Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#119 Boise State vs.
#120 San Diego State
Friday, November 26, 2021 at 12:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

There will be plenty of Mountain West implications on the line when Boise State (7-4, 5-2 MW) travels to No. 21 San Diego State (10-1, 6-1) on Friday afternoon. Boise State has rattled off four consecutive wins to stay in contention for the Mountain Division title. The Aztecs simply need a victory to clinch the West Division.

Broncos still alive for division title

Boise State got off to a frustrating start to the season, going 3-4 in its first seven games. The Broncos suffered losses to Nevada and Air Force in conference play, so it looked like their hopes of appearing in the Mountain West title game had been dashed. They have rattled off four consecutive wins since then, though, including a 40-14 win as 4.5-point underdogs against then-No. 23 Fresno State. Boise State has followed that up with victories over Wyoming and New Mexico to become bowl eligible. The Broncos are also still alive for the division title heading into the final week of the regular season.

They are tied with Utah State and Air Force at the top of the standings. Boise State owns the head-to-head tiebreaker over Utah State, but its loss to Air Force could be damning. The Broncos need a win coupled with an Air Force loss to UNLV, but the Falcons are 18-point favorites in that game. Boise State’s offense ranks No. 78 in college football, averaging 386.6 yards per game. Quarterback Hank Bachmeier has completed 64.0% of his passes for 2,857 yards and 18 touchdowns. Running back George Holani has posted 499 yards and one touchdown on 99 carries. He will be facing a San Diego State defense that ranks No. 11 nationally in yards allowed per game (313.7).

Aztecs aiming for West Division title

No. 21 San Diego State has been the most consistent team in the Mountain West this season. It opened the year with seven consecutive wins, including outright upsets over Arizona, Utah and Air Force. The Aztecs’ lone loss came against Fresno State as 2.5-point underdogs at the end of October. They have responded with wins over Hawaii, Nevada and UNLV, but they have now failed to cover the spread in four straight games. San Diego State’s path to the conference title game is much simpler than Boise State’s. The Aztecs simply need a win on Saturday to clinch their spot.

If San Diego State loses this game, it would be bumped out of first place in the West Division with a Fresno State win on Thursday. The Bulldogs are 7.5-point favorites in that game—San Diego State will know what it needs to accomplish by the time this game kicks off. The Aztecs have relied on their defense throughout the season, as their offense ranks No. 114 in yards per game (325.4). Senior quarterback Lucas Johnson has completed 62.9% of his passes for 993 yards and nine touchdowns. The star of the offense has been running back Greg Bell, who is averaging 4.7 yards per carry on 194 attempts. He can go over 1,000 yards on the season with 93-plus in this game. The Aztecs are facing a Boise State defense that is No. 50, allowing 360.5 yards per game.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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San Diego State has been showing some warning signs of fatigue down the stretch of the regular season. Bell has been banged up several times this season and his numbers have not been great over the past few games. The Aztecs do not have enough explosiveness on offense to overcome lackluster outings from their running backs. Boise State is a much more balanced team, which has shown in its ability to compete on the road. The Broncos have covered the spread in each of their last five road games. I expect them to knock off San Diego State on the road in this game.

Prediction: Boise State -2.5

Full-Game Total Pick

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These teams have been heavily shaded to the under this season, so I do not expect that to change in the final game of the regular season. San Diego State has the best defense in the conference and one of the best defenses in college football. The Aztecs have not been good on the other side of the ball, though. They rely too heavily on their rushing attack, which has allowed opponents to stack the box. San Diego State has now gone under in five of its last seven games. Boise State has gone under in its last six games in a row, so this is shaping up to be a low-scoring game.

Prediction: Under 44
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Written By Blake Von Hagen , "Blake V."

Blake is a lifelong sports fan and hoops junkie. Prior to joining our team at Winners & Whiners and StatSalt, Blake worked for several newspapers and websites. He enjoys combining his beat writing expertise with the knack for finding the winning edge in a matchup. Blake is also an avid sports being expert and you would not be disappointed in following him on a daily basis. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. 
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