Utah State men's basketball opens season at No. 17 in AP Top 25; first time in more than 30 years

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SALT LAKE CITY โ€” For the first time since the 1970-71 season, the Utah State menโ€™s basketball team is ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 Preseason Poll Monday.

The Aggies entered the preseason poll at No. 17, which is just the third time in school history the Aggies have appeared in the preseason honor.

Utah State finished the 2018-19 season with a 28-7 overall record, a Mountain West Conference regular season title, a Mountain West Tournament championship and a berth to the NCAA Tournament. As such, the expectations are high for the Aggies coming into the 2019-20 season.

Utah State returns four starters from last seasons, including Sam Merrill, who averaged 20.9 points per game and was the Mountain West Player of the Year and tournament MVP. Last week, Merrill was named the preseason Mountain West Player of the Year.

Neemias Queta, who announced earlier in the year that he would return to school after entertaining the NBA draft, was named a preseason all-league selection for the Aggies.

Senior guard Diogo Brito, who appeared in all 35 games and averaged 8.2 points per game for the Aggies last season, will also return for the Aggies. Sophomores Brock Miller and Justin Bean, along with junior guard Able Porter will also be back this season.

The Aggies will host the College of Idaho in an exhibition contest on Wednesday, Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. They open up the season on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at 8 p.m. in Logan when they host Montana State. Carra McManamon is a native of Washington State and is attending the University of Utah. Contact her at cmcmanamon@deseretdigital.com or follow her on Twitter: @curramac22

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