Your Washington State Cougars venture south (and slightly east) for a date Saturday evening with the Boise State Broncos. The Cougars are unbeaten against BSU, which is nice. However, at least part of that is due to the fact that the teams haven't faced eachother since 2001. In the 15 years since, Boise has built itself a nice little program. WSU has, well, let's just say there have been some good times and bad times. More latter than former.
In case you hadn't noticed, Boise has a pretty decent record at the big grocery store. That sterling record took a bit of a hit last season, though, as they lost two straight conference games to New Mexico and Air Force. Since 1999, Boise State is 104-6 at home, with their lone non-conference loss coming at the hands of our Cougs in 2001. That wasn't just a loss, by the way. It was, as Roy D. Mercer would say, an ass whuppin.
The Cougs come in tonight with a bit of urgency. Last weekend's loss, while surprising, wasn't exactly stunning. Now, Leach and his players could really use a win. Starting 0-2 isn't unrecoverable, but for a team that always seems to toe the line between success and disaster, losing the first two games would make it exceedingly hard to reach the heights that many Cougar fans thought were attainable before last weekend's embarrassment.
We're all painfully familiar with Mike Leach's putrid record in openers, but WSU is actually 3-1 in its second game since Leach took over. That includes a stunner at USC and a last-minute comeback at Rutgers. So while the Cougars can't seem to get out of their own way on Labor Day weekend, they seem to figure at least part of their problems out by the next week. Here's hoping that happens again in southern Idaho.
As an aside, if you're hanging out in Boise for a bit, head to Old Chicago. Yeah, it's a chain, but it's a great one. There are hundreds of beers on tap, and a sensational appetizer known as Italian Nachos. Trust me when I say that you will not be able to stop eating those things once you start. Go Cougs.
The Cougars will need to see improved play from all corners of the defense, however, not just the cornerbacks. Inside linebackers coach Ken Wilson was disappointed with his unit’s play in pass coverage last week, and the linebackers are going to have to stay particularly sharp to stay on top of all of the Broncos’ moving parts.
Brett Rypien faces off against Washington State, where his uncle Mark was a star in the 1980s before launching a successful NFL career.
Here’s what to watch when each team has the ball as Boise State football opens its 2016 home slate against Washington State.
The key players for Boise State’s nonconference football game against Washington State at Albertsons Stadium in Boise.
Boise State looked phenomenal in Week One going on the road to blow out Louisiana-Lafayette. Washington State didn’t look so brilliant losing to Eastern Washington. Check out the Boise State vs. Washington State fearless prediction and game preview.
Losing to FCS foe Eastern Washington wasn’t entirely embarrassing, but the Cougars could be looking at an 0-2 start given how rarely Boise loses at home.
Welcome to Week 2!
The Pac-12 Networks signed a deal with Sling TV to show all six regional feeds on the over-the-top service, giving fans with DirecTV an option.
Best beer I had this week: Needless to say, there was a not-insignificant amount of beer consumed in my house on Sunday and Monday. But don't worry, I balanced things out with Bloody Marys. Anyway, I tried a high gravity stout from Evil Twin Brewing known as Even More Jesus. The beer was so good that I would like to tell the fine folks at Evil Twin one thing: Don't f**k with the Jesus. Perusing their website makes me certain that I need more Evil Twin in my life.
Florida Man! But seriously, that new can is incredible and the beer is really good, too. If you'd dropped by our spring game tailgate, you could have tried some.
The task of recounting what happened to the jetliner on Sept. 11, 2001, falls to Robert Franz at what is now a national park in Pennsylvania. The emotions are never far away.