Boise State vs. Wyoming: Keys For A Broncos Victory

Boise State vs. Wyoming: Keys For A Broncos Victory

Boise State

Boise State vs. Wyoming: Keys For A Broncos Victory

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Boise State vs. Wyoming: Keys For A Broncos Victory


The last time the Broncos played at Wyoming they came away with a loss, what can they do to be victorious in 2018?

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When Boise State visited War Memorial Stadium on October 29th, 2016, they were 7-0, ranked 13th in the nation, and eyeing a New Year’s Six Bowl berth. With a 21-7 lead with 6:26 left in the 2nd quarter, all seemed well with the Broncos. Then a couple of quick scores before the half (one fueled by a Brett Rypien interception), changed the complexion of the game completely. The Cowboys would go on to win on a safety of all things and Boise State’s season dealt its first of three blows for the year.

The Cowboys would go on to win the Mountain Division thanks to a BSU loss at Air Force. Then of course who can forget the famous safety dance, forever etched in Mountain West gif history.

Boise State’s coaches are hoping that not a single player in their locker room, who was around for that 2016 game, has forgotten that dance. You can bet that 4-year starter Brett Rypien remembers how that game ended and will no doubt be doing everything in his power to play mistake free on Saturday.

Wyoming’s defense remains a strong force, but their offense is a shell of what it was just two years ago. Gone are Josh Allen, Jacob Hollister, and Brian Hill. Tyler Vander Waal, Nico Evans, and Austin Conway take their places.

Let’s take a look on the keys to a Boise State Victory.

Key #1: Keep Rypien & Mattison Clean

The offensive line was highlighted as a strength of the Bronco squad going into the Oklahoma State game and left it as one of the most vulnerable position groups. The Cowboys of Stillwater exposed Boise State’s offensive line with disguised and last-second blitzes that left Bronco lineman standing looking confused.

The Broncos took advantage of a bye week in 2017 to drastically improve offensive line play, Boise State fans can only hope that the same happens in 2018. If Rypien and Mattison are kept clean for the most part and given a chance to perform, the Bronco’s offense will be difficult to stop.

Key #2: Make Special Teams Acceptable

Over the course of the rise of Boise State to national recognition, special teams has played an integral part in their success (look no further than the 2017 Mountain West Championship Game). Even in the Bronco’s wins, their special teams has not exactly been…special.

During the loss to OSU Boise State missed a short field goal and surrendered two blocked punts, one that led to an easy touchdown and another that was returned for a touchdown. If these miscues are corrected on Saturday, it will go a long ways to allowing the Broncos to leave Laramie victorious.

Key #3: Keep Pressure on Wyoming’s Offense

The pressure on Wyoming’s offense should come from both Boise State’s offense and defense. In the OSU game, the Bronco’s defensive front got to Taylor Cornelius multiple times but just could not complete the sack. Versus the Cowboys of Laramie, they will need to put Vander Waal on the ground and stifle Evans in the run game, This effort combined with an effective and high scoring BSU offense should put more pressure on the Wyoming offense then they can handle.

Prediction

ESPN’s Football Power Index gives the Broncos an 89.6% chance to beat the Cowboys on Saturday. I cannot disagree with this prediction. I believe the memory of the 2016 debacle mixed with the sting of the loss at Stillwater fires the Broncos up for this matchup. Rypien continues his solid passing output, Mattison gains some traction on the ground thanks to an improved offensive line, and the special teams does not betray the Broncos in this one.

Boise State 38 Wyoming 13

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