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Boise State Eyes Three-Peat at Pac-10 Championships

GOBRONCOSDOTCOM
GOBRONCOSDOTCOM

GOBRONCOSDOTCOM

BOISE, Idaho - The Boise State wrestling team will look to do something only two other wrestling programs have done in the history of the Pac-10 Conference, this Friday-Saturday (Feb. 26-27), when the Broncos try and capture their third straight conference team title at the Pac-10 Championships in Davis, Calif.

            The Broncos are coming off back-to-back Pac-10 Championships, including a record setting scoring performance in 2009. Arizona State and Oregon State are currently the only two schools that can claim to have won three or more consecutive Pac-10 titles. ASU won seven straight conference championships from 1985-1991, while OSU had runs of six straight (1965-1970) and four straight (1976-1979) as well.

            The 2010 Pac-10 Championships will kick off on Friday (Feb. 26) at 12:30 p.m. (PST) with the first round of competition. The Quarterfinal round will follow on Friday at 6 p.m. Saturday's action will start with the semifinals at noon. The tournament will wrap up Saturday night with the championship rounds starting at 7 p.m.

Looking back at last year...

            Boise State made history in 2009 with a record setting performance at the Pac-10 Championships. The Broncos set the tournament scoring record with 172.5 points after capturing six individual titles. The win marked Boise State's fifth overall Pac-10 championship, and their second in as many years.

Boise State in the rankings...

            Boise State finished the regular season ranked in the top-12 in all three major national polls. The Broncos were voted No. 9 by Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine, No. 11 in the NWCA/USA Today Coaches Poll and No. 12 by intermatwrestle.com. Boise State also finished No. 4 in the W.I.N. tournament power index, which projects how teams will finish at nationals based on current individual rankings.

            Leading the way for Boise State in the InterMat individual rankings is junior Kirk Smith, who finished the year ranked No. 1 at 184 pounds. Smith is the defending 184-pound Pac-10 Champion and was an All-American at that weight in 2008. He has compiled a 21-0 overall record this season, including 16-0 in duals.

            Joining Smith in the final InterMat rankings was Andrew Hochstrasser (133 pounds), Adam Hall (157), Levi Jones (141), Jason Chamberlain (149) and Nate Lee (174). Hochstrasser is ranked No. 2, while Hall is No. 3, Jones is No. 5, Chamberlain is No. 6 and Lee is No. 18.

The Boise State lineup...

            The Broncos will wrestle most of the starting lineup that carried them to a 14-3 overall record (7-0 Pac-10) this season, with Alan Bartelli (125), Ben DeMuelle (133), Jones, Chamberlain, Hall, Michael Cuthbertson (165), Lee, Smith, Matt Casperson (197) and Sam Zylstra (HWT) competing for Boise State this weekend.

            Boise State will boast three defending Pac-10 Champions at the conference tournament, in Chamberlain, Lee and Smith. Chamberlain and Smith both won their first conference titles last year, while Lee has won the last two 174-pound Pac-10 championships.

Dominant in Pac-10 Duals...

            Boise State finished the 2009-10 regular season with a perfect 7-0 record against Pac-10 opponents, which marks the second straight year that the Broncos ran the table in conference duals. In fact, Boise State has compiled a 22-0 dual record against Pac-10 opponents dating back to January of 2008.

            The last time Boise State lost a conference dual was on Jan. 11, 2008 at Cal State Fullerton (19-13).

Keeping up at the Conference Championships...

            The Pac-10 Conference is providing a live broadcast of the 2010 Wrestling Championships through CSTV at pac-10.org. To view the free broadcast, simply click on the All-Access link on the right hand side of the Pac-10 homepage.

            Blog updates will also be provided throughout the weekend at broncosports.com.