Sept. 19, 2016
BOISE, Idaho - Boise State (2-0) looks to remain perfect in 2016, traveling to Corvallis, Ore., to square off against Oregon State (1-1) at Reser Stadium, Sept. 24.
The Broncos and Beavers are slated to kick at 1:30 p.m. (MT), and the game will be nationally televised by FS1.
THE SERIES: The Broncos and Beavers will be squaring off for the ninth time Saturday, and Boise State trails 3-5 in the all-time series. The teams last met in the 2013 Sheraton Hawaii Bowl, a 38-23 victory for Oregon State.
This will be the first trip to Corvallis for the Broncos since 2005, and though Boise State is winless in three trips to Reser Stadium, the last two games were decided by a combined five points - 26-24 in 2003 and 30-27 in 2005.
VS THE PAC-12: Boise State is 9-3 against schools from the Pac-12 since 2006, not including wins against Utah in both 2006 and 2010. Included are wins in each of the last three games â€" a 38-30 victory over 10th-ranked Arizona in the 2014 VIZIO Fiesta Bowl, a 16-13 win over Washington (Sept. 4, 2015) and a 31-28 win over Washington State the last time out (Sept. 10).
AGAINST THE POWER FIVE: Boise State - 13-5 against schools from the Power Five since the start of the 2006 season - squares off against a pair of such schools during the 2016 regular season (Washington State and Oregon State). The Broncos carry a streak of four-straight victories over Power Five schools into this Saturday's contest at Oregon State. It should be noted that of those five losses, all came on the road or at a neutral site.
Since notching its first victory over a Power Five school, a 34-16 win over Iowa State in the 2002 Humanitarian Bowl, Boise State is 14-9 all-time in games against Power Five teams, and 14-21 overall.
COMING OFF A BYE: The Broncos are coming off their lone bye week of the season, typically a sign of good things. Since joining the Football Bowl Subdivision in 1996, Boise State is 23-4 following a bye. The Broncos dropped last year's post-bye contest to New Mexico, snapping a streak of 21-consecutive such victories.
RED ZONE: The Boise State offense is a perfect 7-for-7 in the red zone through its first two games of 2016, ranking tied for first nationally. The Broncos are one of 23 schools in the country that is perfect inside the 20 entering this week. The Boise State defense has allowed scores in the red zone on 4-of-6 opponent possessions, a mark that ranks tied for 14th nationally (.667).
Boise State is one of only six schools in the country to rank in the top 25 in both red zone offense and red zone defense, a list that also includes BYU, North Texas, Rutgers, Stanford and Vanderbilt.
IT'S COOL, GUYS: Boise State did not open the 2016 season ranked in either the AP or Coaches Polls. However, historically, that seems to bode well for the Broncos. Over the course of the previous 14 seasons, Boise State did not open the season ranked in the preseason polls on six occasions. Each year - 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2014 - the Broncos finished ranked in the top 25. In two of those seasons (2006 and 2014), the Broncos capped their season with wins in the Fiesta Bowl.
A 2-0 START? HOW WONDERFULLY DECADENT: Boise State's 31-28 win over Washington State improved the Broncos to 2-0 to start a season for the first time since 2011. That season, the Broncos won their first eight games en route to a 12-1 season that ended with a 56-24 victory over Arizona State in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas.
STILL HAVEN'T TRAILED: For just the fourth time in Boise State's FBS history (1996-present), the Broncos have not trailed at any point through the season's first two games. Bronco teams had previously achieved this feat in 2003, 2008 and 2009, with the 2009 team setting the record by going 306:35 of game time to start the season without trailing until Tulsa scored 6:35 into the seventh game of the season to go up 7-0. Below are the total times each team went without trailing to start their respective seasons (from top mark to lowest), along with how they trailed for the first time:
2009 â€" 306:35 (six-plus games) â€" Tulsa touchdown and PAT to go up 7-0 6:35 into first quarter
2008 â€" 132:16 (two-plus games) â€" Oregon touchdown to go up 6-0 12:44 into first quarter
2003 â€" 122:48 (two-plus games) â€" Oregon State field goal to go up 3-0 2:48 into first quarter
Boise State is also one of just eight FBS teams this season that has not trailed at any point this season. The other seven teams in this group are Florida, Louisville, Miami (FL), Memphis, San Diego State, Stanford and Washington.
BUT THEY SAID THIS WASN'T LAST YEAR'S D-LINE: Boise State's 2015 defensive line finished that season ranked fifth in the nation in rushing defense, allowing just 108.2 yards per game. After losing every starter from that unit to graduation or the NFL Draft, many had reservations about how well this year's unit would perform. The crew of Sam McCaskill, David Moa, Elliot Hoyte, Jabril Frazier and Gabe Perez have answered the call, ranking fifth in the nation after three weeks by allowing just 60.5 rushing yards per game.
Leading the way has been McCaskill, a redshirt senior who started for the Broncos in 2014, and this year leads the unit with 10 tackles and 3.0 sacks. Redshirt sophomore David Moa picked up 1.5 sacks in Sept. 10's win over Washington State while Hoyte (1.5 tackles-for-loss) and Frazier (eight tackles, 1.0 sack) have also brought the heat up front.
SPERBECK KEEPS MOVING UP IN THE RECORD BOOK: Senior wide receiver Thomas Sperbeck, the only current Bronco voted by the fans to the 30-Year All-Blue Team, made seven catches for 133 yards and a touchdown in Sept. 10's win over Washington State. The performance continued Sperbeck's ascent up multiple categories of the Boise State record book, as he now stands sixth all-time with 2,592 receiving yards (471 back of all-time leader Titus Young), and ninth all-time with 157 receptions (87 behind all-time leader Matt Miller). His 133 receiving yards against Washington State also marked the 10th 100-yard receiving game of his career, just three behind all-time leader Ryan Ikebe (1993-96).
With just two games under his belt, Sperbeck leads the Mountain West with 263 receiving yards, a season after leading the conference in that category with a Boise State single-season record 1,412 receiving yards as well as well as with 88 receptions, which tied Miller's Boise State single-season record.