15 days and the '15 season has begun. Shall we look at #15 on the Boise State roster? Cool, it's Ryan Finley.
#15, Ryan Finley, Sophomore, QB
Weight: 200 lbs.
High School: Paradise Valley High School, Phoenix, AZ
How'd he get to The Blue™?
By being one of the best QBs in Arizona. In fact, Finley led the state last season in passing with 3,442 yards and also pitched in a solid 35 TDs against just 8 interceptions. Finley chipped in an additional 282 rushing yards with four scores in his final prep season. As a junior, Finley put up 2,911 yards and 25 TDs with just 7 interceptions. Scout.com had Finley pegged as a 3-star recruit and the 49th best QB prospect in the country. He verballed to the Broncos early on, which scared away a lot of suitors, so BSU was his only offer. I love it when things work out.
Finley is up 14 lbs from last season, so the skinny nicknames are slowly becoming obsolete. This one's for old time's sake.
What I assume Gene Bleymaier looked like 30 years ago
Appeared in five games for Broncos in 2014 in backup role...tossing two TDs in process. Named Arizona Division III, Section III East Co-Offensive Player of the Year in 2012. Named Arizona Football Coaches' Association Division III All-State and all-state honorable mention following senior season (2012).
We'll likely know for sure after tomorrow night's scrimmage, but for the time being, it appears that Finley is the odds-on favorite to win the Boise State QB battle—and as stoked as I am about each and every one of the current signal-callers, I'm totally okay with that. After all, Finley was the backup to Grant Hedrick last season and should—by now—know the Bronco offense inside and out. The best scouting report we can really get on Finley was presented to us last season, when he came into the Air Force game late in relief of a clearly rattled and off-his-game Hedrick. Usually, we only get the benefit of seeing the back-up in blowouts, but last year in Colorado Springs, a redshirt freshman Finley was tasked with getting the Broncos back into a game they were nearly hopelessly out of...and well, he kinda sorta got us back into it. Looking at Finley's statline from the night isn't miraculous by any stretch...he was just 12-of-25, but he looked poised and confident and two of those 12 completions went for scores—scores the Broncos desperately needed at the time.
The arm strength on display in this most recent stable of QBs is probably the best it's ever been at Boise State and Finley is certainly at or near the top when it comes to guys that can air it out. As we learned during the Kellen Moore era, elite arm strength isn't everything...but it does open things up a bit if you have the athletes to get open downfield, and that's just what we have with guys like Shane WIlliams-Rhodes and Chaz Anderson. Another nice element to Finley's game is his deceptive speed. He may have a Kaepernick-eque gait, but he's not a guy that has to stay in the pocket at all costs. Again, this year's O-line probably won't have him dancing too much, but it's nice to know that dimension is there if things break down. If Ryan is, in fact, named starter, it will mean he's staved off some pretty talented individuals and that—coupled with is game-experience—should give Bronco fans a certain level of comfort.
Is he on Twitter?
Yes, and BFFs with Kurt Warner to boot!
Completely made up fact
Ryan's brother, Oliver, runs a successful local cosmetology school and his uncle, Fit, was a successful WWE wrestler. They are working on a joint venture called Hairdressin' and Head Smashin'