Colorado State has not played in the postseason since 2008, but the Rams are only three wins away from becoming bowl eligible this season. The Rams continue to improve as they have won three of their last four games, including consecutive road wins over Wyoming (52-22) and Hawaii (35-28). The players clearly believe in what head coach Jim McElwain is preaching, and I believe the Rams have a legitimate chance of defeating Boise State on Saturday as 7-point home underdogs.
Colorado Offense vs. Boise State Defense:
Colorado State is averaging 33.4 points per game at 4.9 yards per rush play, 7.6 yards per pass play and 6.1 yards per play. However, the Rams are averaging 40.0 points per game at home this season where they are garnering 5.8 yards per rush play, 10.2 yards per pass attempt and 524 total yards 7.9 yards per play). Overall, the Rams are 0.3 yards per rush play, 0.1 yards per pass play and 0.2 yards per play better than average offensively in 2013, which gives Colorado State a nominal advantage over the Broncos’ stop unit (5.3 yards per play to teams that combine to average 5.4 yards per play). The concern with Boise State is its road defense that is yielding 34.7 points per game at 8.2 yards per pass attempt and 6.2 yards per play!
Colorado State Defense vs. Boise State Offense:
Colorado State’s weakness is with its defense that is allowing 30.6 points per game at 8.2 yards per pass attempt and 6.0 yards per play. Despite those numbers, the Rams are actually 0.6 yards per rush play better than average defensively this season, although they remain 0.7 yards per pass attempt and 0.2 yards per play worse than average. However, Boise State’s strength is a ground attack that is 0.6 yards per carry better than average, which plays into the Rams’ strength on defense (0.6 yards per carry better than average defensively). With no edge on the ground, Boise State will likely throw the ball in light of the fact that its aerial attack has a 0.9 yards per advantage over the Rams’ secondary.
Overall, Colorado State is average from the line of scrimmage (0.2 yards per play better than average offensively and 0.2 yards per play worse than average defensively), while the Broncos are 0.5 yards per play better than average (0.4 yards per play offensively and 0.1 yards per play defensively). From a technical standpoint, Boise State is a money-burning 11-15 ATS on the road over the last two seasons and 1-13 ATS as conference favorites of seven or more points. Colorado State remains an underrated team that has covered the spread in four of its last 5 games. Grab the generous points and invest with confidence.