Broncos to Face Illinois State in Semis
Nov. 16, 2017

Boise State (3-0) vs. Illinois State (1-1)
2017 Puerto Rico Tip-Off at Myrtle Beach | Semifinals
Friday, Nov. 17 - 1 p.m. (ET) / 11 a.m. (MT) | Conway, S.C. (Coastal Carolina University - HTC Center)
Live Audio | WatchESPN (ESPN2)

Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Boise State (3-0) will face Illinois State (1-1) in the first semifinal of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off at Myrtle Beach, Friday, Nov. 17, at 1 p.m. (ET) back at the HTC Center in Conway, S.C. The Broncos took down UTEP (58-56) in the first round while the Redbirds advanced past South Carolina (69-65).

WATCH: The game will air on ESPN2 with Rich Hollenburg and LaPhonso Ellis on the call.

RADIO: Radio coverage of Friday’s game will be broadcast on the Bronco Radio Network, with 1350 KTIK serving as the flagship station. Chris Lewis will handle play-by-play duties.

ABOUT ILLINOIS STATE: Coming off a sensational 28-7 season that included a regular season Missouri Valley Conference title, the Redbirds expect to contend again this year in the MVC. Keyshawn Evans averages 22.5 points per game while Phil Fayne (19 ppg) and Malik Yarbrough (13 ppg) also average double figures.

FIRST MEETING: This will be the first meeting between Boise State and Illinois State in men’s basketball.

The two programs were in the same bracket of the 2017 NIT. Had both teams won their second round game, the two would have faced each other in the NIT quarterfinals.

MOUNTAIN WEST-MISSOURI VALLEY CHALLENGE PRELUDE: The Cardinals are members of the Missouri Valley Conference. The Broncos are set to play Loyola (Ill.) on Nov. 28 as part of the MW/MVC Challenge. Boise State is 3-1 in MW/MVC Challenge games.

The last time Boise State played two opponents from the MVC in the same season was 2011-12, when the Broncos defeated Drake (108-64) and Indiana State (74-65) in back-to-back games.

RICE VICTORIOUS AGAINST THE LAND OF LINCOLN: The Broncos hold a 3-2 advantage against programs from the State of Illinois in head coach Leon Rice’s tenure at Boise State. The Broncos have defeated Northern Illinois twice (80-51, Nov. 29, 2010; 71-57, Nov. 26, 2011) and Bradley once (90-70, Dec. 20, 2015). Boise State’s last matchup against an Illinois school was a loss to Illinois last season in the second round of the NIT (56-71, March 20, 2017).

COMEBACK KIDS: Down by nine points with a little over three minutes to play Thursday, Boise State mounted an incredible 13-2 run that was capped off by a Chandler Hutchison layup (plus a made free throw to convert the three-point play) with three seconds remaining, giving the Broncos the 58-56 comeback win against UTEP.

Hutchison scored five of his 10 points in the last 13 seconds of the game. The senior had a dunk with 13 seconds remaining, and then UTEP missed the front end of a 1-and-1, setting the scene for the game-winning play.

DICKINSON SHINES: The sophomore scored a career-high 13 points on 4-of-6 shooting from the field against the Miners to lead the Broncos in scoring. The sophomore’s four makes from the field were all 3-pointers, which also was a career high for the Norman, Okla., native.

BOOSTED BY THE BENCH: Boise State received 23 points from its bench on Thursday, accounting for just under 40 percent of the team’s scoring. Dickinson (13), Jessup (6), Robin Jorch (2) and David Wacker (2) all provided a huge lift and made their mark on the game.

HOBBS BACK IN DOUBLE DIGITS: After scoring 118 points last season as a freshman, Alex Hobbs already has 50 in his sophomore campaign and leads the team in scoring at 16.7 points per game. He is the only Bronco to score in double digits all three games.

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