It's Red Lion Spring Break tennis time!
Four days of Bronco tennis begins with two matches on Wednesday. Unlike the Blue Gray tournament, there will be match play to determine each position to sixteenth place.
Boise State plays their first match against archrival Nevada, Wednesday, at 9 AM at Appleton Tennis Center. Other matches will be played at Boise Racquet & Swim Club and Crane Creek Country Club. Check BroncoSports.com's link for times and locations. http://broncosports.com/index2.asp?id=&article=4061
If the Broncos win, they play their second match Wednesday afternoon at 1:30 against the winner of the Texas Arlington-Portland match at Appleton. If they lose their first match they will play at the same time at Crane Creek in the consolation bracket.
The 2006 Boise State team is the best since the 1998 squad, who knocked off UCLA in Westwood, was ranked #2 in the nation, and almost won the National Championship. Coach Greg Patton was honored that year as NCAA D-1A "National Coach of the Year".
These guys are so close to the '98 team it's scary. The kind of tennis you will see them play is as good as it gets on TV. The exciting part is they are just now beginning to peak, and without a doubt will be MUCH better from here to the end of the season.
This week's Fila Collegiate Tennis Rankings moved the Broncos from #32 to #23 in the country, highest ranking in years. The doubles team of Clancy Shields and Steve Robertson, 13-0 on the season, are ranked for the first time at #65. Luke Shields and Thomas Schoeck are ranked at #17.
The Red Lion seeds...plus a sleeper.
Boise State (#23) is seeded #1, coming off a heart breaking semi-final loss to Notre Dame, (3-4) at the 36th Annual Blue Gray Classic in Montgomery, Alabama.
University of Louisiana Lafayette (#48) is the #2 seed. They are 7-3 on the season having played four ranked teams. Against them they are 1-3. Their one win was over #30, Florida State (4-3). Their three losses are to #6 Mississippi State (1-6), #15 Miami (2-5)...and #42 Oklahoma (3-4). They have no ranked players.
South Alabama (#34) is the #3 seed. They are 12-5 on the season having played ten ranked teams. Against them they are 5-5. Their wins are over #27 TCU (5-2), #53 Brown (4-2), #36 Middle Tennessee, #60 Southeastern Louisiana (6-1), and #74 Texas A&M CC (4-3) Their losses are to #4 Mississippi State (2-4), #5 Clemson (3-4), #12 Louisville (3-4), #56 Fresno State (3-4), and #72 William & Mary (2-4). They have one ranked player, #94, Jack Baker.
Ball State (#70) is the # 4 seed. They are 11-4 on the season having played five ranked teams. Against them they are 1-4. Their one win is over #70 Purdue (5-2). Their losses are to #7 Illinois (0-7), #29 Michigan (2-5), #61 UNLV (1-6), and #47 Northwestern (2-5). They have one ranked player, #99, Matt Baccarani.
The sleeper, College of Santa Fe, ranked #4 in NAIA, 8-2 on the season. Santa Fe is a small coed college with an enrollment of less than 2,000. They are a perennial power in NAIA tennis. They have three wins over D-1 schools...Nevada (6-1), Montana (4-3), and Colorado College (5-0). They have the #15 ranked player in the country, Anibal Aranda.
Come on out and watch, hoot and holler for the home team. Screaming is allowed, and the matches are free. And I believe hot dogs and hamburgers will be available at the stadium.