Fresno State - Louisiana Tech Preview

Fresno State (6-4, 5-2) will play their final home game this afternoon as they welcome in Louisiana Tech (3-7, 2-4).

Fresno State cannot take this team lightly. Louisiana Tech gave LSU all they could handle before the Tigers pulled away for a 24-16 win over the Bulldogs.

Tech has lost four straight and five of their last six. Their last win was a 45-7 blowout of New Mexico State back on October 17.

For Fresno State, this is a must win game, especially with a road game against Illinois looming next weekend. They need a victory to not only ensure a bowl game at the end of the year but to prove that their 52-14 lopsided loss to Nevada was a fluke.

But they'll have to do that without their best player. Running back Ryan Mathews who will sit out this afternoon's game with a concussion he suffered last weekend against Nevada.

That will put the running game on the shoulders of running backs Lonyae Miller and freshman speedster Robbie Rouse. But not only do these two guys have to pick up the slack left by the absence of Mathews, but quarterback Ryan Colburn will need to make plays with his arm.

Todd's Keys to the game

  • The defense struggled against Nevada's running game. Louisiana Tech may take advantage of Fresno State's interior weakness against the dive play.

  • Robbie Rouse and Lonyae Miller need to make headway in the running attack. Failure to do so may force quarterback Ryan Colburn to shoulder the load. Something he may not be able to do.

  • Win the turnover battle. After turning the ball over five times in their loss to Nevada, the Bulldog offense needs to take care of the ball and not shoot themselves in the foot.

  • Keep the crowd into the game. The Fresno State fans are seeing their final home game of the 2009 season. This team needs to excite them and take the bad taste out of their mouth many have after the team's performance last weekend in Reno.

    Todd's Prediction: Fresno State 31, Louisiana Tech 17

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