The undefeated and 17th-ranked Fresno State Bulldogs are hosting Mountain West Conference rivals UNLV Rebels Saturday night in what is guaranteed to be an offensive shootout. Although UNLV will likely put up a good fight, the Bulldogs will retain their undefeated status.
The Rebels and Bulldogs are both known more for their offensive outputs than their defense. UNLV has allowed 36.0 points per game en route to their 4-2 record and Fresno State has allowed 33.4 points per game. Having a 5-0 record and allowing that many points each game certainly shows how powerful is the Bulldogs’ offense. Led by senior quarterback Derek Carr, little brother of NFL quarterback David Carr, Fresno State’s offensive unit packs a powerful punch. At 374.0 passing yards per game, Carr ranks fourth in the nation and UNLV’s average defense will have a difficult time slowing him down.
Nevertheless, UNLV’s offense is nothing to be scoffed at and the Rebels will be able to get the run game going against Fresno State. Tim Cornett leads the UNLV rushing attack with 660 yards on the season, an average of 110 yards per game. With senior quarterback Caleb Herring under center, the Rebels offense will not go down to the Bulldogs without a fight.
All the same, Fresno State has more factors that will contribute to a win Saturday night. First, Fresno State’s offense is more potent as previously discussed. Second, Fresno State has the home field advantage. The Bulldogs have won their previous nine home games and have not lost since the 2011 home finale against San Jose State. Meanwhile, UNLV has struggled on the road in the last two seasons, posting a measly 1-7 record when playing as the visitor.
Finally, Fresno State has performed better against tougher opponents in 2013. UNLV does have a narrow win against Hawaii who Fresno State also beat by less than a touchdown. The Bulldogs’ one-point wins over Boise State and Rutgers, however, are more impressive than the Rebels beating Central Michigan and Western Illinois by an average of 20 points.
With these reasons in mind, expect the Bulldogs to beat the Rebels in an exciting shootout. Don’t miss your chance to watch this must-see match up Saturday night.