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Boise State vs Idaho State Preview

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Hello Bengals, our old friends

Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

Game facts

  • Time: Friday, 7:00 p.m. MT
  • Location: Albertsons Stadium, Boise, ID
  • Weather: 65 degrees, Clear (eyes, full hearts, yadda yadda)
  • Odds: They don't give official betting lines for FBS vs FCS games...but Boise State by a lot
  • TV: CBS Sports
  • Commentators: Jason "Witzy" Horowitz, Jim "Dandy" Sorgi, and Cassie "Ernest and Julio" Gallo

Other facts

1. The Bengals are (sorta) back

Boise State/Idaho got most of the pub in the 80s, but back in the Big Sky days, it was Idaho State that joined Boise State as Gem State national championship winners, NOT the "Tribe from the North". Idaho State has had several rough patches since their early 80s salad days, but with Coach Mike Kramer (who looks surprisingly like Lex Luthor) they seem to be finding their footing again. The Bengals were just 3-9 in 2013, but improved to 8-4 last season and really could've ran the FCS portion of their schedule with a couple better bounces.

2. Another week, another Mangum

Revenge, thy name is Madison. Boise State may have been on the receiving end of some Mangum justice luck last Saturday, but will have a chance to even the score with the family on Friday as Tanner's brother Madison comes to town with the Bengals. Madison is no slouch of a football player either, as the junior WR has himself made a SC Top Ten play in 2015—and the 6'2" Timberline product was also a All Big Sky first-teamer in 2014. Oh, did I mention he uses Pantene Pro-V? Just don't ask his mom any leading questions about him...she's a talker.

"Sup, bro?"

3. More local talent

Tyler Kuder (snicker) is a mammoth DT (6'3" 305 lbs.) and hails from Payette. He was also a 2nd team All Big-Sky pick a season ago after notching 56 tackles (2.5 for loss) in 11 starts. Boise State's offensive line has gotten off to a bit of a slow start, so contending with Kuder might be easier said than done (snicker again).

4.

Streaks

Boise State - Lost 1

ISU - Lost 1

Strokes

Best name on their roster

Sophomore WR Fondereaux Wilson

Best player picture on their roster

Sophomore WR Fondereaux Wilson

Players to watch

Madison Mangum

Like I said...the younger or possibly older Mangum can do some damage if you don't mind your defensive Ps and Qs. Mangum had 84 receptions for 1,234 yards and 10 TDs in 2014 and on second thought I think it's Herbal Essence Shampoo.

Xavier Finney

The senior RB has already cemented himself in the ISU record books after rushing for a single-season record 1,495 yards in 2014 and topping that off with 14 TDs on the ground. The 5'11" 196 lb. RB will face a stout Bronco front seven, but if he gets some room he's a home run threat. Tackle this man.

James Madison

The redshirt freshman DB was the fourth president of the United States.

Josh Cook

Junior TE Cook was a 3rd team all-conference selection on offense last season after hauling in 37 passes for 524 yards and 3 scores. Any good pass-catching TE can be a matchup problem for DBs and Cook should be no different.

Players to NOT watch

Thankfully, the Broncos won't have to contend with QB Justin Arias, whom the Bengals lost to graduation at the end of last season. Arias was a Walter Payton Award finalist and a third-team All-American after a season that saw him put up over 4,000 yards of offense and 38 TDs.

Also, the Bengals appear to be without the services of 2014 Big Sky Freshman of the Year LB Mario Jenkins. Jenkins, who hails from Nampa's Columbia High School had more tackles per game last season (10) than any freshman in the FCS and would've been a guy to "run away from" had he not been injured in camp.

Keys to victory

  • Shake it off. The Broncos suffered an emotional loss on Saturday night and those tend to either refocus teams or distract them. Knowing these Broncos, I'd say it'll be the former, but Boise State can't overlook this team.
  • Get off to a hot start. This has been a key each week and has yet to really come to fruition. The Broncos should be able to score on the Bengals and need to get a good offensive rhythm going with tougher games on the immediate horizon.
  • Hang on to the ball. Also a key each previous week, but one that is even more integral a week after coughing up the ball 3 times. Ryan Finley needs to show the coaches some better decision-making skills this week or they aren't going put much trust in him to execute their game plan.
  • Score more points. When the Broncos have done this, they've won. When they haven't...they've lost. We now have empirical evidence of this.

Score prediction

Boise State 48, Idaho State 13