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Boise State falters against Santa Clara, prepares for Mountain West opener in Reno

The needed focus to defeat a top-100 KenPom wasn’t there as the nonconference slate comes to a close.

NCAA Basketball: Battleground 2K22-Boise State at Texas A&M Chris Jones-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos win!

Hold on...


Make that Santa Clara who won.

The temptation to look ahead towards the holiday break was just too much.

Key Teams Stats of the Night

Field Goal Percentage

Boise State - 34.4%

Santa Clara - 44.1%


Boise State - 35

Santa Clara - 41


Boise State - 7

Santa Clara - 13

Stat Leaders


Chibuzo Agbo (BSU) - 12 points

Carlos Stewart (SCU) - 25 points


Tyson Degenhart (BSU) - 9 rebounds

Brandin Podziemski (SCU) - 10 rebounds


Tyson Degenhart and Jace Whiting (BSU) - 2 assists

Keshawn Justice (SCU) - 5 assists

Story of the Game

The battle of the Broncos started off slow with both teams looking to establish their footing. Boise State gained the lead with over 17 minutes left in the first half and didn’t relinquish it for the entirety of the first half. Leon Rice’s crew held a margin that ballooned to as much as eight multiple times. Santa Clara guard Carlos Stewart shortened the deficit to two at the half after scoring seven straight points.

Then, one team showed up out of the break while the other sleepwalked.

Santa Clara burst out of the gates, going on a 20-4 run through the first 8:19 of the second half. It took nearly 14 minutes for Boise State to score 10 points in the second stanza.

This was the first time this season that the Broncos lacked energy on the floor and the bench.

And it cost them.

This was not a bad loss according to the metrics, but Boise State was favored and expected to win. Perhaps, it will serve as a wake-up call that this team will need to show up each and every night as Mountain West play begins.





Location: Reno, Nevada (Lawlor Events Center)

Date/Time: Wednesday, December 28th at 8:00 p.m. (Mountain Time)

Traditional Television: Nevada Sports Net

Streaming: Mountain West Network (Link to the streaming homepage)

Radio: KBOI 670 AM

Head-to-Head: Boise State trails the all-time series 31-51. Last year, the Broncos beat the Wolf Pack each of the three times they met.

Keys to Watch

1. Will Boise State be able to force Nevada into turning the ball over?

  • Nevada ranks inside the top-20 in offensive turnover percentage according to KenPom.

2. Can the Broncos limit Wolf Pack guard Jarod Lucas’ production?

  • The Oregon State transfer is Nevada’s leading scorer, averaging 16.8 points per game.

3. Will we finally see Marcus Shaver Jr. back on the floor?

  • The floor general for the Broncos has missed the last three games due to an undisclosed injury.

Stat Leaders (Averages)


Boise State: Forward Tyson Degenhart - 13.2 Pts.

Nevada: Guard Jarod Lucas - 16.8 Pts.


Boise State: Forward Tyson Degenhart - 5.5 Reb.

Nevada: Forward Darrion Williams - 8.6 Reb.


Boise State: Guard Marcus Shaver Jr. - 4.1 Ast.

Nevada: Guard Kenan Blackshear - 5.1 Ast.


Via our friends at DraftKings, Nevada is currently favored by two and the total is set at 132.


The first game of Mountain West play is never easy, and traveling to Reno certainly doesn’t help. If Shaver Jr. doesn’t play, I don’t see the Broncos having the offensive balance to win this game. In a tight one, Boise State leaves “The Biggest Little City in the World” with a loss.

Final Score

Boise State 63 - Nevada 70

What are your thoughts on the Broncos’ performance against Santa Clara?

Leave your comments down below.