Fresno State has delivered a fantastic season, particularly with the way the past couple of months have gone.
Now it’s a matter of finishing in style for the Bulldogs.
That opportunity comes Saturday against Washington State in the LA Bowl in Los Angeles.
“From being counted out at 1-4 to having the chance to bring this program 10 wins is awesome for us,” Fresno State senior defensive back Evan Williams said.
Fresno State (9-4), which is the Mountain West Conference champion, has won eight games in a row.
For Washington State (7-5), this will wrap up the first full season under coach Jake Dickert.
“We’re looking forward for the chance to send our seniors out on a winning note,” Dickert said.
No college team has begun with a 1-4 record and ended up with a 10-win season, something that Fresno State will try to pull off.
“The hard work that we’ve put in, we definitely feel that’s why we’re here,” receiver Jalen Moreno-Cropper said. “We had all our goals in front of us, and we made sure we checked off all the boxes. Getting that 10th win would add to our legacy.”
Fresno State’s winning streak produced a championship vibe and certainly confidence has been soaring.
Yet Washington State is bound to send out a defense to present challenges.
“They’ve got two good corners and two good safeties.” Moreno-Cropper said. “It’s going to be a good matchup. We just have to trust in the game plan.”
Washington State had some late-season success as well, winning three in a row before a loss to nationally ranked Washington to close the regular season. The Cougars are making their program-record seventh consecutive bowl appearance.
Linebacker Daiyan Henley, an All-Pac-12 first-team selection who played one season with the Cougars, has opted out of the bowl but will be with the team at the game.
With defensive coordinator Brian Ward off to Arizona State, Dickert will oversee the defense.
“I get a chance to call plays again,” Dickert said. “I love being back in the grind.”
Fresno State has won its past three bowl outings and played two other Pac-12 Conference teams this season. The Bulldogs lost to Oregon State and Southern Cal.
Washington State holds a 3-1 edge in the series, though the teams haven’t met since 1994.
This is the second LA Bowl. Utah State beat Oregon State 24-13 last year.
–Field Level Media