Attack the Opponent: Utah State Aggies
Earlier this year, I questioned Utah State’s depth and Coach Wells’ ability to recruit quarterbacks, especially four deep. I was incorrect. After Mr. Keaton went down with a broken leg, and then two more qb’s got injured, who could have known that Kent Meyers would step in and play exceedingly well and lead the Aggies to five straight wins?
Utah State is worrisome, on paper. They are holding teams under 18.5 ppg, top in the MWC vs. the run, with a top 25 in the country pass defense. They have only been under 400 total yards of offense once since Meyers took the helm. The Aggies do have a fairly balanced attack, if a little run heavy. They don’t turn the ball over much. They don’t get many penalties. Losing Chuckie Keaton, and then two more backups on top of it, was thought to be the death blow for this team and they just didn’t stop fighting. Are the Aggies as dangerous as they sound?
Probably not. The toughest team they’ve faced is Colorado State, and they lost that one.
Colorado State fans are getting a little twitchy, waiting for Boise State to lose. It could be a while, guys.
This is a strong statement: Boise State could’ve beaten most teams in the country on Saturday night. I also believe it’s a correct statement. The Broncos scored in all phases of the game and looked beautiful. They ran STATUE! They made SportsCenter. The backups got to play, for goodness sakes. (Can I just say, Ryan Finley. He could’ve became a head-case, instead he stepped up and made a big play and redeemed himself. That lack of quit is a positive trait that all Broncos should share. Loved it.)
It was less about the opponent for the Broncos, but about executing. About starting fast and not letting up. About not being afraid to make a play and trusting the guys next to you. Really, that’s what lacked last season. The 2014 Broncos aren’t scared to go in for the kill and play the hero. Who doesn’t want to see that?! Are you not entertained, Bronco Nation?! We’re in dreamland, with only a bunch of Aggies between Boise State and their goal of a conference championship. An underdog team from Utah who are just wanting chaos because their own dreams died weeks ago won’t be enough.
Boise State has to stay focused. The J-Train is capable of running over lesser defenses, and McNichols is just such a good compliment. Utah State thinks they have The Answer for Shane Williams-Rhodes, but that would be a first for anybody. Wouldn’t it be epic to see Sanford call Statue again just to remind the Aggies of their place on the low side of the scoreboard and then run the ball up their gut for a few quarters?
I guess getting trucked by Ajayi and then sacked by Correa counts as punishment.
Anything is possible. I suppose the Broncos could get cocky and start slowly again and Utah State could play outta their mind and then the weather could go to crap and Bronco Nation could abandon ship to warmer digs and Boise State could be in real trouble. But this team? The team that played so well on Saturday night that fans on twitter were reduced to hysterical giggling. This Boise State, that has so much confidence in themselves and the team, won’t be outclassed at home on Senior Night.
The game at Albertson’s Stadium next Saturday night is arguably the most important game since the Michigan State game in 2012. We’re lucky – while many thought at the start of the season that Boise State v. USU could have championship implications, we never dreamed it would be because the top 3 teams at the top of the Mountain division are legitimately good football teams. It’s turning CSU fans into Wyoming and Utah State fans, it’s turning Boise State fans into Fresno fans…its mass anarchy and isn’t that what college football is all about? Showing up on Saturday isn’t for you and it isn’t for the coaches. It’s for those young men who showed up for every practice and every meeting and every session in the weight room or climbing Table Rock for 4 or 5 years. For watching Pleasantville: Bronco Edition fall apart before their eyes in a golden spray from a balcony in Hawaii, and then for picking up the pieces and embracing Harsin and the new ideas and running with them. Those guys deserve a few hours of your time. A raucous, crazy
Bronco Albertson’s Stadium is the least we can do, after a weekend of celebration and family and all that comes with it, to support and thank those guys who have given us so many great reasons to smile and be happy over the last few seasons.
The opponent doesn’t matter this week either. All that matters is that there is one, their name is Utah State, and they are in the way of the first outright Mountain West championship for Boise State, ever. Just win, baby. Good things will happen. Go Broncos!