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Wake up, Bronco Nation: Boise State football links and things, 8-7-12

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NBC could offer deal worth $10 million to Big East football teams, $14 million to full members

That's the rumor right now. ESPN's exclusive negotiating window is 60 days and opens on September 1st. If no agreement is reached, then Big East can start talking to NBC and FOX. The deal that the Big East turned down from ESPN previously was worth reportedly between $11 and $13 million a team, so this is good news.

Tommy Smith stepping up as a leader

Smith played behind Hout last year, but is now looking to seize the opportunity at linebacker now that he's a senior. He's always played solidly and his experience will have a huge impact on the rest of the defense.

Tom Scott wishes Boise State would retire number 11

It's being worn this year by true freshman Shane Williams-Rhodes, but it's a little disorienting for everyone. Boise State has only one retired number, 12 for Jim McMillan, and has decided not to retire any other because they need them all with the size of their roster. It makes sense, but I do have to side with Scott on this one. We should make an exception for Kellen Moore.

Joe Tessitore and his magical effect on college football games

Last year Tessitore and Rod Gilmore made a name for themselves after calling some of the best games of the season. But the real start came the year before during the Boise State-Nevada game. Ugh. Now the pair is being named as some of SI's favorite broadcasting teams, but ESPN has decided to split them up.

Boise State comes in at number 24 in ESPN's Top 25 (HT: Ksig)

Right above Notre Dame and below Florida. Similar theme to everything else you will read, Boise State loses a lot of starters but they've always dealt well with it in the past. That's the theme of the preseason articles on Boise State this year.

Air Force loses five key players

Coach Troy Calhoun refused to say if they were suspended or kicked off the team but did confirm they were still in school. The list includes starting safety Anthony Wooding, receiver Mikel Hunter, receiver Brandon Hirneise, tight end Devin Durden and linebacker Jamil Cooks.