Aztecs Sweet 16: Fast facts about SDSU vs. UConn

SDSU will face 1-seeded Connecticut in a East Regional semifinal game at the TD Garden in Boston, Mass., on March 28 at 4:30 p.m. PST.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024
SDSU's band plays during the Aztecs round two game versus Yale.
San Diego State and Connecticut are meeting for the third time with the Huskies taking the first two games in the series. (SDSU)

Advancing to the NCAA tournament for a fourth consecutive season and the Sweet 16 for the second straight time under head coach Brian Dutcher, and fourth time in program history, fifth-seeded San Diego State will face 1-seeded Connecticut in a East Regional semifinal game at the TD Garden in Boston, Mass., on March 28 at 4:30 p.m. PST.

The Aztecs are making their 16th appearance in the Division I event, owning a 13-15 record and have won seven of its last eight games in the event. Head coach Brian Dutcher has been on the Aztec sidelines for 25 of the program's 28 all-time tournament games and all 13 of the program's victories.

This is the fifth NCAA appearance for Brian Dutcher, the two-time Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year, in his seven seasons as head coach with a likely appearance in the 2019-20 event (San Diego State was 30-2 and a likely No. 1 or No. 2 seed), which was canceled because of the COVID pandemic.

The Aztecs appearance in the regional semifinal game is its fourth (2011, 2014, 2023 & 2024) and the eight for a Mountain West program since the inception of the league in the 1999-00 season.

This is the SDSU's 11th tournament appearance in the last 14 seasons that a champion has been crowned. That total does not include the 2019-20 season when SDSU was 30-2 and ranked sixth in the AP poll when the season ended prior to the tournament.

San Diego State is competing in the East Region for the first time in program history. In first and second round games, SDSU has a 4-2 record in the South Region, a 4-5 mark in the West Region, are 0-5 in the Midwest Region and 2-0 in the East Region for an overall record in the first weekend of 10-12.

The Aztecs metrics rank among the best in the nation. Through the games of March 24, the Aztecs were ranked No. 20 in the NET, No. 16 in KPI, No. 17 in Kenpom, No. 24 in T-Rank and No. 27 in BPI. San Diego State's NET strength of schedule is No. 25.

San Diego State owns a 134-33 record (80.2 percent) since the start of the 2019-20 campaign. That's the third-best record in the nation, trailing Gonzaga's 148-20 (88.1 percent), and Houston's 148-26 (85.1 percent), and ahead of Baylor's 128-35 (78.5 percent) and Kansas' 134-37 (78.4 percent) records.

San Diego State owns the sixth-best record in the nation since the start of the 2009-10 campaign, 390-126 (.756), and is 177-100 (.639) road and neutral site contests in that time frame which is the seventh-best in the nation.

San Diego State and Connecticut are meeting for the third time with the Huskies taking the first two games in the series. The previous meetings came in the NCAA Tournament. Connecticut beat SDSU 74-67 on March 24, 2011 in the Sweet 16 & 76-59 on April 3, 2023 in last year's national championship game.

San Diego State is 4-3 all-time against the current membership of the Ivy League, and lost its last game against the conference, 82-61, against Brown at Steve Fisher Court at Viejas Arena. 

With its win over No. 18 Utah State (March 15), San Diego State improved to 14-9 (.609) under Brian Dutcher against AP Top-25 teams. The Aztecs were 29-98 (.228) against AP Top-25 teams prior to Dutcher taking over as head coach in 2017-18. SDSU's .609 winning percentage against AP Top-25 teams since the 2017-18 season is the highest in the country (min. 20 games). Rounding out the top 5 are Kansas (.602), Virginia (.591), Duke (.588) and Gonzaga (.587).

Seven of San Diego State's 10 losses this season have come on the road against Quad 1 opponents, and six of those seven defeats have come by nine points or less. SDSU has lost Quad 1 road or neutral site games, eight in all, by 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 & 18 points. The other Quad 1 loss came in its last regular-season game, 77-79, vs. Boise State in Viejas Arena. The Aztecs lone other loss was a Quad 2 game at UNLV, 71-74, on the Rebels Senior Night.

San Diego State's 36 conference tournament wins since the 2008-09 season are the most in the country over that span (Gonzaga is second at 33).

Senior forward Jaedon LeDee is averaging 29.0 points, 8.5 rebounds and 0.5 assists in this year's NCAA Tournament. The All-American is shooting 66.7 percent from the field (20-of-30), 100.0 percent from distance (3-of-3) & 83.3 percent from the line (15-of-18).

Senior Guard Lamont Butler became the 38th Aztec to pass the 1,000-career point plateau with his nine points against Yale on March 24, and enters the regional semifinal game with 1,001 points.

Dutcher is in his seventh season as San Diego State's head coach and his 25th season on the Aztec sidelines. In his six-plus seasons as head coach, he has led the Aztecs to five conference titles, seven Mountain West championship game appearances, a 177-57 (.756) overall record, the 2023 NCAA national championship game, has been named the national coach of the year, and twice the Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year.

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