Sunday, March 9, 2008

Aggies still hoping for bid

Big 12 tourney could determine A&M's fate


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2007-08 March 8 KU-Texas A&M Hoops

— Texas A&M; will pack more than sneakers and shorts for the Big 12 tournament that gets under way Thursday in Kansas City in the Sprint Center. The Aggies, more than any team in the conference, will bring pressure with them as well.

No team still in contention for an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament needs a victory more than the one that lost Saturday to Kansas, 72-55, in Reed Arena.

The Aggies finished the regular season with a 22-9 overall record and an 8-8 Big 12 mark and with five losses in their last seven games. They are the No. 6 seed and will play either Colorado or Iowa State in the first round of the conference tournament.

"I don't know," said first-year Aggies coach Mark Turgeon, asked about his team's chances of landing a bid. "I'm not going to sit here and act like I know. I think we've had a heck of a year. Did we lose a couple of home games we probably should have won? Yeah, yeah, that hurts us. We have to go over there and play well. Our league is second in the RPI. Texas A&M; has had only one win in the Big 12 tournament, so we're going to go up there and try to double that and then just keep winning."

The home losses that will hurt the Aggies came against Oklahoma State and Nebraska. Six of the Aggies' nine losses came by double digits.

On the plus side, A&M; scored a 23-point victory at Ohio State, a 17-point homecourt victory against Texas and a 14-point road victory against Baylor.

Other than missing shots, Turgeon couldn't find too much about which to criticize his team after Saturday's loss.

"I know this sounds crazy, but I feel better about my team than I did three hours ago," Turgeon said. "I thought we tried. It just wasn't our day. The ball didn't go in the basket, and KU played well. But we battled them. We kept trying, kept trying, kept trying."

Saturday marked the first time Turgeon coached against KU, where he played and was an assistant to both Larry Brown and Roy Williams.

"I didn't really get jacked until I walked out there and saw the uniforms, and then I was really kind of fired up to coach against them," Turgeon said. "I told everybody it would have been different if it had been in Allen Fieldhouse because I would have known half the people in there."

Turgeon mentioned his former school by name six times during the postgame news conference and referred to it as "KU" each time.


Eliott Reeder 14 years, 8 months ago

What else would he refer to it as? Just curious why this tidbit was included...

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