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Kentucky vs. Boise State: Game Notes

As Wildcat fans prepare for Kentucky to take on the Boise State Broncos, here are the Game Notes.

Outstanding BSU guard Derrick Marks glides to the rim.
Outstanding BSU guard Derrick Marks glides to the rim.

The undefeated Boise State Broncos (8-0) visit the Kentucky Wildcats (7-2) for an ESPN televised tilt. The Broncos, coming off an 80-52 win over Carroll College, bring an up-tempo, dribble-drive offensive mindset to Rupp Arena, and will challenge the 'Cats with pressure defense.

Here are your game notes as UK prepares to bounce back from a disappointing defeat to the Baylor Bears:

  • Tonight's game marks the first meeting between the two schools.
  • Broncos head coach Leon Rice is in his fourth season as the leader of BSU's basketball program. Last season, Rice led the Boise to an at-large NCAA Tournament bid, the school's first such invitation. Rice, in two of his first three seasons at BSU, led the Broncs to two 20-win seasons, the first time since Boise became a Division I basketball program in the 1970-1971 season that a new head coach has accomplished that feat. Rice has a 64-41 in his three-plus years at the school.
  • Rice spent 11 seasons working under Gonzaga's Mark Few -- one of John Calipari's close coaching friends -- serving as associate head coach from 2007-2010.
  • Boise plays its home game in Taco Bell Arena. No, seriously.
  • Boise and UK have one common opponent: Texas-Arlington. Boise bested UTA 116-87, while the 'Cats beat UTA by a count of 105-76.
  • Boise has eight players averaging at least 12.1 minutes per game.
  • Boise's long-distance triple-threat -- Jeff Elorriaga, a 6-2 senior guard has connected on 26-of-41 3-points shots on the season (63.4 percent); Nick Duncan, a 6-8 freshman forward has made 9-of-21 from distance (42.9 percent); and 6-5 senior guard Thomas Bropleh has been true on 8-of-17 from long-range (47.1 percent).
  • Boise State's high pressure defense has been responsible for 75 steals on the season (9.4 per game).
  • The Broncos boast five players a scoring in double-figures, led by 6-6 junior swing Anthony Drmic at 20.4 points per game (Drmic missed BSU's last game with an undisclosed illness).
  • Ryan Watkins, a 6-9 senior forward, leads the Broncs in rebounding at 10.4 boards per game.
  • Last season, BSU's conference, the Mountain West, was the nation's top RPI league.
  • UK is 21-2 all-time when playing schools from the Mountain West.
  • In BSU's last game, against Carroll College, the five Bronco starters combined to make 21-of-39 overall shots from the field (53.8 percent) and 9-of-16 from long-range (56.3 percent).
  • BSU takes an average of 30.4 free throws per game, making 75.3 percent of its attempts from the stripe.
  • Boise takes an average of 20.5 3-pointers per game, making shots from distance at a 40.2 percent clip.
  • Boise State's 91.2 points per game scoring average ranks second in the nation.
  • UK's all-time victory total now stands at 2,118.
  • James Young has made multiple 3-pointers in five games this year, including two straight.
  • Kentucky is eighth in the nation in rebound margin, posting a plus-12.0 on the boards.
  • UK is seventh in the nation in blocks per game at 7.6 swats per contest.
  • The Wildcats' lead the SEC in offensive rebound percentage, snagging 46.3 percent of available misses.
  • When shooting a higher percentage than its opponents, UK is 7-0.
  • When scoring less than 80 points the Wildcats are 2-2.
  • UK is 1-2 when playing on ESPN this season.
  • The 'Cats are 0-2 in games decided by five or fewer points.
  • In their careers, when Alex Poythress scores in double-figures UK is 14-3; when Willie Cauley-Stein scores in double-digits Kentucky is 12-3.
  • In Kentucky's last five games -- Julius Randle led the team in scoring at 15.8 points per game; the 'Cats made 37.8 percent of their 3-point shots (28-74), and 46.7 percent of their overall shots from the floor, while holding opponents to 38.2 percent field goal accuracy; Cauley-Stein had 24 blocks (4.8 per game) and Andrew Harrison averaged 4.2 assists per contest.
  • Tip-off is schedule for 9:00 ET, immediately following Kansas vs. Florida.

Thanks for reading and Go 'Cats!