WAC Pigskin Picks

2 10 2010

Last Week: 8-1  Overall: 14-3

Coming off my most successful week since I started doing my ‘WAC Pigskin Picks’ (this in only week four – yes, the sample size is small people), Idaho was the only team to let me down last week.  I was as caught off guard by Colorado State quarterback Pete Thomas as the Vandals defensive was, as the Ram freshman threw for 386 yards in a 36-34 victory.
But this is a new week, and I expect Akey’s Army to march into Kalamazoo and show everyone their a much better team than what they showed last week.

Idaho (-3.5) at Western Michigan
Kalamazoo, Michigan – 11:00 PM (on KLEW-TV)

  • The Lowdown
    What a difference a week makes.  At this time last Saturday Idaho’s defense was ranked 7th in NCAA in passing yards allowed a game (120.5 yds/gm), and had all the confidence in the world following a 30-7 win over UNLV.  Senior defensive end Aaron Lavariaus called it the best defensive showing he’s seen in five years on the Palouse, as head coach Robb Akey continue to tout the unit as one that “could be special.”
    Then that Vandals (2-2) ran into a freshman quarterback named Pete Thomas and the Colorado State Rams (1-3).  Thomas threw for more yards (386) in four quarters last Saturday than Idaho had surrendered in the 12 previous periods of play combined (361).
    “I hope that our defenses stingers are a little bent and that I’ll see some irritation come out of them,” Akey said at his weekly press conference.  “One ballgame isn’t going to kill us and I’m not going to let it.  I hope it will spark us.”
    Today, we’ll see how quickly the Vandals can get back up.  They face Western Michigan (1-2), a team that ranks 4th in the NCAA with 332.0 passing yards a contest.
    Sophomore signal-caller Alex Carder is coming off a 403 yards performance against Toledo, in which he chucked the rock 64 times, completing 43 passes.
    Senior wideouts Jordan White and Juan Nunez are two of the best the Mid-Atlantic Confernce, as the duo has combined to catch 52 passes for 586 yards in three games.
  • Prediction
    The good news hidden in all this is about the Vandals offense.   Senior quarterback Nathan Enderle is coming off a season-high 347 yard-performance, as wide receivers Maurice Shaw, Preston Davis and Justin Veltung (14 rec, 192 yds, 2 td) are all starting to get healthy.
    What this means – much like last year – Idaho can afford to get into a shootout with any one, as long as the defensive can get a key stop late in the game when in matters.
    The way I see it, this group has too much experience and too much pride to resort back to their playing days of 2009.  Led by Shiloh Keo, the Vandals force at least three takeaways and chalked up their third win of the season.

Idaho 37 at Western Michigan 28

“The Others”
* Record entering play today
UC Davis (1-3) 16 at San Jose State (1-3) 23- 5:00 PM

  • Right now, San Jose State is battling with New Mexico State for a label nobody wants. Worst team in the conference.  The Spartans got boat-raced by Utah 56-3 last week, and their lone victory on the season was a 16-11 nail-biter against FCS-foe Southern Utah.  I think San Jose State pulls it out, but it will be interesting.

#3 Boise State (3-0) 51 at New Mexico State (0-3) 3 – 5:00 PM

  • This is an interesting matchup. Wait… I mean uninteresting.  Boise State is one of the best teams in the nation (duh!), while New Mexico State is one of the worst teams in the nation (duh!).  The Broncos will build a three touchdown lead by the early second quarter (if not the end of the first quarter) and turn this WAC-matchup into a snooze-fest faster than BSU head coach Chris Petersen would bench one of his star-wideout for an unsportmanslike conduct celebration penalty.  (Sorry, Austin Pettis.)

Cal Poly (3-1) 17 at Fresno State (2-1) 38 – 7:00 PM

  • It appears Fresno State is suffering from an identity crisis.  In game one, quarterback Ryan Colburn threw for 247 yards and four touchdowns in a 28-14 win over Cincinnati.  In game two, sophomore runningback A.J. Ellis rushed for 165 yards and three touchdowns in a 41-24 victory over Utah State.  Then in game three, it was back to the air, as Colburn passed for 390 yards and four touchdowns in a 55-38 loss to Mississippi.
    The trend says they go back to the ground, but it really doesn’t matter how they get it done.  For and FCS-team, Cal Poly is good.  But not good enough to take down the Bulldogs.

#25 Nevada (4-0) 48 at UNLV (1-3)14 – 7:00 PM

  • After cracking the top-25 for the first time since the 1950’s, this is a perfect matchup for Nevada.  Senior quarterback Colin Kaepernick will be riding high heading into this instate rivalry game, and show put a hurtin’ on a young UNLV squard that has struggle so far this season.

Louisiana Tech (1-3) 17 at Hawai’i (2-2) 31 – 8:30 PM

  • Louisiana Tech is a team that is build.  Hawai’i is doing the same, but has proven they’re a little further ahead.  Junior quarterback Bryant Moniz has show he’s ready to be ‘next’ on the list of talented Warrior signal-callers.



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