It’s no secret that the 2015/2016 season has been a tumultuous one for the Mountain West Conference. In what many consider a “down” year in terms of bids to the NCAA tournament, there has been no shortage of drama and suspense.
That MWC Conference Tournament drama continued on Wednesday with an upset of Wyoming (2015 tournament Cinderella) by Utah State, a 3OT victory of UNLV over Air Force, The last game of the day was a head-scratching, and fairly lopsided win of Colorado State over San Jose State.
With the Rams impressive victory, the Broncos avoided a second round matchup (first round bye) with the team they most recently lost to, the San Jose State Spartans. However, the pending matchup of Broncos and Rams will most assuredly be one of great anticipation for fans of both sides, and potentially even conference officials.
The Broncos have split wins* with the Rams this season, grabbing the one at home, and losing a controversial game on the road. One where James Webb III hit a game-winning shot at the buzzer which was later called off after the officiating crew consulted an abacus, sun dial, and Magic 8 Ball. In all seriousness, a stopwatch was consulted, as the game clock was not stopped on time, and the referees allegedly did not have access to a real-time video review. Ultimately, the conference (and everyone else with half a brain) admitted fault, but unfortunately what’s done is done, and the ruling could not be overturned. Therefore, on a technicality, the Broncos and Rams are even this season in the Win/Loss column.
This matchup is an interesting one, and will undoubtedly be full of emotion on both sides. The Rams and Broncos have both had their fair share of ups and downs this season, and in both cases, played greatly outside of their potential on some nights. Inconsistency has truly been the name of the game, unfortunately, for these two traditionally consistent teams.
The Broncos will need contributions from all players in order to make it through the Mountain West Tournament unscathed, let alone beat the Rams. Clearly James Webb III will lead the way, but role players and the bench crew will need to step up and play to their incredibly high potential in order to give the Broncos a shot at victory.
The game can be watched live on CBS Sports Network on Thursday night at 9:30 pm MST (yuck).
(Credit: Nate Peters)
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