BRONCOS WITH THE BALL
Another big test: Washington (30th) is the fourth team Boise State has faced this season ranked in the top 30 in the nation in total defense. The others: BYU (third), Michigan State (fourth) and Fresno State (19th). The Broncos scored a combined total of two offensive touchdowns against those teams.
Strength on strength: Washington has recorded 25 sacks this season and uses two of its best athletes to chase the quarterback end Josh Shirley and nickel Shaq Thompson. Theyll face an offensive line that has allowed nine sacks, seventh-fewest in the nation. The Huskies pressure has played a role in their high takeaway total. Theyre putting pressure on the quarterback and forcing the quarterback to have some errant throws, Boise State offensive coordinator Robert Prince said.
HUSKIES WITH THE BALL
O-line issues: Four of the Huskies expected starters on the offensive line have been lost to injury since spring ball, which is one reason the offense has struggled this year. The team ranks 90th in rushing and 101st in sacks allowed (34). The latter could be a problem against Boise States ends, Sam Ukwuachu and Demarcus Lawrence.
Another power runner: Hard-running tailbacks like Washingtons Bishop Sankey have had some success against Boise State this year. Michigan States LeVeon Bell, Southern Miss Desmond Johnson, San Diego States Adam Muema, Colorado States Chris Nwoke and Nevadas Stefphon Jefferson have rushed for 100 yards against the Broncos.
If it comes down to a kick ...: Boise State senior kicker Michael Frisina is 12-for-12 on field goals of 30 yards or less, but he hasnt made one from outside that range. Washington kicker Travis Coons is 7-for-11 and could be rattled by his miss of a potential game-winning field goal at Washington State.
Turnover tandem: Boise State is tied for third in the nation in takeaways with 33. Washington is tied for sixth with 32. So who can continue to do that and which team can be the team that can take care of the ball will be a big factor in the ball game, Washington coach Steve Sarkisian told The Seattle Times.
Big-game Broncos: Coach Chris Petersen is 4-2 in bowls, 5-1 vs. the Pac-12 and 8-2 vs. BCS-conference teams.