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For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/ sports Follow Idaho Press-Tribune Boise State beat writer B.J. Rains on Twitter to get breaking news (@BJRains)

Phone: (208) 465-8111; e-mail: sports@idahopress.com; Fax: (208) 467-9562

B.J. RAINS Boise State beat writer (208) 465-8190 bjrains@idahopress.com

TOM FOX Sports editor (208) 465-8109 tfox@idahopress.com

Greg Kreller/IPT

ON THE COVER: Boise State quarterback Joe Southwick, left, looks to lead the Broncos’ offense back to its high-powered ways,while linebacker Blake Renaud, right, tries to guide a defense in transition.

2013 schedule.........................................................4 Cover story..........................................................6-7 Coaches..................................................................8 OFFENSE Offensive story................................................10-11 Quarterbacks/running backs/wide receivers.........12 Tight ends/offensive line......................................13 Most electrifying offensive player..........................14 DEFENSE Defensive story.....................................................16 Most electrifying defensive player.........................17 Defensive line/linebackers....................................18 Defensive backs....................................................19 SPECIAL TEAMS Special teams story...............................................20 Most electrifying special teams player..................21 Kicker/punter/returners........................................22 MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE Mountain West Conference story..........................23 Mountain Division................................................24 West Division........................................................25

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ONLINE

WASHINGTON HUSKIES

TIME: 8 p.m.; LOCATION: Seattle (Husky Stadium) TV: FOX Sports 1 (Cable One, ch. 304; Dish Network, Ch. 150; DirecTV, Ch. 219) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 7-6, 5-4 (lost to Boise State 28-26 in MAACO) NOTES: Preseason All-American TD Austin Seferian-Jenkins doubtful.

TENNESSEE-MARTIN SKYHAWKS

TIME: 1 p.m.; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: ESPN3 (ESPN.com) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 8-3, 6-2 Ohio Valley Conference (no bowl) NOTES: The FCS Skyhawks opened the 2012 season with a 20-17 win at Memphis and then lost 35-7 at eventual BCS buster Northern Illinois.

AIR FORCE FALCONS

For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

NEVADA WOLF PACK

ASSOCIATED PRESS

TIME: 6 p.m.; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: CBS SN (Cable One, ch. 332/410; Dish Network, Ch. 158; DirecTV, Ch. 613) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 7-6, 4-4 MWC (lost to Arizona in New Mexico) NOTES: Former Texas A&M tight ends/special teams coach Brian Polian takes over for longtime and successful coach Chris Ault.

SCHOOL (FIRST) 1. Alabama (58) 2. Ohio State (1) 3. Oregon 4. Stanford 5. Georgia (1) 6. South Carolina 7. Texas A&M 8. Clemson 9. Louisville 10. Florida 11. Florida State 12. LSU 13. Oklahoma State 14. Notre Dame 15. Texas 16. Oklahoma 17. Michigan 18. Nebraska 19. Boise State 20. TCU 21. UCLA 22. Northwestern 23. Wisconsin 24. Southern Cal 25. Oregon State

BYU COUGARS TIME: 6 p.m.; LOCATION: Provo, Utah (LaVell Edwards Stadium) TV: ESPN (Cable One, ch. 24; Dish Network, Ch. 140; DirecTV, Ch. 206) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 8-5 (beat San Diego State in Poinsettia Bowl) NOTES: Boise State escaped with a 7-6 home victory in the first of 12 consecutive meetings with the Cougars — on a defensive touchdown.

TIME: 6 p.m.; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: ESPN (Cable One, ch. 24; Dish Network, Ch. 140; DirecTV, Ch. 206) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 6-7, 5-3 MWC (lost to Rice in Armed Forces) NOTES: The Falcons return to Bronco Stadium for the second time in three seasons. Boise State defeated Air Force 37-26 in 2011.

COLORADO STATE RAMS TIME: 6 p.m.; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: CBS SN (Cable One, ch. 332/410; Dish Network, Ch. 158; DirecTV, Ch. 613) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 4-8, 3-5 MWC (no bowl game) NOTES: Boise State defeated Colorado State 42-14 in Boise last season. This year’s meeting will be a Mountain Division game.

RECORD PTS 13-1 1,498 12-0 1,365 12-1 1,335 12-2 1,294 12-2 1,249 11-2 1,154 11-2 1,104 11-2 1,083 11-2 1,042 11-2 894 12-2 845 10-3 802 8-5 755 12-1 748 9-4 677 10-3 579 8-5 531 10-4 382 11-2 328 7-6 323 9-5 286 10-3 199 8-6 185 7-6 134 9-4 129

PV 1 3 2 7 t5 8 t5 11 13 9 10 14 NR 4 19 15 24 25 18 NR NR NR NR NR 20

RECORD PTS 13-1 1,545 12-0 1,427 12-1 1,397 12-2 1,262 12-2 1,250 11-2 1,215 11-2 1,136 11-2 1,047 11-2 1,010 11-2 930 12-1 872 12-2 844 10-3 797 8-5 726 9-4 622 10-3 620 8-5 589 10-4 426 11-2 420 7-6 400 9-5 202 10-3 186 8-6 172 7-6 165 9-4 135

PV 1 NR 2 6 4 5 7 9 13 10 3 8 12 NR 18 15 NR 23 14 NR NR 16 NR NR 19

USA TODAY

FRESNO STATE BULLDOGS

TIME: 7 p.m.; LOCATION: Fresno, Calif. (Bulldog Stadium) TV: ESPN (Cable One, ch. 24; Dish Network, Ch. 140; DirecTV, Ch. 206) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 9-4, 7-1 MWC (lost to SMU in Hawaii Bowl) NOTES: The Bulldogs lost to Boise State 20-10 last season, but earned a share of the MWC title with the Broncos and San Diego State.

SOUTHERN MISS GOLDEN EAGLES

TIME: TBA; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: ABC/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU/ESPN3 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 4-8, 3-5 MWC (no bowl game) NOTES: Boise State defeated Wyoming 45-14 last season in Laramie, Wyo. Cowboys try to get back to bowl game for first time since 2011.

TIME: TBA; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: ABC/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU/ESPN3 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 0-12, 0-8 Conference USA (no bowl game) NOTES: Boise State defeated Southern Miss 40-14 last season during the Golden Eagles’ winless season.

UTAH STATE AGGIES TIME: 6 p.m.; LOCATION: Logan, Utah (Romney Stadium) TV: CBS SN (Cable One, ch. 332/410; Dish Network, Ch. 158; DirecTV, Ch. 613) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 11-2, 6-0 WAC (beat Toledo in Potato Bowl) NOTES: After best season in school history, coach Gary Andersen took the Wisconsin job. Aggies O-coordinator Matt Wells takes over.

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WYOMING COWBOYS

SAN DIEGO STATE AZTECS TIME: 8:30 p.m.; LOCATION: San Diego (Qualcomm Stadium) TV: CBS SN (Cable One, ch. 332/410; Dish Network, Ch. 158; DirecTV, Ch. 613) 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 9-4, 7-1 MWC (lost to BYU in Poinsettia Bowl) NOTES: Aztecs defeated Broncos 21-19 in Boise in 2012 to help earn a share of the MWC championship with Boise State and Fresno State.

NEW MEXICO LOBOS TIME: TBA; LOCATION: Boise (Bronco Stadium) TV: ABC/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU/ESPN3 2012 RECORD/BOWL: 4-9, 1-7 MWC (no bowl game) NOTES: Lobos gave Boise State a scare in second half before falling 32-29 in 2012 meeting in Albuquerque.

SCHOOL (FIRST) 1. Alabama (58) 2. Ohio State (3) 3. Oregon 4. Stanford 5. Georgia 6. Texas A&M (1) 7. South Carolina 8. Clemson 9. Louisville 10. Florida 11. Notre Dame 12. Florida State 13. LSU 14. Oklahoma State 15. Texas 16. Oklahoma 17. Michigan 18. Nebraska 19. Boise State 20. TCU 21. UCLA 22. Northwestern 23. Wisconsin 24. Southern Cal 25. Oregon State

ONLINE: More on Boise State’s schedule at idahopress.com/sports


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B.J. RAINS

Boise State is back for its third season in the Mountain West Conference. And this time, the Broncos can wear all-blue uniforms on the blue turf and also reached a unique TV deal with ESPN. Boise State’s staying power is the latest decision to pay off. Here are the top five power decisions in Boise State football history:

B.J. Rains covers Boise State sports for the Idaho Press-Tribune. Call him at (208) 465-8190, email bjrains@idahopress.com and follow him on Twitter (@BJRains).

BRONCOS SHOW

BLUE TURF Former Boise State athletic director Gene Bleymaier turned an idea into a programchanging move when the famous blue turf was first installed at Bronco Stadium in 1986.

Greg Kreller/IPT

Boise State is happy with its decision to remain in the Mountain West Conference. By B.J. RAINS bjrains@idahopress.com

©2013 Idaho Press-Tribune

GOING FOR 2 Chris Petersen and his coaching staff went for the win in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, and ended one of the most entertaining games in college football bowl history with a 43-42 win over Oklahoma.

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Sure, the Big East Conference seemed great at first. More money. More exposure. Better competition. An easier path to the BCS. Why not? “It was a cool thing to think about,” Boise State safety Darian Thompson said. “Bigger teams and we’d finally get some recognition and stuff like that.” But the Broncos soon found out that the grass may not always be greener on the other side. As teams continued to leave the Big East and the conference began to crumble, Boise State reconsid-

ered the move. Maybe staying in the Mountain West was best for them after all? Two Fiesta Bowl victories and one of the most successful decades in college football history made the Broncos a hot commodity. They had power. And ultimately, they used it to their advantage. Six months after making their intentions to leave the conference public, the Broncos announced on Dec. 31, 2012, that they would be not be joining the Big East Conference after all. They would remain in the Mountain West. “We made the absolute

right decision by staying in the Mountain West,” quarterback Joe Southwick said. “I think this conference really solidified itself as a conference to be dealt with. It’s very solid top to bottom and I’m really happy that we’re here. Everything just seems to be going right for the Mountain West right now going forward.” But Boise State wasn’t just going to return to the Mountain West and expect things to be the same. The conference desperately needed Boise State to come back. And the Broncos knew it. So Boise State used its power to negotiate a new TV deal with ESPN and the Mountain West

Conference that calls for all Bronco home games to be televised on one of the ESPN family of networks beginning this fall. The deal, which calls for at least three home games to be on either ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC, guarantees them at least an additional $900,000 per year in TV bonus money. They are the only team in the conference with such a deal. “You look back and one of the things that’s really changed Boise State football is ESPN,” Boise State coach Chris Petersen said. “I think that’s made a huge difference. For us to get back on there, I think is a big deal.”


For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

ONLINE

STAYING POWER

HEISMAN HYPE Kellen Moore not only left Boise State with the most wins for an NCAA quarterback, but he was Boise State’s first Heisman Trophy finalist in 2010. His appearance – and overall accomplishments – created national attention and had to help recruiting efforts.

BCS AND MORE

Greg Kreller/IPT

Boise State celebrates Joe Southwick’s touchdown pass to Geraldo Boldewijn (17) against Fresno State on Oct. 13, 2012 at Bronco Stadium. The Mountain West also agreed to let the Broncos wear all-blue uniforms on the blue turf, a scenario that wasn’t allowed for conference home games during their previous two seasons in the MW. The Broncos are arguably the crown jewel of the Mountain West and made sure to maximize their opportunities because of it. But how it plays out remains to be seen. “It could work to our advantage, but it could also work to our disadvantage knowing that we have the bulls eye on our back,” Thompson said. “ESPN and the things like that and the Mountain West begging us back, it could work both ways. It should

be a fun year.” This fall also marks the finale of the BCS before a new fourteam playoff begins in 2014. Already crashers of the BCS party twice in recent years, the Broncos would surely like to get back one more time before the system goes away. Boise State has sparked debates and discussions more than any other team on the fairness of the BCS system. The Broncos went undefeated in both 2006 and 2009 and were 12-0 in the regular season in 2008 and weren’t given a chance to play for the national championship. Heck, the undefeated mark in 2008 didn’t even land them in a BCS bowl.

Some feel the new playoff system — in which a committee will select the four teams that will participate in a single-elimination tournament — will give teams like Boise State a better chance to contend for a national championship. Others argue that the Broncos will likely continue to get left out in favor of teams from the bigger, more powerful conferences. But the Broncos’ immediate plans are to compete for a Mountain West championship this fall, something they didn’t expect to be doing this time last year. With the Broncos back in the fold, the conference is set up for both immediate and long-term success. The Mountain West is

on much more stable ground than when the Broncos originally decided to leave a little over a year ago and new TV deals and exposure have the outlook for the conference trending in a positive direction. And the conference largely has Boise State to thank for it. “We’re happy to be here,” Petersen said. “We think it’s a really good fit. I think the conference from top to bottom is the best conference Boise State has been in since I’ve been at Boise State. I think our fans are excited about it, because of the proximity to everybody. “It feels like it’s where we should be.”

The 2010 Broncos made a serious push to qualify for the biggest BCS game of them all – the national championship game. Boise State set school marks by reaching No. 2 in the AP and USA Today polls and No. 3 in the BCS standings before losing at Nevada.

THE NEXT LEVEL Shea McClellin and Doug Martin were first-round draft picks and four of their teammates were selected. Sunday, August 25, 2013

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ONLINE

EXPERIENCE: Sixth season at Boise State (third in second stint)

Entering his second season as offensive coordinator, Prince and the Broncos believe they are on the right page. Last year’s offense did not score a touchdown in two games and saw its offensive production dip to marks not seen in Boise since 1998. Prince, who also coaches wide receivers, was part of an offseason effort to cut the Broncos’ playbook in an effort to return Boise State to its high-scoring ways.

EXPERIENCE: 12th season at BSU (seventh in second stint)

Strausser enters his seventh season since returning to Boise State and 12th overall with the Broncos. He was offensive line coach with former Boise State coach Dan Hawkins in 2006 and returned to Boise in 2007. Under Strausser, the Broncos offensive line has been one of two teams nationally to rank in the top 10 for sacks allowed. In 2011, Boise State led the country with 0.62 sacks per game and the Broncos were third in 2010 (0.62) and sixth last season (0.77).

EXPERIENCE: Eighth season at Boise State

Also serving as the Broncos’ recruiting coordinator, Bhonapha has been a valuable member of Boise State’s coaching staff. Boise State has had a player rush for 1,000 yards and earn allconference honors in each of his four seasons as running backs coach. Jeremy Avery rushed for 1,151 yards in 2009, Doug Martin had 1,260 yards in 2010 and 1,299 yards during his senior season in 2011. Last season, D.J. Harper rushed for 1,137 yards and 15 TDs.

EXPERIENCE: Eight season at Boise State

A former Boise State player, Huff is entering his eight season on Chris Petersen’s coaching staff. In addition to his duties coaching tight ends, Huff is the team’s special teams coordinator. Between stints coaching tight ends, Huff was the Broncos’ offensive line coach from 2007 to 2009. His work with the tight ends is an important piece to the Broncos’ success, as they are used as hybrid fullbacks/ tight ends in multiple sets.

The former Oregon State standout quarterback coached the position at Idaho for six seasons before taking over as offensive coordinator at Montana in 2010. He joined the Broncos last season and went to work with finding and grooming a replacement for Kellen Moore. Joe Southwick showed improvement throughout the 2012 season. EXPERIENCE: Second In his final four games, Southwick passed for season at Boise State nine touchdowns and no interceptions. 8

Sunday, August 25, 2013

POWER OF PETE COACH OF THE YEAR AWARDS Petersen is the only coach to win the Paul “Bear” Bryant National Coach of the Year award twice, following the 2006 and 2009 seasons. He also was honored as the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year after the 2010 season.

WINNINGEST COACH IN FBS No active coach in the Football Bowl Subdivision has won more games than Petersen since he was promoted from offensive coordinator prior to the 2006 season. Since, Petersen has guided Boise State to an eye-popping 84-8 record, including two BCS bowl victories since 2006.

NATIONAL RANKINGS Petersen’s 2010 team set many school firsts. It was ranked No. 5 in the AP and USA Today polls to start the season and reached a school-best No. 2 in both polls. BSU set the bar higher by reaching No. 3 in the BCS standings.

For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

The former Boise State standout returns for his 16th season on the coaching staff and his fourth season as defensive coordinator. Kwiatkowski’s defense has been one of seven teams nationally to finish in the top 25 for total defense in EXPERIENCE: 16th each of the last three seasons. season at Boise State In 2010, the Broncos finished (eighth in second stint) second nationally. They were ranked 16th in 2011 and 12th last season. In the last four seasons, Boise State’s defense ranks behind Alabama, LSU and Florida State for yards per game (297.1).

Gregory returns for his fourth season working with BSU’s linebacker since returning to Boise after eight seasons as the defensive coordinator at California. He also was defensive coordinator at Boise State in 2001. Under Gregory, who EXPERIENCE: Fourth doubles as the team’s assisseason at Boise State tant head coach, Boise State (fourth in second stint) produced all-MWC linebackers in J.C. Percy (first team) and Tommy Smith (honorable mention) in 2012 and Byron Hout (second team, ‘10; honorable mention, ‘11).

He enters his second season as defensive line coach. He oversaw a group that ranked 11th nationally in sacks in 2012 with an average of 2.9 per game and helped the defense rank eighth nationally in scoring defense (15.9) and EXPERIENCE: Second 12th in total defense (315.6). season at Boise State Tackle Mike Atkinson and end Demarcus Lawrence each were named to the MWC first team and tackle Ricky TjongA-Tjoe was named honorable mention.

Lake returned to college coaching last season after five seasons instructing defensive backs in the NFL. Lake, who also is the team’s defensive pass game coordinator, helped the Bronco secondary rank fifth nationally in pass defense EXPERIENCE: Second (169.5 yards per game) and season at Boise State was part of a defense that ranked eighth in scoring defense (15.8) and 12th in total defense (315.6 yards).


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B.J. RAINS

B.J. Rains covers Boise State sports for the Idaho Press-Tribune. Listen to him talk Boise State football each Monday and Friday at 4 p.m. on ESPN Boise 96.5 FM and 730 AM.

IN NEED OF A POWER SURGE Broncos aim to regain high-scoring form after last season’s team had the lowest-scoring average in 14 years

SOUTHWICK FINALE

By B.J. RAINS bjrains@idahopress.com

© 2013 Idaho Press-Tribune

Most teams would love to average 30.2 points per game. When it happens at Boise State, people ask what the problem is. The Broncos averaged 30.2 points per game last season, but it was the lowest total they’ve finished with since 1998. It was more than a touchdown less than any of the previous six seasons with Chris Petersen as head coach. And the stats didn’t go unnoticed. “As a team, we definitely take responsibility for that and we looked at that and we know that’s not the standard of what Boise State does,” running back Jay Ajayi said. “We definitely went into the summer making sure that everybody knew, ‘let’s get back to the level where Boise State is and make sure we’re clicking on offense and make sure we set ourselves up to score a lot of points.’” The reasons for the drop off started with the departure of record-setting quarterback Kellen Moore and a senior class that set an NCAA record with a 50-3 mark in four seasons. Joe Southwick had the unfortunate task of being the first to step into Moore’s shadows — and it didn’t go as well as some would have liked. Southwick passed for less than 200 yards in six of his first nine starts and he said he had trouble going to the grocery store without hearing from unhappy fans. But the junior eliminated the outside noise and got better as the season went on, throwing for at least 200 yards and two touchdowns and no interceptions in each of the final four games of the season to lead the Broncos to a 4-0 finish.

Please see Offense, 11 10

Sunday, August 25, 2013

As a first-year starter last season, Southwick struggled out of the gate and passed for under 200 yards in six of his first nine games. But he finished strong, throwing for nearly 900 yards, 10 touchdowns and no interceptions in going 4-0 in the final four games. Back as the starter for his senior year, Southwick should be more comfortable and more productive as he builds off last year’s finish. If he is, the Boise State offense should be in good shape.

HELP AT WR

Adam Eschbach/IPT

Boise State quarterback Joe Southwick looks to pass during the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas against Washington Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012.

The Broncos return only three receivers that caught more than 19 catches last season and only one – Matt Miller – that had more than 36. Miller led the team with 66 catches, 769 yards and five touchdowns. If the offense wants to return to it’s previously explosive ways, the Broncos could use breakout years from seniors Aaron Burks and Geraldo Boldewijn.


For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

Offense Continued from 10 He topped it off with one of his best games of the season in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas, completing 26-of-38 passes for 264 yards and two touchdowns to lead Boise State to a 28-26 come-from-behind win over Washington. “I think he’s been practicing and playing like he did the last four, five games of last season,” Boise State coach Chris Petersen said. “He did it in spring ball and he’s done it in fall camp. He’s not flawless. That’s why we practice. … He’s done a really good job. He has tremendous command of what we’re doing. We just have to keep the decisions simple and clean for him.” Southwick took an increased leadership role during spring

ONLINE

and summer workouts and players raved during fall camp about the senior’s increased accuracy and command of the offense. The offense should be better for those reasons alone. Offensive coordinator Robert Prince and quarterbacks coach Jonathan Smith were both new to their roles in 2012, which also likely contributed to the lack of offensive production. But both are back in their same spot and players have said the familiarity between the coaches and players and the offense is much stronger. “The continuity has been big,” Smith said. “Returning starter, returning coordinator, I think in the second year, you’d like to think you make the biggest jump of improvement and we’re hoping that pans out.” Added Southwick: “I think that’s very under the radar of how important that is for this offense.”

The Bronco coaching staff also took additional steps to try and get the offense back to its high-scoring ways of the past. The Broncos plan to use the nohuddle offense with more frequency than last year and could run more plays out of the pistol formation after both were on display at the spring game and the open scrimmage earlier this month. Plenty of weapons also return, including the top two leading receivers in Matt Miller and Kirby Moore. Seniors Aaron Burks and Geraldo Boldewijn earned praise from teammates and coaches during fall camp and should boost the wide receivers group as well. Ajayi steps into the lead role at running back after rushing for 548 yards on 82 carries as a redshirt freshman last season. His 6.68 yards-per-carry was a school record for those with at least 75 attempt.

And the offensive line should be solid with three seniors and returning starters on the left side in left tackle Charles Leno Jr., left guard Spencer Gerke and center Matt Paradis. A pair of talented redshirt sophomores join the group on the right side in right guard Marcus Henry and right tackle Rees Odhiambo. The Broncos went 11-2, won a part of the Mountain West Conference championship and won their bowl game. It was a solid year by any critique. But not for the offense, which went into the offseason knowing they had plenty of work to do. “We just knew as a team we could do better,” Ajayi said. “We knew we could do better. We knew what we were capable of and it wasn’t being represented on the field. We knew we needed to take it upon ourselves to work hard and take ourselves to the next level.”

AJAYI ABILITY Jay Ajayi rushed for 548 yards on 82 carries as a redshirt freshman last year and his 6.68 yards-per-carry set a new school record. But that came as the backup to D.J. Harper, who has graduated. Ajayi’s ability to step in as the featured back and continue his high level of production with an increased workload will be a big factor in the success of the offense.

HEALTH As is the case with nearly every team around the country, the Broncos can’t afford any serious injuries to the offense. Losing quarterback Joe Southwick, leading receiver Matt Miller or speedy return specialist and wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes would be hard to overcome for a young team light on experience.

OFFENSIVE LINE The Broncos have three senior starters on the left side of the offensive line in left tackle Charles Leno Jr., left guard Spencer Gerke and center Matt Paradis. But they are breaking in a pair of new starters on the right in redshirt sophomores Marcus Henry at right guard and Rees Odhiambo at right tackle. How the line performs, especially on the right side, figures to go hand-in-hand with the level of productivity from the Broncos’ offense.

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ONLINE

For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

RESERVES Southwick struggled early last season as the first quarterback to try and replace recordsetter Kellen Moore, throwing seven interceptions and passing for under 200 yards in six of the first nine games. But he finished strong, throwing for 888 yards, nine touchdowns and no interceptions en route to a 4-0 finish, YR: Senior including a MAACO Bowl Las Vegas win. BSU HT: 6-1; WT: 202 HOME: Danville, Calif. coach Chris Petersen said the senior’s positive momentum carried over into fall camp.

NO NAME 9 Grant Hedrick 8 Nick Patti 14 Richard Hoppe

YR HT Jr. 6-0 Fr. 5-10 Fr. 5-10

WT 202 196 153

Coming off a torn ACL that was not yet 100 percent healed and admittedly about 10 pounds overweight, Ajayi somehow still rushed for 548 yards on 82 carries YR: Sophomore last season as the HT: 6-0; WT: 220 backup. His 6.68 HOMETOWN: Plano, yards-per-carry Texas average was the best single-season mark in school history for those with at least 75 attempts. Now he’s healthy, lighter and brings big expectations as he moves into the starting role.

2012 LEADERS PASSING Joe Southwick Grant Hedrick

COM-ATT YDS TD INT 248-371 2,730 19 7 12-17 116 0 0

2012 LEADERS The sure-handed Helena, Mont., native has recorded at least 60 catches, 675 yards and five touchdowns in each of his two seasons at Boise State. The junior led the Broncos with 66 receptions, 769 yards and five touchdowns as a sophomore in 2012 and is already 12th on the Broncos’ career receptions list with two YR: Junior seasons of eligibility remaining. He worked HT: 6-3; WT: 222 HOME: Helena, Mont. on getting faster during the offseason, which could pay off this season.

YR: Senior HT: 6-4; WT: 220 HOME: Amsterdam, Netherlands

After serving a pair of four-game suspensions due to improper benefits to start the previous two seasons, the Amsterdam native and Capital High graduate is expected to play in his first season opener since 2010. The fifth-year senior has the size and skills to be an elite receiver but has yet to put it all together. He had 18 catches for 197 yards in nine games last season.

RECEIVING Matt Miller Kirby Moore Chris Potter Shane Williams-Rhodes Geraldo Boldewijn Aaron Burks Mitch Burroughs Dallas Burroughs

NO YDS TD 66 769 5 36 368 1 34 347 4 25 142 1 18 197 2 17 319 1 12 124 0 4 100 0

RESERVES

NO NAME 10 Jamel Hart 21 Jack Fields 23 Derrick Thomas 26 Devan Demas 35 Charles Bertoli 38 Aaron Baltazar

The fifth-year senior was second on the Broncos with 36 receptions and 368 receiving yards last season as a junior, his most productive season to date at Boise State. Moore, who is widely regarded as the best route runner on the team, is a steady, dependable receiver who had YR: Senior multiple receptions in nine of HT: 6-3; WT: 208 HOME: Prosser, Wash. 13 games last season. He is the brother of Kellen Moore.

12

YR HT WT So. 5-6 157 So. 6-2 188 Sr. 6-3 205 Fr. 6-0 178 Jr. 5-9 174

NO NAME 39 David McKinzie 80 D.J. Dean 81 Dallas Burroughs 82 Thomas Sperbeck 83 Tanner Shipley

YR HT WT Fr. 6-0 165 Fr. 6-0 187 Jr. 5-8 171 Fr. 6-0 174 Fr. 6-0 182

HT 5-9 5-9 6-0 5-8 5-11 5-10

PASSING D.J. Harper Jay Ajayi Jack Fields Drew Wright

ATT YDS 228 1,137 82 548 43 135 18 67

2012 SCORING LEADERS

Greg Kreller/IPT

Boise State junior receiver Matt Miller has been a model of consistency for the Broncos in his two seasons with the team. The highly-recruited passcatcher from Helena, Mont., set Boise State’s single-season freshman record with 62 catches for 679 yards and nine TDs. He had 66 catches, 769 yards and five touchdowns and was named to the Mountain West second team in 2012.

PLAYER D.J. Harper Michael Frisina Matt Miller Chris Potter Jay Ajayi Holden Huff Grant Hedrick S. Williams-Rhodes Geraldo Boldewijn Eight players tied

TD FG 16 0 0 15-20 5 0-0 5 0-0 4 0-0 4 0-0 3 0-0 3 0-0 2 0-0 1 0-0

TD AVE 15 87.5 4 49.8 0 15.0 0 6.7

KICK PTS 0-0 100 42-44 87 0-0 30 0-0 30 0-0 24 0-0 24 0-0 18 0-0 18 0-0 12 0-0 6

WIDE RECEIVER

RUNNING BACK

QUARTERBACK

OFFENSIVE LINE

TIGHT END

The Broncos return three of their top four receivers from last season including leader Matt Miller and seniors Geraldo Boldewijn and Aaron Burks could have breakout years.

It should be another loaded group at running back for the Broncos, who replace 1,000-yard rusher D.J. Harper with talented sophomores Jay Ajayi and Jack Fields among others.

Joe Southwick proved last year that Kellen Moore’s career will be tough to beat. But he improved steadily as the season went on and should be better as a senior in year No. 2.

The three senior starters on the left side should be solid, but the Broncos have question marks in a pair of redshirt sophomores and first-year starters on the right side.

Senior Gabe Linehan is healthy again and Holden Huff should also contribute for the Broncos, who figure to keep their tight ends involved in the offense like usual.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

WT 195 195 208 172 200 215

2012 LEADERS

RESERVES NO NAME 11 Shane Williams-Rhodes 14 Troy Ware 18 Aaron Burks 19 Taylor Pope 20 Terrell Johnson

YR Fr. So. Jr. Fr. Fr. Fr.


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ONLINE

The longest tenured offensive lineman will start his team-best 27th consecutive game in the season opener against Washington on Aug. 31 in Seattle. Leno, a second team allMountain West selection last season, started all 13 games at left tackle after starting all 13 games in 2011 at right tackle. The criminal justice major was named to the preseason allMountain West team in July. He hopes to join YR: Senior former Bronco tackles Ryan Clady (Denver) HT: 6-4; WT: 295 HOME: Oakland, Calif. and Nate Potter (Arizona) in the NFL.

YR: Senior HT: 6-3; WT: 303 HOME: Boise

The Boise native appeared in each of the Broncos’ 13 games last season, including a career-best six starts. He appeared at both left and right guard but is slated to be the starter at left guard this fall. The fifth-year senior has appeared in 29 games during his time at Boise State and adds leadership to what figures to be a strong left side of the offensive line. He is the latest Bishop Kelly High graduate to start at Boise State, joining the likes of former linebacker Tim Brady.

YR: Senior HT: 6-3; WT: 300 HOME: Council

Paradis was the defensive scout team player of the year during his redshirt season in 2009 before switching from the defensive line to the offensive line in 2010. He was one of three Broncos to start at center in 2011 and took over the position exclusively last season. He started all 13 games at center as a junior and was named to the all-Mountain West first team.

The former first-team all-state high school lineman from Bellevue, Wash., will start his first college game near his home town when the Broncos play Washington in the season opener Aug. 31 in Seattle. Henry appeared in 11 games during his redshirt freshman season at Boise State in 2012, but most of his action came on the point-after attempt and field goal units. He was named first-team all-state YR: Sophomore as a senior at Bellevue in 2010 and helped the HT: 6-3; WT: 285 HOME: Bellevue, Wash. Wolverines win 3A state titles in 2009 and ‘10.

The 6-foot-4, 307-pound Odhiambo joins Marcus Henry as redshirt sophomores to crack Boise State’s starting lineup on the offensive line this fall. Odhiambo, from Mansfield, Texas, appeared in six games last season after earning honors from strength coach Tim Socha during his redshirt season in 2011. Players and coaches raved about Odhiambo and his improvement during fall camp after YR: Sophomore he moved into the starting spot during spring HT: 6-4; WT: 307 HOME: Mansfield, Texas practice.

The fifth-year senior appeared in the first four games last year and had one catch for 23 yards before suffering a seasonending injury. He had 23 catches for 252 yards and five touchdowns as a YR: Senior junior in 2011, but HT: 6-4; WT: 238 missed the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas with another injury. He has 30 catches for 357 yards and six touchdowns in 28 games for the Broncos. Linehan, the nephew of Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, will be counted on to produce and help lead a young tight ends corps that is counted on for pass catching and run blocking in Boise State’s multiple offensive formations.

2012 LEADERS RECEIVING Holden Huff Hayden Plinke Gabe Linehan Chandler Koch

No 17 2 1 1

Yds TD 250 4 20 0 23 0 11 0

RESERVES NO 84 85 86 88 89 91 93 98

NAME Jake Hardee Holden Huff Kyle Sosnowski Jake Roh Connor Peters Jackson Reed Brennyn Dunn Alec Dhaenens

YR HT WT So. 6-3 241 So. 6-5 236 Jr. 6-2 238 Fr. 6-2 210 Jr. 6-4 250 Fr. 6-4 226 Fr. 6-3 220 Fr. 6-3 232

2012 TEAM STATISTICS

Adam Eschbach/IPT

Boise State senior center Matt Paradis returns as the lone offensive player to be named first-team All-Mountain West Conference last season.

RESERVES NO NAME 52 Andrew Tercek 58 Robert Ash 59 Mason Hampton 60 Kellen Buhr 61 James Meagher 62 Chris Tozer 66 Mario Yakoo

YR HT Fr. 6-1 So. 6-3 Fr. 6-2 Fr. 6-0 Fr. 6-2 Sr. 6-4 Fr. 6-3

WT 279 291 266 285 286 319 323

NO NAME 70 Steven Baggett 73 Travis Averill 74 Archie Lewis 75 Eli McCullough 76 Jake Broyles 79 Avery Westendorf

YR HT Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-5 Sr. 6-5 Fr. 6-5

WT 285 296 275 271 286 292

STATISTIC BSU OPP Points per game 30.2 15.8 First downs 277 225 Rushing yardage 2,186 1,900 Yards gained rushing 2,391 2,298 Yards lost rushing 205 398 Rushing attempts 478 512 Average per rush 4.6 3.7 Average per game 168.2 146.2 TDs rushing 25 20 PASSING YARDAGE 2,901 2,203 Comp-Att-Int 263-394-7 219-376-18 Average per pass 7.4 5.9 Average per catch 11.0 10.1 Average per game 223.2 169.5 TDs passing 20 4 TOTAL OFFENSE 5,087 4,103 Average per play 5.8 4.6 Average per game 391.3 315.6 Sunday, August 25, 2013

13


ONLINE

AJAYI LOOKING TO LEAD

120

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MOST ELECTRIFYING

118

Ajayi burst on the scene as a redshirt freshman last season, taking his second career carry 71 yards. He finished with 548 yards on 82 carries and his 6.68 yards-per-carry average set a school single-season mark for running backs with at least 75 attempts.

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ONLINE

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Greg Kreller/IPT

Boise State’s Blake Renaud will be in the middle of things this season for the Broncos. The junior middle linebacker will be counted on after the graduation of J.C. Percy and Tommy Smith.

SEARCHING FOR POWER SOURCE

Defense must replace key losses yet again 16

By B.J. RAINS

bjrains@idahopress.com

© 2013 Idaho Press-Tribune

Boise State defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski has a simple philosophy when it comes to trying to replace key starters year after year. “Next guy up,” the Boise State hall of famer said. A year ago, the Boise State defense lost six players to the NFL and nine

Sunday, August 25, 2013

starters and still went out and had one of the best statistical seasons of any defense in the country. Now they are forced to try and do it again. The Broncos enter 2013 after losing seven starters from last year’s team, including three of their top four tacklers, both starting cornerbacks and two key linebackers. “We lost some great guys last year

but this year we’re coming back with more focus,” defensive end Demarcus Lawrence said. “There’s a lot of guys that want to stand up and play this year so we’re going to cause havoc any chance we get.” The Boise State defense allowed 15.8 points per game last year, the eighth lowest total in the nation. It allowed the fifth fewest passing yards (169.5) and the 12th fewest total

yards (315.6). The Broncos were 46th in rushing yards allowed (168.2). But it wasn’t just a one-year wonder. The Broncos have been one of the top defenses in the nation for several years. Since 2010, the Broncos are fourth in the country in fewest yards allowed at 297.05. The only three schools ahead of them are powers Alabama, LSU and Florida State.

Please see Defense, 17


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ONLINE

Defense

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17


ONLINE

YR: Senior HT: 6-3; WT: 245 HOME: Aiken, S.C.

The junior college transfer earned first-team allMountain West honors in his initial season with the Broncos in 2012 after leading the conference with 9.5 sacks. He also led the team with 13.5 tacklesfor-loss and four forced fumbles. A game-changing pass rusher from his defensive end position, Lawrence served a pair of one-game suspensions last year for unspecified violations, including one for the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas at the end of the season.

YR: Senior HT: 6-3; WT: 300 HOME: Amsterdam

A native of Amsterdam and a Boise High graduate, Tjong-A-Tjoe had a breakout season as a junior in 2012. He recorded a career-high 37 tackles, including 4.5 for a loss, and had 2.5 sacks. The defensive tackle had a career-high six tackles in games against Michigan State and San Diego State and recovered fumbles in back-to-back games against BYU and New Mexico. He is featured on one of four banners that hang outside Bronco Stadium.

YR: Junior HT: 6-5; WT: 265 HOME: Meridian

Horn started two games last season as a sophomore, but still managed to finish second on the team with 8.5 tackles-for-loss and five sacks. He played in all 13 games, seeing action at both defensive tackle and defensive end. The Mountain View High graduate figures to be a key component of the defensive line in 2013 and could again see time at both tackle and end. Horn’s first game came against Georgia in 2011.

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The true sophomore figures to step into the starting lineup at linebacker after seeing action in all 13 games as a reserve in 2012. Also a special teams standout, Gray had 27 tackles including a careerbest nine against UNLV on Oct. 30. He returned his first career interception at Southern Miss for YR: Sophomore 34 yards. He primarily lines up on the weak side. HT: 6-4; WT: 228 Redshirt freshman Ben Weaver could also be in the HOME: Templeton, Calif. mix for playing time.

YR: Senior HT: 6-2; WT: 243 HOME: Concord, Calif.

YR: Junior HT: 5-11; WT: 210 HOME: Boise

The task of replacing J.C. Percy and his 118 tackles from last season will land mostly on Renaud, who steps into the starting middle linebacker spot after being a regular in the rotation as a reserve last season. He finished sixth on the team with 46 tackles, including a career-high 10 against UNLV. Renaud is also a key contributor on special teams.

Bell played in all 13 games last season but started four of the final five. He finished seventh on the team with 45 tackles. Bell, who returned a fumble 19 yards for a touchdown against Wyoming, had a career-high eight tackles in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas against Washington. Bell figures to share time with senior Jonathan Brown at the ‘Sam’ linebacker or nickel position.

RESERVES

YR: Senior HT: 6-2; WT: 240 HOME: Phoenix

NO POS 7 LB 20 LB 25 LB 31 LB 32 LB 44 LB 45 LB 51 LB 54 LB 56 LB

The redshirt senior has battled injuries during his Boise State career but appears to finally be healthy for his final campaign in 2013. He played in 11 games for the Broncos last season and recorded a career-high 18 tackles. He forced a fumble against Southern Miss. Redshirt freshman Sam McCaskill battled an injury during training camp, but he also could contend for playing time at defensive end this season.

RESERVES NO POS 49 DE 97 DE 96 DL 53 DL 58 DT 55 DT 40 DT 90 DT 50 DT 92 STUD 94 STUD 33 STUD 18

NAME Darien Barrett Austin Silsby Elliot Hoyte Beau Martin Robert Ash Tutulupeatau Mataele Armand Nance Justin Taimatuia Nick Terry Kamalei Correa Sam McCaskill Gabe Perez

Sunday, August 25, 2013

YR HT Fr. 6-2 Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-4 Jr. 6-2 So. 6-3 Jr. 6-3 So. 6-0 Jr. 6-0 Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-2 Fr. 6-3 Fr. 6-4

WT 225 245 275 271 291 280 288 281 271 244 240 226

NAME Joe Martarano Tanner Vallejo Christopher Santini Andrew Pint Jonathan Brown Darren Lee Travis Saxton Ben Weaver Mat Boesen Dustin Kamper

YR HT Fr. 6-2 Fr. 6-1 Fr. 5-11 Fr. 6-0 Sr. 5-10 Fr. 6-1 Jr. 6-1 Fr. 6-0 Fr. 6-4 Sr. 6-1

WT 234 217 205 221 206 221 214 233 213 216

2012 DEFENSIVE LEADERS

Adam Eschbach/IPT

Boise State defensive tackle Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe wraps up Fresno State running back Robbie Rouse for a loss of yards during their game, Oct. 13, 2012.

DEFENSE J.C. Percy Jeremy Ioane Tommy Smith Jamar Taylor Demarcus Lawrence Blake Reneau Corey Bell Darian Thompson Mike Atkinson Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe

TT TFL 118 3.5 70 2.0 61 4.0 51 3.5 48 13.5 46 0.5 45 0.5 43 - 37 3.5 37 4.5

SACK INT 1.0 - - 3 1.0 - 2.5 4 9.5 1 - - - - - 3 1.5 1 2.5 -

FF 1 1 - 3 4 1 - - 2 -

FR 1 2 1 1 1 2


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ONLINE

FOLLOW THE LEADER The Broncos have holes to replace across the board on defense, meaning they will rely heavily on the limited experience they have. Demarcus Lawrence and his ability to dominate the defensive line will be huge, as will the play of Renaud at linebacker and junior safety Jeremy Ioane in the secondary. The defense has a tough task in trying to repeat last year’s success but they’ll need several players to step up if they want to have any chance.

A torn ACL forced Douglas to miss the final five games of last season but he returned to practice to start fall camp and is expected to start the season opener at Washington on Aug. 31. Douglas had five tackles and forced a fumble against Michigan State last season and also had five tackles against Southern Miss. He started the first three games of the season.

YR: Junior HT: 5-9; WT: 178 HOME: Los Angeles

SECONDARY The Broncos lost both starting cornerbacks from a season ago, including second-round NFL draft pick Jamar Taylor to the Miami Dolphins. Sophomore Donte Deayon steps into a starting role after burning his redshirt late last season while Bryan Douglas, who missed the final five games with a torn ACL, and Cleshawn Page, a JUCO transfer, compete for time at the other spot. Whether or not the secondary can replace a pair of key losses figures to be a big key.

LINEBACKERS No position on the Boise State roster was hit as hard with departures as the linebackers, who lost two of the Broncos’ three leading tacklers in J.C. Percy and Tommy Smith. Percy led the team with 118 tackles and Smith was third with 61. Blake Renaud steps into a prominent role in the middle after seeing most of his action on special teams the past two years. Tyler Gray, Jonathan Brown and Corey Bell will also be counted on with bigger roles. Overcoming the inexperience at linebacker will be a big factor in the Broncos’ success.

YR: Sophomore HT: 5-9; WT: 151 HOME: Rialto, Calif. Aaric Bryan/IPT

Boise State’s Demarcus Lawrence throws Brigham Young quarterback Riley Nelson on the Cougars’ first offensive play of the Sept. 20, 2012 game at Bronco Stadium. Boise State won 7-6.

DEFENSIVE SPARK

YR: Sophomore HT: 6-1; WT: 200 HOME: Lancaster, Calif.

DEFENSIVE LINE The defensive line figured to be one of the strengths of the Boise State defense until freshman All-American Sam Ukwuachu was booted from the team in the spring. Then JUCO transfer Tutulupeatau Mataele, who was impressive during the spring and figured to start, sat out fall camp with an academic issue and his status for the season is unknown. Demarcus Lawrence could be the Defensive Player of the Year in the conference, but how the rest of the line plays around him could determine how good the Boise State defense will be.

FORCE TURNOVERS The Broncos defense had 18 interceptions and recovered 18 fumbles last season en route to being one of the best statistical defenses in the country. The 36 combined takeaways meant nearly three per game, helping provide the Boise State offense with more possessions and better field position. The defense needs to force takeaways at a similar rate if they want to be as dominant again.

Deayon burned his redshirt to play in the final five games last season after Bryan Douglas went down with an ACL tear. He had 17 tackles on the season, including six against Hawaii on Nov. 10. He intercepted his first career collegiate pass in the same game. Deayon switched to No. 5 prior to this season, the number worn last year by second-round NFL draft pick Jamar Taylor.

YR: Junior HT: 5-10; WT: 190 HOME: Honolulu

MOST ELECTRIFYING

RESERVES

Lawrence led the Mountain West Conference with 9.5 sacks despite missing two games in his first season with the Broncos in 2012.

NO POS 6 CB 16 CB 29 CB 21 CB 19 CB 30 CB 3 CB 34 DB 47 DB 22 S 24 S 28 S 37 S

Thompson made an immediate impact as a redshirt freshman in 2012, playing in all 13 games and starting the final six. He had 43 tackles and finished tied for second on the team with three interceptions. He had a career-high nine tackles against Washington in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas. The sophomore is expected to be a key member of the secondary.

The Hawaii native is the most experienced member of the Boise State secondary after starting all 13 games last season and earning honorable mention All-Mountain West honors. Ioane finished second on the team with 70 tackles and had three interceptions, including one against Michigan State that he returned for a touchdown. He graduated from the same high school in Hawaii as President Barack Obama and Chargers linebacker Manti Te’o.

NAME Chaz Anderson Dionza Blue Deon’tae Florence Cameron Hartsfield Mercy Maston Jonathan Moxey Cleshawn Page Promise Amadi Brandon Brown Chanceller James Taylor Loffler Dillon Lukehart Ebo Makinde

YR HT Fr. 5-10 Fr. 5-11 Jr. 5-9 Fr. 5-9 Jr. 5-11 Fr. 5-9 Jr. 5-8 So. 5-9 Fr. 5-11 Fr. 6-1 So. 6-3 So. 6-0 Sr. 5-10

Sunday, August 25, 2013

WT 176 186 167 188 196 175 179 185 192 205 212 207 185 19


B.J. RAINS

B.J. Rains covers Boise State sports for the Idaho Press-Tribune. Call him at (208) 465-8190, email bjrains@idahopress.com and follow him on Twitter (@BJRains).

KICKER, PUNTER DUTIES STILL UP FOR GRABS By B.J. RAINS

bjrains@idahopress.com

© 2013 Idaho Press-Tribune

A big believer in the importance of special teams, Boise State coach Chris Petersen has had his eye on the kicking and punting portions of practice a little more than usual this fall. That’s because he’s yet to find a starter at either spot. In somewhat of a rarity in college football, the Broncos entered fall camp with dead even competitions at both field goal kicker and punter. And by the open scrimmage at the midway point of camp, he’d yet to even have a leader at either spot. “We’re all pushing each other,” said senior Trevor Harman, who is competing with redshirt freshman Sean Wale for the spot

at punter. “Kickers, punters, snappers — we’re all competing and it’s making us all better. “We’re all getting better. You can definitely see the improvement.” Harman, who was recruited to Boise State to be a kicker, didn’t become the starting punter until last season as a junior but struggled with his consistency. He averaged 41.2 yards per punt, but the Broncos ranked just 108th overall in net punting at 34.1 yards per punt. Petersen told reporters at Mountain West media days in Las Vegas that Harman was being pushed by Wale and that the two entered camp in an even battle. “Not playing your senior year is not how you want to go out

when you’ve been playing football since the third grade.” Harman said. “That’s something that’s pushing me. It’s hard thinking about. Of course I want to play and I’m going to do everything in my power to be that guy.” As is the case with Harman, Wale is also relatively new to this whole punting thing. The former kicker didn’t start punting until his senior year of high school and only came in contact with Boise State when defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski met him while recruiting one of his high school teammates. A similar battle has ensued with junior Dan Goodale and junior college transfer Tyler Rausa at kicker. Goodale, a graduate of Tim-

berline High, went 3-for-5 on field goals in 2011 and 50-for-56 on extra points before losing the starting spot after game-ending miss in a late-season game against TCU that contributed to the Broncos’ lone defeat of the season. He lost out last season as well when Michael Frisina, who has graduated, went on to make 15of-20 field goals — including a game-winning kick late in the fourth quarter against Washington in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas. Rausa transferred to Boise State in time for the spring semester and spring practices and comes with a strong leg. He went 15-for-20 on field goals at Riverside Community College and had a season long of 48 yards. He

also hit 52-of-53 extra points. “It’s a fair competition,” Rausa said. “Obviously he’s been here longer. We’re both going out and giving it our all every day trying to make the team better and overall I think we’re both making each other better.” The only special teams unit lacking any drama is at returner, where sophomore speedster Shane Williams-Rhodes figures to be the primary returner on both kick and punt returns. Williams-Rhodes had two kick-off returns for touchdowns in the open scrimmage on Aug. 18 and has the speed to take one to the house on any given play. He didn’t return any punts as a freshman in 2012 but averaged 24.9 yards on 13 kick returns.

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ONLINE

SPECIAL TEAMS SPARK PLUG MOST ELECTRIFYING

Williams-Rhodes’ role is expected to be much greater than it was during his freshman season in 2012. The wide receiver and kick returner also will handle punts.

Adam Eschbach/IPT

Boise State receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes has an open field in sight during a first down run against Washington in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas on Dec. 22, 2012.

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ONLINE

YR: Sophomore; HT: 5-6; WT: 157 HOME: Spring, Texas Arguably the most dynamic player on the Boise State roster, WilliamsRhodes figures to be the primary returner for both punts and kickoffs this season. He returned 13 kicks for an average of 24.9 yards as a true freshman last year but didn’t have any returns on punts. A group of others, including Bryan Douglas, could also see action returning punts.

2012 PUNT RETURN LEADERS

PUNT RETURN RESERVES

PLAYER Chris Potter Mitch Burroughs

NO NAME 1 Bryan Douglas 5 Donte Deayon

NO AVE TD LG 24 11.8 0 37 3 -1.0 0 3

YR HT WT Jr. 5-9 178 So. 5-9 151

2012 KICK RETURN LEADERS

KICK RETURN RESERVES

PLAYER Shane Williams-Rhodes D.J. Harper Dallas Burroughs Mitch Burroughs Bryan Douglas Jay Ajayi

NO NAME 35 Charles Bertoli 81 Dallas Burroughs

NO AVE TD LG 13 24.9 0 47 7 26.9 0 54 2 30.5 0 36 2 31.0 0 40 2 25.5 0 29 1 16.0 0 16

TWIN FALLS

YR HT WT Fr. 5-11 200 Jr. 5-8 171

For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

Goodale appears to have the leg up on junior college transfer Tyler Rausa for field goal kicking duties after the two opened training camp in a dead heat. Goodale YR: Junior went 3-for-5 as the HT: 5-10; WT: 196 Broncos’ kicker as a HOME: Boise redshirt freshman in 2011 and missed a key kick against TCU that could have helped send Boise State to a BCS bowl. He lost his spot to senior Michael Frisina last season.

Boise State coach Chris Petersen had yet to name a starting punter during his chat with reporters following the fall scrimmage on Aug. 18 and he could wait until the YR: Senior Broncos’ season opener against Washington HT: 6-3; WT: 211 on Saturday in Seattle. Both Harman, a HOME: Beaverton, Ore. senior, and Wale, a redshirt freshman, entered fall camp in an even competition. Harman was the starter last season but was inconsistent. Wale pushed Harman during spring practices to pull even heading into fall camp. Harman is also a kickoff specialist.

2012 LEADERS

2012 LEADERS PUNTING YR: Freshman Trevor Harman HT: 6-1; WT: 185 HOME: La Habra, Calif. Joe Southwick

NO AVE LG 42 41.2 60 7 29.9 38

BOISE

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Greg Kreller/IPT

Junior Dan Goodale looks to regain the starting kicking job for the first time since 2011.

FIELD GOALS Michael Frisina

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LG 75

PAT 42-44

RESERVES NO NAME Tyler Rausa

YR HT WT So. 5-8 190

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MWC SHINES WITH NEW FORMAT, TOP QBS By B.J. RAINS

bjrains@idahopress.com

© 2013 Idaho Press-Tribune

Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr looked around the room at Mountain West media days in Las Vegas last month and couldn’t help but notice the number of talented quarterbacks seated around him. “I feel bad for the defensive coordinators,” Carr said. Carr — who might be the cream of the crop after passing for 4,104 yards and 37 touchdowns as a junior last season — was one of six quarterbacks selected by their teams to represent them at the annual media event. There’s no denying it’s the year of the quarterback in the Mountain West. The Mountain West Conference retained Boise State and San Diego State after the two originally agreed to leave for

the Big East Conference, and went out and added a pair of 11-2 teams from a season ago in San Jose State and Utah State for 2013. And that meant adding to the league’s already deep talent pool at quarterback with the additions of David Fales and Chuckie Keaton. Fales (San Jose State) joins Carr as likely future NFL draft picks after passing for 4,193 yards and 33 touchdowns last season while Keaton passed for 3,373 yards and 27 touchdowns in 2012 for Utah State. Nevada’s Cody Fajardo might be the most dynamic quarterback in the league after passing for 2,786 yards and 20 touchdowns and also rushing for 1,121 yards and 12 more touchdowns. Boise State’s Joe Southwick and Wyoming’s Brett Smith also figure to have big years. “It’s exciting to be with this group of

guys and this great talent,” Fales said. “From Derek to Brett to Chuckie to Joe Southwick to Cody Fajardo - I could keep going. It’s going to be exciting every week.” The quarterbacks are just one reason why the Mountain West should be an intriguing league to keep an eye on in 2013. With the league now at 12 teams, the conference split into the Mountain and West divisions and the winners of each will meet on Dec. 7 in the first Mountain West Conference Championship Game. But the quarterbacks aren’t the only position with talent. Four running backs that averaged at least 93 yards rushing per game last season return to the Mountain West, as do eight of the nine wide receivers who averaged at least 57 yards per game. “I think this league is better than people outside the league realize,” Boise State coach Chris Petersen said.

Adam Eschbach/IPT

Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr played last year with a sports hernia and an abdominal muscle tear.

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MOUNTAIN DIVISION TEAM 1. Boise State 2. Utah State 3. Air Force 4. Wyoming 5. Colorado State 6. New Mexico

FIRST PTS 40 245 1 204 - 143 - 116 - 90 - 63

WEST DIVISION TEAM 1. Fresno State 2. San Diego State 3. San Jose State 4. Nevada 5. UNLV 6. Hawaii

FIRST PTS 39 243 1 181 1 172 - 135 - 71 - 59

Brett Smith Steffon Batts

Chuckie Keeton

UTAH STATE AGGIES

Shaquil Barrett

AIR FORCE FALCONS

WYOMING COWBOYS

COLORADO ST. RAMS

Kasey Carrier

NEW MEXICO LOBOS

ALL-MWC OFFENSE POS PLAYER QB Derek Carr, Sr. WR Davante Adams, So. WR Noel Grigsby, Sr. RB Kasey Carrier, Sr. RB Adam Muema, Jr. OL Charles Leno, Sr. OL Matt Paradis, Sr. OL Weston Richburg, Sr. OL Austin Wentworth, Sr. OL Tyler Larsen, Sr. TE Marcel Jensen, Sr.

TEAM Fresno State Fresno State San Jose St. New Mexico San Diego St. Boise State Boise State Colorado St. Fresno St. Utah State Fresno State

ALL-MWC DEFENSE POS PLAYER TEAM DL Demarcus Lawrence, Jr. Boise St. DL Tyeler Davison, Jr. Fresno St. DL Brock Hekking, Jr. Nevada DL Travis Raciti, Jr. San Jose St. LB Jake Fely, Jr. San Diego St. LB Keith Smith, Sr. San Jose St. LB Kyler Fackrell, So. Utah State DB L.J. Jones, Sr. Fresno State DB Derron Smith, Jr. Fresno State DB Nat Berhe, Sr. San Diego St. DB Bené Benwikere, Sr. San Jose St.

ALL-MWC SPECIAL TEAMS POS PLAYER P Ben Skaer, Sr. PK Austin Lopez, So. Ret. Chase Clayton, Jr.

TEAM New Mexico San Jose St. New Mexico

PLAYERS OF THE YEAR OFFENSE: Derek Carr, QB, Sr., Fresno St. DEFENSE: Derron Smith, DB, Jr., Fresno St. SPECIAL TEAMS: Chase Clayton, KR, Jr., New Mexico

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Sunday, August 25, 2013

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

CHUCKIE KEETON accounted for 3,992 yards and 35 touchdowns as a sophomore last season. The QB passed for 3,373 yards and 27 TDs against nine INTs, and rushed for 619 yards and eight TDs.

JON LEE was third on the team with 545 yards rushing and scored four TDs. With the Falcons’ entire backfield from last year’s team gone, Lee might be a go-to player for the ground-heavy Falcons.

BRETT SMITH returns under center after passing for 2,837 yards and 27 touchdowns against six INTs. He also had 248 yards and six more scores on a team-high 114 carries as a sophomore last season.

SHAQUIL BARRETT was a first-team All-MWC preseason pick in 2012 and ended up with honorable mention honors. The linebacker had 99 tackles (45 solo), 4.5 tackles for a loss and 2.5 sacks in 2011.

KASEY CARRIER was named a preseason All-MWC running back after rushing for 1,469 yards and 15 TDs in 2012. Carrier was a second team all-conference pick after last season.

OUTLOOK: Utah State will try to follow up possibly the best season in school history in 2012. Utah State returns eight offensive starters, including all five offensive linemen and quarterback Chuckie Keeton. Seven starters are back on defense for first-year coach Wells, who was promoted from offensive coordinator.

OUTLOOK: The Falcons will try to rebound from a disappointing 2012 season in which they lost to both Army and Navy to lose grips of the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy for the first time since 2009. In addition to their starting backfield, they will have to replace three linebackers who combined to register 311 tackles and 25.5 tackles for loss.

OUTLOOK: Smith has a new position coach, former Washington State standout Jason Gesser. Gesser served as offensive coordinator and interim coach at Idaho last season. Former Vandals coach Chris Tormey enters his second season leading the Cowboys defense, one that yielded an average of 470.3 yards and 33.4 points per game last year.

OUTLOOK: The building continues for McElwain, the former Alabama O-coordinator. Colorado State averaged 339 yards and 21.2 points per game and gave up 405.6 yards and 30.3 points. Barrett (7.5 TFL, 3.5 sacks), LBs Aaron Davis (84 tackles, 5 TFL) and Cory James (10.5 TFL, 7.5 sacks) and S Trent Matthews (71 tackles) are back.

OUTLOOK: New Mexico returns five offensive starters and three starters on defense. The good news for the Lobos is their run-dominated offensive plan has experience with Carrier running behind four returning offensive linemen. On defense, the Lobos have their top tackler back in senior linebacker Dallas Bollema (89 tackles, 6.5 TFL, 3 INTs, 2 FR).

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

Sept. 1 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 28 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 28 Oct. 5 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Nov. 2 Nov. 8 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

Aug. 29 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 27 Oct. 4 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

at Utah at Air Force WEBER STATE at USC at San Jose St. BYU BOISE STATE at New Mexico HAWAII at UNLV COLORADO ST. WYOMING

6 p.m. 1:30 p.m. 6 p.m. TBD 6 p.m. 6 p.m. 5:30 p.m. TBA 2 p.m. TBA 1:30 p.m. Noon

Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 13 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 5 Oct. 10 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 8 Nov. 21 Nov. 30

COLGATE UTAH STATE at Boise State WYOMING at Nevada at Navy SAN DIEGO STATE NOTRE DAME ARMY at New Mexico UNLV at Colorado State

TBA 1:30 p.m. 6 p.m. TBA 5:30 p.m. 9:30 a.m. 7 pm. 3 p.m. TBA 7 p.m. 7:30 p.m. TBA

Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

at Nebraska IDAHO NORTHER COLORADO at Air Force at Texas State NEW MEXICO COLORADO STATE at San Jose State FRESNO STATE at Boise State HAWAII at Utah State

6 p.m. TBA TBA TBA 5 p.m. TBA TBA TBA TBA TBA Noon Noon

vs. Colorado (Denver) 4 p.m. at Tulsa 5 p.m. CAL POLY TBA UTEP 1:30 p.m. SAN JOSE STATE 1:30 p.m. at Wyoming TBA at Hawaii TBA BOISE STATE 6 p.m. NEVADA TBA at New Mexico TBA at Utah State 1:30 p.m. AIR FORCE TBA

UTSA TBA at UTEP 6 p.m. at Pittsburgh 10:30 a.m. UNLV TBA NEW MEXICO STATE TBA at Wyoming TBA UTAH STATE TBA at San Diego State TBA AIR FORCE 7 p.m. COLORADO STATE TBA at Fresno State 5 p.m. at Boise State TBA


For the latest Boise State content online, visit idahopress.com/sports and make sure to check the IPT Sports blog at idahopress.com/blogs/sports

ONLINE

Taylor Graham

Cody Fajardo

Adam Muema

Derek Carr

Tim Cornett

David Fales

FRESNO ST. BULLDOGS

SAN DIEGO ST. AZTECS

SAN JOSE ST. SPARTANS

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

PLAYER TO WATCH

DEREK CARR passed for a league-record 4,104 yards and had 37 touchdowns last season en route to winning the MWC OPOY. He’s likely to be a high-round NFL draft pick next April.

ADAM MUEMA rushed for 1,458 yards and 16 touchdowns last season as a sophomore. He figures to be more involved in the offense this season as they add him to the passing game.

DAVID FALES was the most accurate quarterback in the FBS last year and threw for 4,193 yards and 33 touchdowns. The senior is likely to continue his football career in the NFL next year.

CODY FAJARDO passed for 2,786 yards and 20 touchdowns last year as a sophomore and also rushed for 1,121 yards and 12 more touchdowns. He’s the perfect quarterback to run the Pistol.

TIM CORNETT was one of the few bright spots on offense last year for the Rebels, rushing for 1,232 yards and seven touchdowns. Expect Cornett to see an even bigger load this year.

TAYLOR GRAHAM steps into the starting quarterback role after running the scout team last year. The Ohio State transfer has a strong arm and should immediately upgrade last year’s poor offense.

OUTLOOK: DeRuyter arrived in Fresno last season and brought immediate results, leading the Bulldogs to a share of the Mountain West title in his first year. He has plenty of talent coming back and a manageable schedule, making them the clear favorites to win the new Mountain Division.

OUTLOOK: The Aztecs are defending a co-championship for the first time since 1998 but must adjust to new offensive coordinator Bob Toledo’s offense. Quarterback Adam Dingwell completed 58 percent of his passes and had eight touchdowns to seven interceptions. He’ll need to be better if they want to reach the first MWC title game.

OUTLOOK: The Spartans have talent returning but repeating one of the best seasons in school history will not be easy. San Jose State won 11 games for the first time since 1940 last year but steps into a tougher league in the MWC this year. Still, Fales should lead the offense to another productive season and bowl game.

OUTLOOK: Nevada has a new head coach but things don’t figure to change much. The Wolf Pack will still run the Pistol offense created by former coach Chris Ault and have the weapons in place to make it successful yet again. The defense is another story with several key departures. Nevada is looking to reach a ninth-straight bowl game.

OUTLOOK: There’s optimism surrounding the UNLV program with the return of 19 starters and the hiring of new offensive and defensive coordinators. Sophomore quarterback Nick Sherry need to improve after throwing more INTs (17) than TDs (16) as a freshman. Hauck may need to come close to bowl eligibility to keep his job.

OUTLOOK: The Warriors won their last two games of 2012 to carry some momentum into the offseason but figure to have another down year in part because of a tough schedule. The offense returns seven starters but the Warriors need to develop weapons around him. Hawaii must also avoid injuries after losing five players to knee injuries in ‘12.

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

2013 SCHEDULE

Aug. 29 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 20 Sept. 28 Oct. 5 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 23 Nov. 29

Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 4 Oct. 10 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

Aug. 29 Sept. 7 Sept. 21 Sept. 27 Oct. 5 Oct. 12 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 29

Aug. 31 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 4 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 30

Aug. 29 Sept. 7 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 12 Oct. 19 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 21 Nov. 30

Aug. 29 Sept. 7 Sept. 21 Sept. 28 Oct. 5 Oct. 12 Oct. 26 Nov. 2 Nov. 9 Nov. 16 Nov. 23 Nov. 30

RUTGERS 8:30 p.m. CAL POLY 8 p.m. at Colorado Noon. BOISE STATE 7 p.m. at Hawaii 10 p.m. at Idaho 3 p.m. UNLV 8 p.m. at San Diego State TBA NEVADA 5 p.m. at Wyoming 1 p.m. NEW MEXICO 5 p.m. at San Jose State 1:30 p.m.

EASTERN ILLINOIS 6 p.m. at Ohio State 1:30 p.m. OREGON STATE 5:30 p.m. at New Mexico State 6 p.m. NEVADA 7 p.m. at Air Force 7 p.m. FRESNO STATE TBA NEW MEXICO 6 p.m. at San Jose State 8:30 p.m. at Hawaii 9:30 p.m. BOISE STATE 8:30 p.m. at UNLV TBA

SACRAMENTO STATE 8 p.m. at Stanford 9 p.m. at Minnesota TBA Utah State 7 p.m. at Hawaii 10 p.m. at Colorado State 1:30 pm. WYOMING 5 p.m. at UNLV 2 p.m. SAN DIEGO STATE 8:30 p.m. at Nevada TBA NAVY 7:30 p.m. FRESNO STATE 1:30 p.m.

UNLV REBELS

NEVADA WOLF PACK

at UCLA 8 p.m. UC DAVIS 7:05 p.m. at Florida State 1:30 p.m. HAWAII 6 p.m. AIR FORCE 6 p.m. at San Diego State 7 p.m. at Boise State 6 p.m. UNLV TBA at Fresno State TBA at Colorado State TBA SAN JOSE STATE TBA BYU Noon

at Minnesota 5 p.m. ARIZONA 8:30 p.m. CENTRAL MICHIGAN 8 p.m. WESTERN ILLINOIS 7 p.m. at New Mexico 6 p.m. HAWAII 6 p.m. at Fresno State 8 p.m. at Nevada TBA SAN JOSE STATE 2 p.m. UTAH STATE TBA at Air Force 7:30 p.m. SAN DIEGO STATE TBA

HAWAII WARRIORS

USC 9 p.m. at Oregon State 6 p.m. at Nevada 6 p.m. FRESNO STATE 10 p.m. SAN JOSE STATE 10 p.m. at UNLV 6p.m. COLORADO STATE 10 p.m. at Utah State 2 p.m. at Navy 1:30 p.m. SAN DIEGO STATE 9:30 p.m. at Wyoming Noon ARMY 10 p.m.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

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Boise State Football Preview: Power Issue