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S’party time: Boise State vs San José State game preview

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NCAA Football: San Jose State at Air Force Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Game facts

  • Time: Saturday, Nov. 2, 8:30 PM (MT)
  • Location: CEFCU Stadium, San José, CA
  • Weather at kickoff: 62°
  • Odds: Boise State by 17
  • TV: CBSSN
  • Radio: KBOI 670 AM
  • Commentators: Carter “Pewterschmidt” Blackburn, Aaron “Did you know I played for Notre Dame” Taylor, Jenny “Farmer in the” Dell

Other facts

1. Love is in the air

Many across the Mountain West predicted that a quarterback named Love would have a stellar season. They were only wrong about which one. Utah State started a Heisman campaign for Jordan Love, and that apparently spooked him as he’s currently sitting at 8 TDs on the year and NINE interceptions. The other Love—Josh—is having a fantastic season at San José State and you’re excused if you just said “who?”. The Josh variety has over 2,300 yards this season, with 15 TDs to his name and just 3 INTs. If he was wanting to keep his anonymity...he’s been doing a terrible job.

2. Yes way, José

San José has been a reliable doormat since joining the Mountain West. In fact, there are many that have called for them to be summarily removed from the conference as they haven’t really done much right across the entire athletics landscape. However, this season the Spartans at least have a pulse. 4-4 isn’t a GREAT record, mind you (it’s still better than the record of the team that beat us two weeks ago), but in Spartanville it’s a big step in the right direction. SJSU got a win over an SEC school (on the road, no less) and have hung close even in their losses. Could a new dawn be breaking in San José? Maybe...but it’d be cool if it breaks after we beat them.

3. That said...

Boise State has NEVER lost to San José State...a perfect 13-0 all time against the ALSO not-a-state. Of course, ten of those wins came back in the WAC and the MWC tilts have been a teensy bit more closely contested...but everything looks close when it’s not the 77-14 beating the Broncos put on the Spartans in 2003. SJSU famously stomped on the Broncos midfield logo prior to the game and Dan Hawkins went all “oh-no-you-dihunt” on Fitz Hill’s squad. Ahh, memories.

4. A real steal on Amazon...and so, so nourishing

Streaks

Boise State - Lost 1 :(

San José State - Won 1 (because we’re in Bizarro World)

Stinks

Best name(s) on their roster

I like Isaiah Holiness and Zamore ZIgler as much as the next guy, but something tells me you can call LB Rico Tolefree any time.

Best picture on their roster

I’m going to go out on a limb and predict that punter Alex Galland has a future in law enforcement or karate instruction.

Players to watch

Josh Love, QB

Sure Josh Love doesn’t have as many TDs as Hawaii’s Cole McDonald...but he also doesn’t have all the pesky INTs. The senior Spartan is putting up all-conference numbers and the Broncos will have to keep him in check if they want to keep their spotless conference record intact. I didn’t think I’d be saying this at the beginning of the year but JOSH Love might be the best QB the Broncos play this year. What is life?

Tre Walker, WR

This 5’11” junior leads the team in receptions (40) and receiving yards (565), so obviously should be the guy to lock down, but don’t get too focused on Walker or Bailey Gaither can do some damage as well. Gaither leads the team in yards/catch (18.2) and receiving TDs (4)...so yeah, keep an eye on both these dudes, please.

Nick Nash, QB

Another QB on the “players to watch” list? My stars. Well, this frosh is technically a QB but he made this list because he’s currently 2nd on the team in rushing (by a single yard) and leads the team in yards per carry with 6.4. The Spartans identity isn’t that of a running team (although they may identify that way) with their top 2 guys combining for barely over 500 yards, but when Nash comes in to the game...he’s probably not looking to pass.

Brandon Ezell, DB

SJSU has a surprisingly stingy secondary, and Ezell is probably one of the stingiest with 3 INTs already under his belt. The 6’0” senior hails from the same high school as Orlando Scandrick which isn’t leading to any kind of further point but it is INTERESTING is it not?!

Ethan Aguayo, LB

Yet another senior—Aguayo currently leads the Spartans in tackles with 69 (don’t you dare say it...). The 6’2” Aguayo also has a sack and an INT to hang on his wall, so not too shabby for the fifth year dude.

Players NOT to watch

Senior LB Jesse Osuna will be seen...just not until the second half as he serves a first half suspension due to a targeting ejection last week.

Keys to victory

  • Get takeaways. Seriously...can somebody get some takeaways? That’d be swell.
  • Control the clock. The Broncos have been trying to establish the run this season with mixed results. Keeping the fairly potent Spartan offense off the field on Saturday would go a long way. Feed Holani...he’s hungry.
  • Play with discipline. The Broncos looked like they had BYU figured out in the first half two weeks ago, but took their eye off the ball (literally) in the 3rd quarter and doomed the Broncos chances. Look, Josh Love is a good QB, but this is a pass first AND second team...play disciplined coverage, get after the QB and into his throwing lanes and hope the Bronco offense has regained some efficiency.
  • Don’t lose. Failed to heed this advice in Provo and LOOK at what happened.

Score prediction

Broncos aren’t losing two games in a row...”up” Spartans or not.

Boise State 41, San José State 19