The Big West Conference and the Mountain West Conference play 16 non-conference games this season. In order to become more familiar with our not-so Mid-Major foes, we sat down with different Mountain West writers to answer a few questions about their respective teams. Today, we learn a little about Fresno State, thanks to ROFLCOPTER16 of Mountain West Connection.
CH: You have a very young team this season with 5 freshmen and 4 sophomores on the roster. How will that affect the team's play?
ROFLCOPTER16: It's going to be rough early on. Cezar Guerrero played plenty at Oklahoma State his freshman year and Marvelle Harris and Tanner Giddings have been thrown into the fire already here, but the rest are going to have to learn on the fly.
CH: How will you combat UC Irvine's tough defensive scheme?
ROFLCOPTER16: Poorly, at least in the paint. We're down to one healthy post player in JC transfer Alex Davis. After 7-foot center Robert Upshaw was booted from the team, forward Tanner Giddings broke his wrist, and forward Braeden Anderson broke his neck in a car crash (he is expected to make a full recovery and hopefully return next year). As a result, freshmen Paul Watson and Karachi Edo are playing out of position, at least until Giddings returns.
CH: You were picked 8th in the pre-season MWC poll. Is this too low, too high or about right?
ROFLCOPTER16: With the offseason we've had, probably about right. This was expected to be a year we might have snuck in for a tourney bid and then the basketball gods decided to go all shock and awe on us.
CH: Predict a score for this game. Who wins and why?
ROFLCOPTER16: 65-56 UC Irvine. We'll get beaten pretty badly in the paint.
You can watch this game on BigWest.TV as well as listen live on ucirvinesports.com at 7:00 PM Pacific Time.