After three weeks of option work — the bye, New Mexico and Air Force weeks — the Broncos return to conventional football this week.
“It’s actually a lot more fun for us now,” junior defensive end Kamalei Correa said. “Now we can actually go out there and play some football. It’s your basic spread offense. It’s something that we look forward to on defense. They pass the ball a lot.”
But this might be a “careful what you wish for” situation. The Spartans boast one of the most balanced offensive attacks in the Mountain West. They rank fourth in yards (409.1 per game), seventh in rushing (185.7) and third in passing (223.4).
Perhaps more telling, the Spartans have the conference’s top rusher (running back Tyler Ervin, 128.8 yards per game) and second-ranked passer (Kenny Potter, 144.4 efficiency).
But the Broncos have fared well against traditional rushing attacks this season and have 20 interceptions. For players who say they need to focus on doing their specific job, this will be a more comfortable situation.
“We just went back to basics,” Correa said. “We just went back to the fundamentals. We’re not doing anything special. ... I feel like our game plan is not that complicated. It’s basic football for us.”
The defense has been on a three-game slide with injuries mounting. Through eight games, the Broncos allowed 265.5 yards and 17.2 points per game. Those numbers have climbed to 330.1 and 21.2.
“It really just comes back to everybody doing their job at the same time,” junior defensive tackle Elliot Hoyte said. “We talk about consistency all the time and that really is the foundation of everything.”