The Bengals resume their Big Sky Conference schedule when they travel to Northern Arizona at 5 p.m. Saturday (FOX Sports West) searching for their first win in Flagstaff, Ariz., since 1984.
Idaho State (2-3, 1-1 Big Sky) has lost 14 straight games at Northern Arizona (2-4, 1-2), and the Lumberjacks have won nine straight overall with Idaho State’s last victory coming in 2004 in Pocatello.
The teams did not face each other in 2014 or 2015.
Before their bye week, the Bengals surrendered 531 rushing yards to Portland State, which didn’t complete a pass during the 45-20 loss in Portland. Idaho State coach Mike Kramer told the Idaho State Journal the Bengals have simplified their defense during the bye week. This is the first season in Kramer’s tenure Idaho State has run a 4-3 defense.
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Linebacker Mario Jenkins (Columbia High) continues to lead the unit with 49 tackles and eight tackles for loss. Jenkins, who missed all of 2015 with a knee injury, also ranks second in the Big Sky in tackles and tackles for loss.
Idaho State’s reshuffled offensive line shuffles again with redshirt senior Cody Abbott (Meridian High) scheduled to make his first career start at right guard. He suffered an injury in fall camp and made his season debut at Portland State.
He’s joined on the offensive line by Treasure Valley products Dallen Collins (Vallivue High) and Jacob Molenaar (Capital High).