Call it the "Hunger Game."

Both Colorado Mesa University and Black Hills State University's football teams come into Saturday's game at Spearfish, S.D.(1pm 99.9 FM and 1230 AM), hungry for their first taste of victory this year. And both first-year head coaches are still looking for their first win at their new posts.

"We're getting closer," CMU coach Russ Martin said.

Yellow Jackets coach John Reiners feels the same way, having watched his SDSU team get better in each game.

Neither team has taken an easy road to Saturday's 1 pm kickoff, Homecoming Swarm Day for the Yellow Jackets. Black Hills State opened the season with a 38-5 loss to Division I-AA Idaho State, then lost their first ever Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference game in Golden last weekend, falling 42-19 to Colorado School of Mines.

The Mavericks opened with a 38-19 loss on the road to perennial D-II power Humboldt State (CA) University, then traveled to Greeley for a 40-3 loss to Division I-AA University of Northern Colorado. The Mavs opened RMAC play at home last week with a 41-30 loss to Chadron State College.

CMU showed signs of improvement throughout the game, but must continue to improve on keeping their offense on the field, and the defense on the sideline. To do that, the Mavs have to convert more third downs.

Martin rattled off a number of reasons why converting third downs is important: More offensive opportunities, more chances to score points, turning the field-position battle in your favor, and giving the defense a rest.

"It's a cumulative effect, and each one is important," he said.

Reiners also talked about keeping his defense off the field after the Yellow Jackets' loss at Mines.

So look for both teams to work on sustaining drives on Saturday.Either way, one team will leave satisfied. The other, still hungry.

(Thanks to contributor Greg Reed, who joins Zane Mathews in the booth for CMU football broadcasts)