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Opponent preview: the one-dimensional Aggies

OBNUG’s game previews are written by reader-turned-contributor Stephen Grettenberg. Because not every article should contain pinings for Marty Tadman.

Boise State vs. New Mexico State

How does a team that won three games lose to Idaho 20-14 last week? Well, New Mexico State has a pretty bad run defense for one. Supposedly they have the best pass defense, though. Why? Because it is so easy to run, for one, but also that they drop up to nine players back, making passing hard, but running relatively easy.

The other big problem is injuries, and this is a team with limited depth at most any position. They beat Nevada, but took a beating, and then lost to San Jose State, losing more players before losing to Idaho. They may just not have been able to field enough decent players to hold things together. On the injury report this week is RB Marquell Collston, whose 353 yards are over twice the yards of any other back. Also on the list of people not likely to play are another running back, two wide receivers and three offensive linemen. Ouch! New Mexico State does not have the personnel to absorb those injuries without creating serious holes, or in the case of the offensive linemen, a lack of holes for the missing running backs.

Exactly why did NMSU OL Polo Gutierrez start mouthing off if New Mexico State is in such straits? Well, the truth of the matter is that the man has proven himself foolish and an idiot. I would be highly disappointed if the Broncos don’t grind him to a pulp on Saturday.

New Mexico State on Offense:

New Mexico State’s one-dimensional offense gets decent passing yardage but is easy to key on, and Chase Holbrook gets good-looking passing stats other than throwing too many interceptions. Despite that fact, there are two stars on the team in the mind of fans – QB Chase Holbrook and WR Chris Williams. I expect Kyle Wilson can take away that target pretty easily for most of the game. Always oriented towards passing, the lack of offensive linemen and key running backs should lead to a rough day for Holbrook, who has a hefty negative yardage total for the season from dodging rushers. I expect the Boise State defensive line will better familiarize Holbrook with his own turf.

New Mexico State on Defense:

The idea this is a top passing defense is absurd, and I hope Kellen Moore proves it. That said, without question this is one of the worst running defenses in the league. It would be fantastic if Ian Johnson gets the cobwebs out of his brain and the skip back in his step. By bowl time it would be really nice to have the old Ian Johnson back and in top form. A 100-yard rushing day might help him out psychologically.

The Game:

Despite the trash talk, this should be a cakewalk for Boise State, and it is important to get a few style points if the Broncos expect to stay in the lead over the other BCS hopefuls.

The pick:

Boise State by at least twenty points.