With the regular season at its end, its time for bowl season to begin. It would be a great season for a playoff to settle the argument of who is the best in the land, but it is what it is and this is the system we have. I'm going to take a quick look at some of the less heralded bowl games and do a little write up along with a prediction. First up, the New Mexico Bowl.
New Mexico Bowl 12/19
Wyoming Cowboys (6-6) vs Fresno St Bulldogs (8-4)
The Wyoming Cowboys play in the Mountain West Conference and finished the season 6-6 after a late field goal gave the Cowboys a 17-16 victory over Colorado State. They finished fifth in the MWC with a 4-4 conference record.
The offense is lead by freshman QB Austyn Carta-Samuels who threw for 1752 yards and 7 tds completing 59% of his passes. He has also rushed 123 times for 295 yards and 3 tds.
The running game is lead by freshman Alvester Alexander and sophmore Brandon Stewart. Alexander carried the ball 124 times for 503 yards and 6 tds. He also caught 7 passes for 93 yards. Stewart carried 105 times for 470 yards and 2 tds and chipped in 16 receptions for 152 yards and 2 tds.
Junior WR David Leonard lead the team with 70 receptions 645 yards and caught 1 td. Junior WR Zach Bolger was second on the team with 24 catches for 259 yards and 1 score. Junior Travis Burkhalter tied with RB Brandon Stewart for the team lead with 2 td receptions and also chipped in 19 catches for 198 yards.
The offense ranks #112 in total offense gaining 299 yards/game, 171 through the air (#103) and 128 on the ground (#86). The Cowboys score 16.9 points/game (#111).
The defense ranks #76 in the nation allowing 396 yards/game, 171 on the ground (#91) and 225 through the air (#73) and gives up 27 points/game (#76).
The Fresno State Bulldogs play in the Western Athletic Conference and finished third with a 6-2 conference record and 8-4 overall.
Junior QB Ryan Colburn leads the Bulldog offense and has passed for 2333 yards, 18 tds and has completed 60% of his passes.
Stud junior RB Ryan Mathews is second in the nation with 1664 yards this season on 245 carries and has scored 17 tds. Its safe to say that the offense runs through him. Freshman Robbie Rouse and senior Lonyae Miller will spell Mathews and have produced good numbers combining for 813 yards on 148 carries and 8 tds.
Fresno State has a little more balance in their passing attack. 6'-4" senior WR Seyi Ajirotutu leads the team in all catagories with 48 catches for 671 yards and 7 tds. Senior WR Chastin West is second on the team with 429 receiving yards on 28 catches and 2 tds. Sophmore WR Jamel Hamler is second on the team in receptions with 30 for 418 and 3 tds. Junior WR Devon Wylie is second on the team with 4 tds on 15 catches for 242 yards. Senior WR Marlon Moore has also chipped in 14 catches for 308 yards and 3 tds, one of which went for 92 yards (UC Davis).
The Bulldogs offense ranks #19 in the nation averaging 436 yards/game, 232 on the ground (#7) and 204 through the air (#79). Fresno State scores 34.3 points/game (#14).
Fresno State's defense ranks #97 in the nation giving up 412 yards/game, 212 on the ground (#111), 199 through the air (#32) and allow 27.8 points/game (#81).
Its hard to see Wyoming winning this game. The Bulldogs are a battle tested team who took Wisconsin into overtime and gave undefeated Cincinnati all they wanted in a 28-20 defeat. Ryan Mathews should have a field day against a weak Cowboy's run defense and lead the Bulldogs to a big victory.
Fresno State Bulldogs 49 Wyoming Cowboys 10
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