Big Sky Week 8 FCS Football Game Breakdowns


Week 8 Big Sky Game Breakdowns


Although there are no matchups involving the league’s undefeated squads this week, there are still two fairly good contests involving conference programs on this week’s agenda. Can Cal Poly stay unbeaten when it travels to Montana? Is Eastern Washington in jeopardy when Southern Utah comes to campus? Three teams are currently unbeaten in Big Sky play, and we will see how many of those teams stay undefeated after the weekend slate is concluded. Let’s take a look at the week’s action:


UC Davis at Northern Colorado, Saturday, 3:35 pm

Despite a 2-5 start to the season, UC Davis is still doing well in Big Sky play as it has won two of the three games inside the league. UC Davis has a great chance to go 3-1 in the Big Sky for several reasons. Northern Colorado is on a six-game losing streak, and UC Davis has won four of the five meetings between these schools. UC Davis won the last meeting in 2008, 34-30, Northern Colorado has over 309 yards passing per game, but the UC Davis defense has allowed 188 yards passing per game. Odds are fairly good UC Davis will win.

Projected Score: UC Davis 37, Northern Colorado 27


Cal Poly at #18 Montana, Saturday, 3:35 pm

Cal Poly leads the Big Sky and is third nationally in rushing offense at 283.8 yards per game. However, Montana leads the Big Sky at 40 points per game offensively and 17.5 points per game defensively. Did we mention Montana QB Jordan Johnson has 16 touchdowns and no interceptions and Cal Poly has used three different quarterbacks this season? Although Cal Poly is unbeaten in the Big Sky, this game has potential to be one-sided in a hurry. Cal Poly will score some points, but Montana should easily prevail.

Projected Score: Montana 49, Cal Poly 17


Sacramento State at North Dakota, Saturday, 3:35 pm

These teams have not met each other many times; in fact, the overall series is tied at one game apiece. North Dakota is at home for the sixth time in seven games, and it is the perfect showcase for RB Greg Hardin to show off his 202 all-purpose yards per game. North Dakota scores 29.3 points a game and Sacramento State scores 27.1, but North Dakota gives up 37.2 points a game to Sacramento State’s 31.7. Translation: This will be a high-scoring contest and the visitor should prevail.

Projected Score: Sacramento State 40, North Dakota 30


#2 Montana State at Weber State, Saturday, 5:35 pm

This is a milestone meeting in the series, the 50th between the two schools. Montana State has a 28-20-1 edge in the series, and that is largely due to three straight wins and 11 wins in the last 13 games. Montana State is 1-2 on the road this season, but the team has won seven straight games in Ogden, Utah dating back to 1996. Montana State QB DeNarius McGhee needs 160 passing yards to reach 10,000 for his career. Weber State is minus-4 in turnover margin. You guessed it. This could be ugly.

Projected Score: Montana State 48, Weber State 10


Idaho State at #17 Northern Arizona, Saturday, 6:05 pm

Last year in Pocatello Northern Arizona racked up 609 yards of total offense as it beat the Bengals 50-10. The series shifts to Flagstaff, but it doesn’t matter where this game is played. Northern Arizona has won seven games in a row. Idaho State has lost 41 straight road games, including 28 in Big Sky play. Northern Arizona has allowed 173.3 yards passing per game this year, and Idaho State is minus-4 in turnover margin. Like the Montana State contest, this could get one-sided really quick.

Projected Score: Northern Arizona 41, Idaho State 20


Southern Utah at #5 Eastern Washington, Saturday, 8:05 pm

One of the two marquee games of the week has Eastern Washington out for revenge following a shocking 30-27 loss last season, as Southern Utah kicker Colton Cook had a game-winning field goal with three seconds remaining. Eastern Washington QB Vernon Adams has 21 touchdowns and five interceptions. Southern Utah is plus-9 in turnover margin, but it’s going to be hard-pressed for Southern Utah to pull off the upset one more time. It will be an entertaining contest, though.

Projected Score: Eastern Washington 37, Southern Utah 30


See All FCS Games of the Week Breakdowns