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Early look at UNLV’s next opponent: Boise State

UNLV’s football team (4-6, 3-3 Mountain West) will try to build on its 69-66 triple-overtime win against Wyoming at 6 p.m. Friday at No. 22 Boise State. Here’s everything you need to know about the Broncos (9-1, 5-1):

Who: Boise State Broncos

When: 6 p.m. Friday

Where: Albertsons Stadium (Boise, Idaho)

TV: ESPN2

Line: Boise State -27.5

Series: Boise State leads 6-3

Last meeting: Boise State 55, UNLV 27 (Oct. 31, 2015 at Sam Boyd Stadium)

2015 record: 9-4 (5-3 MW). Beat Northern Illinois 55-7 in Poinsettia Bowl.

2016 record: 9-1 (5-1). Wins: Hawaii (52-16), San Jose State (45-31), Brigham Young (28-27), Colorado State (28-23), New Mexico (49-21), Utah State (21-10), Oregon State (38-24), Washington State (31-28), Louisiana-Lafayette (45-10). Loss: Wyoming (30-28).

Head coach: Bryan Harsin (overall record: 37-12, 4th year; school record: 30-7, third year)

Returning starters: 8 offense, 4 defense.

Three players to watch: QB Brett Rypien, RB Jeremy McNichols, WR Thomas Sperbeck

About the Broncos:

— UNLV’s win over Wyoming (7-3, 5-1), the only team to beat Boise State this season, keeps hope alive for the Broncos to advance to the Mountain West championship game. No. 22 Boise State needs New Mexico (7-3, 5-1) to win out and beat Wyoming on Nov. 26 to set up a potential three-way tie atop the Mountain Division. The tiebreaker would be determined by the team ranked highest in the College Football Playoff rankings at the end of the regular season.

— Boise State has won the last four meetings with the Rebels dating to 1977. The teams didn’t meet against until 2011, the year after the Broncos joined the Mountain West. Boise State has outscored UNLV 135-55 in the last three meetings (55-27 last year, 32-7 in 2012 and 48-21 in 2011).

— The Broncos are 101-6 at home since 2000 on their signature Blue Turf.

— McNichols is the nation’s leading scorer with 22 touchdowns, including 18 on the ground, and fifth in the country in rushing (1,369 yards). The junior ran for 153 yards and two touchdowns Saturday in a 52-16 win over Hawaii in Honolulu and has scored a touchdown in 22 consecutive games, the longest FBS streak in the last 10 years. McNichols also has 31 catches for 428 yards and four scores.

— Rypien went 18-for-22 for 338 yards and four touchdowns against Hawaii in his fourth 300-yard passing game of the season. The sophomore, nephew of former Super Bowl MVP Mark Rypien, has completed 65 percent of his passes (193-for-297) this season for 2,916 yards, 22 touchdowns and only six interceptions. He threw for a season-high 442 yards and three scores in the win over BYU and 391 yards and a season-high five touchdowns in the rout at New Mexico.

— Sperbeck leads the team in receptions (62) and receiving yards (1,023) and is tied for the team lead in receiving touchdowns (nine) with Cedrick Wilson, who has 44 catches for 827 yards. Sperbeck had 88 catches last seson and set the school record for receiving yards with 1,412.

— Harsin was a player and assistant coach at Boise State from 1995 to 2010 before returning as head coach in 2014. He contrived the famed Fiesta Bowl-winning Statue of Liberty play in 2007, when the Broncos went 13-0 and helped bust the now-defunct BCS in a thrilling 43-42 overtime win over Oklahoma that made Boise State national darlings.

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