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Week 8 Mountain West Football Preview

(3-3) #13 (7-0)

Rice Eccles Stadium 12PM MT TV: Radio: KCOL 600 or KALL 700 Sports

With the BYU loss Utah has a little more added pressure to defeat Colorado State, and an outside shot of being in the top 10 in the polls. The big question again is if the Utes can put together a complete game, well more importantly on offense.

Also, a side note is that now that BYU lost the University of Utah has the nations longest winning streak at 8 games starting back to last year when Utah defeat Navy in the Poinsettia Bowl.

There has been some grumblings from Darrell Mack about not being entirely happy with his role, this is coming from the Salt Lake Tribune:

Asked this week about Utah's lack of running productivity against Wyoming, in which he rushed a season-low six times for 15 yards and Asiata rushed 11 times for 37 yards, Mack said he didn't know why that was."I don't really care either, " he said. "I don't care."Mack didn't specify what he didn't care about and continued to be vague. Asked if he was frustrated, Mack said, "I just come to practice every day, I don't even know. I have nothing to say."

He is being vague, but six carries would be frustrating for any back. Hopefully this is not a distraction for the team. In my opinion the Utes need to use Matt Asiata more then Mack and move away from the fifty-fifty split and perhaps toward a sixty-five to thirty-five split, but what do I know I just watch games and it seems that Asiata is the better back.

Play calling has come into question towards offensive coordinator Andy Ludwing, because the Ute staff keeps saying they want play makers so they bring in third back Eddie Wide who is a speed guy, however the Utes all ready have Brent Casteel as a speed guy and not utilizing him too well especially in the deep passing game.

Reasons that Utah has not being pursuing the vertical passing game is because of Brian Johnson's arm strength, but they have not tried too much either. Against this Rams team Utah will need to put up points early and often to try to bury the Rams.

While Colorado State has a good running game in Gattrell Johnson III and Kyle Bell, ultimately their inexperience with Billy Farris does not have the skill set to lead the Rams back if they get behind early. Wide out Reshaun Greer and tight end Kory Sperry are who the Utes need to key on in the passing game and the way Sean Smith and others have been playing Utah should be able have success in slowing down the passing attack.

Defensive lineman Paul Kruger should be able to bring his usual pressure and increase on his 5.5 sacks on the year, because Utah should bring pressure and blitz five to six players a lot and force the young quarterback in mistakes.

Utah should not take the Rams lightly, because last week they played a close 13-7 loss to TCU who as we know played amazing Thursday night in their win over BYU. The Rams will be successful if the running game takes of and then Farris can limit turnovers and make a play here and there.

Here is Colorado State's play by play announcer Kevin McGlue talking about Saturdays game.

Final Score: Utah 37 Colorado State 17

(1-5) (3-4)

University Stadium 4PM MT TV: Radio: XTRA Sports 1360 or 770 KKOB

New Mexico really needs this game to get back to .500 and inch closer to a bowl bid. The Lobos have won 6 straight against San Diego State, and this year the Lobos have been up and down so no wins are guaranteed.

San Diego State as their record indicates is not very good this year, and if quarterback Ryan Lindley can not go because of injury the prospects of the Aztecs getting a win are not good.

New Mexico is decent in their run defense and that is all they will need to stop the very stagnant running game by the Aztecs. San Diego has only 284 yards of rushing on the year, yes the college game includes sacks in the rushing yards but their top two rushers Atiyyah Henderson has 146 on the year and Brandon Sullivan has 142.

Part of that is due to the Aztecs being down and needing to pass a lot, because both average 3.8 and 3.9 yards respectively. New Mexico should have little problems stopping this so called running attack.

New Mexico will just run Rodney Ferguson until he can run no more, because the Aztecs have been giving up big plays or a lot of rushing yards this year. Quarterback Brad Gruner should be able to have a good game, because the Aztecs are giving up nearly 30 points per game, and believe it or not their pass defense is worse then their run defense.

Final Score New Mexico 34 San Diego State 10

(4-2) (3-3)

Sam Boyd Stadium 7PM PT TV: Radio: 740 KVOR or 1100 ESPN Radio

UNLV is still looking for its first conference win of the year, and this weeks game is no push over. The Rebels will need to find a way to try to slow down the Falcons rushing attack that is averaging 292.5 yards per game, but when on the road the Falcons average increases to 347 rushing the ball.

Both teams are fairly even in total yards per game and total points per game, so if you follow the stats this should be a close game. UNLV is more desperate for a win in an attempt to become bowl eligible for the first time in a while.

Everyone knows the main way to beat Air Force is to keep the ball away from their offense that eats up the clock. UNLV's defense will need to step up and play in their lanes and disciplined, and if the Rebels over pursue that is when Air Force beats you.

Omar Clayton will need to make plays at quarterback both running and passing the ball, also coach Mike Sanford must stick with the running game to keep the offense balance. In previous games UNLV has quit on the run way too early which has hurt the Rebels chances at winning.

UNLV has more atheltes then Air Force offensively and must use these players to make plays to be able to beat the Falcons. This game should go down to the wire Saturday night in the desert.

Final Score: Air Force 31 UNLV 28