On any given day, the Boise State Men's Basketball team can beat any squad in the country. They have the coaching chops, talent, depth, and experience to go toe-to-toe with the very best of college basketball.
And that's exactly the problem.
Boise State is a dangerous opponent yet is still not a marquee match-up which makes scheduling a bit tricky. Brand name schools often see games against teams like the Broncos as lose-lose. They either lose or get an unimpressive win. Not a lot of incentive when they are also paying out hundreds of thousands of dollars for a team to come play a true road game. Games against high-major opponents IN Boise are still very much out of the question. That's a lose-lose-lose situation in their eyes.
From Boise State's perspective, scheduling uber-talented opponents needs to be balanced with some... um... cupcakes. At the end of the season, they will still judged by the number of wins, the quality of those wins, and the top-to-bottom strength of the Mountain West Conference. Two years ago, the MWC had the strongest conference RPI in the country and received five bids to the NCAA Tournament. Last year, the MWC ranked 10th in Conference RPI and only received two bids. Boise State in particular did not have the non-conference resume to offset the relative suckiness of the entire conference.
This year, Boise State's premier non-conference games are against Wisconsin, a Final Four favorite, and North Carolina State, a perennial mid-tier ACC squad who has been to the NCAA Tournament the last three years. There are also a couple of interesting games at the Loyola Marymount Classic to begin the year, a return trip to Saint Mary's where they will hopefully avenge last year's loss, and games at the Las Vegas Classic against Houston and either Texas Tech or Loyola.
They also have two Non-D1 games on the schedule against Adams State and Northwest Nazarene. Why schedule those two games during the season rather than as exhibitions? Well, like two years ago, Boise State could either schedule low-level D1 teams like Savannah State with an RPI in the 300s or they can schedule non-D1 games that don't count against Strength of Schedule in RPI rankings, a main component of a teams NCAA Tournament resume. Plus, payouts to non D-1 teams are much lower.
Overall, this schedule isn't strong, but it's getting better. There are enough opportunities presented, however, that if the Broncos take care of business, they can begin to change the conversation about the Broncos (like 2013-2014 was just a fluke) and set a solid foundation heading into the conference slate.
|Fri, Nov 14||vs San Diego||6:30 PM ET|
|Sat, Nov 15||@ Loyola Marymount||8:00 PM ET|
|Tue, Nov 18||vs Montana||10:00 PM ET|
|Sat, Nov 22||@ #3 Wisconsin||10:00 PM ET||Big Ten Network|
|Tue, Nov 25||vs Idaho||9:00 PM ET|
|Fri, Nov 28||@ NC State||7:00 PM ET||ESPN3|
|Sat, Dec 6||@ Saint Mary's||11:30 PM ET||ESPNU|
|Tue, Dec 9||vs Adams State||9:00 PM ET|
|Thu, Dec 11||vs NW Nazarene||9:00 PM ET|
|Sun, Dec 14||vs Southern Utah||6:30 PM ET|
|Sat, Dec 20||vs Abilene Christian||1:00 PM ET|
|Mon, Dec 22||vs Houston||10:30 PM ET||FOX Sports 1|
|Tue, Dec 23||Texas Tech/Loyola||TBD||FOX Sports 1|
|Wed, Dec 31||@ Colorado St||9:00 PM ET||ROOT Sports|
|Sat, Jan 3||vs Utah State||2:00 PM ET||ROOT Sports|
|Sat, Jan 10||@ Wyoming||6:00 PM ET||CBS Sports Network|
|Tue, Jan 13||vs UNLV||11:00 PM ET||ESPNU|
|Sun, Jan 18||@ New Mexico||6:00 PM ET||CBS Sports Network|
|Wed, Jan 21||vs San Jose St||10:00 PM ET||ROOT Sports|
|Sat, Jan 24||@ Air Force||2:00 PM ET||ROOT Sports|
|Tue, Jan 27||vs Colorado St||11:00 PM ET||ESPNU/ESPN3|
|Tue, Feb 3||@ Utah State||9:30 PM ET||CBS Sports Network|
|Sun, Feb 8||vs #16 San Diego St||6:00 PM ET||CBS Sports Network|
|Wed, Feb 11||vs Air Force||9:00 PM ET|
|Sat, Feb 14||@ Fresno St||10:00 PM ET||ESPNU/ESPN3|
|Wed, Feb 18||@ UNLV||11:00 PM ET||CBS Sports Network|
|Sat, Feb 21||vs Nevada||3:00 PM ET||MWN|
|Tue, Feb 24||vs New Mexico||11:00 PM ET||ESPNU|
|Sat, Feb 28||@ #16 San Diego St||TBD||ESPN2/ESPN3|
|Wed, Mar 4||@ San Jose St||10:30 PM ET||ROOT Sports|
|Sat, Mar 7||vs Fresno St||8:00 PM ET||ESPN3|