It's Homecoming Week at Boise State and Portland State looks to play giant-killer today when the Vikings visit Bronco Stadium for the 7th meeting between the two schools. Kickoff is slated for 6:05 tonight. The only time that Portland State won, Boise State said goodbye to their own coach, Skip Hall, in the offseason and hired the Portland State coach, Pokey Allen.
The two teams have one common opponent, Oregon State. The Vikings lost 41-14 to the Beavers on opening day, and Boise State lost to OSU 30-27 the following week. Portland State does have a nice win over UC-Davis, the team that beat Stanford, and they were also victorious over Sacramento State 28-12 and Northern Colorado 41-17 before losing to Eastern Washington 42-24.
Joe Rubin has been the workhorse for Portland State, picking up 854 yards on the ground for 9 touchdowns. He has nearly as many carries (172) as the entire Boise State team (191). The Vikings are not entirely one-dimensional, as they do have 142 yards per game through the air. However, if the Broncos stuff the run as they are apt to do and the secondary continues to play aggressively, it could present problems for quarterback Sawyer Smith. He's got a passing efficiency rating of just 90.28 with 8 interceptions on the year.
Boise State must once again prove it belongs among the nation's elite after falling from grace. (Hint: they aren't going to do it with 44-41 wins.) Sagarin, which rates the Broncos has them favored by 24 points. If Boise State is happy with the status quo, they'll be glad to get a victory no matter by how much. If they want respect, they need to start firing on all cylinders and play their best no matter who the opponent, where the location and what the weather is.