What: Wyoming Cowboys @ San Jose State Spartans
When: Saturday, October 30, 2 p.m. MT
Where: CEFCU Stadium, San Jose, Ca.
Network: Fox Sports 2
Head-to-head: In the various matchups between the San Jose Spartans and the Wyoming Cowboys, the Cowboys lead the all-time series with a record of 7-4.
Line: Wyoming +3, O/U 41 ½ (via William Hill SB)
With their offense being stifled recently and the team desperate for a win, Craig Bohl and the Wyoming Cowboys will travel down to San Jose to face off with Brent Brennan’s Spartans in a game that is surely a must-win for the Pokes of Laramie. In their most recent matchup, the SJSU Spartans bested the UNLV Rebels 27-20 to take home their second conference victory of the season. Meanwhile, the Wyoming Cowboys were held to 3 total points and suffered their third consecutive loss in a game at home against the New Mexico Lobos. As the Spartans look to build off of their most recent victory, Wyoming will attempt to break out of their offensive restraints in order to scrape out their first conference victory of the 2021 season.
Three keys to a Cowboy victory:
1. The defense will run the game
The one constant in the past few games for Wyoming has been their consistent defensive effort. Though they haven’t forced as many turnovers since beginning their journey into the Mountain West, the defense has still been able to put together performances that have limited opposing offenses to their usually productive numbers. The linebacker tandem of Easton Gibbs and Chad Muma have had a hand in just about every play, proving they are one of the best and most effective duos in the conference. If those two are able to keep putting together double-digit tackle performances, there will be nowhere for the Spartans to run.
2. Flags will run amok for the Spartans
It’s worth noting that the San Jose Spartans have fallen accustomed to drawing a hefty amount of penalties. The team ranks 115th in the nation on drawing penalties, meaning they oftentimes shoot themselves in the foot on drives. If there’s one thing Wyoming needs, it’s to catch a few breaks. So, if the Spartans penalty plague continues to affect their flow, both on offense and on defense, it will put the Cowboys in a good position to compete and bring a victory back to Laramie.
3. QB play will revitalize the offense
The starting quarterback play has been the most detrimental element working against the Pokes so far this season. Bouncing between Sean Chambers and Levi Williams, it looks as though Williams will be given the opportunity to start his first game of the season, on Saturday. So what does that mean? Well, that much is unclear. However, it gives the offense hope, since change is what was clearly needed. If Williams can put together a solid performance by limiting his mistakes and the Poke running game can get back to its usual self, the Cowboys could very well be leaving the East Bay with a win.
This is optimistic. It’s banking on Levi Williams, which so far hasn’t been all that reliable of a play, given his limited opportunities. However, there are a few things I can see unfolding for the Cowboys on Saturday. I think the offense will be able to make strides toward finding an identity. Though I don’t think Williams’s play will be superb, I think his ability to manage the game and lead the offense will spark a tiny resurgence. The defense has played well, and I can see the Cowboys winning the turnover margin. Penalties will upend the Spartans, so I’ll take the Cowboys in the upset.
San Jose State 17