Feb. 2, 2007
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Clune Arena (5,858), USAFA, Colo.
The Air Force Basketball Network. Locally on NewsRadio 740 KVOR in Colorado Springs. KVOR's Jim Arthur handles the play-by-play.
the mtn. James Bates (play-by-play) and Dave Bollwinkel (analyst) call the action.
Air Force lost to BYU, 61-52, last Saturday in Provo, Utah. Wyoming lost to New Mexico, 91-83, Tuesday in Albuquerque, N.M.
Air Force is coached by Jeff Bzdelik (Illinois-Chicago, 1976), who is in his second season as head coach. Bzdelik returned to the college game last year after 15 seasons as a coach and scout in the NBA, most recently as head coach of the Denver Nuggets. Bzdelik has a collegiate career record of 68-41, including a 43-10 mark at Air Force. Bzdelik was the head coach at UMBC for two years from 1986-88.
Wyoming is coached by Steve McClain (Chadron State, 1984), who is in his ninth season with the Cowboys. He is 153-109 at the school and in his career.
Wyoming leads the all-time series, 67-24. Air Force defeated the Cowboys, 58-56, earlier this season on Jacob Burtschi's buzzer-beating layup.
Tied For First Place in Conference
Air Force fell to 6-2 in Mountain West Conference action but remains in a tie for first place after dropping a 61-52 decision to BYU last Saturday in Provo, Utah. The Falcons are tied with UNLV and BYU in the MWC standings.
19-3 Best Start Ever
Air Force's 19-3 record is the best start ever in program history after 22 games, bettering the team's record of 18-4 from 2003-04 and last season.
Still Top 20 in Both Polls
For the fourth straight week, the Falcons are in the Top 20 in both polls. AFA dropped three spots to No. 16 in this week's USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll and one spot to No. 17 in the Associated Press poll.
Nearly Unbeatable at Clune
The Falcons have been close to unbeatable at Clune Arena the last four seasons. Including the final home game of the 2002-03 season (a 68-60 victory over New Mexico), Air Force has won 51 of its last 52 home games. The team was 13-0 in `03-04, 12-1 in `04-05 (lost to Utah, 65-56, on Feb. 19), 15-0 last season and is 10-0 this year.
AFA's 50-1 home record since the beginning of the 2003-04 season is the second-best in the country for winning percentage, behind Gonzaga (48-0).
In addition, the Falcons have won 26 of their last 27 MWC games at Clune Arena.
Home Win Streak at 27
The Falcons have a 27-game winning streak at Clune Arena. The team's current home-court winning streak is the second-longest in the nation, behind Gonzaga.
The Falcons continue play in the Mountain West Conference on Tuesday, Feb. 6 against San Diego State in San Diego, Calif. Tip-off is at 7 p.m. (PT).
Burtschi Sets Career Steals Mark
With his two steals against Radford on Nov. 22, senior Jacob Burtschi became the all-time steals leader at Air Force. He currently has 173, 22 more than Raymond Dudley, who played from `86-90.
McCraw Takes Over 3-Pt% Lead
Seniors Dan Nwaelele and Matt McCraw are in a heated battle for the No. 1 spot on Air Force's career list for three-point percentage. McCraw barely holds the lead. He is shooting 47.2 percent (191-405) from behind the arc, while Nwaelele is at 46.5 percent (147-316). Third place on the list is Raymond Dudley, the school's career scoring leader, at 39.6 percent (285-720).
13 of Air Force's 19 victories this season have been by 10 points or more. The only single-digit wins were the 69-68 victory over Long Beach State at the CBE Classic and the first five MWC wins.
Nine of the team's wins have been by more than 20 points and seven of those have been by 30+ points.
Non-Conference Home Streak at 31
With its 70-47 victory over Norfolk State on Wednesday, Dec. 13, Air Force has a 31-game winning streak at home against non-conference opponents.
The last loss at home to a non-Mountain West team at Clune Arena was against Tennessee Tech on Dec. 29, 2001 (64-44).
13 Tied Longest Winning Streak
Air Force's 13-game winning streak that was snapped on Jan. 16 at Utah tied the longest in school history. The Falcons rattled off 13 straight victories in 2003-04 before falling at UNLV on Feb. 2, 2004.
NCAA Record vs. Colorado College
Air Force held Division III Colorado College to an NCAA-record six points in the first half in the Falcons' 82-31 victory on Dec. 9.
The previous low for a half since the shot clock was introduced for the 1985-86 season was the seven scored by Central Michigan in trailing Ohio University by 28 points on Jan. 14, 2006.
Starters Shooting Lights Out
Three of Air Force's five starters are shooting at least 50 percent from the field this season. Forward Dan Nwaelele leads the team at 56.8 percent (109-192). Tim Anderson is second at 52.0% (65-125), followed by Jacob Burtschi at 51.9% (109-210). Nick Welch is at 49.7% (77-155) and Matt McCraw is at 48.4% (74-153). The five starters as a group are shooting 52.6 percent (434-825).
First Loss in Over Two Months
Air Force's loss at Utah on Tuesday, Jan. 16 was the team's first loss since Nov. 20, when the Falcons dropped a 71-56 decision to Duke. The span of 57 days between losses ties the longest in program history, equalling the team's 13-game win streak in 2003-04 (Dec. 7 - Feb. 2) and the 12-game streak last season (Nov. 15 - Jan. 11).
Largest Crowd in Clune History
The largest crowd in the history of Clune Arena witnessed Air Force's dramatic 65-57 come-from-behind victory over New Mexico on Jan. 9. The official attendance of 6,511 surpassed the previous top crowd of 6,359 on Jan. 24, 2004 against BYU.
AFA in the Computer Rankings
The Falcons posted their highest rating ever in the Sagarin ratings on Jan. 8 at No. 5 and CollegeRPI on Jan. 14 at No. 6. Air Force is currently No. 17 in each ranking (Feb. 1).
Welch, McCraw Join the 200-100 Club
With his steal on Dec. 13 against Norfolk State, Nick Welch became the ninth player in school history to record 200 assists and 100 steals in his career. Welch has 231 assists and 109 steals in his career. Matt McCraw joined the club with a pair of assists against BYU and has 201 assists and 113 steals.
Tied For Seventh with 19 Wins
The Falcons are tied for No. 7 in the country with 19 victories. Wisconsin and Butler lead the way with 21, followed by Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Florida and Nevada at 20. The Falcons are tied with Kansas, Oregon, Marquette, UNLV, Davidson and Virginia Commonwealth with 19 wins.
Tied For #1 for 30-Point Wins ...
Air Force is tied with Texas A&M for the most victories of 30 points or more this season. Both teams have seven, while Notre Dame is third with six.
... And Outstanding in Close Games
Air Force has also been very strong in close games this season. The Falcons are 6-2 in games decided by 10 points or less and 5-1 in games decided by six points or less.
Seven Games in 12 Days!!
Air Force started the season playing seven games in 12 days, including four games in five days, culminating with its 83-59 victory over Radford on Nov. 22. Air Force was just one of three Division I teams (Winston-Salem College and Fairfield Univ.) to play seven games before Thanksgiving this season.
Air Force has made a three-point shot in 437 consecutive games. The last time the Falcons failed to make a three-pointer was Dec. 4, 1991 in a 57-51 victory over Adams State College.
Three Starters in Double Figures
Three of Air Force's five starters are averaging in double figures this season. Dan Nwaelele leads the way at 15.0 points per game, followed by Jacob Burtschi (14.0) and Matt McCraw (12.4). Nick Welch (9.6) and Tim Anderson (9.2) are just below the mark.
No. 3 in Nation in Shooting
The Falcons are ranked No. 3 in the country in field-goal percentage, No. 5 in three-point shooting and No. 6 in free-throw percentage in the latest NCAA Division I statistics (Jan. 29). Air Force is the only team in the country in the top 10 in those three categories.
Falcons in National Stats
Senior Matt McCraw is ranked eighth in the country in three-point percentage (49.0 percent) and ninth in free-throw percentage (90.9 percent) in the latest NCAA Division I statistics (Jan. 29). Dan Nwaelele is 85th in free-throw percentage at 82.4 percent.
Burtschi Joins 1,000-Point Club
With his 21 points against Utah on Jan. 16, senior Jacob Burtschi became the 19th player in school history to score 1,000 career points. He currently has 1,041 points, No. 16 on the school's career scoring list.