A year ago the Bruins were enjoying the passing of Lonzo Ball and looking forward to the next Ball freshman joining the team for this season.
The victor will face No. 6 seed Florida on Thursday. After slip-ups at the beginning of conference play, the team clearly showed that they turned a corner when they won 13 consecutive games in conference play.
The Bruins had an early and global role in college basketball's season of scandal. "But I think we feel really confident that we're able to play with anyone in the country, and that is really about preparation and process and taking things one game at a time".
The St. Bonaventure Bonnies cheerleaders perform in the game against the Saint Joseph's Hawks during the Semifinals of the 2014 Atlantic 10 Men's Basketball Tournament at Barclays Center on March 15, 2014 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. They did manage to outrebound the Bonnies by 10, but turnovers ended up killing UCLA in this one.
St. Bonaventure is 0-2 all-time against UCLA, last facing the Bruins during UCLA's run to a 10th national championship in 1975. The Bonnies fell in the second round to Florida State in 2012, their last tournament appearance.
Playing in a familiar venue also helps take away some of the jitters of being a part of the "Big Dance". The Bonnies are familiar with the arena and hoping for support from Flyers fans.
FAMILIAR ARENA PART 2: LIU Brooklyn coach Derek Kellogg was sacked by MA last season after losing to St. Bonaventure in the A-10 tournament. He led the Pac-12 with 20.3 points per game and has been especially hot lately.
The Bruins participation in the tournament means their players will miss at least three days of classes in the final week of instruction in the winter quarter. This marks the fourth time in five seasons that UCLA has gone to the tournament under Steve Alford, and they'll look to make some noise in the East Region if they can get by the Bonnies. The Bruins first beat Stanford in the 4/5 game. After finishing sixth in the Big South last season, Radford was picked in preseason polls to finish near the bottom of the conference again.