With one game left in the season, Nevada is on pace to finish its best season in history since it’s joined the ranks of the division 1 elite. At 11-1 this Nevada team has shown that it is capable of matching up against any team out there on any given Saturday. Will we ever get that respect? Probably not, but the real fans, the coaches, and the players know it…and that’s all that matters.
Nevada has already traveled as far west as it can go this season (Hawaii), and now it will go as far east as a WAC opponent will let them (Louisiana). Much like Boise State has had Nevada’s number over the past few years; Nevada has had La Tech’s.
The only real question going into this game is how much will Colin Kaepernick play. On the verge of a few more records the question is, does Ault put him in a position to get the records and set his place in history more-so than he already has, or does he save his star quarterback for a bowl game? Either way expect him to play the first half and put up, dare I say Heisman like numbers?
Another question going into this game is what defense will show up. Will it be the defense that allowed Boise State 24 first half points, which by all means is respectable, or will it be the 2nd half defense that held Boise State to 8 rushing yards? Either way the game should be pretty much in hand, but for ranking sake we need the 2nd half defense to be there.
Last game we saw great defense from Duke Williams who made a great 1-on-1 tackle in the open field saving a critical first down. Brandon Marshall and James-Michael Johnson also kept their games up and have become one of the best linebacking duo’s in college football this year. But what’s more impressive is #58 Ryan Coulson and the already brilliant Dontay Moch. Both of them are defensive linemen and on every play that we give up for 20 or more yards, one of these two is down field in position to make the tackle. Coming from two “hog-mollies” that’s down right impressive. This defense is fast and outrunning them is a tough task to do, breaking tackles on the other hand might be a bit easier, evident in the Boise State game.
As far as our offense goes we showed last week why we are one of the best offenses in the nation. The pistol went in fully loaded and tore apart one of the best defenses in the country. After a slow start, it seemed like there was nothing that could be done to stop Colin Kaepernick. Unlike previous Boise State games, he took it to the air and lit up their secondary much like we have been lit up in the past. I don’t expect much of a stand from the bulldogs this weekend, if Nevada can tire out Boise State’s defense, it can put La Tech’s to sleep.
Now you might hear that this team is looking past La Tech and they feel like they can do nothing wrong but there’s really nothing to look past. Going into this game a bowl game is guaranteed, which and against whom we will know after this weekend. What’s not is a ring and that trophy. Utah State doesn’t stand a chance entering the smurf turf of Boise. Hawaii hosts UNLV which isn’t a conference opponent so they will finish the season with a ring guaranteed. If Nevada wants that ring, it will take a win against La Tech and they know that. Last week was Nevada’s shining moment, but this week is their championship moment. A win against Boise State means nothing to this team unless there’s a ring associated with it at the end.
I’m expecting a valiant effort from La Tech, but with the swag this Nevada team is walking around with, I expect it too be too little too late. Unfortunately I still don’t see us getting that shut-out. But I do think we will see Mike Ball finally run back a kick-off, unfortunately I see them doing the same thing.
Final Score Prediction
Nevada 48 – La Tech 17