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The Boise Sate quarterback conundrum [Position Preview]

April 16, 2012; Boise, ID, USA; Boise State Broncos quarterback Joe Southwick (16) during the spring game at Bronco Stadium.  Mandatory Credit: Brian Losness-US PRESSWIRE
April 16, 2012; Boise, ID, USA; Boise State Broncos quarterback Joe Southwick (16) during the spring game at Bronco Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Losness-US PRESSWIRE

The Boise State Quarterback Conundrum: Coming soon to a stadium near you. Unless you live in Moscow. Yuck.

The BSU quarterback race is hot as ever, or at least the hottest it has been in four solid years. Joe Southwick is the alleged heir apparent to the Kellen Moore throne. However, noobs Nick Nack Patti Wack, Jimmy Dark Horse Laughrea, and Grant Gonna' Transfer Soon Hedrick look to unseat the would-be Jedi Mind-Tricker.

(And so begins the age-old tradition of position previews. We love traditions at OBNUG. Other traditions may include, but are not limited to: Dairy Queen Blizzards, Hating anything Vandal, and Spell Check. Next up: The RB Rascals.)

The Offenders

9 Hedrick, Grant QB 6-0 191 RSo. Independence, Ore. (Central HS)
14 Laughrea, Jimmy QB 6-1 201 RFr. Rocklin, Calif. (Rocklin HS)
8 Patti, Nick QB 5-10 189 Fr. Orlando, Fla. (Dr. Phillips HS)
16 Southwick, Joe QB 6-1 192 RJr.

Danville, Calif. (San Ramon Valley HS)

Joe Southwick


  • Favorite Quote: "A day without sunshine is like, you know, night." -Steve Martin
  • Favorite Song: "Call Me, Maybe." -Carly Rae Jepsen
  • Favorite Movie: "Cast Away." That Wilson guy sure is a hoot. - Joe Southwick

List of Offenses: College Career Statistics

23-for-30, 198 yards, 76.7% comp., 6.6 yards/att, 1 TD, 1 INT, 136 QB rating
Joe Southwick has been the Robin to Kellen Moore's Batman throughout the last year. Clearly Joe didn't get a lot of field time due to him playing behind the greatest quarterback that has ever lived. Even though his playing time was limited, Joe made the best (arguably) of his time when he did get a shot. With a career completion percentage of nearly 77%, Joe proved in 2011 why he was the King in waiting. However, 1 touchdown to 1 interception is not the best ratio, even if your name is Nathan Enderle and you play for one Akey Brakey Fart at one northern Idaho University.

Even with the experience and tutelage of Kellen Moore that Southwick brings to the table, a few young bucks on the squad are looking to make Coach Pete's eventual decision (he has to make one, right?) all the more difficult.

Next up: Nick Nack Patti Wack

Nick Patti


  • Favorite Quote: "I'm not a hater, I just crush a lot." -Fat Joe
  • Favorite Song: "Old McDonald Had a Farm" -Children Everywhere
  • Favorite Movie: "The Buttercream Gang." Those. Guys. Are. Awesome. -Nick Patti

List of Offenses: High school senior year statistics


141-for-257, 54% comp., 2,114 yards, 23 TD, 7 INT, long of 75, 101 QB rating


79 carries, 626 yards, 7.9 avg, 7 TD, long of 80

Nick Patti comes into Boise State as one of the most highly recruited quarterbacks in school history. An Elite 11 quarterback, finalist for National Gatorade Player of the Year, and Mr. Football in Florida, Patti brings a dynamic to the Boise State offense that we have not seen in a long time: he can run.

Not only is Patti silky smooth in the pocket, but he has the ability to move outside when he feels the pressure coming on, either creating a pass opportunity from nothing, or running with the ball.

Nick graduated early from Dr. Philips High School in Florida in order to enroll at Boise State and attend spring practices as a true freshman.

While Joe Southwick took the majority of snaps at the spring game with the first team offense, Nick Patti had arguably the most exciting play of the entire game.

Coach Pete seems to think quite highly of Patti, which goes a long way in my book. Will Bronco Nation agree?

Next Up: Jimmy Dark Horse Laughrea

Jimmy Laughrea


  • Favorite Quote: "Milk was a bad choice." -Ron Burgundy
  • Favorite Song: "Thong Song." -Sisqo
  • Favorite Movie: "I don't watch movies." -Jimmy Laughrea

List of Offenses: High school senior year stats


174-for-290, 60% comp., 2,527 yards, 22 TDs, 10 INTs, long of 78, 99 QB rating 


45 carries, 327 yards, 7.3 avg, 6 TDs, long of 72

Jimmy Laughrea also comes into Boise State as an Elite 11 quarterback. A fantastic high school career in Rocklin, California brought Jimmy to the Blue with hopes of being a starting quarterback. Unfortunately for Jimmy, his progress has been somewhat stymied by the likes of Joe Southwick and other young quarterbacks.

Although 2011 was Jimmy's redshirt season, he was still able to claim the Offensive Scout Player of the Year - not an easy task by any means.

When I sat at the spring game watching the quarterbacks warm up, I recall sending off a tweet or two in regards to Jimmy being a dark horse. He was throwing the ball well, and moving in the pocket just as good or better than any of the others. With his height and arm strength, I thought he may be a dark horse for a number two job, or possibly even a starter. Fall camp has just begun, and Jimmy has just as much opportunity as the rest to show what he is made of, but it will take a herculean effort to thwart the progress of Joe and Nick.

Next Up: Grant Gonna' Transfer Soon Hedrick

Grant Hedrick


  • Favorite Quote: "I distrust camels, and anyone else who can go a week without a drink." -Joe E. Lewis
  • Favorite Song: "Cant touch this." -M.C. Hammer
  • Favorite Movie: Twilight: New Moon. Those werewolves are awesome. -Grant Hedrick

List of Offenses: Career statistics

2-for3, 19 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs, 119.9 QB rating

Grant carries the tradition of prolific high school quarterbacks recruited by the Broncos. A few notable high school stats include:

  • State record for most combined yards: 11,230
  • State record for most combined TD's: 145
  • A senior year where he threw for 2,500 yards, 34 touchdowns, and only 1 INT.
Hopes have been high for Grant ever since (or rather before) he stepped foot on the blue turf. With a personal invite to Grant to graduate early and attend spring drills three years ago, Grant eventually declined due to him wanting to obtain the full high school experience. That's cool, I guess.

As a redshirt freshman last year, Grant played a key role in wild cat formations, often running the ball himself or handing it off to the muscle hamster. With Southwick and presumably Patti ahead of him on the depth chart, can Grant make a name for himself before he becomes another Mike Tamburo?

Take a look at his highlight video below, and you tell me.


The QB race is wide open. No matter how many think Southwick is the next in line, I know Coach Pete does not follow a timeline of seniority or tenure. Therefore, guys like Patti, Laughrea, and Hedrick all have a fair shot at being the number 1 come August 31. With all different styles and levels of talent and experience, Pete definitely has a difficult decision ahead of him: what kind of blizzard do I get today? And secondly: who will be the starter for Michigan State?

Your Turn

Sound off in the comments as to your QB predictions and cast your vote in the QB Conundrum Poll below. This poll is in regards to who you WANT to be the starter, NOT who you think will be the starter. Sound off, Bronco Nation!