UNLV at Air Force
2:30 PM CT on CBS Sports Network
Here we have another Group of 5 matchup with major conference title implications. UNLV continues to be on a tear. They dominated Wyoming 34-14, knocking my beloved Pokes out of the Mountain West championship race. So much of the attention with UNLV is put on Brennan Marion’s “Go-Go” offense, it’s triple option-esque attack, and the trio of tailbacks griding away at defenses in the system.
But QB Jayden Maiava deserves plenty of love too. Over the past five weeks, he’s averaging 271 passing yards and has thrown eight touchdowns and just two interceptions. He’s completed over 70% of his passes in four of those games. And against Wyoming, he showed he can factor in more with his legs, rushing for two more scores.
Air Force seems to have hit some turbulence. After an 8-0 start, they’ve lost their last two games. First rival Army, who had just two wins going into that game, pulled the upset over the Falcons 23-3. Then a three-win Hawaii squad took down Air Force on the Island 27-13. In both games, Air Force actually out-gained its opponent despite losing by multiple scores.
Why? Turnovers. The Falcons have turned the ball over TEN TIMES the last two weeks without forcing a single turnover from their opponent. They’re still a good team. They’ve just played incredibly sloppy football.
These teams are tied atop the Mountain West standings. With an Air Force win, UNLV would drop below Fresno State in the pecking order and would need help to reach the championship game. If UNLV wins, Air Force and Fresno are tied. And seeing as how they don’t play each other this year, it could come down to a weird tiebreaker to determine who’d play they Rebels for the title.
There could be chaos!