Mountain West Basketball Tournament 2018: Boise State vs. Utah State Game Preview, Score Prediction

Mountain West Basketball Tournament 2018: Boise State vs. Utah State Game Preview, Score Prediction

Utah State

Mountain West Basketball Tournament 2018: Boise State vs. Utah State Game Preview, Score Prediction

 

Boise State vs. Utah State Preview & Score Prediction


Check out the Boise State vs. Utah State game preview and score prediction


Contact/Follow @Logantj & @MWCwire

No. 2 Boise State vs. No. 7 Utah State Game Preview

Game Info

Date: Thursday, March 8th
Tip-off: 7:00 p.m. (MT)
Venue: Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, NV
Radio: TBD
TV/stream: CBS Sports Network

Projected Boise State Lineup

G Chandler Hutchison
G Justinian Jessop
G Lexus Williams
F Chris Sengfelder
F Zach Haney

Projected Utah State Lineup

G Koby McEwen
G Sam Merrill
G Diogo Brito
F Alex Dargenton
F Daron Henson

Why Boise State Will Win

It always helps to have an All-MW first-teamer leading the way. Senior guard Chandler Hutchison is as capable of entering full-game takeover mode as any dude in the tournament, and should be especially interested in proving a point after being overlooked for conference Player of the Year.

The Broncos enter the tournament quarterfinals winning three of their last four, posting wins over Air Force, CSU and Wyoming. The team’s defense has tightened up significantly as of late (neither AFA nor CSU managed to crack 55 points), and Hutchison will always find a way to contribute his 20ppg no matter the opponent. A long season of lobbying for an NCAA tournament bid is finally on the line; count on 2-seeded Boise State to deliver against a tricky USU team that hasn’t made it past a conference quarterfinals since joining the MW in 2013.

Why Utah State Will Win

The Aggies were agents of chaos in an already-messy Mountain West season. Utah State captured wins on the road at UNLV, in overtime against Fresno and even a snazzy home victory against this very Boise team. Then the team fell apart against Air Force and San Jose State in the same week, a sin so unforgivable most fans consider this tournament USU head coach Tim Duryea’s only chance to save his job.

Fortunately for Duryea, he’s got a group that positively thrives under the harsh light of disrespect. Wednesday’s matchup against CSU saw the triumphant resurrection of senior Julion Pearre, who single-handedly kept the Aggies in the fight until McEwen and Merrill caught up in the second half. After being down as many as 15, Utah State rediscovered its gutsy team defense and advanced past the Rams to what should be an intriguing quarterfinal. If the Aggie backcourt can avoid a slow start and defend for a full 40 minutes, Utah State might just shake up the whole bracket.

KenPom Line

Boise State -7, o/u: 141

Score Prediction

Utah State 77, Boise State 74

Latest

More MWWire
Home
%d bloggers like this: