THROUGHOUT FALL CAMP, THE IDAHO DEFENSIVE BACKFIELD HAS BEEN RESILIENT. For the 2010 season the…
IDAHO INSIGHT: Idaho hosts Nevada
Idaho is deep into the meat of its schedule, and the Vandals will need to earn a victory this week to keep alive a streak that makes the program proud. The Vandals (4-4 overall, 1-2 WAC) haven't dipped below .500 since the end of the 2008 season. That's a string of 22 weeks, which is impressive considering that Idaho was above .500 for only one week from 2000 to 2008.
Keeping that streak alive won't be easy as high-powered Nevada comes to the Kibbie Dome this week. Last season, the Vandals allowed 70 points against the Wolf Pack.
The Vandals will play back-to-back home games for the first time this season, starting with this week's game against Nevada. No. 2 Boise State comes to town next week. Idaho has been tough in the Kibbie Dome this season, outscoring their three opponents 112-21, but the level of competition is nothing like what the Vandals are about to see. They need to win three of their final five games to become bowl eligible for the second year in a row.
Idaho is coming off a 45-10 loss at Hawaii. The Vandals scored first and last, but the Warriors dominated in between and took advantage of four Idaho turnovers. Idaho also committed 14 penalties for 152 yards and had a field goal blocked.
--For the first time this season, Idaho quarterback Nathan Enderle did not throw a touchdown pass. He completed 30 of 52 passes and was intercepted twice against Hawaii.
--The Vandals recovered one fumble in the loss to Hawaii, giving them 14 recoveries this season. That leads the nation.
GAME BALL GOES TO: TE Taylor Elmo -- He caught five passes for 49 yards and a touchdown at Hawaii. It was the second career touchdown for the freshman, who set career-high totals in receptions and yards in the loss.
KEEP AN EYE ON: S Thaad Thompson -- The junior made the first start of his career, moving to outside linebacker. He made a career-best seven tackles in the loss at Hawaii.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "Turnovers were costly to us. They did have an impact. (Hawaii) got on a roll of momentum. We didn't make plays to stop it." -- Idaho coach Robb Akey, on the Rainbow Warriors taking advantage of four turnovers, including a 57-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
--DE Aaron Lavarias recorded two sacks, giving him 7.5 this season. The senior also intercepted the first pass of his career in the loss at Hawaii.
--QB Brian Reader, in relief of starter Nathan Enderle, completed 7 of 11 passes for 105 yards and a touchdown.
--S Quin Ashley made a career-high six tackles in the loss at Hawaii. All of his stops were solo tackles.
STILL NEEDS WORK:
--The Vandals' ground game continues to be non-existent. Idaho averaged only 2.8 yards per carry Saturday.
--The Vandals allowed three sacks in the loss at Hawaii. Idaho ranks 117th out of 120 Football Bowl Subdivision squads in sacks allowed.
--For the second game in a row, the Vandals were penalized for more than 100 yards. Against Hawaii, Idaho was flagged 14 times for 152 yards.
--TE Daniel Hardy (ankle) was injured during the loss to Hawaii and his status for next week's home game against Nevada was uncertain.
--RB Princeton McCarty (undisclosed reasons) did not play in the loss at Hawaii.
--TE Taylor Elmo (ankle) was hurt in the loss at Hawaii. His status for next week's home against Nevada was uncertain.
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