Boise State will come to Omaha for the first time when Creighton Men’s Basketball hosts the Broncos on Nov. 28 as part of the fourth annual Mountain West-Missouri Valley Challenge Series. The agreement between the Mountain West and Missouri Valley conferences is in the final year of a four-year term. In each of the first two years, the Challenge featured head-to-head competition between nine Mountain West and nine Missouri Valley teams, while last year’s Challenge consisted of eight games.
The conferences split last year’s matchups, 4-4, but the Mountain West won the 2010 Challenge, 8-1, and holds a 16-10 lead in the first three years of the series. The MVC won the 2009 Challenge, 5-4. Last season, the leagues combined for six NCAA tournament appearances, which included second-round wins by New Mexico and Creighton. Overall, the two conferences earned a collective 13 postseason berths and seven postseason victories in 2011-12.
The Mountain West has ranked among the Top 9 in the NCAA’s final RPI report in 12 of the last 13 years, including two straight No. 5 rankings, while the Missouri Valley has been among the Top 9 in seven of the last eight years, ranking as high as No. 6 on two occasions. Teams from the two leagues have squared off 67 times since the inception of the Mountain West in 1999, with MW squads holding a 38-29 edge in those contests.
Boise State finished last season 13-17, including wins over MVC schools Drake and Indiana State, as well as Utah and Colorado State. Creighton finished the 2011-12 season with a 29-6 record, tying a school-record for wins. The Bluejays are expected to return nine of their top 10 scorers next fall for coach Greg McDermott’s third season. Creighton’s complete 2012-13 schedule will likely be announced in late August.