What are you more excited about—that it's the first official day of summer, or that it's the 26th day of the countdown? I'm torn.
We've got 74 days until kickoff...so today we'll be taking a look at number 74 on the Boise State roster—Cory Yriarte
#74, Cory Yriarte, Senior, OL
Weight: 282 lbs.
High School: Oaks Christian High School, Westlake, CA
How'd he get to The Blue™?
Yriarte was actually one of the bigger "gets" for the Broncos in the class of 2007 when they snagged him from Cali's Oaks Christian High School. Now, Cory wasn't the highest profile player to come out of Oaks Christian that year...that honor went to QB Jimmy Clausen, but Clausen's productivity was the direct result of outstanding line play, and Cory was a major reason for that in his one season at OCHS. As a senior, Yriarte was named Velocity/Prep Star All-Region and named to the Ventura County Star All-Ventura County Team and Los Angeles Daily News All-Area Team. Cory also garnered All-CIF honors, all Tri-Valley League honors and all-state second-team recognition as well as being named the Coaches' Association Ventura County Offensive Lineman of Year. All the exposure and praise failed to net any "huge" offers for Yriarte, unless of course, you count the one from Boise State. He was also offered by Colorado State and San Diego State.
This appears to be the material that Yriarte's knee is made of.
/ˈkɜrnl/ Show Spelled
In high school, helped Oaks Christian rush for over 3,500 yards and 91 touchdowns and pass for more than 3,600 yards and 51 touchdowns while playing center on the squad.
ACL injuries have sidelined him for two straight seasons.
Playing O-line is easy, right—you just have to weigh a lot and be able to crouch. Ah...if only that were reality. In truth, the O-line may be one of the most physically demanding spots on the field, and Boise State's recent spate of knee, neck, and back injuries can attest to that. O-lineman make contact on every single down, unlike the QB that they protect or some of the "skill" positions that generally only make hard contact if they are the ball carrier. Perhaps no player on the Boise State roster is more of a testament to the daily grind of the O-lineman than Cory Yriarte. Yriarte played in six games as a redshirt freshman and looked to be a rising star on the Bronco line until a knee injury derailed his entire 2009 season. Then, he looked to be back on top of his game before a Spring injury killed his 2010 as well. Yriarte is nothing if he isn't resilient...because here he sits, ready to tackle another year of football at a position that has utterly destroyed his knees. Godspeed.
Will Yriarte actually play this year? Maybe, but he is sure to take his time getting back into the rotation, and at this point, I'm sad to say that he's likely been passed over. Thomas Byrd's knees aren't in the best condition either, but he hasn't missed significant time due to them and he's still the presumptive starter at center, a position that Yriarte knows and plays well—when healthy, of course. Bronson Durrant or Matt Paradis are now Byrd's chief backups and the guard position, Yriarte's other staple, seems to be stocked as well, with Joe Kellogg and Jake Broyles currently edging the pack. The good news for Yriarte is that he's a prime candidate for a medical hardship. He and DJ Harper are near slam dunks to receive an extra year of eligibility—but they can only apply after this season. Whether Yriarte will choose to pursue it, depends largely on how his knee holds up this season. I think he may play very sparingly and tentatively, if anything to just test out the durability of his rebuilt knees...and then if he still has the passion for football and confidence in his ACL, I think he'll try to get one more year to finish strong. The somewhat depleted depth in 2012 will provide more oppportunity for him, anyway.
Completely made up fact
The second failure of Yriarte's knee can be directly attributed to the materials it was repaired with—namely, a paperclip, a foot of twine, and a ballpoint pen. Dr. MacGyver has since been charged with malpractice.