The Fresno State Bulldogs weren’t expected to be one of the best teams in the Mountain West Conference coming into the season. Picked to finish 5th in the preseason poll, the Bulldogs have vastly outperformed that expectation under head coach Terry Rodney. With a record of 23-9 (13-5 MWC) they earned the second seed in the conference tournament and a first round bye.
In their first game of the tournament last night they matched up with the team picked to finish directly ahead of them in the poll, UNLV. The Rebels have had a rough season, firing head coach Dave Rice mid-season, but still are a very talented team, expected by many to be a sleeper for the tournament. Rodney and his Bulldogs knocked them out last night with a 95-82 win, their third victory over the Rebels this season.
“It’s never easy, now they have a lot of talent,” said Fresno State head coach Terry Rodney on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “I thought Todd Simon did a great job filling in for them in a very difficult situation. You know every time you play those guys that you’re going to play a team that can really get things done, especially from an offensive standpoint. To come over and do it on their home court again, it’s not the easiest thing to do, it’s probably one of the more difficult things to do in our league.”
Fresno State returns to the floor tonight at 11:30 PM ET as they take on the 6th seeded Colorado State Rams in the semifinals for the right to play for the championship on Saturday.