The UNLV Rebels caught the Boise State Broncos sleepwalking in the first half on Saturday night's game in Las Vegas, as the Rebels were only down by 7 points at halftime. As was expected, the Broncos did eventually pull away from UNLV in the second half and made the final score look a lot more like a traditional Boise State blowout.
Kellen Moore had a decent performance, going 18/31 for 219 yards and 5 touchdown passes. D.J. Harper also stepped in quite well for Doug Martin, who is injured for the Broncos, rushing for 109 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries.
UNLV's running game was stellar once again, as the team as a whole rushed for a 5.2 YPC average. Bradley Randle led all rushers on 10 carries for 96 yards. What is concerning for UNLV fans is not the running game, but how the Rebels' quarterback position will hold up after Caleb Herring suffered an undisclosed injury towards the end of the third quarter.
Herring has been as much as a rushing threat as he has been throwing the ball in the past few games, averaging 5 YPC out of the read option offense. Herring also was playing quite the efficient game before his injury, as he was 12/17 for 114 yards and a touchdown. If Herring's injury was serious, it could be a big blow to UNLV's chances at beating New Mexico on the road this upcoming week.
The bottom line is that both the UNLV offense and defense did much better than was expected against the 5th ranked team in the nation. Boise State only had 416 total yards, which is less than what Boise State has gained in other blowout for the Broncos. The UNLV offense hung toe-for-toe in the first half with Boise State's high powered offense and ended up with 319 yards and 3 touchdowns. The big thing for the UNLV offense is that they didn't commit any turnovers, which will give you a chance against any team not named Boise State.
If UNLV can continue to manage the game, not commit turnovers, and score more than 20 points per game, then I think this team could finish the season on an upswing.