Posted: 4:48 p.m. Monday, Oct. 21, 2013
By Hank Corless
The Boise State men’s basketball team looks to be in great shape for their opener on Novemeber 1st. That is because they return all five starters from last season’s hoops squad that finished 21-11 and closed out one of their best efforts in years with a slot in the NCAA Tournament. Perhaps that is one reason why they were picked to finish in second place in the Mountain West this season tied with UNLV for the spot behind perennial MW champ, New Mexico.
Bronco hoop stars Anthony Drmic, 6-6, 196 lbs, and Derrick Marks, 6-3, 206 lbs, are back for their junior year. They also have a new twist to share: they have both been selected to the 2013-14 Preseason All-MW Team. That might sound like heady stuff for Boise State fans, but for third year head coach Leon Rice, he is taking it all in stride. He would be quick to point out that Drmic and Marks are the same two Broncos who were selected for the second-team All-MW Team in 2012-13. They are among the most valuable players on Boise State roster. For a complete list of players click here. Drmic led the conference in scoring last season with 18.8 points per game, while Marks was the league’s leading returner in free throws and field goal percentages, and led the league in steals.
All that is a big step up for Boise State who last season was 9-7 in MW action, and finished tied for fourth. But even that finish was a huge leap in the 2012-13 preseason media poll projections that picked the Broncos for an 8th place finish. Coach Rice and his staff deserve all the credit for the Broncos recent successes by a recruiting program that, quite literally, went to the ends of the earth to rebuild the program. Sophomore Edmunds Dukulis, 6-9, 225 lbs, is from Riga, Lativia. And while Marks is a junior from Chicago, Drmic and fellow team members Igor Hadziomerovic, 6-4, 202 lbs, and new incoming freshman Nick Duncan, 6-7, 225 lbs, are all three Australian.
So, you can you say, “G’day, mate!” and sound like you mean it? If so, on November 1st you can go to Taco Bell Arena in Boise for the season opener for some great fun and actually feel like you are in the land Down Under. According to John Engle of The Arbiter, the fans in the student section cheer the team on with the Australian chant: “Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! Oi! Oi! Oi!,” following a basket by any one of the Australian players.
And good onya, mate, if you bring another bloke with ya!