For the first time since the controversial ending of their regular season match up, the Boise State Broncos and the Colorado State Rams go toe-to-toe in the entertaining Mountain West Conference tournament.
Both teams are not in contention for an at-large spot in the NCAA Tournament, so winning the conference tournament is their only path to going to the big dance.
Regular Season Meetings
Both regular season games between the two were nothing less than exciting.
The first meeting was in Boise, where the Broncos held off a furious comeback from Colorado State. A 16-point lead was nearly squandered, but late game heroics from Mikey Thompson and free throws from Anthony Drmic sealed the 84-80 win for the Broncos.
The second game stormed ESPN, but not in a good way. After going into overtime, the Broncos had the ball with .8 seconds left. James Webb III got the ball and quickly got it off. The shot went in and it seemed that Boise had gotten an important road win. That was, until the referees went to review it and determined the clock had started late. So what do they do? What's the protocol?
Use a stopwatch and determine it themselves.
The officials concluded that, after "many" tests, Webb had the ball for 1.3 seconds, and therefore didn't get the shot off. Colorado State went on to win 97-93 in double overtime. The story was picked up by many news outlets; including ESPN, who used many computer tests to determine Webb only had the ball for .7 seconds. Even Colorado State head coach Larry Eustachy admitted that his team had "lost to Boise twice. That shot should've counted."
Colorado State comes in with one of the best offenses in the country. However, they also have one of the worst defenses. Top scorer Antwan Scott comes in with a 16.2 points per game average. Emmanuel Omogbo averages 8.2 rebounds and also puts up 11.1 points per game.
For Boise, the most obvious player is James Webb III – he leads the team in average points and rebounds. Anthony Drmic also is one the Broncos need to stay hot in order to win. Nick Duncan, who had seven three-pointers last year in last year's quarterfinals match against Air Force, relies on his shooting.
Keys To Victory
Colorado State wins games because they score. Their defense ranks tied for 301st in the nation in points allowed at 77.5, which means if they are cold, they're done. However, they are a big presence on the rebounding side, averaging 40.1 rebounds per game.
Similar to the Rams, Boise State is a team that relies on their offense. James Webb III, Anthony Drmic, Nick Duncan, and Mikey Thompson all average double-digits in points per game. Their defense is better than that of the Rams, as the Broncos average 69.6 points allowed.
The game will be held at the Thomas and Mack Center, and is scheduled to tip off at 11:30 P.M. EST (8:30 PT). The game will be on CBS Sports Network.
The winner of the game will face the winner of Fresno State and UNLV.