Utah State basketball headed for season of back-to-backs as Mountain West changes format
Utah State center Trevin Dorius (32) and Nevada forward Zane Meeks (15) vie for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, in Logan, Utah. The Mountain West has changed its schedule to adjust for COVID-19 risks. This year each team will play 10 back-to-back series, with a day between each game in the series. (Eli Lucero/Herald Journal via AP)/The Herald Journal via AP)
Back-to-backs, typically a rarity in college basketball except in tournament play, will be the norm this year in the Mountain West Conference.
Utah State and the league’s other 10 teams will play 20 conference games, the MW announced Monday. Those will be broken down into 10 back-to-back series against the same opponent with a one-day break between games. Five series will be at home and five series will be on the road. The move is intended to limit travel and make rescheduling games easier during this pandemic.
MW play is set to begin in December and run through the last week of February. Schedules have not been finalized.
“The format adjustments create flexibility throughout the season to potentially reschedule games, which may need to be postponed as the schedule plays out,” according to the MW news release. “This is a one-year model adopted specifically to address the unique challenges of the current COVID-19 pandemic.”
The Aggies men are coming off back-to-back MW Conference Tournament titles
and had earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament last spring before the coronavirus caused its cancelation. They finished 12-6 and tied with Nevada for second in the regular-season standings behind San Diego State (17-1).