Broncos Close Non-Conference at #23/25 N.C. State
Western Michigan Broncos (8-4) at #23/25 North Carolina State Wolfpack (9-2)
Saturday, December 29 // 12 p.m.
Raleigh, N.C. // PNC Arena
Radio • Bronco Radio Network
Announcers • Sean Fagan
Stations • WKZO — 96.5 FM: (Flagship) Kalamazoo, Portage, Mattawan; WMAX — 96.1 FM: Grand Rapids, Holland, Muskegon; WVIC — 94.1 FM: Lansing, Jackson, Battle Creek
Broadcast • Pre-game show begins at 11:30 a.m.
Television • ESPN U
Talent • Lou Canellis & Dereck Whittenburg
LIVE STATS // LIVE AUDIO
The game will be available for internet streaming in select states only; in particular, the game has been blacked out on ESPN 3 east of the Mississippi River.
• This will be the first ever meeting between the two teams
• The Broncos are 6-1 all-time against the Atlantic Coast Conference, including a 5-0 record against Virginia Tech and a 1-0 record against Clemson
• Shayne Whittington averaged 22.0 points and 8.5 rebounds per game last week, scoring 20 and 24 points, respectively, in games against Duquesne and Mount St. Mary’s
• The Broncos received nine votes in this week’s CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll
• Darius Paul leads all freshmen in the MAC in scoring (12.0 ppg) and rebounds (6.6 rpg)
• Paul recorded a career-high 19 points in the game against Mount St. Mary’s, and has scored double-digits in 10 of 12 games this season
• The game against Mount St. Mary’s snapped the Broncos’ streak of four consecutive games with a double-double at four
• Shayne Whittington is ranked second in the MAC West and sixth in the conference overall on John Hollinger’s Player Efficiency Ratings; teammate Darius Paul rates as fourth and 14th, respectively
• Connar Tava is averaging 7.7 points off the bench in each of his last three games
• Austin Richie recorded a career-high eight assists in the win against Mount St. Mary’s, recording just one turnover
• The Broncos recorded 21 assists in the win against Mount St. Mary’s, the third-highest single-game total in program history
• Shayne Whittington went 10-of-11 from the field against Mount St. Mary’s, one of just five total 10-of-11 shooting performances in school history and one of the six best shooting performances in program history
• The Broncos lead the Mid-American Conference in rebounding margin at +8.8
BRONCOS VS. THE ACC
This will be just the first time the Broncos and Wolfpack have met, but it is not the first time the Broncos have taken on an opponent from the Atlantic Coast Conference. Overall, WMU is 6-1 against teams from the ACC, including a 2-1 record under head coach Steve Hawkins. Both of those wins came against Virginia Tech.
HAWK VS. CAROLINA
Steve Hawkins is 4-2 as head coach of the Broncos in games played against schools from North Carolina, including a pair of wins against High Point earlier this season.
TAVA TURNS IT UP
Freshman forward Connar Tava has helped the Broncos to three of their best games of the season in regards to bench output, and is adding more of a scoring touch to his repertoire. Tava is averaging 7.7 points per game in the last three games, including eight points apiece against High Point and Duquesne and seven points against Mount St. Mary’s.
Another young Bronco providing quality minutes off the bench has been Taylor Perry, providing strong on-ball defense and the ability to hit the open shot when the time comes. Perry is averaging 5.0 points per game off the bench in each of the last three contests.
Sophomore point guard Austin Richie set a new career-high in assists against Mount St. Mary’s last week, recording eight assists in the Broncos’ victory.
BRONCOS RECEIVE VOTES IN COLLEGE INSIDER POLL
The Broncos received nine votes in the most recent CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll. The Broncos are currently slated to face four teams that are either ranked or receiving votes on this week’s poll.
Darius Paul has made a name for himself throughout the conference as an impact player early in his career, and is currently among the league leaders in scoring and rebounds. Paul ranks first among conference freshmen in scoring (12.0 ppg) and rebounds (6.4 rpg).
Shayne Whittington responded to his career-best performance against Duquesne with another gem against High Point, finishing with a career-high 24 points in the Broncos’ victory against the Mountaineers. Whittington averaged 22.5 points per game for the week.