The Rams rebound.
That's their M.O., their ID.
Thanks to the fearsome frontcourt of Colton Iverson and Pierce Hornung, Colorado State is the best rebounding team in the nation. At 42.6 rebounds per game, the Rams are fourth-best in the country, but they're No. 1 overall in rebounding margin; a thrilling +13.8.
And while Hornung and Iverson are the heart and hustle of the team, playing consistently well all season long, it's been the great guard play as of late that's propelled the Rams to victories.
Dating back to December 29, when Eikmeier scored 11 in CSU's blowout win over Adams State, the senior shooting guard has scored in double digits in 7-8 games. Over that time he's averaged 15.1 points per game, hitting 44.4 percent of his shots from the field. He's caught fire from downtown, making 17-34 (50 percent) over that same span, all while grabbing 2.0 rebounds and handing out 1.8 assists per.
Even more impressive has been Green's last six games. In the win over St. Bonaventure on January 5, Green was key, and the same can be said of the win over then No. 23 UNLV – when he scored a career-high 24 points with five boards and five assists – and Saturday's victory in California over Fresno State.
In fact, he played so well last week that Green won Mountain West Player of the Week for the first time in his college career, and over the last three games, he's 22-24 (91.7 percent) from the charity stripe.
Ironically, for weeks, head coach Larry Eustachy has talked of his guards under-performing in postgame press conferences; maybe the sly old coach knows just the way to get the most out of his players.
Either way, it's great news for the Rams, as Eustachy's team is playing the most complete basketball of the season, in fact, of the entire team's history with the school.
This isn't a team that has to rely on three-point shooting like last year, or one that leans heavily on Iverson in the low post as they did earlier in the year; they've evolved into a squad with five players able to take over on any given night.
Yes, small forward Greg Smith is quietly playing his best basketball as well, and the willingness to play team-first basketball has benefited everyone simultaneously.
Getting great ball movement is a crucial piece of the Rams offense working well, and the team has learned over the course of the season that they'll find open looks for teammates when passing it unselfishly.
At 16-4, 3-2 MWC, Colorado State sits in third place of the second-best conference in the nation, a league they will contend for if they can continue to play complete basketball.
Next up for the Rams are two home games against Boise State (14-5, 2-3) and rival Wyoming (15-4, 2-4) on Wednesday and Saturday nights. CSU has won a school record 24 straight home games dating back to November of 2011, though these contests against the Broncos and Cowboys will likely be tough tests.
If Green and Eikmeier are on again though, look out.