Friday's football game between San Jose State and Boise State will be a dazzling display of defensive talent. It's difficult to find a defensive category in the WAC in which these two teams don't rank 1-2. So which is better?
confident San Jose State player got all dressed up in his football uniform, stood in front of the mirror and asked, "Mirror, mirror on the wall….who's the
best defense of them all?" To which the
mirror replied "Why Great Spartan, you should know. You just returned from Las
Cruces with the San Jose defense
completely shutting down the Aggie passing game and coming away with a 31-14
road win. Your defense ranks 11th
in the nation in rushing defense allowing only 86. 7 yards per game. Your pass defense ranks #1 in the Western
Athletic Conference and 35th in the country, just ahead of #36 Boise State," the
mirror told the pleased Spartan. "Only
three teams in the nation can boast more interceptions than your 13, while only
two have allowed fewer passing touchdowns than your three. Duke Ihenacho is tied for the national lead
with five interceptions," the shining mirror proclaimed.
know," the mirror continued, your great cornerback Christopher Owens (13) needs
one more interception to tie the school record.
The Spartans rank seventh in pass efficiency defense. Overall, your defense ranks 13th
by allowing just 272.57 yards per game. It
marks the first time that the Spartans have allowed less than 300 yards per
game since 1990. That's
sensational. You and your group rank 21st
in scoring defense by allowing only 16.6 points per game."
the great measures of a defense," the mirror said, " is how many sacks you've
totaled for the year. Great Spartan,
your defense is third in the country with 25 sacks. Individually, Carl Ihenacho is 10th
with seven himself. Justin Cole has
five. Tenacious. You're ninth in the nation with 56 tackles
for loss. Carl leads the nation with 14,
while Jarron Gilbert already has 10.5.
It is believed that Carl and Duke Ihenacho are the first brotherly duo
to ever both lead the nation in a major defensive statistical category. Aggressive.
Focused. The San Jose State defense
is 18th in third down percentage defense by allowing just over 30%
conversions. And you're third in the
country in total turnovers gained with 20.
Carl Ihenacho is fifth individually with three forced fumbles."
Spartan one, because of these many things, you are indeed the best defense of
of miles away, a determined Bronco defensive player stood tall in his freshly-pressed uniform, walked in front of his
mirror and asked, "Mirror, mirror on the wall….who's the best defense of them
all?" The mirror answered, "Why of
course, Mr. Bronco, it's Boise State. Your last effort against high-flying Hawai'i was superb. You held them to seven points. Seven. The last time the explosive Rainbow Warriors scored less than 7 was way back in 2004 when your predecessors at Boise State held them to 3. You're 10th in the nation in
interceptions with 11. The Broncos are
eighth in the nation in pass efficiency defense. Sixth in the nation in red zone defense," the
mirror told the proud Bronco.
"Individually, Kyle Wilson is ninth in the nation with nine passes defended. Brandyn Thompson is fourth with four
interceptions. Boise State is 21st
in the country in fourth down conversion percentage-defense. Best of all, the Broncos are second in the
country where it counts—scoring defense.
Boise State is only
allowing 10.5 points per game. Only USC has allowed fewer points per game. You have
held opponents to seven or fewer points in five out of six games. That's the first time that has happened in
the esteemed history of your school since 1970.
the mirror continued. "Your defense is
surely the best of them all."
can glean from the tale of the two mirrors is that if you stand in front of a
mirror and ask a question, it's pretty much going to tell you what you want to
hear. The real answer can only come in a
two-parter Which team plays more like
the way they've played all season on Friday night, when the two teams meet? and
Which team will continue to play that way for the remainder of the season?