Examining Boise State's depth chart following the great walk-on exodus of 2009

Thou shalt not run the "Q" offense. (via lighthousepatriotjournal)

You could make a pretty decent WAC team with the talent that has left the Boise State program since spring practice.

Wednesday's news of Drew Hawkins' departure was the latest in a line of players, all walk-ons, who have presumably seen the writing on the wall and left to pursue other activities - like totally owning intramural football this fall.

Where does all this cutting and running leave the Broncos? I'm glad you asked. Let's examine BSU's depth, post Ten-Commandments-like exodus.

First off, a recap. According to the not-yet-furloughed Chadd Cripe, the following players are no more: QB/WR Drew Hawkins, TE Josh Hill, RB Stephen Gabbard, LB Alex Ruben, DL Jake Densley, LS Anthony D'Mato (whose doppelganger still appears on BSU's roster page), and WR Tim Ruben. Are any of them big losses? In the grand scheme of things, no. Hawkins would probably account for the biggest departure and that's only because I had already dreamed up a sick double-WR-QB-reverse-pass-touchdown play.

So while the actual impact of losing these players will be negligible, their leaving does give us an excuse to obsess over the BSU depth chart again. As if we needed an excuse!

Returning Starters Experienced players Incoming freshmen/transfers Total on roster
QB 1 2 2 4
RB/FB 0 2 5 10
WR 1 6 3 9
TE 1 4 2 7
OL 3 6 3 17
DE 1 4 3 7
DT 1 4 2 10
LB 1 3 3 12
CB 2 6 3 10
S 2 4 2 8

 

*Note: Richie Brockel was listed as a TE, for whatever that's worth

Observations:

It might be best if teams don't throw against the Broncos this year

Not only does BSU return all four of its starting corners and safeties, it has ten guys with game experience from last fall. One of the guys who doesn't have either starting or game experience with the Broncos? Winston Venable, the de facto new starter at the roving safetybacker position. So out of the 18 total secondary players, 11 have the potential to be hands-down beasts this year.

And yet, out of the seven walk-ons to leave, none were from the BSU secondary. What is Marcel Yates putting in their water? I'm going to assume the legend of Marty Tadman has something to do with this.

The thinnest position on the team: Defensive End

I believe we were saying the same thing last year, December-ish.

While true that Ryan Winterswyk, Byron the Hout, Shea McClellin, and Jarrell Root return, no one else does. As such, you have newbies Nick Alexander, Zach Gholson, and Kharyee Marshall for depth. Might we see some fancy finagling again from the Bronco staff? Remember that Hout was a stud linebacker prospect right up until he needed to be a stud defensive end. I would not spend too much time studying zone drop technique if I were Aaron Tevis. He may be one Jarrell Root glass leg away from serious PT.

Should I be worrying about our running back situation?

Of course not. But I shouldn't be watching "I'm a celebrity ... Get me out of here!" either.

Behind Jeremy Avery and D.J. Harper, there is ... "Mr. August" Jarvis Hodge? Matt Kaiserman - now with more hustle? Doug Mart- oh, that's right. I forgot. It's Avery and Harper and then, probably, whoever shows up big in fall camp. It could be Hodge or Kaiserman. It could even be true freshman Malcolm Johnson. My gut feeling? A thunder and lightning combination of African-American Richie Brockel and the Canadian Bacon.

By and large, Boise State will be okay after losing seven walk-on players. But don't take my word for it. Take Bronco scribe Lace Banachek's:

The bottom line is the Broncos are deeper in talent then most people media etc, and even some fans realize. What you gonna do? What can you do - but extend a hand bid good luck and get on with it?

I am not entirely sure what a "hand bid" is, but other than that, I hear you, Lace. Extend a hand bid good luck and get on with it. Well said.

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