#29 Boise State Men's Basketball 2013-2014 Preview

Boise State Broncos

2013-2014 Overall Rank: #29
Conference Rank:  #2 Mountain West

Boise State Team Page#29 Boise State Men's Basketball 2013-2014 PreviewBuy Boise State Basketball Tickets

Boise State, late of football fame, has enjoyed some of the finest years on the hardwood they have ever had under Coach Leon Rice.  A former small school and small division coach, Rice has put the Broncos on the map in the Mountain West.  He has won 20 games in two of his three first seasons, and he led the Broncos to their first at-large NCAA tournament bid in school history.  Not bad for a school without any rich history.  In 2013-2014 they return a lot of starters.  Big things could be in the works again this season.

2012-2013 record:  21-11, 9-7 Mountain West
2012-2013 postseason:  NCAA
Coach:  Leon Rice
Coach Record:  56-41 at Boise State. 56-41 overall

Who’s Out:
The Broncos are set up for success going into this season.  The only real legitimate threat they lose as a player is center Kenny Buckner.   He only averaged 5.2 points per game, but he played a lot less minutes than most of his teammates.  His contributions were valuable to a team coming into their own.  Every player, outside of Buckner, who played in their final game of last season, a loss to La Salle in the first round of the tournament, returns this season.  This roster is loaded with veterans.

Who’s In:
Rice did not have many roster spots to fill.  He has only two freshmen coming in this season to add to the depth of the roster.  Nick Duncan and Dezmyn Trent add some front court help for the Broncos.  Duncan is the bigger of the two and may get some run this season.  Trent is a smaller guy who may be used as a swingman in order to best utilize him in the lineup.  Either way, these freshmen can learn a lot from the players in front of them.  Any minutes they play this season will be valuable experience for the coming years.

Who to Watch:
The best guard on the floor for the Broncos will be Jeff Ellioraga.  He was the team’s third leading scorer last year.  He was a work horse for Rice as well.  He led the team in minutes.  Most importantly, he was the conference’s best three-point shooter.  Ellioraga could change the game for the Broncos from beyond the arc.  Not to be left as an afterthought, Anthony Drmic, a guard-forward, is also a fabulous shooter.  He shot 39.2 percent from long-range himself.  

Final Projection:
There is no reason to think that the Broncos will not be in position to fight for the Mountain West crown in 2013-2014. Any team that returns all of its starters and most of its bench should be expected to improve.  A team that won 20 games with that same group should have some lofty expectations.  They have some sharp shooters on the roster.  The fact that these players have played together for a full season already is a great asset.  Rice has done some incredible things in his first three years in Boise.  In his fourth year, the Broncos should be gunning for a conference title.

Projected Postseason Tournament:  NCAA

Projected Starting Five:
Anthony Drmic, Junior, Guard, 17.7 points per game
Ryan Watkins, Senior, Forward, 8.4 points per game
Igor Hadziomerovic, Junior, Guard, 5.2 points per game
Derrick Marks, Junior, Guard, 16.3 points per game
Mikey Thompson, Sophomore, Guard, 7.9 points per game

By the numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.2 (45th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 65.5 (140, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.0 (46, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.7 (214, 7)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.8 (37, 2)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 39.1 (11, 1)
Free-Throw Percentage: 74.7 (25, 1)
Rebound Margin: 4.3 (49, 3)
Assists Per Game: 13.2 (133, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.0 (70, 6)


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