Boise State celebrates senior day this weekend with its game against Utah State, and what better way to honor the program's old geezers than letting them all start against a WAC also-ran? Flowers just don't cut it any more.
After the jump, read along as I go through Boise State's depth chart, learn from last week's Nevada loss, and predict what we might see from Boise State on Saturday. Then feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
Boise State offense
Boise State defense
Z - 2 Austin Pettis 6-3 203 Sr.
X - 1 Titus Young 5-11 175 Sr.
H - 89 Tyler Shoemaker 6-1 215 Jr.
LT - 73 Nate Potter 6-6 300 Jr.
LG - 75 Faraji Wright 6-3 282 So.
C - 66 Thomas Byrd 5-11 281 Jr.
RG - 59 Will Lawrence 6-2 291 Sr.
RT - 72 Matt Slater 6-4 267 Sr.
TE - 80 Kyle Efaw 6-4 232 Jr.
QB - 11 Kellen Moore 6-0 191 Jr.
RB - 22 Doug Martin 5-9 212 Jr.
FB - 47 Dan Paul 6-0 241 Jr.
E - 98 Ryan Winterswyk 6-4 270 Sr.
96 Jarrell Root 6-3 257 Jr.
T - 90 Billy Winn 6-4 288 Jr.
N - 97 Chase Baker 6-1 295 Jr.
SE - 92 Shea McClellin 6-3 254 Jr.
MIKE- 52 Derrell Acrey 6-1 238 Sr.
WILL- 36 Aaron Tevis 6-3 232 Jr.
S 23 Jeron Johnson 5-11 198 Sr.
S 8 George Iloka 6-3 209 Jr.
N 17 Winston Venable 5-11 220 Sr.
CB 21 Jamar Taylor 5-11 191 So.
CB 13 Brandyn Thompson 5-10 177 Sr.
PK - 35 Kyle Brotzman 5-10 197 Sr.
14 Trevor Harman 6-2 197 Fr.
KO - 14 Trevor Harman 6-2 197 Fr.
HD - 2 Austin Pettis 6-3 203 Sr.
P - 35 Kyle Brotzman 5-10 197 Sr.
SNP - 44 Chris Roberson 6-0 226 So.
KR - 4 Titus Young 5-11 175 Sr.
PR - 3 Chris Potter 5-9 160 So.
Disclaimer: Depth charts mean as much as you want them to mean. Keep in mind that things change over the course of a game week and that game situations, injuries, and performance will render some of this depth chart moot. Still, it's fun to speculate ... with hyperbole! This will be the same depth chart forever!
Note: Boise State's official depth chart has yet to be released to the public. What you see above is last week's with my best guesses at what this week's looks like.
Boise State seniors: Congratulations on all your successes
Boise State's senior class is what every other senior class wishes it could be. It is invariably better than yours or mine - especially mine since our lasting legacy was a racial equality fountain spigot that we have yet to purchase. Reparations are nice and all, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't envious of this:
- 46 wins, 5 losses
- Bowl wins: Fiesta Bowl
- Four straight seasons of Top 25 defenses (including one Top Ten)
- Four straight seasons of Top 20 offenses (including two Top Tens)
(Rank stats are yards per game and courtesy of cfbstats.com.)
Ladies and gentlemen, we just witnessed one of the greatest Boise State senior classes in school history and one of the most storied senior classes in college football history. And yes, that may be the hyperbole and mood enhancers talking, but I'm not afraid to say it.
Will Michael Coughlin start at quarterback?
Last time Boise State had a backup senior quarterback was Bush Hamdan in 2008, perhaps best known for starting on senior day and throwing a pick-six on his first series. But Michael Coughlin is no Bush Hamdan, and by that I mean Michael Coughlin is never allowed to pass in real game situations. So why not start the guy? If the only plays he knows how to run are read options and handoffs, what's the worst that could happen?
/remembers fumble from New Mexico State game
/remembers Shiloh Keo trying to take Coughlin's head off
/remembers the past four fall scrimmages
Will Jeremy Avery start at running back? Will Jarvis Hodge?
Avery has proven his worth to this team over four stellar years that saw him bounce between roles as the feature back, the featured backup, and the featured backup to the backup. He deserves to be rewarded with a bajillion carries against the Aggies, give or take.
Hodge has shown time and again this season that he is a talented, hard-working back who can gain yards against bad defenses. And hey, it just so happens Utah State is coming to town!
So which way do the Broncos go? Who gets the ball first?
My prediction (and you heard it here first so don't let KTVB go taking the credit): A Hodge-to-Avery reverse. Let it be written, let it be done.
Most of the other Bronco seniors are already starters, so there's really no need to juggle the lineup to accommodate them. The leftovers:
- Jason Robinson. I wouldn't be surprised to see George Iloka give way to Robinson to start the game.
- Sean King. I'm 100 percent positive that there's a 70 percent chance King is still on the team. He doesn't exactly get on TV a lot. Still, starting King on Saturday wouldn't hurt anyone, so I don't see any reason not to.
Apparently there was a football game last week. Whatever!
- Doug Martin surpassed 1,000 rushing yards. He now has 1,090 yards on the season. Martin is 61 yards away from Jeremy Avery's 1,151-yard total, which was good for 7th all-time in school history.
- Kellen Moore surpassed 3,000 passing yards. He now has 3,269 yards on the season. With 268 yards in his final two games, he will have the second-highest passing yardage season of all-time at Boise State.
- Titus Young moved into second place all-time on the Broncos' career receptions list. Austin Pettis is first. Of course he is.
- Young has 1,117 yards on the season and needs 76 more to pass Tim Gilligan for the top receiving yardage season in Bronco history.
- Kellen Moore's passer rating is 188.0, which puts him on pace to break Colt Brennan's NCAA record of 186.0.
Jeron Johnson reclaims spot as team's top tackler
Thanks to his 14 tackles against Nevada, Jeron Johnson is back atop Boise State's tackles leaderboard. See, there is a silver lining to everything.
Here are your Top Three tacklers:
- Jeron Johnson, 63 tackles
- J.C. Percy, 58 tackles
- George Iloka, 55 tackles
No. 42: Kellen Moore, 1 tackle.
Boise State defensive strategy: Stubbornness
I joke a lot about last week's game not ever happening, but like Coach Pete said, losses are great learning opportunities so there's no sense sweeping them under the rug. Burying emotions does not help you grow as a person, and as someone who still harbors resentment for a youth football weigh-in incident, I can vouch for that.
One of my biggest questions following Friday night's game was what happened to the Boise State defense? More importantly, where were the creativity and the in-game adjustments?
And the more I thought about, the more I realized that there really was no need for the Broncos to get creative. This was one of the best defenses in America. Playing the run was a strength. They hadn't needed to do anything exotic all year to be successful, so it made sense to think that they could get by on Friday night.
In hindsight, it's easy to wish that Pete Kwiatkowski would have dreamed up some Justin Wilcox blitz scheme or would have adjusted coverage to help Brandyn Thompson. But at the time, an entire season of evidence told him that Boise State's D should have the advantage. Judging the game in hindsight just isn't fair.
Brandyn Thompson picked a bad time to have his worst game maybe ever
Thompson was used and abused by Nevada's Rishard Matthews, showing little of the tight coverage and playmaking skills that had been his hallmark for most of the season.
But he wasn't alone. Lots of Broncos had a rough go of it on Friday night - like Joe Kellogg, Aaron Tevis, and others. As mentioned before, it was a collective bad day for pretty much everyone on the Boise State football roster. Except Kellen Moore, natch.
Kellen Moore or Colin Kaepernick for WAC Offensive Player of the Year?
This race really shouldn't even be close, but the fact that Kaepernick beat Moore head-to-head might account for something when the votes are tallied at the end of this week. Like Chris Ault's vote.
Dontay Moch may have sealed his WAC DPOY award
In the battle between Moch and Shea McClellin, Moch came out the victor both on the scoreboard and on the field. Presumably, Moch's only other competition for the award is Fresno DE Chris Carter, but you have to think that Moch being on a WAC co-champion and his being reigning DPOY carries some clout.
Also, if Moch wins this award, that probably helps Moore's case for OPOY. Wouldn't want outsiders thinking that bias was at play, now would we? (Graham Watson does not understand the question.)
- Tyler Shoemaker was apparently dinged up last week against Nevada. He is supposed to be full strength for USU.
- Boise State did not award individual player of the week honors. They were too busy having a sad.
- Joe Kellogg and Faraji Wright will probably continue their depth chart slog for starter's rights again this week.
How do you think Boise State's starters will look on senior night? Will Coach Pete let Michael Coughlin lead the first-team offense? What leftover thoughts do you have about the Nevada game? Share your thoughts in the comments.