Tuesday night’s position breakdown: UNLV at New Mexico

Breaking down the UNLV basketball team’s game at New Mexico at 5 p.m. PT Tuesday:

BACKCOURT

The burden will be on UNLV’s guards to push the ball down the court. But New Mexico will want to do the same, and the Lobos have scored more than 80 points in the past three games. Elijah Brown, who averages 20.3 points per game for the season, was the Mountain West player of the week after averaging 23.5 against Air Force and Boise State and making 52.2 percent of his shots. He also hit on 61.5 percent from 3-point range.

Edge: New Mexico

FRONTCOURT

UNLV will go with four guards at times with forward Ben Carter out for the season with a left knee injury, but the Rebels start forwards Stephen Zimmerman Jr. and Derrick Jones Jr., who combine to average 21.2 points and 12.5 rebounds. New Mexico counters with Tim Williams and Obij Aget, who combine to average 23.7 points and 13.8 rebounds. Plus, Sam Logwood (6.0, 4.2) is a 6-foot 7-inch wing player.

Edge: New Mexico

BENCH

This is where the Rebels will feel Carter’s absence the most, but they still bring in reserves Ike Nwamu (9.0-point average), Jalen Poyser (4.9) and Jordan Cornish (4.8). Only guard Xavier Adams (4.6) averages more than four points for the Lobos.

Edge: UNLV

INTANGIBLES

UNLV must cope with the new reality of not having Carter, and the Rebels also face a New Mexico team that won three games in a row, is on an offensive roll, is at home, and remembers the 86-74 loss on Jan. 12 in Las Vegas.

Edge: New Mexico

BOTTOM LINE

Betting line: New Mexico -2½

Contact Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2914. Follow him on Twitter: @markanderson65

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