bleedCrimson.net: Your thoughts on the team's play on Tuesday night playing without Hamidu you were still right in the game at the end.
Marvin Menzies: Playing without Ham I was really concerned about the center position and not having a lot of depth there but B.J. West came in and gave us quality minutes. Abdoulaye came in and gave us good minutes. So we were doing okay, probably not as productive as we could have been with Hamidu but nonetheless we were in a battle and we just ran into a buzzsaw named Randy Culpepper once again. It seems like they've always got one guy, no matter who we lace them up with they have that one guy that really does a good job against us and that was the case again.
bc.net: The Aggies had a big rebounding advantage in both games.
MM: I felt it was a big sticking point for us. We talked about it a lot and practiced on it a lot trying to improve our rebounding based on our road losses and we added some drills and emphasis in practice and I'm glad to see they responded. We just didn't get it done in two other statistical categories in terms of our three point defense and the final score.
bc.net: What can you carry over into Saturday from the way your team finished the UTEP game?
MM: I think the momentum of playing better, we played much better here than we did the last four games on the road and I think that's what non-conference is all about. If you're not going to be an at-large team, which I don't think we're going to be at this point, then it's all about improvement. That's what we need to put our focus on, it's what we have in years past and it's helped us and aided us in being very very competitive in conference.
bc.net: UNM graduated Roman Martinez and Darington Hobson now plays for the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA, how has their team changed this season?
MM: They have a very deep lineup. They play 11 guys. They lean on seven or eight guys but they go deep. They've got some young kids but they've also got a very experienced senior in Dairese Gary. They've got a very balanced attack and they've got some juniors and sophomores that have some experience. They're a lot like us in how their classes are divided up, they just have a lot more depth right now.
bc.net: In terms of Gordo Castillo's play and his scoring, how many touches per game would you like to see him get?
MM: I think that depends on the game. Obviously I think he needs to get more shot attempts than he's getting. Guys really key in on him and do a good job of denying him off the ball a lot. He's getting better at moving without the ball and as he improves with that he'll get much cleaner looks than he's getting right now.
bc.net: What is Hamidu's status for Saturday's game?
MM: We'll call it that day. We're not sure right now. He's getting treatment right now and he's day to day.
bc.net: What are the keys for the Aggies to come out with the win on Saturday?
MM: I think the biggest key is to build on what we did last time. Winning has to take care of itself. The better team that's prepared and plays the hardest and has the most talent will end up winning 99 percent of the time. We've got to make sure we cover what we can as coaches and the guys gotta lace 'em up and get after it and may the best team win.
bc.net: How important is it for the fans to come out on Saturday?
MM: We had a strong turnout against UTEP. I thought the community came out and represented itself well and was very loud and boisterous and did a good job and really were a factor down the stretch in us getting back in it. I think if you're going to have a chance to beat a good program like the Lobos have then you've got to have your hometown fans come out and aid you in order to make that happen.