The University of New Mexico Football team looks to break a five-game losing streak when the No. 23 Boise State Broncos come to town on Friday night.
The game will kick off on CBS Sports Network at 7 p.m., the second straight week the Lobos will feature on the network. Boise comes into the game fresh off the heels of a win over the Fresno State Bulldogs, who were ranked No. 16 in the country coming into the game. The Bulldogs paid a visit to Albuquerque one month ago and went home with a fairly easy 38-7 win over the Lobos.
Boise is lead by quarterback Brett Rypien, who UNM head coach Bob Davie believes is an NFL-caliber player “without a doubt.”
Rypien is a dangerous player through the air, throwing for at least 300 yards in six of the Broncos nine games this season. He is a Top-10 candidate for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given annually to the best fourth-year quarterback in the nation. He was a consensus four-star recruit coming out of Washington state after high school, and has certainly lived up to that billing during his time in Boise.
Davie said on Tuesday that some of the things he’s seen from his teams during the past few weeks have been positive, such as recovering nine fumbles in the last three games, the same as the number of fumbles the team recovered in the 32 games prior to that. However, he also said that he understands that things like that are hollow when the team is losing games.
So far, the season has mirrored last year in many ways, as last year’s team finished the season losing its last seven games, and this year’s team is currently in danger of repeating that feat, needing a win this weekend or against Wyoming next week to avoid the repeat.
“We have to find a way to become consistent,” Davie said. “We have to find a way to really muscle up and man up on defense.”
The Lobos will play with two quarterbacks again this week, as they did against Air Force last Saturday. Davie wasn’t sure who would get the start, but said that both Coltin Gerhart and Sheriron Jones bring things to the offense that they like. He also said that Gerhart is feeling better than he was last week, when he suffered a setback following the game against San Diego State.
The Lobos will have to find a way to score some points on a Boise defense that hasn’t allowed an opponent to score more than 17 points in two weeks, and has only given up more than 30 points once this season.
The Lobos are 20 point underdogs going into the game, according to Bovada.
Cameron Goeldner is a senior reporter and photographer for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers men’s soccer, women’s basketball, softball and the Albuquerque Isotopes, but also contributes content for all other sports. He can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @Goeldfinger.