At least Santa Clara won't have to face Bill Russell, Lew Alcindor, Bill Walton or Michael Jordan in its latest attempt to topple college basketball's top-ranked team.
But the Broncos (11-2) are sure to have their hands full Saturday against No. 1 Duke (11-0), which hasn't lost a nonconference game at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C., since Feb. 26, 2000.
Coach Kerry Keating promised that the Broncos won't obsess over the Blue Devils' 100-game home winning streak against nonconference foes when they make their 12th bid to upset a No. 1 team.
Santa Clara is 0-11 in such games, including four that involved USF legend Russell, and one each against Alcindor, Walton and Jordan.
"If you spend too much time worrying about them winning 100 games in a row, that takes away from our focus," Keating said. "I honestly feel we'll have the same attitude we've had in all our games. We're trying to go 1-0 in the next game."
Sure, but trying to go 1-0 in their most recent game -- against Wagner -- isn't quite the daunting assignment the Broncos face along Tobacco Road.
Coach Mike Krzyzewski has won four NCAA titles (plus two Olympic gold medals), and his current team is well-deserving of its No. 1 ranking. The Blue Devils have beaten teams that were ranked No. 2 (Louisville), No. 3 (Kentucky) and No. 4 (Ohio State) at the time.
Keating said the game was scheduled as part of his vision to build a program that is accustomed to
"It's just a step I felt the kids in our program were ready to take in the larger scheme of things," he said. "We wanted to be able to measure ourselves and go to a place that's hard to measure yourself at."
The Broncos, who skidded to an 0-16 West Coast Conference record a year ago when two key players were sidelined, are 3-0 on the road this season.
Both of their defeats came in overtime. So they're eager for a way to gauge their readiness with the start of West Coast Conference play a week away.
No one is likely to face a stiffer test than senior forward Marc Trasolini.
The 6-foot-9 Canadian, who missed all of last season because of a knee injury, is averaging 16.3 points this season, including 23.7 over the past three games.
He will duel Duke senior Mason Plumlee, a 6-10, 235-pound senior, who is bidding for national player of the year honors. One of five Blue Devils scoring in double figures, Plumlee averages 19.3 points and 11.5 rebounds.
"He's supremely confident in what he does," Keating said of Plumlee. "He plays with controlled reckless abandon. He may be playing as well as anyone in the country."
The Blue Devils also feature guard Seth Curry, brother of Warriors star Stephen Curry, who is averaging 15.7 points.
The Broncos are hoping that leading scorer Kevin Foster (18.2 points) snaps out of an 8-for-38 shooting slump over the past three games.
Keating credits Foster with becoming a better passer and defender, but his offensive contributions remain important.
"For us to pull off the unexpected," he said, "we're going to need all these guys firing on all cylinders."