UNLV is 2-5 under Tony Sanchez, most recently the coach at Bishop Gorman HS in Vegas. (LOOK AT THEIR FACILITIES. This is a high school with stuff that’s better than most of the MWC.) However, this isn’t the regular UNLV 2-5. This team is the current owner of the Fremont Cannon, winning this years Battle for Nevada. They almost beat the NIU Huskies, put 80 points on Idaho State, took a decent SJSU team to OT and then somehow wasn’t able to withstand a comeback from…Fresno. The Mountain West is the most incomprehensible conference in the country and UNLV with some heart is the most incomprehensible of them all. Are they good? Probably not beat Boise State If They Show Up good. But if Boise melts down again? UNLV could go for the throat.
The Broncos need a bye and to heal up a little. The Rebels are just coming off theirs, and should be fresh and sharp with a couple of weeks to prepare. The weird 12:30 PM kickoff off on Saturday should benefit UNLV as well – Boise State hasn’t played a regular season game before 5 pm since last September at UConn.
A day game! What a concept!
However, that’s pretty much where the Rebels advantage stops, at least on paper. The Broncos should dominate on both sides of the ball and win handily. UNLV doesn’t have the strongest rush game and will be living on the pass. Their defense is better than usual but still should be overpowered by McNichols and the Broncos on the ground to allow the passing game to open up and be prolific.
Of course, all of this is just data, and we learned vs Utah State that occasionally, data lies.
Someone should probably take my comp away. Theoretically Boise was better than both BYU and Utah State on paper too.
The MWC is more dumpster fire than metropolitan conference of distinction or whatever the slogan is this year, but here’s hoping Temple loses horribly to ND in front of the whole country during prime time on ABC. When they start looking for a G5 champ at the end of the season, the Broncos might run with the chaos monster stampede and end up in the big money bowl game corral somehow. Probably not, but stranger things have happened. There is a lot of football left.
This horse is scary, but not as scary as the MWC West division standings. Is everyone good? Is everyone terrible? Who knows!
UNLV know this too. They’re fighting for bowl eligibility, and beating Nevada and Boise in the same season would get UNLV a very long way toward their goals of everything from turning the program around to building a new on campus stadium facility. This isn’t the same UNLV. Of course, Boise State, who now statistically has the best QB in the conference, won’t just lay down. The Broncos should win this game handily and send us all happily on our way to trick or treat with victory in our hearts, but we can take nothing for granted. No lead is safe. Not in this conference, not this season. Not much more terrifying than that. Boo!