Boise State Men's Basketball 2013 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Boise State Broncos
Mountain West (21-10, 9-7)

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Boise State hung around in the ultra-competitive Mountain West. Some of the newcomers Coach Leon Rice hoped would make a big impact have not panned out quite yet and that could have put an end to the Broncos postseason hopes. Yet, Boise State managed to come together with what they had and turned into a very good team that can beat just about anybody on any given day.

Big Wins: 11/28 at Creighton (83-70), 2/02 UNLV (77-72), 3/02 Colorado State (78-65)
Bad Losses: 12/05 at Utah (55-76), 1/19 at Air Force (80-91), 1/26 at Nevada (59-75)
Coach: Leon Rice (3 seasons at Boise State)

Why They Can Surprise:
The reason the Broncos are so dangerous is because of their three-point shooting. The team knocks down a lot of long balls at a consistent level. However, a vast majority of the shooting is done by Anthony Drmic and Jeff Elorriaga. Drmic connects on 2.4 three-pointers per game while Elorriaga adds 2.9. Drmic, a 6-6 sophomore, is more than just a shooter though. He averages 17.3 points per game and is just as dangerous inside the arc. Elorriaga’s offense mostly comes from beyond the arc, but he can also handle the ball and that has turned out to be extremely important for this team. Mikey Thompson, who is not a bad shooter himself, was supposed to take over the starting point guard spot, but the freshman does commit a few too many turnovers. Thompson will still play 25 to 30 minutes per game even when he does not start, so that does allow Elorriaga to move off of the ball and get open looks. Thomas Bropleh and Igor Hadziomerovic, who is one of the best glue guys in the country, bring down the overall team shooting percentage a bit, but can make an occasional offensive impact. Derrick Marks will not spend too much time shooting, but he is a great athlete who can finish above the rim. Between Drmic, Elorriaga and Marks, the Broncos have a trio of very dangerous scorers.

Why They Can Disappoint:
The point guard spot was not the only position that did not turn out exactly as planned. The frontcourt has a complete lack of depth as a handful of freshmen failed to crack the regular rotation. The result has been a relatively small team that has the habit of getting into foul trouble. Ryan Watkins, a 6-9 junior, starts in the middle with four guards around him. Watkins is a good interior scorer and a fine rebounder, but there are times Coach Rice needs him at the four spot. That is when Kenny Buckner steps into the mix. Buckner can score around the basket, but is not much of a defensive presence. He does have some size though and that is what the Broncos need. Behind those two there is virtually no depth and certainly no experienced depth. Boise State has gotten away with two big men all season long, but that will likely be their undoing in March.

Probable Starters:
Jeff Elorriaga, Junior, Guard, 10.3 ppg, 2.1 apg
Derrick Marks, Sophomore, Guard, 16.3 ppg, 3.9 apg
Igor Hadziomerovic, Sophomore, Guard, 5.4 ppg, 2.0 apg
Anthony Drmic, Sophomore, Guard, 17.3 ppg, 2.4 apg, 4.6 rpg
Ryan Watkins, Junior, Forward, 8.4 ppg, 6.8 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Thomas Bropleh, Junior, Guard, 3.7 ppg, 1.9 rpg
Kenny Buckner, Senior, Center, 5.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg
Mikey Thompson, Freshman, Guard, 8.1 ppg, 1.4 apg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.5 (49th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.7 (129, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.4 (42, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.0 (183, 7)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.9 (34, 2)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 39.3 (12, 1)
Free-Throw Percentage: 75.1 (19, 1)
Rebound Margin: 4.4 (52, 3)
Assists Per Game: 13.3 (132, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.1 (75, 7)

Last Five Postseason Appearances:
2011    CBI        First Round win over Austin Peay
2011    CBI        Second Round win over Evansville
2011    CBI        Semifinal loss to Oregon
2009    CBI        First Round loss to Stanford
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Louisville
2004    NIT        Opening Round win over UNLV
2004    NIT        First Round win over Milwaukee
2004    NIT        Second Round loss to Marquette
1994    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Louisville

*all team stats through 3/10


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