Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

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Column: The Red Wave was one reason for Boise State’s defeat

Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian
Fans cheer at a sold out Valley Children’s Stadium against Boise State on Nov. 4.
Fresno State football fans dish on Boise State and potatoes during halftime of the Nov. 4, 2023, game.

With 41,031 people in attendance and red filling the stands, the stadium was sold out Saturday night to watch the Fresno State Football team defeat Boise State.

The Red Wave was as loud as ever in the 37-30 victory, keeping high energy throughout all four quarters, which gave the players an extra boost. 

“It was great knowing that the crowd stayed and it helped us, especially on the defensive side. It got loud out there,” said Bulldog linebacker Levelle Bailey. “It was hard communicating on our side so I know it was hard to communicate on the offensive side of the ball.” 

Some fans brought signs, flags, chains and masks in support of the Bulldogs. 

The home field advantage showed great success for the ‘Dogs as they played their most well-rounded game of the season. 

What had been struggles in past games weren’t the case in this rivalry match. 

The Bulldog run game was finally able to get going. Running back Malik Sherrod was able to find the holes to break through for big gains totaling 132 rushing yards. 

Bulldog Malik Sherrod goes into the end zone for a touchdown as a Bronco player goes for the tackle. (Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian)

While Sherrod deserves credit, the offensive line played an outstanding game by creating  pockets for Sherrod to run through, and only allowing one sack for the entirety of the game. 

This gave quarterback Mikey Keene extra time to throw, allowing for more explosive plays to be made against the Broncos. 

With the offense playing solid ball, it was nicely complemented by the astonishing defensive performance. 

Throughout the game, close coverage was maintained to create several incomplete passes by Broncos quarterback Maddux Madsen. 

Turnovers were also a factor in the Broncos’ defeat. The Bulldogs came up with two interceptions in key red zone moments to prevent points from being scored. 

Having a strong defense was an area in which the ‘Dogs have struggled in past games, but the change was seen on the field.

The Red Wave went wild as big plays were being made on both ends of the field. 

The loud environment prevented the Broncos from finding a rhythm on offense, which was a benefit to the ‘Dogs. 

Fresno State wide receiver Jaelen Gill gets ready for a catch. (Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian)

Madsen was never comfortable in the pocket, only completing 22 of his 44 pass attempts.

This was a clear advantage for the ‘Dogs as the Red Wave made it easier for the defense to make big turnovers on messed-up throws. 

“Knowing the Red Wave was always behind us — you know we didn’t get a chance to play Boise in Fresno last year, so this is something that we know that we need to rely on as the home crowd advantage,” Bailey said. 

Not only did the crowd make it hard for the Broncos but it also gave more confidence to the Bulldogs, which allowed them to play with more poise and aggression.  

The Red Wave was appreciated by head coach Jeff Tedford after the ‘Dogs took on the win.       

“I want to take this time to thank our fans,” Tedford said. “Our fans were totally different tonight. Totally different on first and second down. I thought they were great. We need to make that a tradition.” 

If the Red Wave shows out as they did against the Broncos, the ‘Dogs will be unbeatable for its last home game against New Mexico on Nov. 18.

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