Although the two schools are in different states and have never played in the same conference, the BYU Cougars (2-4) have become one of the No. 14 Boise State Broncos’ (6-0) main rivals in recent years. Since their first meeting in 2003, the Broncos own a 6-2 record against the Cougars heading into their ninth overall contest.
This Saturday, Oct. 19, the Broncos are heading to Provo, Utah to face off with the Cougars once again.
Coming off of a 59-37 win against Mountain West Conference opponent Hawaii, the Broncos are looking to extend their undefeated record to seven games this season.
On the other hand, BYU heads into Saturday’s game after a tough 27-23 loss to South Florida — their third straight defeat.
Despite losing true freshman quarterback Hank Bachmeier to an alleged hip injury early in the second quarter last weekend, the Broncos were still able to hang 59 points on the Rainbow Warriors’ defense with redshirt sophomore Chase Cord at the helm.
Widely considered to be a running quarterback, Cord carved up Hawaii through the air, throwing for 175 yards and three touchdowns, all with zero interceptions.
“[Chase] has good command when he’s in there,” said Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin. “I think that’s one thing he shows when you watch him play the position.”
Through the first six games of the season, the Broncos’ offense has averaged 35.4 points per game, while the Cougars defense has given up 30.5 points per game.
Much like they have in their two most recent games games, the Broncos intend to light up the scoreboard with their potent offensive attack. With no word on Bachmeier’s status heading into Saturday’s contest, Harsin will potentially lean on Cord to lead the offense once again against the struggling Cougars’ defense.
In addition, Boise State will likely continue pounding the football on the ground with their two-headed monster in tailbacks, Robert Mahone and freshman George Holani. Wide receiver John Hightower will also be drawing attention from the Cougar secondary.
“We knew that when [Holani] got here, he was going to light up the field,” Hightower said. “Seeing him do that is really exciting.”
On the offensive end, BYU also has question marks circling around the quarterback position. In fact, it would come as no surprise if third-string quarterback Baylor Romney is under center for the Cougars.
BYU head coach Kalani Sitake feels very confident in whoever ends up starting at quarterback come Saturday night, despite last week’s loss.
“We talked about depth the entire offseason,” Sitake said following their loss to South Florida. “Now we’re going to be able to test a lot more of it than we even anticipated.”
In spite of their recent struggles and injuries surrounding the quarterback position and defensive side of the ball, BYU will be looking to spoil Boise State’s chances of earning a spot in a New Year’s Six bowl game.
On the contrary, Boise State will be focusing on continuing to move up in the rankings, after remaining at No. 14 for the second week in a row.
Kickoff is set for 8:15 p.m. MST at LaVell Edwards Stadium. The game will be televised and can be viewed on ESPN2.