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Fresno State vs. Abilene Christian final score. Bulldogs cruise to an easy win

The Fresno State Bulldogs easily handle the Wildcats of Abilene Christian, 34-13.

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Simply put, Fresno State did what it was supposed to do on Thursday night at Bulldog Stadium, beating the Abilene Christian Wildcats 34-13. Sure, Abilene Christian is an FCS school, a lower division than the FBS, where Fresno State resides, but Fresno State did what they needed to do to lay down a convincing win in all three phases of the game, offense, defense and special teams. Where there moments of imperfection? Sure. Where there moments where it is clear Fresno State has room to improve? Of course. What mattered though was the Bulldogs look like a team that has a lot of talent and it's going to be fun and exciting to watch them cultivate that talent over the this season in the coming months.

Over half of Fresno State's roster is made up of sophomores or freshman. Tonight the coaches got a good look at a lot of different young players, but the veterans were some of the ones that really shined. Here's a look at some of the players that stood out tonight.

Marteze Waller - Quietly, it seemed, Waller rushed for 154 yards on 22 carries. He didn't get into the end zone, but he did pick up three key third downs, a 3rd and one, a 3rd and four and also a 3rd and seven. It was great to see the coaching staff surprise by giving Waller the ball on third down even when it was short, but it also seemed surprise Abilene Christian. Waller was patient to the find the hole, but quick to burst through. He's a tough runner to bring down and looks like he's ready to finish his senior year strong.

Zack Greenlee - Greenlee showed great pocket awareness and was fantastic at alluding the rush. He somehow escaped what looked like a certain sack on the first drive of the game. He somehow spun away from two defenders, made his way to the sideline and threw the ball over 20 yards down the field to Jamire Jordan who was waiting near the goal line. Jordan made the catch and a nice move to lunge into the end zone. Greenlee's second pass was also a beauty where he threw a perfect pass to a streaking Josiah Blandin over 30 yards down the field.

Chason Virgil - There had been a lot of hype about Virgil coming out of high school and he did not disappoint. He didn't look like a true freshman and was poised in the pocket. This kid is simply smooth. His delivery is smooth and quick. For a true freshman to drive the team down the field and throw a touchdown pass on his first drive, he looked impressive.

Josiah Blandin - There were a lot of intrigue and questions about the wide receivers coming into this season. Only one of the four starters (Justin Johnson) had ever even played a game for the Bulldogs. It didn't matter though, because they looked confident and ready to make plays. One of those was Blandin, who caught a great pass from Greenlee for a touchdown as well as bringing some size, strength and swagger to the position.

Jamire Jordan - Jordan made a great play on the first drive as Greenlee extended the play, he used to speed to make his way to the far side of the field and then made a great move after the catch to lunge into the end zone. Jordan has a quickness to him that should give opposing defenses fits.

Chad Olsen - Last year Olsen set the Fresno State record for most touchdowns by a freshman TE. This year he's picked up right where he left off, finishing with two catches for 35 yards and two touchdowns. For his career Olsen six touchdowns on 15 catches. He has a nose for end zone and caught a touchdown pass from both Virgil and Greenlee.

Ejiro Ederaine - He's healthy and it showed. Last season Ederaine played with two separated shoulders. After having offseason surgery to repair them Ederaine was making plays he simply couldn't have made last year. Particularly a leaping interception where he some how leaped to snatch the ball out of the air at close range to the quarterback with both hands. He also got a sack, 1.5 TFL and finished second on the team with 5.5 tackles.

Tobenna Okeke - On the other side of the field opposite from Ederaine, Okeke reeked havoc against the Abilene Christian offense, finishing with four tackles, two TFL and a sack. The sophomore has bulked up since last season, so he looks, bigger and stronger, but he hasn't seemed to have lost any of his speed. Okeke and Ederaine make quite a pair. It should also be noted that backup OLBs Justin Green and Brandon Hughes also each had a sack. The Bulldogs are hopefully returning to their menacing ways on defense.

The Defense - 8 TFL; 5 Sacks; 2 INTs; The Bulldogs look to be back as a menacing defense, but more than the turnovers and sacks, as a unit the defense played well together. Most everyone kept to their assignments and there were very few missed tackles if any. Abilene Christian was 5/17 on 3rd down, which was a major crux for the Bulldogs last year. The other crux for the Bulldog defense last year was giving up the big play, but last night Abilene Christian's longest play from scrimmage was a mere 22-yards and that was its only play over 20-yards. One other stat to add, the Bulldog defense gave up 34 yards on the ground, yes 34 yards on 29 attempts.

Garrett Swanson - It's worth mentioning the senior punter and kickoff specialist because he's become a huge asset to the Bulldog special teams. Swanson's net punting average on the night was just under 40-yards on three punts, but it was his work kicking off where he really showed why he's so important to the team. Of his seven kickoffs, four were touchbacks, which is a major step in the right direction for the Bulldogs special teams.

Now that the Bulldogs have finished their open season tuneup, the real test awaits in Oxford, MS. It's not going to be easy, but it looks like the Bulldogs are certainly a team with talent that will have the ability to compete at a high level in the Mountain West Conference.