MW's Hottest Teams Collide Wednesday
Feb. 10, 2015
Wednesday, Feb. 11 vs Air Force 7 p.m. MT
THE GAME: The Mountain West’s two hottest teams square off Wednesday, at Taco Bell Arena when Boise State hosts Air Force. The Broncos (17-6, 7-3 MW) have won seven straight games, while the Falcons (11-12, 4-8 MW) have won three of four. The squads enter the week as the only MW teams currently with consecutive wins.
RADIO INFORMATION: Boise State’s games will be broadcast live on the Bronco Radio Network, with KBOI (670 AM) serving as the flagship station. The broadcast will also be streamed live at BroncoSports.com.
Play-by-Play: Bob Behler
Analyst: Abe Jackson
LIVE VIDEO: The game can be watched live, for free, on the Mountain West Network. Visit BroncoSports.com/videos/ for live, upcoming and archived games.
TICKETS: Single-game men’s basketball tickets start at $11 for adults, and are available to purchase online at BroncoSports.com/tickets or through the Boise State Athletic Ticket Office in person or by phone (208-426-4737).
ABOUT AIR FORCE: The Falcons dropped seven of their first eight conference games but have rebounded to win three of the last four, including sweeping New Mexico and Wyoming last week. The four-game stretch comes immediately after losing to Boise State in the first meeting of the season. Marek Olesinski is the reigning MW Player of the Week and is averaging 12.1 points per game in conference play. Olesinski scored 24 against the Broncos last month.
SERIES HISTORY: Boise State leads the all-time series 5-3. The Broncos won the first meeting this season at Clune Arena (Jan. 24), 77-68. Air Force won at Taco Bell Arena in Boise State’s first season in the Mountain West (Jan. 14, 2012).
LAST TIME OUT: Boise State knocked off San Diego State 61-46 Sunday, in front of a sellout crowd at Taco Bell Arena. The Broncos jumped out to a 17-4 lead, eventually extending the advantage to 17. The Aztecs trimmed it to four in the second half, but Boise State closed out its seventh consecutive win. Derrick Marks scored 19 points and James Webb III added 17.
ONE OF A KIND: Of the 1795 players in the country averaging at least six points per game, Derrick Marks is the only one shooting 50 percent from the field, 50 percent from three-point range and 82.5 percent from the free throw line. Marks ranks 15th in scoring at 19.8 points per game.
WINNING WHEN IT MATTERS: Boise State has tied the school record with seven straight conference wins. It is the fourth time in school history with seven conference wins in a row, and the first time since 1995-96. The three previous seven-game conference win streaks came while the Broncos were members of the Big Sky. This is the 15th different season in which the Broncos have won at least four consecutive conference games, in 10 of the previous 14 seasons the feat was accomplished, the Broncos advanced to the postseason.
BRONCO WIN STREAK(S): Boise State’s current seven-game winning streak is tied for the seventh-longest win streak in school history and the second significant stretch of victories this season. The Broncos enjoyed a six-game streak, Dec. 6 through Dec. 22. These mark the 18th and 19th times Boise State has rattled off six straight wins since becoming a Division I program (1970-71). It is the sixth such streak under fifth-year head coach Leon Rice. The longest win streak in the school’s DI history is 10 games, set in 1987-88 (Dec. 29-Jan. 28).
HOLDING COURT: Boise State is 58-15 at Taco Bell Arena under head coach Leon Rice, including a 33-2 mark in nonconference games. Boise State has won 37 of its last 43 overall at home.
HOW DUNCAN GOT HIS GROOVE BACK: Sophomore forward Nick Duncan is shooting 64.3 percent from three-point range (18-for-28) in the last five games. Duncan was mired in a month-long slump prior to the breakout. He went 0-for-6 from deep against Southern Utah (Dec. 14), before suffering a sprained ankle five days later in practice. Duncan missed just two games, but returned still hobbled by the injury. In his first six games back, he shot 21.4 percent (9-for-42) from beyond the arc and after the Jan. 18 game at New Mexico, was shooting under 30 percent on the year from three. His season percentage has now risen to 37.6 percent. Duncan shot 41 percent as a freshman.
LOTS OF TRIPLES: Boise State has made at least 10 three-pointers in eight of its last nine games. The Broncos have hit double-digit triples in 11 of 23 games this season. Prior to this year, Boise State had played 848 games in the three-point era and made at least 10 threes just 85 times.
RPI RISING: Boise State is ranked No. 40 in the latest RPI released by the NCAA (Feb. 9). The Broncos are third among MW teams, behind No. 27 Colorado State and No. 30 San Diego State. Boise State has beaten both MW teams ahead of them. The Broncos have been boosted by five true road wins and three more neutral-site wins. The Broncos’ games against non-Division I opponents do not factor in the RPI.
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