Bovine Blog: No. 18 Utah State Improves With ‘Gut-Check Game’

Jan 22, 2024, 2:05 PM | Updated: 2:57 pm

LOGAN, Utah – Ranked 18th in the AP Poll and 20th in the Coaches Poll, Utah State gets an opportunity to breathe before they continue Mountain West play against the Boise State Broncos this weekend.

Utah State (17-2, 5-1) responded to its first loss since November 11 with an imposing defensive effort against Fresno State.

RELATED: Cougars & Aggies Drop In Latest AP Top 25, Utes Receive Votes

“This was a gut-check game for our guys,” Danny Sprinkle said. “We challenged them the last two days. I don’t mind losing, but how we lost, that bothers me. We got out-toughed and out-physicaled, and these guys answered the bell. I’m proud of them.”

“Being aggressive and being tough,” Ian Martinez said after finishing with 14 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and two blocks against the Bulldogs.  “That was the bottom line. We had to go out there and give the first punch. The aggressors always win. That was important for us coming into this game.”

Fresno State scored the game’s first bucket and never led again against a USU team that was happy to play in front of its rabid fan base after difficult road matchups with UNLV and No. 25 New Mexico.

Sprinkle thanked the Aggie’s home crowd sixth man after the win.

“From a coach and a player standpoint, how much they mean to us during the game with their energy. When things aren’t going good and they’re loud. Not only do they affect our energy, but it affects the opponent’s. Couldn’t be more thankful for our fans and the Hurd.”

The win assured USU of a spot in the updated polls, making it three straight weeks in the Top 25.

Following USU With KSL Sports Zone

The Aggies face the Boise State Broncos (13-5, 4-1) on Saturday, January 27 at ExtraMile Arena in Boise, Idaho. Tip-off is at 2 p.m. (MT). Boise State received nine votes in the latest AP Top 25.

Utah State is 36-21 all-time against the Broncos in a series that began in 1974. USU won by 13 in last year’s regular-season finale, ending a five-game losing streak to Boise State. The Aggies followed that win by upsetting BSU in the Mountain West Tournament semifinals with a 72-62 win.

Listen to USU basketball games on KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard on the call.

Find KSL Sports coverage of Utah State University Athletics here.

Take us with you wherever you go.

Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio and video and stay updated on all your favorite teams.

Brian Preece is a KSLsports.com insider covering the Utah State Aggies and Salt Lake Bees. Follow Brian’s coverage of the Bees, Big League Utah, and Aggie athletics here.

  • Utah State Aggies Scoreboard

  • Utah State Aggies Team Leaders

  • Utah State Aggies Standings

Utah State Aggies

AP Top 25, BYU Basketball, Trevin Knell...

Mitch Harper

BYU Climbs Back Into AP Top 25 Rankings, Utah State Stays Put

The final AP Top 25 poll of the regular season features two teams from the state of Utah.

36 minutes ago

Dee Glen Smith Spectrum...

Brian Preece

No. 22 Utah State Shows Depth In Wire-To-Wire Win Over Air Force

With Osobor surrounded by Falcons defenders all night, USU turned to its stable of depth and experience to pay the rent in a 72-60 win.

3 days ago


Brian Preece

Mountain West Announces 2024 Utah State Aggies Football Schedule

Utah State, in conjunction with the Mountain West, released its 2024 conference schedule on Thursday, February 29.

4 days ago

utah state basketball...

Brian Preece

Bovine Blog: Previewing Air Force Falcons At No. 22 Utah State Aggies

The No. 22 Aggies look to complete the season-series sweep of Air Force on Friday, March 1, at the Spectrum. Tip-off is at 9 p.m. MT.

5 days ago

darius brown II utah state...

Brian Preece

Bovine Blog: ‘Confident’ Darius Brown II Sets Tone For No. 22 Utah State

When its back is against a wall, No. 22 Utah State leans on Darius Brown II to put his team in a position to win games.

5 days ago

utah state darius brown II...

Brian Preece

Darius Brown II Lifts No. 22 Utah State To Ragged Win Over Fresno State

Nothing comes easy on the road in the Mountain West as Utah State needed overtime to survive upset-minded Fresno State.

6 days ago

Sponsored Articles


KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.


KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.


KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.

Bovine Blog: No. 18 Utah State Improves With ‘Gut-Check Game’