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at Nevada 37 … UNLV 0

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Oct 8, 2011


Week 6 CFN Fearless Prediction & Game Story - UNLV at Nevada


2011 Predictions & Game Story 

Week 6 - UNLV at Nevada

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Oct. 8 at Nevada 37 … UNLV 0
CFN Analysis: A passing game? Tyler Lantrip went ballistic against the bad UNLV defense, throwing for 366 yards and three scores, and Cody Fajardo stepped in and helped the cause as the Wolf Pack finished with 459 passing yards and three scores, but also gave up three picks to keep the game from getting out of hands. It didn’t matter with the UNLV passing game completing one pass. One. Nevada rolled for 699 yards of total offense but only scored 37 points. Brett Roy led the defense with 11 tackles with a sack and three tackles for loss, but this was a total team domination of the lousy Rebel offense.

Really, UNLV? 1-of-14 for 8 yards with a pick? That’s the passing game? The offense tried to keep running Caleb Herring since the passing attack didn’t work a lick, and Dionza Bradford ran for 79 yards on 18 carries, but this was a total meltdown on offense against a good defense, but not a great one. With two straight miserable performances against Southern Utah and Nevada, the O is getting worse as the season goes on with a trip to Wyoming up next. The team needs an identity, and right now it doesn’t have anything positive happening outside of the punting game. Chase Lansford has been terrific, but that’s because he’s getting plenty of practice.

(AP) RENO, Nev. -- Tyler Lantrip passed for 366 yards and three touchdowns and Nevada's defense held UNLV to 110 total yards as the Wolf Pack beat the Rebels 37-0 Saturday for their seventh straight win in the intrastate rivalry and first shutout in the history of the series.

Rishard Matthews caught 10 passes for a career-best 220 yards, including a 90-yard touchdown, and Stefphon Jefferson rushed for 100 yards for the Wolf Pack (2-3), who totaled 699 yards on offense in their home opener. They now lead the series 22-15.

Dionz Bradford ran 18 times for 79 yards for the Rebels (1-4). UNLV quarterback Caleb Herring was sacked six times and didn't complete a pass until 4:17 was left in the game. He finished 1 of 14 for 8 yards and one interception.

UNLV (1-3) at Nevada (1-3) Oct. 8, 7:00, ESPN3

Here’s The Deal … It’s a rivalry game that doesn’t get much play outside of Nevada, but as much as any game matters to UNLV fans, this is it. Unfortunately for them, the series has been all Wolf Pack since 2004, and for second-year head coach Bobby Hauck, changing around his program has to start with changing around the fortunes in this series.

The Rebels were miserable in the opening games against Wisconsin and Washington State before pulling off a dominant shocker beating Hawaii 40-20. Just when it seemed like things were about to change and the program had turned a corner, the air went flying out of the balloon with a 41-16 loss to Southern Utah. With Mountain West play starting next week at Wyoming, a good performance against Nevada might do wonders for a team that needs to be far more effective offensively and needs to start producing in the secondary.

Nevada hasn’t been the Nevada of last year with the running game sputtering and coughing last week against Boise State and not doing enough over the first three games to throw the type of scare into anyone. It’s a rebuilding year, and while the ground game is fine, the points aren’t coming and the defense isn’t picking up the slack. As shaky as things have been, an easy win over the Rebels might get things back on track before a layup against New Mexico.

Why UNLV Might Win: The Rebels have had two weeks to prepare, and after the loss to Southern Utah, motivation shouldn’t be a problem. The team’s biggest defensive problem has been a secondary that hasn’t slowed anyone down except for, surprisingly, Hawaii. Since Nevada can’t/won’t throw, that shouldn’t be a problem.

Nevada’s defense hasn’t even been close so far to stopping the run, and while the Rebels don’t have a brutish ground game, Tim Cornett is just good enough to control the game, even if he’s not a workhorse. The UNLV offense has to keep Nevada off the field and can’t allow several long, sustained scoring drives, and it has to do that by winning third downs. Nevada’s defense has been awful this year on third downs, and UNLV, for good and sometimes bad, is tenth in the nation in time of possession. However …

Why Nevada Might Win: Nevada is 12th in the nation in time of possession. No, this is nowhere near the running game of last year, and missing Colin Kaepernick hurts, but the ground attack isn’t bad, running for 312 yards against Texas Tech, 283 yards against Oregon, and 261 yards against San Jose State. Just because it didn’t work against Boise State doesn’t mean it’s bad.

UNLV might be 38th in the nation in run defense, but that’s because most offenses spend most of their time throwing the ball against the miserable secondary. UNLV just doesn’t score unless the defense give the offense great field position off of turnovers, and while Nevada has been giving the ball up enough to potentially give up a few easy mistakes, it’ll take a lot of big blunders to blow this. UNLV’s offense isn’t going anywhere, and while Cornett has been a nice player to work around, the passing game is ineffective and inefficient. The line just isn’t good enough to give the skill players the time needed to work.

What To Watch Out For: Cornett only has 274 rushing yards this year, but he ran for 106 yards and two scores against Hawaii and he’s been productive when given the shot. The problem is that he’s not getting the ball, running just 14 times against Wisconsin, ten times against Wazzu, and 11 times against both Hawaii and Southern Utah. He’s quick with the straight-line speed to be a top kick returner, taking one back against the Cougars, and now he needs the ball in his hands more.

The Nevada defense might not be doing much, but Brett Roy is cranking out a whale of a season. A good pass rusher with eight sacks last year, he’s been steady and consistent over the first four games with five sacks including two against Texas Tech. Decent against the run, he’s made 27 tackles so far as the team’s most active defender. Against the awful Rebel O line, he should be in for a big game.

What Will Happen: The UNLV offense will be better than it was against Southern Utah, but it won’t be good enough. Nevada’s ground game stuffed by Boise State will roll from the start, and the UNLV mistakes will come after getting down. The Wolf Pack will control the clock.

CFN Prediction: Nevada 38 … UNLV 16
- Click For Latest Line From ATS: Nevada -20.5  O/U: 56

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