Broncos, Wolf Pack Renew Rivalry
Oct. 30, 2017

Nevada Gameday 2017

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1-7, 1-3 MW
Boise State vs. Nevada
Saturday, Nov. 4 | 5 p.m. MT
Albertsons Stadium | Boise, Idaho
Broadcast: ESPNU
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Boise State
6-2, 4-0 MW
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BOISE, Idaho - The Boise State football team brings its four-game winning streak home to Albertsons Stadium, where the Broncos are set to take on Nevada, Saturday (Nov. 4). Kick between the Broncos (6-2, 4-0 MW) and Wolf Pack (1-7, 1-3 MW) is scheduled for 5 p.m., and the game will be nationally televised by ESPNU. The kickoff time is the earliest for a November game at Albertsons Stadium since 2012.

THE SERIES: In a series that spans fi ve decades and four conferences, the two-year hiatus of the rivalry between Boise State and Nevada is the longest since the schools started playing in 1971. The Broncos boast a 28-13 all-time record against the Wolf Pack, including wins in each of the last four meetings and in 14 of the last 15. Boise State has also won eight-straight home games against the Wolf Pack, the last loss at home coming Nov. 8, 1997 (56-42).

ANOTHER STEP TOWARDS THE CONFERENCE TITLE GAME: Boise State remained undefeated in Mountain West play and kept its march to the conference title game intact with Saturday’s 41-14 win at Utah State. Thanks to Saturday’s victory, combined with Colorado State’s loss at Air Force, the Broncos, at 4-0, are the only undefeated team in the conference, and hold a one-game lead in the Mountain Division over the Rams and Wyoming with four games remaining. Boise State already holds the head-to-head advantage over Wyoming with Oct. 21’s 24-14 win over the Cowboys, and can cement its advantage in the divisional race with a victory Nov. 11 at Colorado State.

NEVER BEEN 5-0 IN MOUNTAIN WEST PLAY: Saturday night’s win at Utah State improved Boise State to 4-0 in Mountain West play, marking the first time the Broncos had opened conference play with that record since 2012. A win this Saturday night against Nevada would improve the Broncos to 5-0 in Mountain West play for the first time in Boise State’s seven seasons in the conference, and would be the first time that the Broncos had started a conference season 5-0 since its 2010 WAC campaign.

BOISE STATE’S BOWL STREAK AMONG BEST IN THE COUNTRY: Boise State entered 2017 with a run of 15-consecutive bowl appearances, a streak which is tops among “Group of Five” schools and is surpassed by only five “Power Five” schools. Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma and Virginia Tech have each played in at least 16-straight bowl games entering this season. Oct. 28’s win at Utah State improved the Broncos to 6-2, making Boise State eligible for its 16th-straight bowl game.

(NO) TURNOVER STREAK: Since an interception on the Broncos’ opening drive against BYU, Boise State has not turned the ball over. Entering Saturday’s game against the Wolf Pack, the Broncos’ streak without a turnover is at 237 minutes, 56 seconds.

THREE ROAD WINS IN OCTOBER: Boise State captured three road wins during the month of October for the fi rst time since 2003. Three of the Broncos’ last four games have been on the road, and the Broncos won all three, knocking off BYU (24-7), then-19th-ranked San Diego State (31-14) and Utah State (41-14). Boise State had lost at each venue the last time it played the three opponents on the road – against both BYU and Utah State in 2015, and against San Diego State in 2013.

NO 100-YARD RUSHERS: Boise State’s defense rose to seventh in the country in rushing defense after holding Utah State to just 93 yards on 27 attempts (3.6 ypc) Saturday night. It marked the fifth game this year, out of eight, that the Bronco defense has held an opponent to under 100 yards on the ground. The Broncos have also still not allowed an opposing player to rush for 100 yards in a game this season, as the leading Aggie rusher was Tre Miller (40 yards on seven carries). The eight-game stretch is Boise State’s best since a 13-game run that began Nov. 22, 2014 at Wyoming and ended Nov. 14, 2015 against New Mexico.

VINTAGE RYPIEN: The Bronco offense opened things up Saturday night at Utah State, and no one benefited more than quarterback Brett Rypien, who went 19-for-27 for 260 yards and three touchdowns. Rypien led the Broncos to touchdowns on each of the team’s first two drives, capping the first with a 19-yard pass to Cedrick Wilson just two minutes into the game, then hitting freshman wide receiver Octavius Evans with a 12-yard strike to put the Broncos up quick at 14-0. For Rypien, it was his his first multi-touchdown game of the year, and first since throwing for four touchdowns at Hawai’i on Nov. 12, 2016.

EFFECTIVE TWO-QB SYSTEM: Boise State has employed a two-quarterback system all season, with both junior Brett Rypien and redshirt senior Montell Cozart, a graduate transfer from Kansas, handling signal-calling duties. While the system has led the Broncos to a 6-2 record and 4-0 start in Mountain West play, it showed peak efficiency Saturday night at Utah State, as the two quarterbacks combined to go 24-for-34 for 370 yards and five touchdowns in the Broncos’ 41-14 win. Rypien finished the game 19-for-27 for 260 yards and three scores, while Cozart went 5-for-7 for 110 yards and two touchdowns. The performance marked the first time that the Broncos had two players (Rypien and Cozart) throw for a touchdown since Rypien and wide receiver Thomas Sperbeck did so on Oct. 15, 2016, against Colorado State. The last time two true Bronco quarterbacks threw TD passes in one game was November 30, 2013, against New Mexico, when Grant Hedrick had three touchdown passes and Joe Southwick had one. The last time two Bronco quarterbacks had multi-touchdown days in the same game, just as with Saturday at Utah State, was against Idaho on Nov. 17, 2017, when Taylor Tharp threw for four touchdowns and Bush Hamdan threw for two.

YOU ASKED FOR TIGHT END TOUCHDOWNS, NOW YOU GOT ‘EM: After struggling with injuries in 2016, redshirt senior tight end Jake Roh has returned to his All-Mountain West form this year, bringing his career-high touchdown total up to eight with two scoring grabs at Utah State Saturday night. Roh, a John Mackey Award candidate who was named to the All-Mountain West Second Team in 2015 and honorable mention in 2014, caught four passes for a career-high 87 yards in Logan, with his scoring grabs going for 22 and 35 yards, respectively. Through Oct. 28, he ranks second on the team this year with 29 receptions for 279 yards, and leads the Broncos with six receiving touchdowns and eight overall. His other two touchdowns have come on the ground, as Roh, working primarily from the Wildcat, has rushed five times for 23 yards this season.

MATTISON WITH ANOTHER 100-YARD GAME: After a slow start to the season which included tough outings on the ground Sept. 14 against New Mexico (10 yards on six carries) and Sept. 22 against Virginia (11 yards on seven carries), sophomore running back Alexander Mattison has gotten things on track, rushing for 447 yards over Boise State’s last four games. That figure has included three 100-yard outings, including a career-high 128 yards on Oct. 14 at San Diego State. Mattison had a career night on the ground Oct. 6 at BYU, setting personal benchmarks in rushing yards (118), carries (29) and rushing touchdowns (two), posting the first multi-touchdown game of his career and Boise State’s first 100-yard rushing game of 2017. He eclipsed his week-old career best by going for 128 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries Oct. 14 at San Diego State, then went for 91 yards against Wyoming (Oct. 21) and 110 yards, including a three-yard scoring reception, at Utah State (Oct. 28). For the year, Mattison leads the Broncos with 613 rushing yards and five scores on the ground. With at least five games remaining, the sophomore is on pace to hit 1,000 yards and extend Boise State’s streak of seasons with a 1,000-yard rusher to nine (current streak is 2009-16).


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