Attack The Opponent: Colorado State Rams

goatthelightningUh oh…

Colorado State is underachieving right now. On paper, they should be one of the few threats to the Broncos really left on the schedule. Mike Bobo came from Georgia and took over a Rams team that won 10 games last season. Rams fans are beside themselves after watching two close OT losses to P5 teams (I can’t believe that’s what Colorado counts as), squeaking by UTSA, and then losing by 15 to Utah State. CSU lost a lot of their star power to the NFL draft – boy does that sound familiar – except where BSU has flourished, really, CSU is in a fall.

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Okay, it’s hard to find gifs of mountain goats falling that aren’t terrible, but totally found THIS AWESOME ONE OF GOATS FALLING…UP!?

CSU is a team who’s stats make little to no sense when we look at totals. But the trend is revealing. The cupcake tasted like cupcake. But then things went wrong.

Offensively, CSU is struggling a little over the last few games. Boise State has a much better DL than Utah State, and this team didn’t fare well against the Aggies run defense. They didn’t against Minnesota either. Neither of those teams are the #2 run defense in the country…but Boise State is.

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The Rams retained the services of outstanding WR Rashard Higgins, and while his production isn’t quite as good as where he left off last season, that can be attributed to the inexperience at quarterback. Nick Stevens is playing consistently, but just not quite to the standard that Garrett Grayson set last season.

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The noise coming out of Ft. Collins is that the defensive woes in the run game have been due to missed assignments and not seeing formations like the ones the players have come up against before. Yeah. Hope they got some quality time in the film room, or else this weekend’s game could be very, very ugly.

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The Broncos do not have the weird stats problem. The rush game is all over the place, but the pass game is definitely much improved. Rypien has done some good work over the last few weeks, and I would expect that to continue this weekend. CSU’s pass defense isn’t bad, but there’s a lot to be said for the power of a positive trend and Boise State has a statistically correlated one.

Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 8.39.49 PMDefensively, Boise State has been pretty spectacular. 2 fewer big plays vs. BYU and this defense would’ve earned the “dominant” moniker games ago and the national media noise would be deafening. Boise’s DL is ridiculous. Look at that run yardage. If CSU breaks 100 yards on the ground, it will be truly stunning. CSU will find what success they can through the air…at least until Donte Deayon and new daddy Darian Thompson and the rest of the Bronco defense gets rolling in their intercepting ways. Oh, didn’t you know? Coach Yates’ DBU is leading the country in interceptions right now with 11. Hawaii doesn’t exactly have a big time WR like Higgins, so expect BSU to be defending a better air attack than we saw last week.

CSU is one of those teams that is either going to keep sinking and fight to get in a bowl game, or flip the switch at any point in the next few games and start blowing people away. Boise State might be too dominant for the Rams to actually be victorious against, but CSU doesn’t really go down without a fight. Especially against Boise State. Their fans are saltier than usual and kind of freaking out in that “Kellen Moore Induced PTSD” way that it seems we’re going to see out of MWC opponents this season with Ryp under center.

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A little twisted up, that’s all.

CSU is in a good spot. They’ll have a gorgeous new stadium soon, they’ve got a head coach that seems to be a genuinely good person and is taking responsibility for the issues that are going on in that program’s performance right now. His life isn’t going to get any easier for a week or so, though. Boise State is too much. Too much balance, too much power, too much defense to allow a team that needs to find an identity to get it done on their watch. Online, Boise State fans will feign outrage that there isn’t a shut-out and CSU fans will take it WAY too seriously and keep the hate a-flowin’.

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Sorry, Ram Boy. No win this time either. But your tears are delicious nourishment!

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