Boise State Looks to Defend Blue Gray Titles
Feb. 18, 2015

Bronco Weekly: Boise State head coach Greg Patton talks about the Broncos tough road season that they have started with, as well as about this weekend's trip to Alabama to try and repeat as champions of the Blue Grey National Tennis Classic.

        

       

THIS WEEK'S FACTS
        
  • Tournament: Blue Gray National Tennis Classic
  • Location:  Montgomery, Ala. 
  • Facilities: Lagoon Park Tennis Center (2855 Lagoon Park Dr, Montgomery, Ala.) and O'Conner Tennis Center (500 Anderson St, Montgomery, Ala.)
  • Dates: Feb. 20-22
  • Blue Gray Website 
  • Live Stats    
  • Blue Gray Draws Get Acrobat Reader
  • Match 1:  No. 57 Boise State (3-5) Vs. No. 24 South Florida (4-3)
  • Date and Time:  Feb. 20 (Friday) at 1 p.m. (Mountain) 
  • Location:  Lagoon Park Tennis Center
  • Match 2:  No. 57 Boise State (3-5) Vs. No. 38 Texas Tech (10-2) or No. 35 Auburn (9-1)
  • Date and Time:  Feb. 21 (Saturday) at TBA (Mountain)  
  • Location:  If Broncos win match 1 they will be at Lagoon Park, if they lose Boise State will be at O'Conner
  • Match 3:  No. 57 Boise State (3-5) Vs. TBA
  • Date and Time:  Feb. 22 (Sunday) at TBA (Mountain)  
  • Location:  TBA
      
        
WHAT'S HAPPENING THIS WEEK
  • Boise State is headed to Montgomery, Ala., to defend its back-to-back Blue Gray National Tennis Classic titles against one of the strongest fields yet in this competition. If they Broncos are successful they will become the first team in the 31-year history (since becoming a team competition) of this prestigious event to win three straight championships.  The tournament will be played at two different locations in Montgomery, Ala., at both the Lagoon Park Tennis Center and the O'Conner Tennis Center.    
  • The Blue Gray Field:  No. 24 South Florida, No. 30 Mississippi State, No. 35 (tied) Clemson and Auburn, No. 38 Texas Tech, No. 49 Alabama, No. 50 Princeton.
       
THE BLUE GRAY (BGNTC)
  • The Blue Gray National Tennis Classic is one of the oldest and prestigious collegiate men's tennis tournaments in the country dating back to its first year in 1949.
  • It originally began as a individual (singles) tournament and remained that way for 30 years.
  • In 1984 the modern era of the Blue Gray began as the tournament became a team competition
  • Many of the players from the current era have gone on to great success in the professional ranks. Some of the more notable former Blue Gray players would include Paul Annacone, Mikael Pernfors, Richey Reneberg, Murphy and Luke Jensen, Mali Vai Washington and current stars - Mahesh Bhupathi and James Blake.
  • In all, there have been seven Grand Slam (Wimbledon, U.S. Open, French Open and Australian Open) single finalists and over thirty Grand Slam double champions that can trace their careers back to Montgomery and the Blue Gray. 
      
THE BRONCOS AT THE BLUE GRAY
  • Boise State is one of three teams to ever win the Blue Gray three times bringing home the championship in 1998, 2013 and 2014.
  • Last year the Broncos became only the fourth team ever to repeat in back-to-back years, no team has ever won it three consecutive times.
  • Three different Broncos have earned the tournament's Most Valuable Player recognition: Daniel Merkert (1998), Andy Bettles (2013) and Brendan McClain (2014).
  • Two Broncos have also won the tournament's Sportsmanship Award: Damian Hume (2012) and Andy Bettles (2014).
  • Last year the 41st-ranked Broncos for the second year in a row defeated three teams ranked higher than them to claim the championship: No. 36 Alabama (W 4-0), No. 21 Clemson (W 4-3) and No. 37 Virginia Commonwealth "VCU" (W 4-2). Boise State was forced to rally from behind for the victories in both the semifinal and the championship, just like the Broncos did in 2013 on their run to the title. 
            
BRONCO LINEUP
      
NEXT UP - HOME SWEET HOME
  • Next week after six consecutive week's and 11 matches on the road Boise State will host its first home contests of the season when No. 59 Utah, No. 52 Penn and Brigham Young all come to town for a weekend of men's collegiate tennis. 
      
LAST WEEK'S STANDOUT
  • Last weekend the Broncos split a pair of contests in Las Vegas falling 4-3 to UC Irvine before regrouping to win the Mountain West Conference opener 5-2 over the UNLV Rebels, both matches were on Feb. 14 at UNLV.
  • Bronco of the Week: Garrett Patton went 2-0 at No. 2 singles and 1-0 at No. 1 doubles last weekend to lead the Broncos. In the first match against the UCI Anteaters Patton and doubles partner Toby Mitchell helped Boise State gain the early edge claiming the team doubles point (2-1) with a 6-4 win on court one. Patton then followed that with a 6-4, 6-3 singles victory on court two over Nico Mertens to spot Boise State a quick 2-0 lead in the team score. Later that afternoon versus UNLV in the league opener, Patton helped Boise State to the team victory with a win at No. 2 singles. After dropping the opening set 4-6 to the Rebels' Denys Pume, the senior rallied taking the second set in commanding fashion 6-1 to force a decisive third frame where he won 6-4 to claim the match and hand Boise State the clinching team point up 4-2.
      
ITA NATIOANAL RANKINGS
  • Boise State fell a few spots in the latest ITA National rankings coming at No. 57 after sitting at 45 the last two weeks.
  • The Broncos opened the season ranked 33rd.
            
ANOTHER TOUGH SCHEDULE
  • As usual Boise State has not shied away from a tough schedule in 2015 which features 28 matches.
  • Of the 28 matches, 14 will be against teams currently ranked in this week's ITA Top-75 and four others Nevada, New Mexico, San Diego State and Utah State have been ranked.  That gives the Broncos a total of 18 teams on their schedule who have been in the national rankings this season. 
  • Included among the 14 ranked opponents are the three contests at the Blue Gray National Tennis Classic in which Boise State opens with No. 24 South Florida, all seven potential opponents at the competition are ranked this week.
  • Boise State is the only current Mountain West member ranked,  but four others have been in and out of the rankings this year:  Nevada, New Mexico, San Diego State and Utah State.
  • The Broncos are currently 1-4 versus teams who were nationally ranked at the time of the match this season. 
     
QUICK LOOK AT BOISE STATE
  • The Broncos are currently 3-5 overall entering the weekend.
  • The Broncos went 28-5 overall and finished the 2014 spring duals season ranked 29th.
  • The first home match for Boise State is schedule for Feb. 27 versus both No. 59 Utah and No. 52 Penn. 
  • The Blue and Orange went 14-1 at home last season competing at both the Boas Indoor Tennis Center and the Appleton Outdoor Tennis Center.
  • Boise State finished the 2014 campaign ranked fourth nationally in total attendance, while the women came in at third. 
  • So far this season the Broncos are 3-5 on the road. Boise State went 14-4 on the road in 2014.
  • Greg Patton is in his 19th season as head coach at Boise State where he is 411-155 overall in team duals, his career mark is 762-348 in 35 years.
     
DEFENDING MW CHAMPIONS
  • League Champions:   Boise State is the three-time defending Mountain West Tournament champion and is undefeated in the event since joining the league for the 2011-12 season. 
  • NCAA Tournament Participant:  Boise State advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2014 for the 17th time in school history and the ninth time in the last nine years. 
     
ITA REGIONAL RANKINGS
  • Boise State has four players regionally ranked by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA). Regional rankings come out once in the spring semester just before the season starts, they are based on fall results.
  • Singles: Senior Garrett Patton begins the 2015 dual season ranked ninth in the ITA Mountain Region, while junior Thomas Tenreiro is 10th. 
  • Doubles: In doubles the team of junior Brian Foley and junior Toby Mitchell enter the spring ranked ninth in the region.  
                

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