The Wyoming Cowboys (1-9, 1-5) will take on the San Diego State Aztecs (6-3, 5-0) in a Mountain West Conference matchup Saturday night. The teams have split the last ten meetings dating back to 2003; San Diego State took a 42-28 win as a 7 point favorite on the road on November 24, 2012 in the most recent matchup.
Wyoming has lost three straight games after getting dumped 26-7 at home by Colorado State last week. San Diego State had a bye last week; they’ve won five in a row, including a 41-17 rout of that same Colorado State team on the road on Halloween. Kickoff from Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California is scheduled for 10:30 pm ET and will be televised on the CBS Sports Network. San Diego State is currently favored by 24 points with the over/under set at 51 points in this contest.
Wyoming struggled again to do much of anything offensively as they were kept off the scoreboard until just 2:25 remained in the contest. The Cowboys were in a 17-0 hole after the first quarter and that was more than enough to seal the game up for Colorado State. Wyoming was outgained 348-239, lost the first down battle 22-14 and allowed the Rams to hold the ball for 37:20 to Wyoming’s 22:40 in the contest. The Cowboys were victimized by four turnovers while forcing just one takeaway in the game; two of Colorado State’s scoring drives started in Wyoming territory.
The Cowboys are 105th in the nation in passing offense (187 yards) and tied for 61st in rushing offense (172.9 yards) per game on the year. Wyoming is only averaging 20.4 points per game while they are 101st in scoring defense as they allow 34.2 points per contest. Cameron Coffman has completed 129 of 196 passes for 1,574 yards with 15 touchdowns and seven interceptions on the season. He was knocked out against Boise State and missed the last two games; he’s unlikely to play here. That means it will likely be Nick Smith (27 of 60, 245 yards, 2 TD, INT, second on the team with 156 rushing yards, 2 TD) or Josh Allen (four of six, 51 yards) under center in this contest. The run game is pretty much Brian Hill as he’s run the ball 226 times for 1,327 yards and five scores. The rest of the team has combined for 174 carries for a total of 402 yards and five touchdowns; Shaun Wick is next in line for running backs with 43 carries for 97 yards and a touchdown. Tanner Gentry (37 receptions, 678 yards, 4 TD) and Jake Maulhardt (team high 49 catches, 497 yards, 7 TD) are a solid 1-2 combination in the passing game; Jacob Hollister is next in line with 21 receptions for 236 yards and two scores while Hill has 18 catches out of the backfield. Tristan Bailey has struggled in the kicking game as he is 23 of 26 on extra points and only 1 of 7 on field goal attempts this season.
San Diego State has had two weeks to get ready for this game after they decimated the same Colorado State team that dumped Wyoming last week. The Aztecs trailed 10-7 early in the second quarter but took control by reeling off the next 20 points. San Diego State outgained Colorado State 456-368 despite losing the first down battle 22-21. The Aztecs controlled the clock as they held the ball for 32:52 to Colorado State’s 27:08 and forced four Rams turnovers while playing turnover free ball. San Diego State scored on a pick six in the third quarter.
The Aztecs are an average offensive team at best as they are 120th in passing offense (147 yards per game) and 24th in rushing offense (214.1 yards per contest); San Diego State averages 28.9 points a game while they are tied for 22nd in scoring defense by allowing 18.7 points per game. The quarterback play has been dismal for San Diego State; their two quarterbacks have combined to hit just 51.4 percent of their passes, average 7.48 yards per pass attempt for 1,323 yards with 10 touchdowns and three interceptions. Maxwell Smith (84 of 161, 1240 yards, 9 TD, 2 INT) has seen the vast majority of the reps. Donnel Pumphrey leads the Aztecs with 202 carries for 1,031 yards with 12 scores while Chase Price contributes 113 carries for 571 yards and three scores on the year. Pumphrey leads the team with 21 receptions for 296 yards and two touchdowns while Mikah Holder has 17 receptions for a team high 302 yards and three scores plus Eric Judge has 12 grabs for 243 yards and two scores; no other player has more than nine receptions. Donny Hageman has booted all 32 extra points and is 12 of 16 on field goal attempts this season with a long of 54 yards.
San Diego State is 4-0 ATS in their last four after a straight up win, 4-0 ATS in their last four against teams with a losing record, 4-0 ATS in their last four after an ATS win, 5-0 ATS in their last five overall, 4-0 ATS in their last four after allowing less than 20 points and 4-1 ATS in their last five after scoring at least 40 points. Wyoming is 4-10 ATS in their last 14 after an ATS loss, 0-4 ATS in their last four in November and 0-4 ATS in their last four against teams coming off a bye.
Wyoming has struggled all season long and their offense doesn’t do much to inspire confidence in this contest. San Diego State is unbeaten in conference play and hopes to get in the Mountain West Conference title game; a win here will help make that happen. The Cowboys are no match for the Aztecs in this contest; look for San Diego State to win this one convincingly.