HERO Sports welcomes you to "Two-a-Days", where we will preview every single one of the 125 FCS programs, with two being released each day from June 18 to August 18 (with the final day having three in one day). Today we give you … Idaho State.
[divider]MORE: Compare Any Two FCS Players or Any Two FCS Teams[divider]
FCS TEAM BY TEAM PREVIEW: The countdown
FCS PRESEASON TOP 25: The poll
FCS PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA: The teams
IDAHO STATE (4-7 IN 2017)
Big Sky (ISU was 9th in 2017)
COACH: Rob Phenicie – 2nd season (4-7)
2017 OFFENSE: 28.1 ppg. (43rd in FCS)
2017 DEFENSE: 35.5 ppg. (112th in FCS)
SUM IT UP: Phenicie has a good nucleus of starters back as he begins his fourth season with the Bengals and second as head coach. Around 15 starters return, including tons of weapons on an explosive offense. The combination of James Madison and Ty Flanagan combined for 1,567 yards last season. Combine that with starting quarterback Tanner Gueller and his top two pass catchers back and the Bengals are going to be special on offense this season. The defense needs plenty of improvement, though. Even though the Big Sky features tremendous offenses, allowing 35.5 points per game isn't acceptable. Idaho State went just 2-6 in conference play last season but showed signs in the nonconference with a 30-28 FBS win against Nevada.
BEST-CASE SCENARIO: The Bengals move up toward the middle of the pack in the conference standings. They will be the second most experienced team in the Big Sky as far as the number of returning starters. The offense will keep Idaho State in games. If the defense can improve, this team is going to compete well.
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BEST FCS PLAYER BY NUMBER: We count down, No. 99 through No. 1[divider]
TOP RETURNEE: RB James Madison (First Team All-Big Sky)
THE NEXT BEST: DB Adkin Aguirre (HERO Sports Sophomore All-American honorable mention ); OL Brian Fineanganofo (All-conference honorable mention); RB Ty Flanagan (634 yards, 11 TDs); QB Tanner Gueller (2,754 yards, 22 TDs, 9 INT.); WR Mitch Gueller (871 yards, 8 TDs)
TOP NEWCOMER: DL Kainoa Fuiava (BYU transfer)
DID YOU KNOW?: Idaho State won the Division I-AA national title in 1981.
THE QUOTE: "I like the effort and enthusiasm. I like the fact that they were chirping at one another and then they shook hands. There is a level of competitiveness that this team has that you have to have. I like that we didn't have a lot of procedural mistakes out of the offensive and defensive staffs." — Head Coach Rob Phenicie said after spring ball
SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT
THE HASHTAG: #EverythingMatters
FOOTBALL TWITTER: @IdahoStateFB
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