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Bronco basketball returns, feel free to ignore at will

Tonight marks the tip-off of the 2008-09 Boise State men's basketball season. More importantly, tonight is one day before another Bronco football game.

Until the latter gives way to the former, it might be hard for Bronco Nation to give much attention to their defending WAC champion men's b-ball team. And the preseason polls wouldn't blame you; they picked the Broncos to finish fifth.

With four new starters, the Broncos are starting over in some ways. It took the seniors on last year's team several years before they came together. The same might be true of the current group. Boise State will find out quickly where it stands with a nonconference, pre-Christmas schedule that includes games at Siena, BYU and San Diego - all NCAA Tournament teams.

So why should you pay attention to the men's basketball team this season? We're glad you asked. Here are five reasons we came up with off the top of our head:

  1. Anthony Thomas: Is the junior point guard the next Chris Childs? He's certainly the team's only returning starter.

  2. Mountain West Conference: If Boise State football hopes for a move to the MWC, it will need some help from the other scholarship sports at the university. Come on, second or third place finish in the WAC! We need you!

  3. La'Shard Anderson: Greg Graham chose not to redshirt the talented sophomore guard this season. It was either that, or average 50 points per game as a team.

  4. Graham's sideline plays: They're always a hoot.

  5. The electric atmosphere of Taco Bell Arena: We just made this one up. Guilty.

Can you think of any more reasons to watch? If so, please let us know because, honestly, these five aren't good enough for us to be refreshing ESPN GameTracker tonight.

Read more: Three Boise State storylines [Statesman]