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UNLV Football 2011: Best Case - Worst Case Scenario

Every team, no matter what sport, has different kinds of fans. The optimistic fan always says their team is going to win the national championship (If the team is actually somewhat good), while the pessimistic fan is going to say the team will struggle to win a bowl game. Somewhere in the middle is the realistic fan, who thinks realistically about his team. He doesn't think so poorly of them that he believes they won't make a bowl game, but he isn't so optimistic that he thinks his team will win the national championship every year.

The UNLV football team obviously doesn't have quite the optimistic fan that most teams do or quite the pessimistic fan that others do. For UNLV, it's more like this:

The optimistic fan predicted UNLV would go 9-4 last season in the comments of a post on the Las Vegas Sun. That was just insane.

The pessimistic fan said that UNLV would go winless and lose every game by double digits. That obviously wasn't the case either (Although it was much closer than the optimistic fan).

I like to consider myself as that realistic fan, but most of the time each fan is blind as to what kind of fan he is (That's your cue to tell me what I am in the comments). Here is my stab at what the optimistic fan would say and what the pessimistic fan would say.

Game 1: UNLV @ Wisconsin

Optimistic Fan: There are some crazies out there who would predict a win on the road, but I'll say the best case scenario in this game is losing by somewhere between 7-14 points. Staying close with a Wisconsin who won the 3rd quarter of last years game by a margin of 24-0 would mean that there is some obvious improvement from last season.

Pessimistic Fan: The Pessimistic Fan says that Wisconsin will win by something like 41-7.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): I don't expect the offense to do very well and I don't expect the defense to do very well, so I guess don't really expect the Rebels to play very well. Expect a loss of about 17-24 points.


Game 2: UNLV @ Washington State

Optimistic Fan: An easy win. The optimstic fan says that the Rebels are better than Paul Wulff's Cougars who have been atrocious.

Pessimistic Fan: A Rebel loss. The pessimistic fan says that UNLV is so horrible that they'll get beat by double digits by a terrible Washington State squad.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): I think it will be a close game. It's hard to tell who would win in a close game since neither team is very good.


Game 3: Hawaii @ UNLV

Optimistic Fan: The optimstic fan says that UNLV gets a close win at home over a good Hawaii team with a Heisman candidate quarterback.

Pessimistic Fan: The pessimistic fan says that Bryant Moniz will throw for 450 yards and 6 TD's and rush for two more on the ground as Hawaii cruises to an easy win by 30+ points against the Rebels.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): UNLV only loses by 7-10 points and shows some sort of competency in the pass defense.


Game 4: Southern Utah @ UNLV

Optimistic Fan: Easy win. A field day for the Rebels in which the offense and defense both shine.

Pessimistic Fan: Close loss. UNLV loses a shocking game to an FCS team and bring their status of bottom dweller to new lows.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): I say the Rebels get an easy win but don't exactly shine. A 31-13 win sounds about right.


Game 5: UNLV @ Nevada

Optimstic Fan: Close victory. The Optimstic fan says that with Colin Kaepernick now gone, the Wolfpack offense will struggle to score and UNLV will score just enough points to get the Fremont Cannon back.

Pessimistic Fan: Why would this year's game be any different from the past six games?

Realistic Fan (My opinion): Nevada did lose Colin Kaepernick, but unfortunately Nevada still has much more talent than UNLV. I could see the Rebels putting up a fight, but I just don't see them getting a win in Reno.


Game 6: UNLV @ Wyoming

Optimistic Fan: UNLV brings home a comfortable victory from Laramie in which the Rebels win by double digits.

Pessimistic Fan: Wyoming exacts revenge on UNLV for their tough loss down in Vegas last season.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): Neither team has particularly good talent, and both teams will be starting new quarterbacks this season. This game could go either way depending on which quarterback has matured more by game time.


Game 7: Colorado State @. UNLV

Optimistic Fan: UNLV beats out CSU by a touchdown.

Pessimistic Fan: A much improved Colorado State team stays on track by easily beating UNLV.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): Colorado State will be a much better team than last season, UNLV... not so much. I don't think it will be a complete destruction, but the Rams should beat the Rebels pretty comfortably.


Game 8: Boise State @ UNLV

Optimistic Fan: UNLV keeps the game semi-close, losing by two possesions.

Pessimistic Fan: The Broncos blank the Rebels, 56-0.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): When you have a legitimate heisman candidate throwing against a traditionally bad defense, bad things will happen. I think Kellen Moore will have a field day before being pulled before the start of the third quarter and UNLV scores 17 points in garbage time.


Game 9: UNLV @ New Mexico

Optimistic Fan: The Lobos are quite simply horrible. UNLV should beat these guys easy.

Pessimistic Fan: UNLV suffers an embarrassing loss in Albuquerque and drops to the basement of the Mountain West.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): UNLV should beat New Mexico. New Mexico finally has some of the talent that Locksley has been recruiting maturing, but the problem is that he isn't a very good coach. You have to be a good coach to win football games.


Game 10: UNLV @ Air Force

Optimistic Fan: UNLV is able to keep it close because Air Force's offense takes so much time off the clock.

Pessimistic Fan: Air Force holds the Rebels to less than seven points while scoring 35 points.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): The UNLV defense is able to hold Air Force's offense to 28 points or less and the Rebels offense takes a couple of big plays and turns them into some points to make it about a 10 point loss.


Game 11: San Diego State @ UNLV

Optimistic Fan: The Optimistic fan says that UNLV should lose to San Diego State, but not too bad.

Pessimistic Fan: Terrible Loss. The pessimistic fan says that the San Diego State offense slices through the Rebel defense and wins by 30+ points.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): The Rebels don't stay close but don't lose by an insane amount. I would put the line at 20.5.


Game 12: UNLV @ TCU


Optimstic Fan: The Rebels stay within 14 points.

Pessimistic Fan: UNLV gets blanked by TCU like they did two seasons ago.

Realistic Fan (My opinion): TCU easily shuts UNLV's offense down and wins 31-3.


So there you have it, UNLV's best case - worst case scenarios. The Optimistic Fan had UNLV starting off 7-2 before dropping their last three games, the Pessimistic Fan had UNLV 0-12 (Although the true worst case scenario would be a 1-11 record since I doubt UNLV will lose to Southern Utah), and the Realistic Fan (Me) had the Rebels as a 4-8 team, which is much better than last season's 2-11 record.


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