Derek Carr and Fresno State will face two Pac-12 opponents in 2012, heading to Oregon and hosting Colorado in weeks two and three. Photo Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

Know the Opponent: Fresno State Bulldogs

This week we’ve looked at Colorado and Sacramento State who will play the Colorado Buffaloes and today we’ll complete the Buffs non-conference slate looking at the Fresno State Bulldogs. The Bulldogs will enter 2012 without longtime head coach Pat Hill who was replaced by Tim DeRuyter in the offseason. He inherits 4-9/3-4 in the WAC team that is 26thon our know the opponent list.

DeRuyter comes to town with 22 years of experience, 16 of which as a defensive coordinator at Texas A&M, Air Force, Nevada, Ohio, Navy and Ohio State. Expect the team to be better defensively in their maiden voyage in the Mountain West Conference.

Fresno State is also the first team previewed that the Pac-12 will see multiple times including back-to-back weeks. The Bulldogs travel to Autzen Stadium on September 8 for a 3:30 pm kickoff on the Pac-12 network. Week three they’ll host the Buffaloes in Fresno for a 5 pm scheduled start on CBS Sports Network.

Colorado and Fresno State have history meeting what I remember to be several times in the 2000’s with Pat Hill and company going to Boulder getting a victory. Oregon has also played the Bulldogs a handful of times in the last 10 or so seasons. Time will tell if DeRuyter will adopt Hill’s anytime anywhere scheduling philosophy that had them playing several high profiled road games, which resulted in a handful of upsets.

Junior Derek Carr returns for his fourth year on campus being redshirted early in his career, he should be the starter in 2012 for the team. In 2011 he threw for 3,544 with 26 touchdowns to nine interceptions with a 62.6 completion percentage, he also rushed for three TD’s. He’s the younger brother of former Bulldog great and former number one overall NFL draft pick David Carr.

The running game returns a pair of seniors who contributed last season in seniors Robbie Rouse and Milton Knox. Rouse played in all 13 games rushing for a 1,549 yards with 13 TD’s averaging 119.2 per game with 228 yards receiving and a TD. Knox had just 84 yards also playing in every game but only got 20 carries.

Receiving wise the team lost their top two receivers but return senior Rashard Evans and junior Isaiah Burse. Evans 44 passes for 351 yards, good for 8.0 yards-per-catch with three touchdowns. Burse had a 10.9 YPC with 436 yard on 40 receptions with a TD. Sophomore Josh Harper actually leads all WR’s in yards from last season with 497 yards, 14.2 per catch with five touchdowns.

Senior outside linebacker Travis Brown returns and his 85 tackles 57 solo and assisted on 28, 8.5 tackles for losses with three sacks.  Fellow senior Terrance Dennis who tied for second on the team with 71 tackles (42 solo/29 assisted) last season.

2012 Fresno State Bulldogs Schedule –

Weber State 9/1
@Oregon 9/8
Colorado 9/15
@Tulsa 9/22
San Diego State 9/29
@Colorado State 10/6
@Boise State 10/13
Wyoming 10/20
@New Mexico 10/27
Hawai’i 11/3
@Nevada 11/10
Air Force 11/24

Previous Previewed Teams –
July 2 – Nicholls Colonels (32)
July 6 – Northern Colorado (31)
July 12 – UNLV (30)
July 13 – Duke (29)
July 16 – Colorado State (28)
July 18 – Sacramento State (27)

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Tags: Autzen Stadium Colorado Colorado Buffaloes Colorado Buffaloes Football Derek Carr Fresno State Fresno State Bulldogs Fresno State Bulldogs Football Mountain West Conference Mountain West Conference Football Oregon Oregon Ducks Oregon Ducks Football Pac 12 Football Pac-12 Pac-12 Conference Pat Hill Tim DeRuyter WAC WAC Football

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