Five Questions: Idaho State

Jonathan Daniel

Taking care of business, avoiding injuries, game reps for the backups, getting some players their mojo back, and pitching a shutout are this week's questions heading into the game.

1. TCOB - can the Huskies do it? They should be pumping Bachman-Turner Overdrive all day everyday at practice this week because the last thing they need to do is play a sloppy game against a team that Vegas has them favored by 53 points. For the Huskies to continue to get people to take notice and move up in national rankings (and perception) style points matter, and they need to take care of business and remain focused against the Bengals.

2. Can they stay healthy? This is probably the biggest one. They need to get an early lead and get the starters some rest and off the field against a team with nothing to lose so that they're healthy, hungry, and ready to go for conference play in a week. Guys like John Timu who are nicked up have no real reason to play in this game at all, and I'd expect to see maybe a little bit longer of an inactive list than if this game were against a conference opponent.

3. Will the backups get quality reps? This goes hand in hand with number two. Not only do we want to see these guys in early because the ones have done their job and the game is well in hand, but there are a lot of guys that we've heard about and we just plain want to see get more action. What can Cyler Miles do throwing to the troika of freshmen receivers? Can we get Jeff Lindquist into the game? How about a freshman duo in the secondary of Trevor Walker and Kevin King? Let's get Joe Mathis some extended playing time in the second half.

4. Can they restore some confidence? It would be nice to see Dwayne Washington mop up after Bishop Sankey and Jesse Callier have put the game in hand and pick up right where they leave off. If the game gets out of hand, I'd expect that Washington would become the go-to guy in the backfield to drain the clock, and it's an excellent opportunity for him to prove the fumbles aren't going to be a lingering issue, as well as have a potentially big stat sheet stuffing type of day.

Additionally, it would be nice to see Austin Seferian-Jenkins get some big plays and become a more consistent weapon for the offense. His season got off to a slow start, but it's a safe bet that it won't stay that way. I'm guessing ISU can't really match up with him, so he should have some good opportunities.

5. Can the defense shut out the Bengals? That should be the expectation. There's no real reason that a good defense like UW's should allow an FCS program of ISU's calibur to even cross midfield. The defense should be on the field for three plays and then back to the sidelines. The size and speed advantage here will be cavernous, as will the coaching edge. I'll be disappointed if Idaho State leaves Husky stadium having put any points on the board.

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