NCAA Basketball Prediction: Boise State Broncos vs UNLV Runnin Rebels
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
by Mike Stewart
Twentieth-ranked UNLV Runnin Rebels returns home after losing back-to-back road games, including Saturday’s 65-45 blowout at New Mexico.
The Runnin’ Rebels scored a season-low for a half (18) and entire game in the loss, and shot a season-worst 31.1 percent. UNLV is 2-4 in Mountain West Conference road games, but is a different team at home, where the Rebels are 14-0 this season and shooting 50.7 percent from the field.
Boise State Broncos is riding a three-game win streak, including a victory over TCU, which had dealt UNLV its first of the back-to-back defeats.
Boise State Broncos (13-12): The Broncos rallied from 12- and nine-point deficits in the first meeting before losing 77-72 in overtime Jan. 25. Boise State will need to pressure UNLV just as it did the first time, forcing 14 turnovers and grabbing 43 rebounds. The Broncos are young, with 11 underclassmen, but have matured rapidly. Freshman Anthony Drmic leads Boise State with 12.3 points and 5.3 rebounds. Derrick Marks paced Boise in the first meeting with 21 points, while Thomas Bropleh added 17 off the bench.
UNLV Runnin Rebels (22-6): If UNLV gets ahead of Boise State this time, don’t look for any significant rallies by the Broncos. Whatever their road hazards have been, the Runnin’ Rebels are unstoppable at home, winning by an average of 22 points. Mike Moser led UNLV in the last meeting with 18 points and a career-high 21 rebounds. Moser is seventh in Division I averaging 11 rebounds per game, and leads the team with 14.7 points. Chace Stanback (13.1 points) will be looking for improvement after being held to just four points against New Mexico. Stanback leads the MWC making 45.7 percent of 3-pointers.
1. UNLV ranks second in Division I with 18.4 assists per game, while Boise is 235th with 12.1 per game.
2. In the first meeting, UNLV went through a 6-of-26 shooting slump in the first half.
3. UNLV leads the conference in offensive rebounds with 12.3 per game; Boise State is third averaging 11.3.
NCAA BASKETBALL PREDICTION: Runnin Rebels 80, Broncos 62.
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