Spring football is here? Spring football is here!
The Boise State football team begins spring practice this morning with a roster full of new faces and a coaching staff full of new faces. First team drill: the name game, followed by trust falls, followed by actual football practice. With so many Boise State stars off to NFL pastures, the new guys will have a chance to make a big splash this spring and set themselves up well for fall ball. Here are five with the most to gain over the next month or so of spring practice.
Jeremy Ioane - The sophomore safety has become rather an enigma inside Bronco Nation for his stellar high school recruiting tape and spurning of Notre Dame and his relative lack of anything since he arrived in Boise. A good spring, though, and all our worries are forgotten. We have short-term memory spans due to all the College Football Live we watch.
Demarcus Lawrence - The JUCO defensive end arrived on campus in January, a la fellow successful JC transfers like current Chicago Bear Winston Venable. Plus, the top three returning defensive ends from last year are gone, so you can bet Lawrence will get a hefty amount of reps. Time to put that associate's degree to work.
Drew Wright - D.J. Harper will be the starting running back, provided his mechanical knees hold. And Jay Ajayi figures to be the backup. But don't count out Wright just yet, unless you promised never to count him in for anything again after his fumble last year. Hear me out: Ajayi is still recovering from his ACL injury last year and will be limited this spring. Malcolm Johnson left the team, which is code for "screwed the pooch one too many times." If Wright has a good several weeks, he could put distance between himself and the other No. 2 candidates.
Robert Ash and Jeff Worthy - The two heralded redshirt freshmen defensive tackles will get work behind Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe and Mike Atkinson this spring, and they could be part of the rotation come fall. Or they could be another James Michael Davis and Allen Mooney. We'll see.
Jimmygrant Patti-Laugh - The amalgam of Grant Hedrick, Jimmy Laughrea, and Nick Patti can do no wrong this spring. There will be no decision made on a starting quarterback, so they can't lose the job. They all trail Joe Southwick in the imaginary depth chart, so there's no pressure to stay on top. If anything, the spring will give one of the three a chance to play his way into the top of the QB competition going into the fall. Which one do you hope it is?
What players do you think have the most to gain in spring practice? Would you like to see Drew Wright as the No. 2 running back? Which non-Southwick quarterback do you prefer to see do well? Share your thoughts in the comments.