Photo courtesy of San Diego State Athletics
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (Sports Network) -
AIR FORCE: Trailing by double digits at the break at Wyoming on Saturday, the Falcons were lifted to a 28-27 win over the Cowboys thanks to a five-yard touchdown run by backup quarterback Kale Pearson. Pearson, who stepped in for an injured Connor Dietz, capped a 16-play, 67-yard drive that ate up almost seven minutes on the clock in order to get the Falcons their second win in the last three outings. Thanks to the lengthy drive to win the contest, the Academy controlled the action for 12:12 in the fourth quarter alone, nearly matching the entire time the program had possession of the ball through the first three frames. Now ranked second in the nation in rushing with 363.0 ypg, the Falcons amassed just 230 yards on the ground and 371 yards overall, while the defense gave up 447 yards to Wyoming. Before leaving the game Dietz hit on 7-of-9 passes for 141 yards and two touchdowns and also led the squad with an additional 92 rushing yards as well. The Falcons are back home this coming weekend where they will entertain the New Mexico Lobos in conference play. Air Force owns a 19-10 advantage in the all-time series, thanks in part to a 42-0 thumping of UNM last season.
BOISE STATE: The Broncos picked up their fifth straight win on Saturday as they defended their home turf with a 20-10 victory over Fresno State in Mountain West Conference action. Now ranked 24th in the nation, Boise State scored the first 17 points of the meeting with the Bulldogs and never looked back as D.J. Harper ran for a game-high 122 yards and a score on 21 carries and Joe Southwick connected on half of his 22 passes for another 113 yards and a touchdown as well. The Broncos produced a healthy 215 yards rushing on 42 attempts and at the same time held GSU's Robbie Rouse to just 77 yards on 25 carries in the decision. The hosts did give up 266 yards and a touchdown through the air, but at the same time intercepted Derek Carr once and sacked him three times Back home on Saturday, the Broncos welcome the UNLV Rebels to Idaho for another Mountain West Conference battle. Boise State topped the Rebels last season in a 48-21 decision, giving BSU a 4-3 edge in the all-time series.
COLORADO STATE: First-year head coach Jim McElwain started off his tenure in Fort Collins on the right foot with a victory over Colorado in Denver in the season opener, but since then the team has gone downhill fast. On Saturday, the Rams gave up at least 28 points for the fifth straight game and saw their skid reach six games overall as they took a hard tumble against San Diego State on the road, 38-14. Colorado State was tied with the Aztecs heading into the second quarter, but after that the Rams defense allowed 31 straight points by the hosts and the squad was never able to recover. Starting quarterback M.J. McPeek, who himself is covering for an injured Garrett Grayson, converted 6-of-13 for 49 yards and a score before he took a seat on the bench with an injury of his own. Conner Smith stepped in to convert all but four of his 22 pass attempts for another 165 yards but it made little difference in the final outcome. The Rams catch a break in the schedule this coming week which will give them extra time to prepare for their bout with Hawaii at home on Oct. 27.
FRESNO STATE: The Bulldogs trailed 17-0 at the half against nationally-ranked Boise State in Idaho on Saturday and were never able to fully recover as they absorbed a 20-10 setback on the blue turf. The loss snapped a brief two-game win streak by Fresno State and now the program is 2-1 in Mountain West Conference play as a result. For the second time in three games, running back Robbie Rouse was held below 80 yards rushing, finishing with 77 on 25 attempts, the school's all-time leading rusher also being held out of the end zone for the second straight game. Since throwing for a 536 yards against San Diego State a few weeks back, Derek Carr has come back to reality as he threw for just 266 yards and a single score, although the team as a whole is still averaging better than 308 ypg passing to rank first in the conference and 19th nationally. Back home this week, the Bulldogs welcome MWC member Wyoming to California. The most recent meeting between the two schools went to double- overtime back in 2009, with the Cowboys picking up a 35-28 victory and earning a 4-3 edge in the all-time series in the process.
HAWAII: Homecoming for the Warriors felt like anything but as the team suffered yet another loss over the weekend, this time a 35-23 setback versus visiting New Mexico in Mountain West Conference play. Now winless in three tries in their new league, the Warriors fell behind by three touchdowns and never fully recovered despite the efforts of quarterback Sean Schroeder who converted 20-of-42 passes for 272 yards and a touchdown. Will Gregory contributed a team-best 99 rushing yards on 13 attempts and John Lister landed in the end zone on a one-yard run in the fourth quarter but still Hawaii was dealt a fourth straight setback and the fifth in six tries this season under new head coach Norm Chow. Mike Edwards did give the hosts a bit of a spark late in the third with a 100-yard kickoff return for a score, but still this team has not defeated another school from the Football Bowl Subdivision since putting up a 35-23 decision over Tulane on Nov. 26, 2011. For the second time this season, the Warriors have a bye and this time they'll return to face Colorado State on the road on Oct. 27.
NEVADA: The Wolf Pack ran its win streak to five in a row on Saturday, overcoming an early deficit against UNLV as it captured a thrilling 42-37 victory at Sam Boyd Stadium in order to claim ownership of the Fremont Cannon for another year. Stefphon Jefferson ran for a game-high 185 yards and scored three times on the ground for Nevada, which means he now leads the nation in rushing with 162.9 ypg on the ground as he became the first running back in the FBS to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark on the campaign. As a team, Nevada ran for 329 yards and four scores as quarterback Devin Combs, subbing for an injured Cody Fajardo, accounted for another 111 yards and a TD running the ball and also threw for 167 yards and two scores in the triumph. Alternating home and away games for the final eight dates on the schedule, the Wolf Pack heads back to Reno this weekend to entertain the San Diego State Aztecs in conference play at Mackay Stadium. Nevada dropped the most recent bout between the squads in 2004 by a score of 27-10, and that has the teams locked at 2-2 in the all-time series.
NEW MEXICO: For the second week in a row, the Lobos scored 35 points and for the second straight outing the team also picked up a victory as it held off the Hawaii Warriors in Honolulu on Saturday night, 35-23. Winners of three of their last four games overall, the Lobos were again paced by Kasey Carrier who posted a game-high 161 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 35 attempts coming out of the backfield. Cole Gautsche added another 104 yards and a score on his five rushing attempts as the team dialed up 332 yards and five total TDs on 62 carries. Maintaining possession of the ball for close to 39 minutes in the meeting, UNM rolled up 452 yards of total offense and didn't turn the ball over a single time, while recovering three fumbles by the Warriors. With the win the Lobos snapped a 24-game slide outside the state of New Mexico and also halted an 18-game road losing streak in the Mountain West as well. The Lobos are out on the road for the second time in as many weeks as they clash with the Air Force Falcons in Colorado on Saturday. Unfortunately for UNM, the team was blanked by the Academy last season, 42-0, and now trails in the all-time series, 19-10.
SAN DIEGO STATE: Quarterback Ryan Katz threw for two touchdowns and ran for a third on Saturday as he helped guide the Aztecs to an overwhelming 38-14 home win against Colorado State in Mountain West Conference action. San Diego State, which went without a penalty for the first time since 1973, has now won by 24 or more points in consecutive games for the first time since 1999 thanks to Katz who converted 16-of-22 passes for 181 yards and survived a pair of sacks. On the ground the Aztecs were led by Adam Muema who gained a game-high 105 yards and found the end zone twice, extending his string of games with at least one touchdown to eight in a row dating back to last season. As a team, SDSU has now tallied at least one rushing TD in 15 straight outings, the longest run for the program in more than two decades when it had a string of 19 games in a row. After a two-game homestand the Aztecs are out on the road this week and will drop in on the Nevada Wolf Pack in Reno. San Diego State won the most recent clash eight years ago, 27-10, and tied the all-time series at 2-2 in the process.
UNLV: The Rebels appeared to be on track to pick up a huge and long-overdue win against in-state rival Nevada on Saturday, leading 21-0 early in the third quarter. But then UNLV seemed to relax on both sides of the ball and that opened the door for the Wolf Pack to battle back for a 42-37 win on the road in Sin City, which meant the Fremont Cannon was heading back to Reno yet again. Bradley Randle posted a pair of rushing touchdowns in the first half and finished with 49 yards on the ground for the hosts, second to Tim Cornett who recorded 129 yards and a score on 20 rushing attempts. Nick Sherry converted 21-of-35 passes for 243 yards and a touchdown for a team that was penalized seven times for 74 yards as it lost for the third time in as many games and the sixth time this season already. The Rebels hit the road for the first of back-to-back away dates this weekend as they head to Boise to take on the Broncos in Mountain West Conference action. UNLV was beaten up by BSU in last year's meeting, 48-21, and that outcome also dropped the Rebels a game behind in the all-time series at 4-3.
WYOMING: With quarterback Brett Smith being ruled out prior to the start of action on Saturday, the Cowboys tried to lean on Jason Thompson but still ended up with a 28-27 loss to Air Force in Mountain West Conference action in Laramie. Wyoming, a loser in two straight and five of the first six games of the 2012 campaign, led by double figures in the second half before falling apart. Thompson managed to hit on 23-of-36 passes for 195 yards and a score, adding another 75 yards rushing on 16 attempts, but it simply wasn't enough. D.J. May and Shaun Wick combined for 173 rushing yards and both scored once for the hosts as they generated 447 yards of total offense but managed to control the action in the all-important fourth quarter for a mere 2:48. Heading out of Laramie for the third time in the last four games, the Cowboys find themselves taking on Fresno State this time around. The Pokes own a 4-3 edge in the all-time series, thanks to a 35-28 double-overtime win in the most recent matchup three years ago.