NCAA Bracket 2012: Long Beach State To Battle New Mexico In First Round

The Long Beach State 49ers will open their ninth NCAA Tournament appearance as a No. 12 seed in the West Region Thursday in Portland. The opponent for the 49ers will be the New Mexico Lobos, hailing from the MWC, and the two teams will tangle in what figures to be one of the most competitive matchups in the first round. Here is a first look at the first foe for Long Beach State.

Team: New Mexico

Record: 27-6, 10-4 in conference

Conference: Mountain West Conference

RPI: 27th, 6-3 in the RPI Top 50, 9-4 against the RPI Top 100

Ken Pomeroy Rank: 13th

Jeff Sagarin Computer Rating: 16th

Long Beach State will be an underdog, but that is nothing new for the 49ers, who had arguably the toughest non-conference schedule in the country. They played five teams ranked in the Associated Press top 14 at the time of the game, with wins over then No. 9 Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh and then No. 14 Xavier in the Diamond Head Classic Tournament in Hawaii. Long Beach State also had road losses at Louisville, North Carolina, and Kentucky.

For more on the 49ers, visit our team page. For more coverage of Long Beach State in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, visit SB Nation Los Angeles' STORYSTREAM. Click here for a link to our NCAA bracket 2012.

• Brackets on the brain? Us too! Play Yahoo! Tourney Pick’em and be a part of the craziest month of college basketball. It is fun, easy, and free.

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