The Boise State men’s basketball team (7-5) opens Western Athletic Conference play this week, playing host to Louisiana Tech (9-5) and New Mexico State (6-8).
The Broncos and Bulldogs are slated to square off Wednesday (Dec. 29), at 8:15 p.m. The game will follow the Bronco women’s game against Saint Mary’s.
Boise State will then play a New Year’s Eve match-up against the Aggies. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m.
FOUR-STRAIGHT CLOSE CALLS
The Broncos defeated Texas-Pan American Dec. 19, ending a four-game slide by a combined 11 points. After three-straight three-point losses to Long Beach State, No. 19/20 UNLV and Drake, Boise State dropped its contest at Utah by just two points. The Broncos had five losses of three-or-fewer points in all of 2009-10.
A GOOD START
The Broncos won each of their first six contests, matching the best start in school history. Boise State was one of the nation’s final 20 undefeated teams.
The only other time a Bronco team began the season 6-0 was in 1987-88, when the team finished 24-6, won the Big Sky Conference regular season and tournament titles and made the NCAA Tournament.
Boise State trails 8-11 in the all-time series, though the Broncos have won four of the last six meetings with the Bulldogs. The teams split last year’s series, with each team notching a road victory. The Broncos lost 79-64 at home (Jan. 11), and were victorious 72-59 (Feb. 25) in Ruston, La. Boise State is 5-4 when playing at home.
DEBUT FOR RICE
Leon Rice, in his debut season after being named the seventh head coach in school history, is the only coach to begin his career with six-consecutive wins. Since Boise State became a four-year institution prior to the 1968-69 season, no other coach won more than his first two games to begin his career.
Rice joins the Broncos after spending the last 11 seasons on the coaching staff at Gonzaga. He had served as the associate head coach with the Bulldogs since 2007.
Bob Behler is in his third season as the “Voice of the Broncos,” and his 25th calling college basketball games. Joining Behler, and also in his third season, is former Bronco Abe Jackson, who played for Boise State from 1998-2002.
All Bronco games will be broadcast on the Bronco Radio Network, with KBOI 670 AM serving as the flagship station. Games can also be heard live at broncosports.com.