Boise State bounced back from its loss to TCU in a big way against San Diego State on Saturday night, taking a 45-14 lead into the fourth quarter and then packing it in. There were a lot of big-time performers in the 52-35 Bronco win, and three of them get their just desserts after the jump. Plus, find out who or what was the game's biggest goat.
Star No. 1: Kellen Moore
Paired against one of the top NFL prospects in college football (Ryan Lindley, for reasons that are not immediately clear), Moore put on a passing clinic, finishing with 366 yards and four first-half touchdowns, three of which went to Tyler Shoemaker. Moore hit Shoemaker 10 times in the game, which is pretty great. But not as great as this: The Heisman candidate completed passes to 11 different Broncos. Eleven! That's an entire team worth of receivers. Give that man the Mountain West Player of the Year award and a ticket to New York.
Star No. 2: Doug Martin
A couple of things: 1) Martin was the team's only running back to have any carries on Saturday night due to D.J. Harper's injury and coaches not wanting to use Drew Wright very often, 2) Martin was not at 100 percent because of the injury he suffered against UNLV and that kept him out against TCU, 3) Martin had 36 carries. Thirty-six! The man rushed for two games' worth of carries on one leg and still finished with 129 yards and two scores. His second score, the one that iced the game in the fourth quarter, was a picture of power and grace as he stiff-armed San Diego State DB Larry Parker while jumping in the air and then scooted 22 yards into the end zone.
Star No. 3: Gavin Escobar
Tyler Shoemaker deserves credit for his career night, and Shea McClellin, Josh Borgman, and Tyrone Crawford were also considered. But San Diego State tight end Gavin Escobar gets the nod for Star No. 3 for being one of the biggest threats on the field all night. He finished with eight catches for 113 yards, two touchdowns, and a two-point conversion. He was nigh unstoppable at times, particularly his one jaunt down the sideline where he broke two Bronco tackles with the greatest of ease. Perhaps the biggest compliment I could pay him would be that I was jealous. I want Boise State to have a dynamic tight end like Escobar. Intern, fetch my video game system.
Goats: San Diego State PR Leon McFadden and KR Brandon Davis
With Boise State jumping out to an early 7-0 lead and the San Diego State defense having just done its best to swing momentum back in the Aztecs' favor, the San Diego State special teams grabbed a shovel and started digging an enormous hole for Rocky Long's fellas to climb out of.
First, Leon McFadden muffed a punt inside his own 20 and Boise State's Josh Borgman recovered. After the Broncos scored two plays later, SDSU's Brandon Davis fumbled the ensuing kickoff on a super poke by Blake Renaud that Corey Bell recovered. Boise State scored again.
Also considered: Ryan Lindley for playing like hot garbage for most of the first half
Who were your three stars for the Boise State - San Diego State game? Did Tyler Shoemaker deserve to be in the list? Who did you think was the goat of the game? Share your thoughts in the comments.