This hunch if you will, that Boise State is about to lose. Sounds crazy, I know. But the thing about a stunning upset? Nobody's really going to talk about it. So, let me tell you why this can happen. And why this most likely won't.
1) Hawaii is freaking spectacular through the air.
The worst aspect of their game is in terms of completion percentage. 64.0% is good for 31st nationally. Then it's 11th in terms of yards per attempt, and they are the best in the world in terms of passing touchdowns, touchdown to interception ratio, and passing yardage. It's awesome numbers. And there's no reason why it can't continue.
2) They generate turnovers.
You need to be a ballhawking team if you're looking to shock the world. And Hawaii is talented at winning the turnover battle. 26 turnovers is good for 2nd in the country. A turnover margin of 11 is good enough for 4th. If this is to happen, you need to find success in this respect. Boise doesn't make many mistakes, but Hawaii can take advantage.
3) They make with the first downs.
218. Tied for 3rd. More first downs than Auburn and Baylor. Good for 11th in terms of per game. That means these kids sustain drives. And lord knows they will need to do it.
And yet? Because it's Boise State, and the game is in Boise. There are real reasons for this to be the fever dreams of someone desperate for content.And not just because it's a road game for the Rainbow Warriors.
1) They're 111th in Rush Offense.
Which is legitimately terrible to be sure, but the fact of the matter is that they weren't exactly likely going to get untracked against Boise State's 2nd ranked Rush D. There's gonna be a lot of off tackles for a yard and a half up in there.
2) They give up a bunch of sacks.
20 sacks in 9 games. Kinda terrible, it's tied for 88th in the nation. Though they have overcome this when they faced teams that generate sacks like Army and Fresno State, but Boise State is the sort of team where they have additional power to their defense. See point #1 for further proof. See point #3 for further further proof.
3) Boise State is a step up in Passing D weight class.
They're 8th in Pass Yardage. And as such? They are a few ticks better than Army and Fresno State. And a lot of ticks better than a USC. It's an unknown how exactly Hawaii is going to work against a defense such as this. Then again? Army and Fresno State gave up a combined 54-86 with 719 yards and 6 scores against an interception.so Hawaii could bring something to the table.
So what does it all mean. It means that Hawaii is probably going to have a game much like their game against USC, without USC chasing points from the two point conversions. Boise State's going to have a solid game. But Hawaii will be hanging around. Hanging around.
They'll be in a situration, a 4th and 4 from the 33, down by like 9. And it'll be midway through the third quarter. They hit the situation, and they'll go down to the wire. They don't?
They cover. Barely.