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College Football
Preview
Western Michigan vs Air Force
When: 5:45 PM ET, Saturday, December 20, 2014
Where: Albertsons Stadium, Boise, Idaho


FAMOUS IDAHO POTATO BOWL STORYLINES

1. Western Michigan will take aim at the first bowl victory in program history when it meets Air Force in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise. The Broncos are 0-5 all time in bowl games with three losses by five points or less, most recently 37-32 to Purdue at the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit in December 2011. Air Force, like Western Michigan, is seven wins better than it was last season.

2. Air Force went 6-0 at home and is one of two teams in the nation to beat multiple 10-win opponents. The Falcons toppled then No. 21-ranked Colorado State in the regular-season finale Nov. 28 after the Rams entered with a 10-1 record. Earlier this season, Air Force handed current No. 21 Boise State one of its two losses.

3. The Falcons have a notable weapon in kicker/punter Will Conant, the Mountain West Conference Special Teams Player of the Year. He's 18-for-20 on field goals with a long of 50 yards and 42-for-42 on extra points. Conant entered the Colorado State game averaging 42.5 yards a punt, then went out and averaged 52.9 on seven punts and kicked the game-winning 39-yard field goal against the Rams.

TV: 5:45 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Western Michigan -1.5

ABOUT WESTERN MICHIGAN (8-4, 6-2 Mid-American): The Broncos have one of the nation’s most productive receivers in sophomore Corey Davis, who is tied for fourth in the nation with 12 TD receptions and ranks ninth with 1,232 receiving yards. He has surpassed 100 yards seven times this season and has caught at least one TD in 11 of his team's 12 games. Air Force went up against another elite receiver in its last game, Rashard Higgins of Colorado State, and he finished with 12 catches for 193 yards and two touchdowns.

ABOUT AIR FORCE (9-3, 5-3 Mountain West): There’s a good chance Davis will be matched up at times with Air Force safety Weston Steelhammer, who’s tied for seventh in the nation with six interceptions, collecting three in the Boise State game and one in each of the last three games. Steelhammer, like Davis, is 6-2 with an innate ability to get quick breaks on the ball. Jordan Pierce is a standout at linebacker for the Falcons, leading the team in tackles (107), tackles for loss (16.5) and sacks (five).

PREDICTION: Air Force 34, Western Michigan 20
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
Western Michigan 8-4 L1 34.6 23.8 3-2 5-2 0-2 0-0 6-2
Air Force 9-3 W1 30.9 24.2 6-0 3-3 6-1 0-1 5-3
Last Meeting
Western Michigan Air Force
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
No previous meeting.
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Western Michigan N/A
Air Force N/A
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Western Michigan N/A
Air Force N/A
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Western Michigan N/A
Air Force N/A
Touchdowns Player TD
Western Michigan N/A
Air Force N/A
Season
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Western Michigan Z. Terrell 70.0 3146 23 10
Air Force K. Pearson 59.3 1513 14 3
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Western Michigan J. Franklin 294 1525 5.2 24
Air Force J. Owens 204 1054 5.2 5
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Western Michigan C. Davis 70 1232 17.6 12
Air Force J. Robinette 41 763 18.6 4
Touchdowns Player TD
Western Michigan J. Franklin 25
Air Force G. Brown 7
Quickchart Matchup
Western Michigan Off vs  Air Force Def
443.3 yards
397.8 yards
4.5 yards/rush
3.9 yards/rush
9.5 yards/attempt
7.8 yards/attempt
Air Force Off vs  Western Michigan Def
423.5 yards
370.4 yards
4.5 yards/rush
4.2 yards/rush
9.3 yards/attempt
6.8 yards/attempt