Boise State at #14 Oregon: Game Preview, TV & Radio Schedule, Live Streaming, Odds, More
Boise State travels to Eugene to take on the Ducks
Broncos look to stay hot in first real test
WHO: Boise State (1-0, 0-0 MWC) at #14 Oregon (1-0, 0-0 Pac-12)
WHEN: Saturday, November 9th — 9:00 P.M. MT / 8:00 P.M. PT
WHERE: Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, OR
TV: Pac-12 Network
SERIES RECORD: Oregon leads the series, 8-2
ODDS: Oregon -11, per KenPom
PREVIEW: The Broncos come into the game looking like a well-oiled machine after coasting to a gaudy 126-49 victory over NAIA opponents Life Pacific on Tuesday night. And though the game was clearly a mismatch, there are still some interesting things to glean from the performance.
Perhaps the most intriguing wrinkle that Leon Rice threw into the picture was his small-ball starting lineup. Rice’s decision to start RJ Williams over Robin Jorch is evidence that the coach may be leaning into his team’s strength: athleticism. Boise State is not the biggest team, especially with the sudden departure of center Mikey Frazier last month.
But the Broncos make up for their lack of size with explosiveness, especially from junior Derrick Alston. Williams can fill up a highlight reel himself. The other three starters—seniors Justinian Jessup, Alex Hobbs, and Marcus Dickinson—have plenty of experience. Jessup and Hobbs are two of the better shooters in the league.
And though this roster looks great on paper, this same core of players stumbled to a 13-20 record last year. On Saturday, they face their first real test.
And it’s a big one.
Oregon did not disappoint in their opener, beating Fresno State at home by a score of 71-57. They’ll be back at Matthew Knight Arena to defend their home court against the Broncos.
As expected, senior point guard Payton Pritchard was in fine form. The Ducks star scored 24 points in the season opener, adding seven assists and six rebounds. Pritchard made hay inside the arc, hitting 8-for-10 on two-pointers and getting to the line for 12 free throws.
If the Ducks continue to play as they did on Tuesday night, they will be a tough team to beat for Boise State. It’s unclear if the Broncos will be able to contain Francis Okoro down low. The big man went for a double-double against Fresno State, notching ten points and ten rebounds.
That said, it’s unlikely that Boise State will shoot nearly as poorly as Fresno State did. The Bulldogs went 9-for-36 from beyond the arc against Oregon. The Broncos shot 17-for-31 against Life Pacific. Though they’ll play a much tougher opponent this time around, Boise State looks to have its stroke down.
The Broncos might be able to exploit a Ducks team that is still developing chemistry with a revamped roster. While JUCO transfer Chris Duarte had an impressive debut 16 points and three steals, neither Anthony Mathis nor Shakur Juiston had remarkable games. Oregon’s trio of freshman played a combined 34 minutes, but made little to no impact on the proceedings.
Boise State has the experience and athleticism—not to mention the hot hand—to contend with Oregon. They’ll need to draw on all three if they are to have a chance at pulling off this upset.
Andrew is a current USBWA member, covering college basketball for multiple outlets, including Mountain West Wire of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group and Busting Brackets of the FanSided Network. He also runs the Dieckhoff Power Index, a college basketball analytics system, and provides bracketology predictions throughout the season.