The Santa Clara Broncos have been a surprise team this season, starting out 12-3 and opening up West Coast Conference play with a 74-69 win over the San Francisco Dons. Head coach Kerry Keating has his team on the verge of getting some national recognition so he wants the student body to come out en force for their home game Jan. 5 against the No. 10 Gonzaga Bulldogs, and he’s willing to pay for it.
Keating recognizes the opportunity that the Broncos have to make a huge statement both nationally and within the WCC when the Zags visit the Leavey Center on Saturday night. A raucous home crowd could be just the ticket to create an electric environment that could fuel the upset over the WCC preseason favorite. There’s just one problem: dorms at Santa Clara don’t re-open until Sunday, meaning most students won’t be on campus.
The Broncos’ head coach has a solution for that, though. Following their win over San Francisco, Keating made an appeal to the student body: Come to the game, and he’ll pay for the hotel room.
“We need all their energy. And if any of them read this and any of them want to stay here and can’t have a room on campus … I want them to personally call the office and I will reimburse them up to $100 for a hotel room.”
That generous offer could be just the thing to spur a huge outpouring of support for the Broncos in this game. Santa Clara has an opportunity to shock the college basketball world on Saturday and Keating is ready and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure the building is primed for the upset.
So with a top-10 conference rival coming to town and a free hotel, where else could Santa Clara students possibly be on Saturday?