Monday, December 30, 2013

Boise State #21 in CBS RPI Basketball Rankings

Monday, December 23, 2013

Broncos Roll to 80-54 Win Over South Carolina

Anthony Drmic scored from nearly every place on the court, as the junior guard poured in 30 points and had six rebounds to lead Boise State to a lopsided 80-54 win over South Carolina tonight in Honolulu. The Broncos will meet #14 Iowa State in the championship game of the Diamond Head Classic on Christmas night.

The Broncos looked smooth and confident from the get-go, exploding to a 13-4 lead six minutes into the contest against the Gamecocks. Drmic scored nine of his team's 13 to set the tone early. Boise State undoubtedly played one of their best games of the season, throwing a stifling defense on inexperienced South Carolina.

Meanwhile, Coach Leon Rice's team utilized unselfish play and crisp passing, often finding open Broncos for easy buckets underneath. Boise State led at the break, 43-28, with Drmic piling up 20 points.

Boise State continued to build their lead in the second half, opening up a thirty-point lead with 8:53 remaining on a three-ball from Jeff Elorriaga. Coach Rice emptied his bench in the final minutes.

Drmic hit 10-of-17 shots from the field; his repertoire featured three-pointers, pull-up jumpers, floaters in the lane, and difficult driving layups that often resulted in fouls. Drmic connected on 8-of-11 from the free-throw line. Elorriage's three treys resulted in nine points, while big man Ryan Watkins contributed eight points, three rebounds and three assists.  Igor Hadziomerovic had four assists for Boise State.

Brenton Williams came off the bench to hit 14 points for South Carolina, while Duane Notice added 13.

Boise State forced 18 Gamecock turnovers while committing just nine themselves. Boise State advanced to 10-2 with the win, while South Carolina dropped to 3-5.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Boise State Selected as Favorite in Initial Mountain Rim Conference Season

The Boise State gymnastics team is moving on from its days in the Western Athletic Conference, but some things remain the same--the Broncos are the preseason favorite in the new Mountain Rim Gymnasts Conference.

Boise State received three first-place votes and 15 points to top the poll of the five league coaches, while the University of Denver finished second with the remaining two first-place votes.  Southern Utah was third, followed by Brigham Young and Utah State.

Boise State returns 2013 WAC Freshman of the Year Maddie Krentz, as well as All-WAC performer Kelsey Black, from its WAC Championship squad of last season.

The 2014 Mountain Rim conference season will begin January 11, with the championship scheduled for March 22 in Provo, Utah.

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Top 100 Female Artists of the Rock Era:

In case you haven't checked it out, or have fallen behind with the Christmas rush, here is a link to Inside The Rock Era's first 25 artists:

The Top 150 Christmas Songs of All-Time:

Here is a guide to all the Christmas songs that our sister blog, Inside The Rock Era, has featured since December 1 in our annual Christmas special:

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bronco Hoops Ready to Go in Lexington

It took much longer than expected, but Boise State got to Lexington late last night, and did a shootaround this morning in Rupp Arena.  Someone asked me what percentage Boise State had of winning tonight?  I said about the same percentage as Boise State's field goal percentage tonight.

Boise State #29 in AP Basketball Poll

Friday, December 6, 2013

Statement from Boise State

Coach Chris Petersen Leaving for Washington

Coach Chris Petersen is leaving Boise State after leading the Broncos to their worst season since at least 2001.  His last few years weren't happy ones--the NCAA violations, the suspensions, kicking players off the team.  Pete was 92-12 since taking over in 2006, with a quarter of those losses happening this year.

Boise State has already received dozens of applications for the vacant head coaching job.  I expect an announcement fairly soon.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Broncos Pull Out 69-67 Win Over Utah

In the game of basketball, sometimes you need some intangibles to win.

Tonight, Boise State got those, in the form of a noisy crowd down the stretch, stepped-up defense, and playing though a 10-minute stretch in which their leading scorer was on the bench with foul trouble, to stop Utah 69-67 in Taco Bell Arena.

That the Broncos won with an uncharacteristic frigid night from behind the free-point line (4-14) is to their credit.  It certainly wasn't pretty, but Coach Leon Rice's team advances to 7-0 with the win over the previously unbeaten Utes.  That's the best start in school history.  Getting it this early is one thing; keeping it is quite another.  

This year's Broncos will have to go 9-1 over the next 10 games to match the 16-1 start by the 1987-1988 team.

The game was back and forth the entire way, with 14 lead changes.  Utah grabbed their biggest lead of the night, 46-42 on a Kenneth Ogbe three-pointer with 12:16 remaining.  They continued to hold that lead at 50-46 until an Anthony Drmic three-ball two minutes later.  

Boise State regained the lead at the 7:52 mark when a jumper by Drmic found nothing but net to put the Broncos up 56-55.  It was a lead that the Broncos wouldn't relinquish until Jordan Loveridge's three-pointer with just 1:52 left to put the Utes ahead 66-65.

Derrick Marks hit a clutch jumper in the key with 52 ticks remaining to give Boise State a 67-66 lead.  A defensive stop put Marks on the line.  He missed the front end of a one-and-one, but Jeff Elorriaga made the defensive play of the game with a steal with 18 seconds remaining.

Marks was back at the free-throw line, and this time, he hit both shots to extend the lead to 69-66.  Utah's Delon Wright made one of two free throws for the final points for either team.

Marks led the way with 17 points, while Drmic scored 14 hard-earned points and Mikey Thompson came off the bench for 13.  Ryan Watkins stepped up his game in the second half to finish with eight points and 10 rebounds, including several key offensive boards.  

Loveridge led Utah with 19 points while Wright had 15.  Utah falls to 6-1 with the loss.

Boise State entertains Carroll College Thursday night in Taco Bell Arena.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Broncos Turn Back Portland State 76-60

Boise State wore down Portland State tonight 76-60 in Taco Bell Arena.

The game was the Broncos' third in seven days and just two days after the exhausting game against Idaho and it showed.  Boise State was not its usual sharp selves, allowing the Vikings to hang around for the entire first half.  Coach Leon Rice's team went into the locker room only up 34-30.

No doubt Rice laid it out to his team at halftime, as the Bronco defense ceased to allow the easy buckets they were giving up in the first half.  One minute into the second stanza, Derrick Marks' driving layup made it 36-30, then a steal by Marks and beautiful assist to Ryan Watkins opened up an eight-point lead.  Watkins added a free throw to make it 39-30.

Both teams turned ice cold as seven minutes later, Boise State held a 43-35 lead.  Igor Hadziomerivic drilled a three-pointer to give Boise State its biggest lead at 46-35, then Anthony Drmic came up with another steal, resulting  in a Marks layup and free throw.  The Broncos were up 49-35, and coasted the rest of the way to their sixth victory in as many games.

Watkins was superb for Boise State, hustling all over the court.  The big guy netted 14 points and 13 rebounds, and his help down low stopped several Vikings in their tracks.  Marks added 14 points, while Mikey Thompson scored 13 and had four assists, Hadziomerivic contributed 12 points and 7 rebounds, and Drmic had 9 points, 8 boards and 3 assists for the Broncos.

  DaShaun Wiggins had 19 points for Portland State, aided by Tim Douglas with 12 and Aaron Moore with 12.

Next up for the Broncos is Utah Tuesday night.  The Utes are unbeaten themselves, making for an early season game of two of the nation's 25 undefeated teams remaining.  

Tipoff is 8:05 Tuesday night in Taco Bell Arena.

The 2013 Boise State Seniors: A Record-Breaking Run for A Class Act

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Marks Sets School Record with 21 Free Throws

Idaho helped Derrick set the mark, fouling the Mountain West's best free-throw shooter repeatedly down the stretch.  Marks calmly hit 21-23 free throws, breaking the school record of 20 set by Tanoka Beard against George Mason in 1992.

Oh, and Idaho quit fouling when Boise State had 98 points.  Hmmmm.

Drmic Moves from 21st to 18th on All-Time Scoring List at Boise State

Anthony Drmic's 21 points tonight gave him 1,033 in his Boise State basketball career.

He is now 18th all-time in career scoring, passing Eric Lane (1,075 points), Greg Bunn (1,032) and LeShard Anderson (1,022).

Monday, November 25, 2013

Boise State Wrestlers Stun #6 Oregon State

Boise State sent shock waves through the wrestling world with a 19-18 upset of #6 Oregon State in Corvallis.

Coach Greg Randall's team fell behind 15-3, but won four of the last five matches to knock off the defending Pac-12 champions in the first league match for both teams.

The shock started with sophomore Chris Castillo's win at 149 pounds, beating the #3 wrestler in America, Scott Sakaguchi, 3-2.  Oregon State won the next to matches to grab their big lead, but freshman Austin Dewey recorded a 6-5 victory over Oregon State's Joe Latham at 174 pounds.  Senior Jake Swartz, the nation's #5 wrestler at 184 pounds, put away John Tuck 20-7.  Taylor Meeks, the top-ranked wrestler at 197 pounds, got more than he wanted from Boise State senior Cody Dixon, escaping with a 1-0 win to push the Beaver lead to 18-10.

Bronco senior heavyweight J.T. Felix pinned Amarveer Dhesi in 31 seconds, to hand the deciding match to Sophomore Rami Haddadin.  Haddadin came through with a 10-9 victory to give the Broncos the amazing win.

133: Van Anrooy major decision Ty Stevenson, 10-0 (OSU 4, BSU 0)
141: Joey Delgado major decision Travis Himmelman, 10-2 (OSU 8, BSU 0)
149: Chris Castillo decision Scott Sakaguchi, 3-2 (OSU 8, BSU 3)
157: RJ Pena decision Holden Packard, 6-2 (OSU 11, BSU 3)
165: Alex Elder major decision Taylor West, 11-2 (OSU 15, BSU 3)
174: Austin Dewey decision Joe Latham, 6-5 (OSU 15, BSU 6)
184: Jacob Swartz major decision John Tuck, 20-7 (OSU 15, BSU 10)
197: Taylor Meeks decision Cody Dixon, 1-0 (OSU 18, BSU 10)
HWT: J.T. Felix pin Amarveer Dhesi, 0:31 (OSU 18, BSU 16)
125: Rami Haddadin decision Pat Rollins, 10-9 (OSU 18, BSU 19)

Boise State #31 in AP

Boise State #31 in Coaches Poll

Still not a whole lot of respect for the Broncos.  They put a 4-1 team ahead of 4-0 Boise State.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Boise State Getting Close To 400 Wins As a Four-Year School

In 2005, my research showed that Boise State was the fastest school in the modern era to win 300 football games as a four-year school.  The Broncos won their 300th over San Jose State about midway through that season.  

Since that win, Boise State has won 96 games, giving them 396, just four shy of their 400th win as a four-year school.  It just so happens that the Broncos can win four more games this season if they win out--really something for them to shoot for.

If these Broncos don't get it done, Boise State very likely will get their 400th very early in the 2014 season.

Boise State Thumps New Orleans 100-80

The Broncos are 4-0, cracking the 100-point barrier for the 33rd time in school history, and the third time in four games this year.  Anthony Drmic and Derrick Marks both had 24 points, and Jeff Elorriaga hit six three-pointers for 18.

Bates Finishes Second in the Nation

Emma closed the gap on the leader after about 4000 meters, moving from 20th to 12th to 3rd.  Abbey D'Agostino of Dartmouth raced out to a lead of about 60 meters shortly afterwards.  Bates chased her down at the end, but finished about five seconds behind.

Superb race, and just a super finish by Bates--Congrats!

Bates Falls Back

Emma is well back of the leader, who leads the field by about 20 yards.

Bates Underway in the NCAA Women's Cross Country Championship

Boise State's Emma Bates is hoping to finish somewhere in the Top 10 today.  She is a legitimate contender for the title.

Anthony Drmic Becomes 23rd Bronco Over 1,000 Career Points

Anthony Drmic went over the 1,000-point mark for his career in the first half of the New Orleans game.  He now has 21 with four minutes remaining.  Congrats AD!

Boise State Leads New Orleans on the Road 52-28

Great start in the Broncos' first road game.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Emma Bates is the 2013 U.S. Women's Cross Country West Region Athlete of the Year

In case you're wondering who the top women's cross country athlete of the week is, you don't have to look any further than Boise State.
Emma Bates
No, it's not someone from the Pac-12.  Rather, the Mountain West Conference.  Bates continued to roll in the West Regional last weekend, completing the 6-k course in 19:10.56.  Bates also won the Mountain West championship as well as a Pre-National Invitational title.  

Bates will test the field at the NCAA National Cross Country Championships this Saturday in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Boise State Students Head to Greenland

Boise State University graduate students Mark Robertson (far left) and Gabriel Trisca, along with researcher Hans-Peter Marshall, gather in their Boise State lab for final preparations before Robertson and Trisca depart for Greenland.

Students at Boise State are making a difference in what they do. Boise State technology that is used this year to measure snow accumulation and melt at Bogus Basin is on its way to Greenland to help scientists answer questions about that country's massive ice sheets.

Boise State graduate students Gabriel Trisca, computer science, and Mark Robertson, geophysics, will spend a month at Summit Camp at Greenland's highest point, where they will help test the capabilities of a unique NASA robot and gather radar data to help the scientists better understand the extent of summer 2012's unusual ice melt.

The radar system, developed by Boise State geosciences assistant professor Hans-Peter Marshall, will be utilized by the robot to measure snow accumulation over the past 30-plus years and help determine how much melt occurred during the extremely warm summer last year when melting occurred at the summit for the first time since the late 1800's. The robot can be operated remotely and the low-power radar system is unique in that it uses the same frequency range as NASA satellites, making it unlike that is available commercially.

Dubbed "GROVER", or Greenland Rover, the robot weights over 800 pounds and uses two snowmobile tracks and electric motors to traverse the ice. It employs large solar panels and batteries that it uses for a power source.

“NASA is very interested in a remote ground unit. They have aircraft and space measurements but nothing capable of taking continual ground measurements,” Marshall said. “This trip is to prove the concept of autonomous ground-based radar measurements on ice sheets. It if goes well, robots like GROVER could be deployed in polar regions around the world and operated from anywhere in the world.”

GROVER was first developed from 2010-2011 by teams of students, including Trisca. NASA has since provided funding to fine-tune the robot at Boise State through several grants led by Marshall that focus on radar measurements of snow. It incorporates the same technology that the Cryospheric Sciences group at Boise State has been utilizing for NASA snow remote sensing field campaigns in Alaska, Canada and Austria. The project in Greenland will be the last of six major NASA sensing field campaigns that Marshall and six Boise State graduate students will participate in this winter.

Boise State was the sole university research group representing the U.S. for the two NASA/ESA snow radar campaigns in Europe. The snow radar has been integrated with GROVER this year and was tested in Idaho this winter in preparation for being deployed to Greenland. This final campaign’s goal is to demonstrate the potential for large-scale, ground-based radar measurements, which could be done at a fraction of the cost of large field campaigns.

“This really is an opportunity for Boise State to demonstrate an exciting new science platform for radar and other measurements in polar regions, which would enable continuous measurements in extremely remote areas,” Marshall said. “I love going to these places, but after over a decade of lots of fieldwork in these isolated areas, the potential for controlling a robot to do the radar measurements for us in Greenland or Antarctica, from my office at Boise State, is pretty exciting.”

Marshall just returned last week from a NASA field campaign in Arctic Alaska on the North Slope of the Brooks range. Trisca has been writing software for various versions of GROVER for a couple of years.

“This trip to Greenland is such a rare opportunity,” Trisca said. “Computer science doesn’t often have you doing field work in geosciences. I’m really excited to be able to go out and test what I’ve written. Not to mention that we are doing something that has such potential for impacting research in polar regions.”

Trisca also is writing software for detecting snow avalanches, using low frequency microphones, along Idaho Highway 21 between Lowman and Stanley. The local avalanche project with one of Marshall’s Ph.D. students, Scott Havens, is funded by the Idaho Transportation Department. The avalanche starting zones are too dangerous for Marshall’s group to take radar for snow measurements, but next winter they will test a long-range version of the radar system for measuring snow conditions and avalanche speeds to add to the infrasound avalanche measurements.

The Boise State students will meet with NASA scientist Lora Koenig in Greenland for the research project, and will collaborate remotely with Marshall via email and Skype. NASA will send a reporter to Greenland at the end of May to document GROVER’s progress on the ice sheet.

“Robots like GROVER will give us a new tool for glaciology studies,” Koenig said, adding that research with polar rovers is cheaper than with aircraft or satellites. “If we can control them from our offices, we’ll able to process the data and get scientific results quicker than if we were in the field gathering data, which will speed up our scientific conclusions on what happened that year on the ice sheet.”

Boise State Leads the Nation in Scoring and Three-Point Shooting

54.9%--that's better than many teams shoot the ball from the field, and the Broncos are doing it from behind the arc:

Thomas Bropleh #12 in Three-Point Shooting, Nick Duncan #22

Boise State's Anthony Drmic #13 in the Nation in Scoring

Boise State Breaks Own Modern Record for Wins in a 15-Year Period

When you judge the top college football teams in history, certainly longevity has to rank among your most important factors.

With Boise State's 48-7 win over Wyoming last night, the Broncos have now eclipsed their own modern record for the most wins in a 15-year period. Boise State broke Florida State's record last year, compiling a 163-29 mark from 1998-2012. The great Seminole teams from 1987-2001 held the existing mark of 160-23-1 prior to Boise State topping them.

But with last night's win, Boise State is now 164-27 since 1999 with at least three games to play.

Seventh Heaven

Boise State consistently shows up in the all-time Top 10 in several football categories, but Boise State's run of success has lasted scarcely over a decade.  This list showing consecutive seasons with seven or more victories requires more consistency.  The teams that make this list are generally the landmark teams, the giants of college football.  Boise State has been a great 15-year phenomenon, and has been doing this for a very short time compared to the Michigan's, the Ohio State's, the Alabama's.  But to land in the Top 25 is still impressive.

For the Broncos to truly get respect, however, they will need to stay consistent for at least another decade.  Given that they land near the top in about every other category, if the Broncos can reach the Top 10 in this list, most will feel at that time that they belong.  There will of course be a scattering of skeptics.  But you can't please everyone...

Nebraska put together the most amazing run in the history of football by winning seven or more games every year from 1969 to 2003, an incredible streak of 35 straight seasons. That all came to a crashing halt when the Cornhuskers finished 2004 by winning just five of 11 games.

Florida State has compiled a streak of 32 straight seasons that is still current. The Seminoles have won seven or more games every year since 1982. Michigan had a great recent streak of 23 years that ended in 2008 when the Wolverines were 3-9. Florida’s streak of 25 consecutive seasons that began in 1988 is still current but in jeopardy. Oklahoma put together a streak of 22 straight seasons; the Sooners were highly consistent from 1970 to 1991.  Coach Frank Beamer has guided Virginia Tech to seven or more wins every season since 1993, giving the Hokies 21 consecutive seasons.

BYU, Michigan, Notre Dame, Penn State and Miami of Florida each achieved the feat 17 straight seasons, with the Cougars winning seven or more from 1976-1992, the Wolverines winning seven or more from 1968 to 1983, the Fighting Irish recording the feat in the years 1964-1980, the Nittany Lions putting together seasons of seven or more wins from 1967 to 1983 and the Hurricanes doing it from 1980 to 1996. Tennessee’s streak of 16 straight seasons (1989-2004) ended when the Volunteers went 5-6 in 2005. 

Ohio State’s best streak came between the years of 1972 and 1986, when the Buckeyes ran through 15 consecutive seasons of seven or more wins. Oklahoma's current run from 2002-2013 has matched Boise State for 15 straight seasons.  The Sooners also put together a run of 14 straight years from 1946 to 1959, the 20th best streak of all-time. LSU started their current run a year after Boise State and Oklahoma and the Tigers now stand at 14 straight years.  Virginia racked up seven or more wins from 1987-1999, 13 consecutive seasons. Alabama put together streaks of 13 (1971-1983), 12 (1985-1996) and 10 (1959-1968). 

Mississippi won seven or more from 1952 to 1963, a streak of 12 seasons, matched by Notre Dame’s run from 1938 to 1949 and more recently by Boston College's streak from 1999-2010.  Another streak of 12 consecutive seven-win seasons ended in 2010 for Texas when the Longhorns were 5-7.  USC has now set a school record with 12 consecutive seasons of seven or more wins (2002-13) and Wisconsin matches USC with their run from 2002-2013.  Washington’s most successful years came from 1977-1987 when they too won seven or more games in eleven straight seasons. Texas A & M matched the Huskies’ streak from 1985 to 1995. Arizona State enjoyed ten consecutive seasons of seven or more wins from 1955-1964. Alabama (1959-1968), USC (1924-1993), Colorado (1987-1996),Colorado State (1994-2003), Ohio State (1989-1998), Pittsburgh (1974-1983) and Duke (1932-1941) also had ten seasons of seven or more wins. 

Yale dominated football in the 19th century and the first part of the 20th century, winning seven or more games for 28 straight seasons (1882-1909). Princeton strung 27 such years together (1881-1907) and Pennsylvania (1888-1912) and Harvard (1886-1910) both had 25 consecutive seasons in roughly the same time period. Carlisle, which featured running back Jim Thorpe, won seven or more games from 1902-1913, a streak of twelve seasons.

The top streaks in the history of college football are featured below. 

Consecutive Seasons of Seven or More Wins:
1.  Nebraska…35 (1969-2003)
2.  Florida State…32 (1982-2013)
3.  Yale…28 (1882-1909)
4.  Princeton…27 (1881-1907)
5.  Harvard…25 (1886-1910)
5.  Florida…25 (1988-2012)
7.  Pennsylvania…25 (1888-1912)
8.  Michigan…23 (1985-2007)
9.  Oklahoma…22 (1970-1991)
10.  Virginia Tech…21 (1993-2013)
11.  BYU...17 (1976-1992)
11.  Miami of Florida…17 (1980-1996)
11.  Notre Dame…17 (1964-1980)
11.  Penn State…17 (1967-1983)
15.  Michigan…16 (1968-1983)
15.  Tennessee…16 (1989-2004)
17.  Ohio State…15 (1972-1986)
17.  Boise State…15 (1999-2013)
17.  Oklahoma…..15 1999-2013 
20.  Oklahoma…14 (1946-1959)
20.  LSU...14 (2000-2013)
22.  Alabama…13 (1971-1983)
22.  Georgia…13 (1997-2009)
22.  Georgia Tech…13 (1997-2009)
22.  Virginia…13 (1987-1999)
26.  Alabama…12 (1985-1996)
26.  Boston College…12 (1999-2010) 
26.  Carlisle…12 (1902-1913)
26.  Mississippi…12 (1952-1963)
26.  Notre Dame…12 (1938-1949)
26.  Texas…12 (1998-2009)
26.  USC...12 (2002-2013)
26.  Wisconsin...12 (2002-2013)

Blue Through and Through Goes Over 75,000 Page Views

Thank-you for accomplishing that.  Since we own three blogs, we'll put our most effort in the ones that do the best.  The more page views, the harder we'll work!  Thanks again for your support!

Be sure to check out our sister blog, Inside The Rock Era, with now over 500,000 page views!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Boise State Powers Past Simpson 110-53

The emphasis on defense this past off-season is obvious--the message has gotten through to the Boise State players.  Despite the second straight game in which they scored 110 points in a 110-53 win over Simpson last night in Taco Bell Arena, we still don't know how good this team is.

Although I maintain that any team that does to another what Boise State has done the past two weeks is pretty darn good.  We'll begin to know with Seattle, and then progressively Utah and Kentucky after that.

Senior guard Jeff Elorriaga made up for lost time by scoring 26 to lead the Bronco attack.  Elorriaga had sat in the home opener as a precaution after being hit in the head after a fall in practice leading up to the game.  Elorriaga missed his first trey, then connected on his next nine attempts from the field, including seven howitzers.  Last week it was Anthony Drmic and his 34 points; this week it was Jeff, who had 20 points  in the first half alone.

Boise State as a team made 15 three-pointers, one shy of a school record.  Drmic added 16 points of his own and Nick Duncan, who is beginning to emerge as a threat, chipped in 14, including 4-of-5 shooting from three-point land.  

Boise State jumped out to a 19-5 lead early and kept up the defensive pressure, creating steal after steal.  Coach Leon Rice's team opened up a 92-33 lead with 10:48 to play.

The Broncos take on Seattle next Tuesday in Taco Bell Arena.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Emma Bates Wins NCAA West Regional, Jeff Howard Will Join Her at Nationals

They still haven't been able to find someone to beat Boise State's Emma Bates, so now she'll race against the best in the nation, after topping all participants in the NCAA Western Regional Cross Country Championship in Sacramento today.

Bates beat Arizona State's Shelby Houlihan by three seconds and broke her personal best in the 6-kilometer by 58 seconds.  Her time of 19:11 today is 16 seconds than the time won by the national champion in 2012.  Courses and the times run by the athletes vary of course.  Emma is the first Bronco to ever win a Regional, and is the first woman to qualify for the National Championship since Abby Peters did it in 1999.  The Bronco women finished 10th today. 

Jeff Howard was seventh on the men's side and will also advance to Nationals after leading the Bronco men to their best-ever finish at a Regional Championship, fourth place.  Howard maneuvered through the 10-k course in 29:54, while senior Allan Schroeder was 14th (29:59) and junior David Elliott delivered a career-best of 30:08 to get 18th.  

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Boise State's Jennifer Forbey Secures Two NSF Grants

With support from two grants from the National Science Foundation, Jennifer Forbey, assistant professor of biological sciences at Boise State University, is working with researchers from universities in Washington, Florida and California along with biologists from state and federal agencies, to determine how the quality of sagebrush as food influences the success of pygmy rabbits and sage grouse.

“Pygmy rabbits and sage grouse are among 1 percent of all plant-eating mammals and birds that rely entirely on a single plant for food,” said Forbey, assistant professor of biological sciences at Boise State. “Both only exist where you find sagebrush. Unfortunately sagebrush habitats are considered one of the most threatened ecosystems in North America.”
A $980,000 NSF grant will be used by Forbey and the other researchers to explore how pygmy rabbits make decisions between eating the highest quality sagebrush and using sagebrush to hide from predators and extreme temperatures.  
Unique chemistry and different nutrient levels can affect whether the rabbits eat or ignore the plants.  
“Past conservation of sagebrush habitat focused on cover characteristics, not food quality. We are trying to change that approach,” Forbey said.
Pygmy Rabbit study, Jennifer Forbey, Biology, for Explore magazine, desert, cq

A second grant of $470,000 will allow the researchers to study how availability and selection for tasty sagebrush affects courtship displays of male sage grouse.  If the grouse have to travel farther away from mating sites, called leks, for tasty sagebrush, they may use more energy traveling and be at a greater risk of being attacked by predators.  Males that eat low quality sagebrush near a lek may not have the strength for the intense mating rituals required to attract females.
“We want to identify what makes certain sagebrush tasty and how that diet quality influences their reproductive success,” Forbey said. “We can then map, monitor and restore the distribution of tasty plants to improve the mating success of sage grouse.”

Forbey and her fellow researchers will use cutting-edge technologies for observation and experimentation, including a robot grouse capable of mimicking female grouse behaviors and wireless devices that measure real time movement of grouse.
Pygmy rabbits and sage grouse are both threatened species, Forbey noted. “Everyone wants to prevent the loss of these iconic animals, which also would prevent economic consequences associated with listing them as endangered species,” she said. “Our research could help identify which types of sagebrush help promote the healthiest populations of pygmy rabbits and sage grouse and can help keep these species off the endangered species list.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Boise State Signs Two High Quality Recruits

Two promising prospects have signed letters of intent to play at Boise State.

Guard Chandler Hutchison (6-6) and forward David Wacker (6-9) have agreed to play for Coach Leon Rice and, truth be told, what high school basketball player in their right mind wouldn't want to?

Hutchison is ranked as the #11 prospect in California after averaging 13.8 points and 4.8 rebounds last year.  Hutchison helped Mission Viejo to a 26-5 record and a beth in the CIF quarterfinals.  

“Chandler is a very skilled, athletic guard who has the chance to be a very special player,” Rice said. “He is going to have a terrific senior year.”

Wacker is ranked as the #21 center in the country and #11 prospect in Texas.  He averaged 14.7 points, 9.8 rebounds and 2.7 blocked shots as a junior in leading Converse High School to a 29-8 record and the third round of the Texas Class 5A State Tournament.  He was tabbed 5A All-State.  

“In David Wacker we got a great on- and off-the-court leader who will not only impact our basketball program but will impact the campus and community,” Rice said. “Not to mention he’s a very talented young big man.”

“We are very excited about both of these young men because of their tremendous upside,” said Rice. “The best basketball is definitely still ahead for both Chandler and David. They have a great work ethic to go along with their ability and they’re going to continue to improve here at Boise State. They both come from great families and are really high character young men.”

Monday, November 11, 2013

Boise State #31 in AP Poll

Boise State #30 in Coaches Poll

The highest a Boise State basketball team has ever been ranked is #23 back in the magic year of 1987-88.  At that time, the polls consisted of a Top 20, and the Broncos were third-best of Others Receiving Votes.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Boise State 14th in Three-Point Shooting

Boise State 11th in the Country in Field Goal Percentage

Boise State 4th in the Country in Scoring

Anthony Drmic 3rd in the Nation in Scoring

Hopefully, you were there to witness his great start to this basketball season.  I was!

All-Time Bronco Great Steve Connor Has Passed Away

Sad to read in this morning's paper that Steve Connor has passed away at age 58 in North Carolina.  Connor was the guard for Borah High School on one of the best high school basketball teams the state has ever produced, then as a four-year starter for Boise State and his father, head coach Bus Connor.

Connor finished his career in 1978 as one of the top players in Bronco history.  He continues to hold school records for career scoring average (18.0), career assists (502), career field goals (771) and career field goal attempts (1,718).  Connor is #2 all-time in points at Boise State with 1,927, third in career free throws with 385, third in free-throw attempts with 486, sixth in career free-throw percentage with 79.2% and eighth in single-season scoring with 530 points.

Connor also scored 490 points in the 1975-1976 season, helping Boise State win the Big Sky Conference Tournament and a berth in the NCAA Tournament, and 457 in the 1976-77 season.  He was drafted in the 10th Round of the 1978 NBA Draft by the Washington Bullets, and played professionally in Europe and in the CBA.

I went to school with his brother, Ty, and worked with his younger brother Bret.  Condolences to the Connor family during this sad time.  Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

Where Will Boise State Be Ranked Tomorrow?

After an easy win over UT-Arlington, the Bronco basketball team is now 1-0.  The first official college basketball poll will be released tomorrow.  Last week, Boise State was #32.  Will be interesting to see what the pollsters do.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Red-Hot Drmic Keys Resounding Bronco Win

Bottle this one up, especially the first half.

The Boise State basketball team put one of its best shows in years with a 116-87 victory over UT-Arlington tonight in Taco Bell Arena.  Coach Leon Rice's team put up 60 in the first half alone, and were two points shy of a school record for points.

Anthony Drmic was on fire early and often, displaying a devastating mixture of draining threes and lightning quick drives to the hoop to pace the team with 34 points to go along with six rebounds and two assists.  What made Drmic so special tonight was his tenacity on defense, hustling hard to save loose balls, and his amazing passing to wide open teammates under the basket.

Drmic hit 5-11 from downtown tonight and passed Anthony Thomas (2006-2010) for 10th place all-time with 142 career three-pointers.  The sharpshooter from Down Under is zeroing in on becoming the 23rd player in Bronco history to score 1,000 career points--he now has 947.

If you haven't seen this team play yet, you're going to notice two things.  First, the defensive pressure is much improved from last year.  Still nothing like the Bobby Dye days at Boise State, but getting better.  I've said often that if this team played defense, they'd be a Top 10 team and I still believe that.  The second eye-popping thing is the depth.  They now have the depth that the football team has had for years, with solid contributions nine and ten deep in the lineup tonight, and that was without star senior guard Jeff Elorriaga, who sat out for precautionary reasons because of an injury to his head last week.

The Broncos are back and looked better tonight than they've looked, well, since the Bobby Dye days.  Offensively, of course, there's no comparison--this is the best offensive team by far the school has ever fielded.  The entire team was lights out shooting the ball--their 13 three-pointers were just three off another school mark.  If they can keep improving defensively, there's almost no one that can beat them.

Derrick Marks poured in 17 points and included a couple of highlight reel dunks, while Ryan Watkins played another superb game inside for the Broncs with 14 points and 10 boards, true freshman Dezmyn Trent had 13 points and reserve guard Mikey Thompson scored 10 points and had six assists.  Add in Igor Hadziomerivic and Thomas Bropleh with nine points each and you have a deep team. 

Boise State hosts Simpson next Friday in game number two for this special team.

Boise State Soccer Team Headed to MWC Championship!

In only their fourth year of play in the Mountain West Conference, the Boise State soccer team has reached the championship game.  They did it with a 2-1 victory over #2 seed Fresno State in double overtime.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Boise State Shuts Out Wyoming in Mountain West Quarterfinals

The third-seeded Lady Broncos blanked Wyoming today 3-0 to advance to the semifinals of the Mountain West Soccer Tournament.

Katy Oehring scored in the opening minutes when she headed a Mikhalia Bowden corner kick into the net.  Sophomore Brooke Heidemann got in on the scoring in the 43rd minute when she took a pass from junior Shannon Schueren and booted it home.  Ohering headed in another Bowden corner kick for the final margin.

Junior Maddy McDevitt posted her eighth shutout of the season in helping the Broncos advance.  Boise State will meet second-seed Fresno State Thursday afternoon.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Boise State Holds Off Colorado State 42-30

It turned out much closer than it should have been, but Boise State survived with a 42-30 win over Colorado State tonight in Fort Collins.  The Broncos have a much-needed bye this week to try to heal some wounds.  Boise State has 21 players out, 12 from loss of scholarship from their players paying for other players to eat tacos at Taco Bell, and another 9 from injury.

The good news is that Boise State is still in control of its own destiny, and it got that bowl-eligible sixth win tonight.

Kentucky #1 in Men's Basketball

Friday, November 1, 2013

Boise State and Utah State Finish Where They Began

A tie game.  No one could break the 1-1 deadlock at the half.

Broncos Storm Past Lewis-Clark State 80-52

Boise State's basketball team opened the season with an 80-52 exhibition win over Lewis-Clark State tonight in Taco Bell Arena.  Ryan Watkins led the way with 15 points and seven boards, but it was the reserves who clamped on the defense to stymie a Warrior team that came into the game averaging 100 points a game.

Coach Leon Rice's team hosts UT-Arlington next Friday to open the regular season.

Boise State Soccer Tied with Utah State 1-1

Halftime score.  Kayla Tucker scored at the 20:21 mark to put Boise State up, but USU has tied it.

Women's Cross Country Results

1.    Emma Bates, Boise State (20:48) (won by 24 seconds)
2.    Samantha Silva, New Mexico
3.    Marisa Howard, Boise State
4.    Charlotte Arter, New Mexico
5.    Anna Everson, Air Force
6.    Holly Page, Wyoming
7.    Nicole Roberts, New Mexico
8.    Kali Zachary, New Mexico
9.    Annette Eichenberger, Air Force
10.  Helene Tambet, New Mexico

Freshman of the Year;  Sonna Helleran, Colorado State
Athlete of the Year, Emma Bates, Boise State

2013 Champions:  New Mexico--31 points
2.  Boise State 60 points
3.  Colorado State 117
4.  Air Force 118

Taryn Treadway Earns 2nd Team All-Mountain West

Treadway finished 12th today.  Congrats Taryn!

MWC Men's Cross Country Results

1.    Isiah Bragg of the Air Force (24:08.39)
2.    Luke Caldwell of New Mexico
3.    Adam Bitchell of New Mexico
4.    Pat Zacharias of New Mexico
5.    Garrett Zans of Wyoming
6.    Eric Showhorn of Utah State
7.    Ben Larson of Colorado State
8.    Shawn Stamm of New Mexico
9.    Andrew Goodman of Colorado State
10.  Christian Meyer of Colorado State

Aaron Back of Boise State finished 12th

Freshman of the Year:  Michael Kessey of Wyoming
Athlete of the Year:  Isiah Bragg of Air Force

2013 Champions:  New Mexico--32 points
2.  Colorado State 51
3.  Air Force 80
4.  Boise State 101

Aaron Back 2nd Team All-Conference

Back finished 12th today and earns MWC 2nd Team.  Congrats Aaron!

New Mexico Wins Both Men's and Women's

The battle will be for the other spots.  The Bronco men are no better than third, but I think the Boise State women might have gotten second.  We'll let you know first right here!

Two Broncos at 23:28 and 24:11

Unofficially, I had Bates at about 20:49; the MWC record is 20:42.

The Bronco women with a real shot at second.

Bates Wins Easily

Super, super performance.  She won by at least 200 yards.

Marisa Howard gets third!

Howard Now in 2nd

New Mexico 3, 4 and 7.

Bates Now by 50 Yards

Emma running away with this--she's incredible!

One mile to go, about a 200-yard lead!  She's like Secretariat!

Bates Opening Up Lead

Howard now third as the runners begin to separate.

Bates leads by about 30 yards.

Problem for Boise State is that it is just about a two-woman team.  The rest of the Broncos now way back.

New Mexico Still with 6 Runners Near the Lead

Boise State has four near the front.  A pack of about 20.

Bates Now Leads

Boise State is 1 and 4 (I believe that's Marisa Howard in fourth).

Broncos Making Their Move

Five Broncos now near the lead, along with New Mexico, Colorado State and Air Force.

Colorado State Finishes Second

Colorado State placed runners in the #7, #9, #10 and #11 spots today and will defeat #20 Boise State for second in the Mountain West.  Not sure if the Broncos even got third.

Bronco Women Fall to the Back

Most of the Bronco runners are near the back of the back.  Not good.

2 Kilometers In

New Mexico, Fresno State and Colorado State are 1-2-3.

New Mexico Has All Six Women Near the Front

Only one Bronco near the lead as of the moment.

Bronco Women Get Great Start

But the men did too earlier. 

Women's MWC Cross Country About to Start

Hopefully, the Bronco women will do what the men could not.

Women run a 5K as opposed to the 7K for the men.

Mountain West Slow on Results

They claim to have "high technology", but the race has been over for 10 minutes, and still no results.  All you have to go on is our unofficial results.  New Mexico won easily.  It will be a battle between Colorado State, Air Force, Wyoming and Boise State for the next few positions.

If I had to guess, I would say Colorado State finished third.

One Runner Still on the Course

Eight minutes or more behind the winner.  We'll have final results as soon as that runner finishes.

Winning Time Under 25 Minutes

Gavin Owens of Air Force upset Luke Caldwell of New Mexico to win the individual title.  New Mexico was 3 (Adam Bitchell) and 4 (Pat Zacharias) followed by a Wyoming runner.  Two Boise State runners were near the back, hurting the Broncos' team chances.  They will be lucky to finish third.

Air Force Takes the Lead

New Mexico still 2-3-4.

Boise State Not Looking Like the Second Best Team Today

New Mexico is 1-2-4, and no Bronco in the top 6.

There are two Broncos in the Top 10, #7 and #10.

Caldwell Now 30 Yards Ahead

And his Lobo teammates have similar leads on the rest of the field.  New Mexico still 1-2-3.

New Mexico 1-2-3

The Lobos are running away with it.  Only one Bronco near the lead now.

New Mexico Now 1-2-3-4

Defending champ Luke Caldwell leading the Lobo men.

Three Lobos and Two Broncos near the Front

Colorado State also has a runner near the lead.

Three Broncos Now Near the Lead

Three Broncos are in a huge pack of leaders--very few stragglers at this point, and no Broncos are at the back.  New Mexico, though, has the early advantage.

Two miles remain.

Broncos Now Slipping Off the Pace

4 Kilometers to Go.

Only two Broncos near the lead now--New Mexico is taking over as expected.

Chris Grimbel of Fresno State is leading--there are five Lobos near the lead.

Boise State Men Off to Great Start

The Bronco harriers are near the lead in the early going.

There are four Broncos in the Top 10--Wyoming and New Mexico also with several in the lead pack.

MW Cross Country Championships About to Get Underway!

This is the best the Broncos have looked in years, so it will be interesting to see how they do!

Then men will go first, followed by the women about 45 minutes later.  (Whatever happened to "Ladies First"?)

Boise State Cross Country Teams Compete in Mountain West Championships

They may not top New Mexico, ranked #9 in both men's and women's, but the Bronco cross country teams will give it a shot today at the Mountain West Championships in Colorado Springs.  Action gets underway at 10 this morning.  As usual, Blue Through and Through will have results before any other media outlet or website in Idaho.

Bronco Wrestlers Ranked #20 in Opening Poll

The Boise State wrestling team is back where it belongs--in the Top 25.  The Broncos are #20 in the first Intermat poll--Oregon State of the Pac-12 is at #6.

Boise State opens the season this weekend with wrestlers competing in two tournaments.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Lori Orr Hayes Passed Away Friday

Lori Orr Hayes, a dedicated Bronco who was the assistant sports information director at Boise State in the Olympic Sports, and did so many other things for Boise State, passed away last Friday after a long battle with cancer.  Lori had been diagnosed with a tumor in 2011 and underwent surgery then.

I first met Lori when she was a student intern at KFXD radio station.  She started out doing news and sports, but literally would do everything we asked of her.  My condolences to her husband James and their family.  Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and everyone who knew her.  She was a special person.