Colorado State has won three straight games. They’ve improved the most on the defensive side of the ball. The offense has continued to be explosive after being up and down to start the season. The Rams will face their toughest test of the season against a very good Air Force team. The triple option has been a challenge for many teams including the Rams the past few seasons but with two weeks to prepare that should help them. If the Rams want to take back the Ram-Falcon trophy for the first time in four seasons these are my keys to the game.
Date: Saturday November 7th at 5PM MDT
TV/Radio: ESPN2 102.7 FM Northern Colorado
Line: Colorado State –10, Over/Under 61
1. Defense needs to prevent manageable third downs.
The triple option will wear defenses down if you continue to give them manageable third downs. Third downs will be keys to this game. The Ram defense needs to force Air Force to throw the ball in long yardage situations. The challenge to that is staying disciplined on first and second downs. This Falcons team is okay with long drives that wear down the defense. So, getting off the field and staying fresh will be the biggest factor for this defense.
2. Rams offense needs to start fast and get a lead.
Colorado State possesses one of the most explosive offenses in the country. That needs to be on display this evening. Warren Jackson will likely be double teamed so it’s up to receivers such as EJ Scott, Nate Craig-Myers and others to pick up the slack. Jackson will still get his but when he’s covered its up to the other to help. A big game is needed from the running game as well. Marcus McElroy, Jaylen Thomas and fly sweeps with Dante Wright will be key to sustaining drives. A player to look out for tonight is Toby McBride, the tight end could be for a big game.
3. Discipline, Discipline, and Discipline.
Both sides of the ball need to stay disciplined in this game. Offensively, finish drives with touchdowns and no stupid penalties that halts drives. Patrick O’Brien needs to be mistake free and continue to run out the pocket to extend plays. Defensively gap discipline needs to yelled in their ears until they bleed. No stupid penalties that extends drives for Air Force. Watch the cut blocks and remain alert for the pass over the top. If the defense can generate at least one turnover and get three sacks Colorado State will have a huge chance at winning.
Prediction: This game has always been a challenge for Bobo but the important thing here is the extra week of preparation. Last year they played on a short week and the issues showed. This time I think the Rams make a stand and win the trophy. Colorado State 41 – Air Force 34