Moore goes for record 46th win at UNLV

It's easy to say that Boise State's midseason bye came at a good time -- after a physical game against Air Force. Then again, coach Chris Petersen would sell it that way even if he didn't like the bye. "Whatever is thrown at us, we're going to put a positive spin on it," he said. "The bad news is the kids were playing pretty good and were into a good rhythm and now we lose a little bit of that."

It's easy to say that Boise State's midseason bye came at a good time -- after a physical game against Air Force, and with several key players beat up.

Then again, coach Chris Petersen would sell it that way even if he didn't like the bye. "Whatever is thrown at us, we're going to put a positive spin on it," he said. "The bad news is the kids were playing pretty good and were into a good rhythm and now we lose a little bit of that."

The Broncos' schedule was front-loaded and the second half only includes two teams expected to play in bowl games -- TCU (Nov. 12) and San Diego State (Nov. 19).

The Broncos return to action Nov. 5 at woeful UNLV.

They are 7-0 and haven't really been challenged yet. They have led throughout every second half and no team has had the ball with a chance to tie. Air Force pulled within a touchdown three times in the second half Oct. 22 and the Broncos responded each time with a score to stretch the lead.

In the Broncos' past two road games, they beat Fresno State and Colorado State by 50 points each.

"Hopefully we don't skip a beat," safety George Iloka said.

NOTES, QUOTES
--Quarterback Kellen Moore picked up his 45th career win against Air Force, tying Colt McCoy for the Football Bowl Subdivision record. Moore can break the mark Nov. 5 at UNLV. He only has two losses.
--Boise State has won 35 straight home games and has the longest home winning streak in the nation.
--The Broncos have played at least one game without the starter at center, right guard, left guard, fullback, nose tackle, field cornerback and strong safety. They also missed key contributors Geraldo Boldewijn (wide receiver) for four games and Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe (defensive tackle) for six games because of impermissible benefits obtained from their host families.

SERIES HISTORY: Tied 3-3 (last meeting, 1977, 45-14, Boise State)

SCOUTING THE OFFENSE: After a choppy start, the Broncos have found the balance they seek on offense. They're 14th in passing (304.9 yards per game) and 38th in rushing (183.1). Tailback Doug Martin has rushed for at least 100 yards in three of the past four games and quarterback Kellen Moore has thrown at least two touchdown passes in 20 straight games. Moore ranks fourth in the nation in pass efficiency at 180.72 and Martin is 22nd in rushing at 106.7 yards per game.

SCOUTING THE DEFENSE: The Broncos actually played fairly well against Air Force. They held the Falcons about 100 yards below their average, but their inability to get off the field on third down -- a strength coming into the game -- got them in trouble. Coaches likely won't put much stock in that game because they won't face that type of offense again anytime soon. The defense still ranks 16th in the nation at 300.6 yards per game and 10th at 16.1 points per game.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "We get a great reception. ... They treat us very well and they have tremendous respect for this program, but we're kind of living in the fast lane a little bit, so it's not like it's easier." -- Boise State coach Chris Petersen, on the reaction his staff gets while recruiting


STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
THIS WEEK'S GAME: Boise State at UNLV, Nov. 5
-- These teams haven't met since the 1970s but they share a legendary coach, Tony Knap, who died earlier this season. Knap was the first coach for the Broncos as a four-year program and he left to take over the Rebels, where he was one of that program's best.

KEYS TO THE GAME: The Broncos should roll in this one. Not only do they have the Rebels overmatched in every facet of the game, but they'll have a large crowd - 5,000 or more -- following them to Las Vegas. That should give the Broncos a spark even if the opponent doesn't.

PLAYERS TO WATCH:
RB Doug Martin --
The offensive line has found its groove and Martin is benefiting. He's averaging 5.3 yards per carry and 106.7 yards per game after a slow start. At this rate, he could top 1,500 rushing yards this year.
WR Tyler Shoemaker -- He had his ninth touchdown catch against Air Force and is on pace to break Austin Pettis' school record of 14 touchdown catches in a season. Shoemaker leads the team with 499 receiving yards and a 17.8-yard average per catch.
P Brad Elkin -- Elkin might be a surprise All-Mountain West pick. He uses the rugby style that isn't always pretty but he consistently pins opponents. He's averaging 42.6 yards and has killed 16 of his 26 punts inside the 20-yard line.

ROSTER REPORT
--True freshman tailback Jay Ajayi, who was expected to redshirt, tore an anterior cruciate ligament in practice, Petersen said.
--Senior starting defensive tackle Chase Baker missed his second straight game (vs. Air Force) with a calf strain but is expected to play against UNLV.
--Senior center Thomas Byrd (knees) didn't start against Air Force but played for the second straight game. His workload will increase as his troublesome knees improve.




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