Utah State’s NCAA Tournament History As Aggies Prepare For Missouri

Mar 15, 2023, 9:15 AM

SACRAMENTO, California – Utah State’s NCAA tournament success is a distant memory as the Aggies prepare for their fourth appearance in the past five years.

No. 10 Utah State will face No. 7 Missouri in the first round of the 2023 NCAA tournament after receiving an at-large bid for just the fourth time in program history.

USU previously received at-large bids in 2006, 2010, and 2021. The Aggies were a 12-seed in 2006 and 2010; they earned a 10-seed in 2021. Utah State was also a 10-seed in 1983 and 1988. USU entered the 2019 tournament with their highest seeding ever, falling as an eight-seed, 78-61 to Washington.

RELATED: Similar To Utah State, Missouri Lacks Recent NCAA Tournament Success

For the second time, the Aggies will play an NCAA tournament game in Sacramento. As a 12-seed, USU lost 82-68 to Maryland in 1988.

Three current Utah State players have NCAA tournament experience, though limited. Steven Ashworth and Max Shulga each received playing time in 2021 against Texas Tech in the first round. Ashworth pulled down three rebounds and had two assists in 16 minutes while Shulga saw one minute of action.

MW Sixth Man of the Year Dan Akin was a member of the 2018 UMBC Retrievers team that became the first 16-seed to advance when they beat top-seeded Virginia 74-54. Akin played 22 minutes, finishing with two points, two rebounds, and an assist.

Utah State head coach Ryan Odom led that UMBC team. This will be his second NCAA appearance as a coach and first with Utah State.

This marks the 11th time USU has made the NCAA tournament since 2000. They are looking for their first tournament victory since 2001 when 12-seed Utah State needed overtime to beat five-seed Ohio State 77-68 in the first round.

Utah State holds a 6-24 record in the NCAA tournament. They look to end a nine-game losing streak.

Utah State against the Southeastern Conference

Missouri enters the field with a No. 23 ranking in the most recent AP Poll. This will be the third meeting between these programs with USU winning 87-81 at home during the 1967-68 season. Missouri avenged the loss the following season, winning 97-87 at Missouri.

This is the first time since 1988 that USU has played an SEC opponent in the tournament. That year, the 10th-seeded Aggies lost 80-77 against seventh-seeded Vanderbilt.

RELATED: Mountain West Regular Season Honors Announced, Steven Ashworth Named To First-Team

Utah State’s last win against an SEC opponent came early in the 2019-20 season when Sam Merrill and Alphonso Anderson each scored 24 points in an 80-78 win over LSU.

Where to watch No. 10 Utah State vs. No. 7 Missouri

The Aggies and Missouri Tigers are scheduled for an 11:40 a.m. (MT) tip at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, CA on Thursday, March 16. This game will be broadcast on TNT.

RELATED: Instant Replay: Utah State’s Steven Ashworth Scores 1,000th Career Point

The winner of this game will face either the No. 2 Arizona Wildcats or the No. 15 Princeton Tigers on Saturday, March 18.

Every Utah State basketball game can be heard on the KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard on the call.

KSL Sports coverage of Utah State University Athletics can be found here. 

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Utah State’s NCAA Tournament History As Aggies Prepare For Missouri