Wednesday, March 9, 2011

WAC Men's Basketball Tournament Results

#8 San Jose State shocked #5 seed Hawai'i 75-74 this afternoon.  The Spartans will now go after #4 Idaho tomorrow at 1 pm. Mountain Time.

#6 Nevada downed #7 Fresno State 90-80 today.  Nevada will play New Mexico State tomorrow afternoon at 3:30.  The winner of that game will play Boise State.

Bronco Women Lose to Idaho 70-59

The old saying this time of year is "It's tough to beat a team three times in a season."

Boise State gave its best effort of the year against Idaho but in the end, it was the Vandal women with a 70-59 win tonight in Las Vegas in the opening round of the Western Athletic Conference Tournament.

Idaho moves on to play Idaho tomorrow night while Boise State sees their difficult season end.

The NCAA Wrestling Brackets for Boise State

Earlier this afternoon came the news that for the first time in history, all 10 Boise State wrestlers would be competing at the NCAA National Championships in Philadelphia.  Now the Broncos must go out and prove that the respect was earned.  At times in the last few years, several of the Broncos have wrestled very tentatively when they get to this level.  It is obvious to fans but by now it should also be obvious to them that wrestling tentatively is the quickest way to get beat, get injured, or both.  You have to go all out and wrestle aggressively to do well.

The Championships begin Thursday, March 17 with the early matches.  I have shown the first-round matches for each of the 10 Broncos below.

125--Alan Bartelli.  Bartelli is unseeded despite an impressive late-season run that included a third-place finish in the prestigious Pac-10 Conference Championship.  Not only that, they put him against #8 Jarrod Patterson of Oklahoma in his first match.  Patterson was the Big 12 Champion last year and the runner-up this season.  He has a record of 25-7.  The respect given the Bronco team in general did not translate to Bartelli.  Prove 'em wrong, Alan!

133--Andrew Hochstrasser.  Andrew drew the #2 seed at 133 pounds, which is about where he has been all season long.  "Hoch" will face Nathan McCormick of Missouri in the opening round.  McCormick came in third at the Big 12 Championships.  McCormick is 21-13 on the season.

141--Levi Jones.  Despite being nationally-ranked all season, Jones has to wrestle in the "pigtail" match against Corey Manson of Cornell.  I want to mention that Cornell is the favorite for the national title.  Boise State has aspirations of that title.  You can see where I'm going when I say that this match, even though it is a pigtail match, is pretty important in the team standings.  Manson is 24-15 this year.

149--Jason Chamberlain.  Chamberlain could have been higher possibly if he had done a bit better in the Pac-10 Championships.  As it is, he is seeded #6 and will face Dane Johnston of Pittsburgh, who is 16-16 this year.

157--Adam Hall.  Hall draws the #1 seed at 157 pounds.  He will face another Cornell wrestler, D.J. Meagher.  Again the huge importance of coming out strong to not allow a Cornell wrestler (or anyone for that matter) to shock him in overtime.  It makes one wonder why they put a 19-4 wrestler against Hall in the first match.

165--Kurt Swartz.  The older Swartz may not have gotten here were it not for a fantastic Pac-10 Championship win.  He will face #4 Josh Asper of Maryland in the opening round.  Asper was the runner-up in the Atlantic Coast Conference last year and captured the championship this season.

174--Jake Swartz.  Jacob of course was one of three Broncos named today to the at-large pool.  Two brothers competing at the same time in the National Championships; it doesn't get much better than that.  He will face Matt Fullowan of F & M.

184--Kirk Smith.  Well, here's the biggest question mark.  He only wrestled 10 times this season to protect an earlier injury, then gets hurt against Oklahoma State in the final regular season match.  Only Kirk knows how well he can do, but he did not look good at all when he left the mat in Corvallis.  He opens with Duke's Diego Bencomo, who went 21-13 in getting second place in the ACC.

197--Matt Casperson.  Matt received an invite as well to Philadelphia this afternoon.  In my mind, someone who is glad to be invited is going to be more loose than someone who is a high seed.  Hopefully "Casp" will surprise the field.  He'll take on #8 Zac Thomusseit of Pittsburgh in the first round.  Thomusseit was the Eastern Wrestling League runner-up last season who this season has a record of 21-3.

285--J.T. Felix.  Felix is one of the surprises of the team, but not because he was invited today.  Rather, J.T. went out and finished second at the Pac-10 Championships to get the automatic berth.  He likely would not be going if it weren't for that.  If Felix can continue to surprise, he would greatly improve Boise State's team chances.  Felix squares off against Dominique Bradley of Missouri in the opening round.  Bradley enters the match with a record of 22-3.

So there you have it.  History.  But to be honest, history is made more by what you do in particular situations.  The Broncos are fortunate to all be wrestling in Philadelphia, but life is what you make of the moment.  And that chapter will be written by their performance in the Championships.

Good luck to Coach Greg Randall and the Boise State Broncos--make us proud!!

This blog will have constant updates so stay tuned.

(Click on story link for the complete NCAA Wrestling brackets.)

Burnett and Cortney Will Represent Boise State at NCAA Diving Championships

For the first time in the short history of swimming and diving at Boise State, the Broncos will send two representatives to the Zone E Diving Championships starting Thursday in Minneapolis. 

Junior Amanda Burnett and freshman Ciera Cortney are there now preparing for the competition and trying to qualify for the National Championships.  The Bronco pair are among 57 competitors vying for just six qualifying spots for the Nationals.  Both Burnett and Cortney will compete in all three diving events--the 1-meter, 3-meter and platform diving.  Prelims begin at 10 a.m. Mountain time Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Amber Boucher and Stephanie North have already qualified for the NCAA Championships which beging Thursday, March 17 in Austin, Texas.

Boise State Will Send A Perfect "10" To NCAA Wrestling Championships

Super news from the NCAA today.  All three Boise State wrestlers who were hoping to join their Bronco teammates have been invited to the NCAA National Wrestling Championships in Philadelphia.  The news, just announced by the NCAA, means that Jake Swartz, Kirk Smith and Matt Casperson have all been selected to compete as at-large qualifiers.  The other seven Broncos won automatic berths to the Championships by virtue of their finish at the Pac-10 Championships.

This is the first time in school history that Boise State has sent all 10 wrestlers to the National Championships.  The previous record was 9, set in 2003 and tied in 2008 and again in 2009.

I will have much more on this news, including the NCAA brackets, later tonight.

Blog Highlights

As it takes considerable time to sift through past blog articles (now numbering over 200), to find a particular article of interest, I have started the Tab "Blog Highlights".  That page has links to all of the most popular articles all in one place.

Boise State One of 11 Schools in the Nation

By topping the 10-win mark last season (the Broncos' football team was 12-1), Boise State became one of just 11 schools since 1920 to put together five consecutive seasons of 10 wins or more.

Boise State was 13-0 in 2006, 10-3 in 2007, 12-1 in 2008, 14-0 in 2009 and 12-1 last season.  Were it not for a heartbreaking loss in the final seconds to Boston College in 2005, the Broncos' streak would be nine.

The other 12 schools with five or more consecutive seasons of 10 or more wins are:  Alabama (1971-1975), Florida State (1987-2000), Georgia (2002-2006), Miami of Florida (1985-1992), Nebraska (1993-1997), Ohio State (2005-2010), Texas (2001-2009), Oklahoma, which has accomplished the feat three time (1954-1958, 1971-1975, and 2000-2004), USC (2002-2008) and Virginia Tech (2004-2010).

Here is the ranking of the above schools:

1.  Florida State 14 (1987-2000)
2.  Texas 9 (2001-2009)
3.  Miami of Florida 8 (1985-1992)
4.  Virginia Tech 7 (2004-2010)
4.  USC 7 (2002-2008)
6.  Ohio State 6 (2005-2010)
7.  Boise State 5 (2006-2010)
7.  Alabama 5 (1971-1975)
7.  Georgia 5 (2002-2006)
7.  Nebraska 5 (1993-1997)
7.  Oklahoma 5 (1954-1958)
7.  Oklahoma 5 (1971-1975)
7.  Oklahoma 5 (2000-2004)