#24 Boise State vs San Diego State : Keys to a Bronco Victory
Here is how the Broncos can top the Aztecs
Boise State’s game this week will be the second in a row that the Broncos with be playing a team coming off a bye week and will be kicking off with plenty of daylight left. 8:15 PM (MT) kickoffs have been commonplace for all the teams that play west of the Rocky Mountains, so having kickoffs at 5:00 and 1:30 PM in consecutive weeks is a rarity.
Similar to Boise State, San Diego State are coming off their bye week to open their Mountain West schedule on the road. This was a circled game for many people before this season started and will likely be a classic Rocky Long battle that we have come to expect. With that expectation, here are the keys to a Boise State victory.
Key #1: Ignore The Hype
Boise State come in off the high of putting up 34 points on one of the better defenses in the Mountain West and with San Diego State missing two of their key weapons, senior QB Christian Chapman and Jr RB Jean Washington, it feels like this is a game where Boise State’s defense will shine. This is one of the quickest ways to put yourself in a position to drop an unexpected game in the middle of the season. Rocky Long’s teams are known to have great running games and great defense.
San Diego State’s defense is still one of the best and Sophomore running back Chase Jasmin has proven to be an excellent replacement for Washington. Of course, the Aztec would be in better shape if all their opening week starters were in the lineup, but they have proven to still be a very dangerous team, just ask then #23 Arizona State.
Key #2: Offense and Defensive Lines Must Hold Their Own
The Aztec come into this game with the 2nd ranked rushing defense in the nation and unfortunately, rushing the ball in an area that Boise State has not been as successful as they would like. By turning teams one dimensional, San Diego State allowed the 3rd fewest points and yards per game in the Mountain West to this point in the season.
They have also been dominant on. the ground on offense as well. Producing the best rush offense in the conference, the Aztec game plan is to grind you down on both sides of the ball. Boise State will have to force them into passing situations on 3rd down where San Diego State is converting less than 40% overall.
Key #3: Coffee is For Closers
Through four games San Diego State has scored 63 of their 89 total points (71%) in the 2nd and 4th quarters. With their power run game, they grind defenses down and capitalize towards the ends of the halves.
The more Boise State can put together long drives on offense, keeping their defense off the field, the better the chance they will be able to stand firm against the Aztec offense. As covered in the last key, it is no easy task to put together long drives against their defense either, but this is where Boise State would likely be able to open them up with their pass game.
This seems like the prototypical conference game where the Broncos can come out flat and be taken to the woodshed. However, I think playing at home on The Blue, Boise State will be able to hold their own against the Aztec offensive line, and be able to capitalize in the passing game to open up a quick early lead.
San Diego State is going to be able to put together sold drives as well, but in the end will not be able to close with enough touchdowns to stay in the game.
Boise State 41, San Diego State 23