Previewing UNLV’s Opponents: Utah State Aggies

Three of the MWC teams play the Aggies this year with BYU, Utah, and also UNLV. The best chance for a Utah State win is against the Rebels who are on the same talent level for the past few years. Coach Brent Guy is on the hot seat with a new athletic director who did not hire him, so that is a concern for them. The Aggies do have upgraded their facilities, which should help get some better recruits and keep coaches around longer.

Offense: Senior Sean Setzer showed great progress in spring practice after a disappointing first season at Utah State after transferring from Garden City (Kansas) Junior College and was expected to challenge for the starting role. Instead he got hurt in fall camp and was never a factor.

This year Setzer is the leading candidate to be the starting quarterback he has the strongest arm but is the weakest with his running ability.

The team returns six starters but they lose their starting quarterback from a year ago in Leon Jackson III, but most likely will be replaced by Setzer and then top wide out and punt returner from last year Koren Robinson. As for this year their top offensive players they have returning played and have some experience but their stats are nothing to get too excited about.utah state football logo

Curtis Marsh RB 302 Yards 2 TD
Derrvin Speight RB 504 Yards 3 TD
Omar Sawyer WR 6 Receptions 96 Yards

Their running game of 125 yards per game last year is not great, but it was their best in a few years and 3 of the offensive lineman return, so the running game has the potential to be their best offensive weapon, especially when breaking in a new quarterback Their passing game which was not great last year will have a tough time by breaking in a new quarterback and new wide receivers. The basic point is that their offense will struggle to score points this year.

Even though Speight is their top returning back, offensive coordinator Darrell Dickey likes Sophomore Curtis Marsh who is expected to be that back this year. Marsh missed time with injuries last year and did not carry the ball more than 17 times in any game. Durability is an issue with Marsh who has had a tough time staying healthy.

Defense: Not much better here with the Aggies defense they gave up 31.25 points per game last year. Utah State does have nine returning starters, so the defense better come up with big plays and overall be better. Just by being experienced this defensive squad should improve on last seasons play. The coaching staff is moving players around to maximize players talents the place that needs help is the running game, because last year the Aggies ranked 98th in the nation in running defense.

Early Prediction: The edge has to go to UNLV since they are at home.  This will be competitive game since both are not that great, look for UNLV to win by seven points.

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BYU Reschedules Nevada

BYU was to play the University of Nevada-Reno to open this year, but the Wolfpack backed during last Spring and forced BYU to scramble to find a new home opener this year.  BYU is set to play Northern Iowa on opening day, but the rescheduled game with Nevada will take place in Provo on September 25, 2010 to finish a three game set that began in 2001.