Idaho State Bengals (0-0) at California Golden Bears (2-0)
|Date & Time||Saturday September 15, 2018, 6:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: California Golden Bears -- Over/Under:
The Idaho State Bengals will travel to Memorial Stadium (Berkeley, CA) to take on the California Golden Bears this upcoming Saturday in College Football action.
The Idaho State Bengals had this past week off however, will entered this game with a 1-0 record after defeating the NCAA Division II Western State Colorado University Mountaineers 45-10 on August 31st. Idaho State poured on the offense early in this one and had no trouble securing the victory after going into halftime with a 31-3 lead. Idaho State outgained Western State Colorado University by a 479-107 margin and won the turnover battle by a 2-1 margin in the victory. Leading the way for the Bengals was the RB duo of James Madison (19 att; 114 yards; 3 TD) and Ty Flanagan (21 att; 79 yards; TD). QB Tanner Gueller completed 17 of 27 passes for 213 yards with a TD & INT. WR Mitch Gueller hauled in 4 receptions for 81 yards and a TD. Idaho State finished last season with a 4-7 overall record while finishing Big Sky conference play with just a 2-6 record. Offensively, the Bengals returned a lot of impact players, which includes QB Tanner Gueller and RB James Madison to an offense that averaged a respectable 28.1 ppg on 434.9 total yards per game (256.5 passing yds/g; 178.4 rushing yds/g) however, if the Bengals are going to improve on that 2017 win-total, they’ll need to find answers on the defensive end as they allowed their opponents last season to average 35.5 ppg on 485.8 total yards per game (279.5 passing yds/g; 206.3 rushing yds/g).
The California Golden Bears improved to 2-0 on the season after going on the road and defeating the BYU Cougars, 21-18, this past Saturday night. In a tight game, California pulled ahead by a 21-10 margin early in the 4th quarter and although BYU had a late TD and 2-point conversation to make it a 3-point game, the Golden Bears secured the victory after recovering the onside kick with just :51 seconds remaining. California outgained BYU by a 386-287 margin however, did lose the turnover battle by a 3-2 margin. Leading the way for the Golden Bears was QB Chase Garbers who completed 18 of 28 passes for 176 yards with 2 TD’s & 1 INT. Offensively, California is averaging 22.5 ppg on 332.5 total yards per game (166.5 passing yds/g; 166.0 rushing yds/g) in their first two contests agianst North Carolina and BYU. Offensively, it looks as if the Golden Bears are going with the young arms at QB as Chase Garbers (61.0 Comp %; 115.0 yds/g; 3 TD; INT) and Brandon McIlwain (6 for 9, 56 passing yds; 19 att; 100 rushing yds, TD) have replaced former starter Ross Bowers. Both Garbers and McIlwain can get it down with their legs and provide another option in the backfield to go with RB Patrick Laird (19.5 att/g; 62.5 yds/g; TD). The top receivers for the Golden Bears have been WR and Kanawai Noa (5.0 rec/g; 54.0 yds/g; TD) and RB Patrick Laird (5.5 rec/g; 33.5 yds/g; 2 TD). Defensively, California is holding their opponents to an average of 17.5 ppg on 294.0 total yards per game (166.5 passing yds/g; 127.5 rushing yds/g).
The Golden Bears were 8-4 ATS during their 2017 season and 1-0-1 so far this season.
Idaho State has to be happy with the win to open their season, however, I had to do a lot of digging just figure out who the Western State Colorado University Mountaineers were, and I even lived in Colorado for 4 years. California pulled off a nice win in a very tough road environment at BYU and has looked decent with their new offense led by Garbers and McIlwain. California’s defense has got the job down against to weaker offenses however, we’ll have to wait a few more weeks until they start Pac-12 to see how good this defense can really be. Idaho State has some weapons on the offensive end that might be able to get a few points in this one, however, the Golden Bears offense should have no problems scoring on the Bengals and my initial thoughts is to take California to cover what will most likely be a high spread as they’ll want to get their young QB duo as much action as possible in this one before they play Oregon in two weeks.