FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – The Fresno State football team will be playing in an NFL stadium this weekend: Allegiant Stadium, home of the Las Vegas Raiders.
It is also the home of the UNLV Rebels, and that is who the Bulldogs play on Friday in Las Vegas.
“You can’t go in there all shell-shocked you’re playing in the Raiders’ stadium. Who cares? It’s a football field and you gotta go get the job done,” said Fresno State senior quarterback Jake Haener.
Haener, the current Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week, was the Bulldogs’ quarterback the last time (and first time) Fresno State played at Allegiant Stadium, in 2020 during the pandemic-shortened season. He threw for 164 yards and one touchdown, and also ran for a 54-yard touchdown in a 40-27 win over the Rebels.
“You gotta get a win, and you gotta go play a really good football team,” said Haener. “The only thing that gets that done is preparing really hard during the week and staying 100% focused on the task at hand.”
After starting the season 1-4, Fresno State (5-4, 4-1 MW) has won four games in a row.
“It will be fun for our players to get over there, walk around and see it,” said Fresno State defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle of Allegiant Stadium. (Coyle spent several years as an assistant coach in the NFL.) “But then when the game starts, you’re just back to playing football, whether it’s out on the practice field or a great stadium like that.”