Friday's game against Fresno State sure doesn't feel like a Fresno State game.
Typically, we Bronco fans are in a lather about our hatred of the Bulldogs. We are uptight, hostile, and belligerent every time the word "Fresno" is uttered, and not a minute goes by when we aren't bringing up the 2001 game or reminding everyone we see about David Carr's NFL career.
This year, it feels like Utah State is coming to town again.
Fine by us. We always kill Utah State.
Personally, we're super stoked for Friday's showdown against the Bulldogs (4:00pm, ESPN2, ESPN360) because all signs point to a blowout. Fresno is hurting, disappointing, mostly one-dimensional, and has nothing on the line. It's the perfect storm of ineptitude! If Boise State plays to its capabilities, this game should be over by halftime.
Giving the Bulldogs 10 points in our prediction might even be a bit generous. If the Broncos have more of an advantage on one particular side of the ball, it would have to be the defense. Fresno is hurting at running back, and the Broncos are coming off a stifling performance against Nevada's rushing attack. Tom Brandstater is an error-prone quarterback, and Boise State feasts on error-prone quarterbacks. If the Bulldogs get more than 17 points in this one, it will be a miracle.
Defensively, Fresno State should struggle, too. The only thing that slowed the Bronco offense last week was turnovers, and the Bulldogs just so happen to be horrendous at forcing turnovers (they have three interceptions this season, total). Kellen Moore has proven this year that it doesn't matter how good the opposing pass defense is because he will still get his yards. The Broncos should find room to run, too, with Fresno State DT Jon Monga out with an injury.
The only area that Fresno might have a chance is in the return game. Last week, Chastin West's punt return TD was pretty much the only reason Fresno beat SJSU. West might get lucky again this week, and it might be all the Bulldogs get.
We Bronco fans have been trained to expect big things when the Bulldogs and Broncos tangle. This year, the only thing we're expecting is a lopsided final score.
- Bush Hamdan throws a touchdown to Andrew Woodruff.
- Vinny Perretta gets the start at quarterback.
- Pat Hill benches Tom Brandstater in the fourth quarter, which, according to Fresno fans, is about a month and a half too late.
- Ian Johnson gets his first 100-yard game of the season.
- Kyle Gingg has double-digit tackles.
- OBNUG's Kevan falls asleep during the game and the comment thread, due to a poorly timed turkey sandwich.
- ESPN spends half the broadcast talking about Utah.