Idaho coach Paul Petrino has said he’ll play two quarterbacks Saturday. Regardless who’s taking the snaps for the Vandals, Cotton figures to be the primary target against a Wyoming defense that’s been susceptible to the pass so far. Cotton caught 16 passes for 145 yards and two touchdowns in Idaho’s 41-31 win over Central Washington last week and is averaging more than 10 yards per reception. Wyoming is allowing 408.5 passing yards per game.
Wyoming will no doubt try to assert its dominance with the ground game, and Walker will be there to try to help prevent that for the Vandals. Walker has been Idaho’s most active defender from his inside linebacker spot. He leads the team with 17 tackles and is tied for the team lead with two tackles for loss. Ten of Walker’s tackles have been of the solo variety. Idaho’s defense has struggled through its first two games (55 points allowed per game), but it hasn’t been for a lack of trying on Walker’s part.
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Wyoming’s offense goes as Chambers goes. He added 50 more yards on the ground against Texas State, but Chambers still hasn’t been able to make defenses pay for zeroing in on the Cowboys’ running game. He’s completed less than 42 percent of his passes for an offense that’s produced the third-fewest passing yards in the FBS. This could be a game where the Cowboys try to work on getting Chambers in a rhythm through the air. If Chambers can find his accuracy, get help from his receivers and loosen up Idaho’s defense, the Cowboys could have a relatively easy go of it. If not, Wyoming could find itself in a Wofford situation all over again.
Idaho finished sixth in the FCS last season in total offense and likes to throw the ball, so the Cowboys’ defense figures to get plenty of additional practice defending the pass Saturday. Getting to the Vandals’ quarterbacks would help disrupt the rhythm and timing of that, and Crall is as good a bet as any for Wyoming to be able to consistently do that. The Cowboys’ junior defensive end led the team with 4.5 sacks last season and has 1.5 sacks and a quarterback hurry so far this season. Wyoming had one of its better pressure games in a while against Texas State with five sacks and could use another one Saturday.