. But it didn’t look great, either, which is particularly disappointing for a televised game.

Cotton Eyed Joe!

One of the best timeout experiences in the Mountain West, even when the AA wasn’t exactly packed on Tuesday, is at the under 8 minute media timeout in the second half when they play the Cotton Eyed Joe in Laramie!

Meanwhile, back at Channel 13…

It looks like Tuesday’s outcome was good news for a few people in the KRQE newsroom and not so much for one proud, albeit bitter for now, Wyoming graduate.

Cite your source!

Apparently looking at the player profile pages for some Lobo players isn’t exactly the best place for opposing student sections to find their dirt.

The Sam Logwood bio page on the team’s website still includes the line, “Undecided on major.”

That, apparently, is where the Wild Bunch, the Wyoming student section, found their fodder for Logwood heckling on Tuesday, chanting “Pick a major! Pick a major!” during his free throw attempts.

The problem is, Logwood walked at December’s University of New Mexico commencement ceremonies, making him one of the few players on the court Tuesday night who actually already has a degree.

Final stat sheet

Here’s the final stat sheet from Tuesday’s game, one an offensive-minded basketball coach might frame, one a defensive-minded coach might set a match to.

For the record

Since I previewed Tuesday’s games talking about how the Lobos were about to break a 20-year-old program record for most 3-pointers made in a season, I should update how that went.

And for those who missed it, or just love the nostalgia of reading about Royce Onley, here’s my Tuesday article:

Meanwhile, in Albuquerque…

OK, so the UNM women’s basketball team didn’t play on Tuesday. But they have a big one on Wednesday night. Here’s Ken Sickenger’s article publishing in Wednesday’s Journal including a game box with stats and game information…

Mountain West scores/schedule

There was only one Mountain West game on the schedule on Tuesday:
• New Mexico 119, Wyoming 114

There are four MWC games on Wednesday with only Utah State off for a midweek game (times MT):
• Boise State at Colorado State, 7 p.m.
• San Diego State at Air Force, 7:30 p.m.
• Fresno State at UNLV, 8 p.m.
• San Jose State at Nevada, 8 p.m.

Mountain West standings

Through Tuesday’s game…

The good news here for the Lobos is that with tie breakers via season sweeps of Wyoming (standard two-game sweep) and San Diego State (the two teams only played once this season and the Lobos won), UNM will be seeded higher than either if there is a two way tie in the standings with those teams.

That means of the six teams still battling it out for seeds 3, 4 and 5 (the top five seeds get a bye into the Mountain West Tournament quarterfinals), UNM is currently ahead of four of them via record and both Wyoming and SDSU would likely have to pass UNM by a game, not just tie them, to get a higher seed.

The seeding scenarios get more complicated for multiple team ties, which this season could have, but the good news for now for UNM is even if they lose all three remaining games and finish 9-9, they might still be in a tiebreaker scenario for a top-5 seed because all those teams in the mix still play each other and it is not likely multiple teams will both catch and pass UNM in the standings with just a week and a half left in the regular season.

Just asking

The NCAA on Tuesday upheld the sanctions it imposed on Louisville, forcing the Cardinals to vacate wins from 2011-2015, including one Round of 32 win against the Lobos in 2012, leading former Lobos Hugh Greenwood to pose the question…

To be clear, no. It doesn’t. The NCAA’s decision to vacate victories isn’t the same as making them forfeits, which would give the other team the win. It just takes away the original win, but the loss still stands.

Sorry, Hugh.

Postgame Paul Weir interview

Here is the postgame interview I posted on the Journal’s Facebook page that I had with Weir outside the Lobos locker room with the added bonus of a wonderfully courtious woman walking behind us talking rather loud as we started recording the interview.

Grammer’s Guesses

The news everyone wanted to know Tuesday night was how I did against the coin from my daughter’s piggy bank in picking the game.

Well, the Guesses got one right and gained a game on the unbelievably accurate coin in picking games against the Vegas point spread.

The Guesses are now at 42-34-3 on the season, which would be making a profit in Vegas. But the coin, even after the Tuesday loss, is still beating me soundly at 47-29-3 on the season.

Until next time…

Until next time, Laramie, Wyo., and the Arena-Auditorium, a.k.a. the Dome of Doom…