We have just 27 days until gameday, but because that number was officially assigned to freshman Donzale Roddie after the countdown schedule was etched in stone, we're just going to soldier on and highlight #39 on the Bronco roster—Kelsey Young
#27 (39), Kelsey Young, Senior, RB
Weight: 198 lbs.
High School/College: Norco HS, Norco, CA/Stanford University, Stanford, CA
How'd he get to The Blue™?
Kelsey is the first graduate transfer in Boise State history and comes to Boise by way of a pretty prestigious university by the name of Stanford. NCAA graduate transfer rules allow for students who have already earned their degree at one institution to transfer to another to pursue a graduate degree (IF their eligibilty clock has yet to expire). Young was looking to boost his playing resumé and because his younger brother Cory is already in the Broncos stable of backs, decided to come to Boise for his final season of ball. At Stanford last season, Young was the Cardinal's second leading rusher, having gained 331 yards on 66 carries. Young also caught 5 balls for 31 yards in 2014 for the Cardinal. In his first two seasons at Stanford, Kelsey rushed for 270 yards and 3 TDs. During his prep career at Norco, Kelsey earned four football letters under coach Todd Gerhardt (Stanford legend Toby's father)—capping his career with a 2,008 yard, 30 TD campaign in 2010. The elder Young was rated a 4-star recruit by Scout and Rivals.com and was rated the 21st best running back recruit in the country. Out of high school, Young picked Stanford over offers from Arizona and Duke...and was recruited by none other than Brian Polian.
You'll see why in a second (depending on how fast you read).
Though he looks a fair amount like a certain freshman running back currently on the roster, something about Kelsey is giving me a bit of a Warren G vibe (and not Warren G. Harding)
Appeared in 41 games for the Cardinal between 2012 and 2014. Named to Doak Walker watch list as a senior. Scored Cardinal's first TD in 2013 Rose Bowl win over Wisconsin. In high school, was a SuperPrep All-American and 3-time All-CIF Southern Section Inland Division honoree. In 2010, was named Riverside Press Enterprise All-Inland Empire.
When Kelsey was pencilled in at #2 on the Broncos probably-too-early depth chart at media days (behind sophomore Jeremy McNichols), it raised more than a few eyebrows. Young is easily the most experienced RB currently on the Bronco roster, but he was not here for Spring Ball and therefore had not been fully evaluated by the coaching staff. Kelsey already has his computer science degree and obviously has some brains since he was playing at Stanford, but listing him as the backup at such an early (and possibly meaningless) stage shows a pretty big trust by the coaching staff that he'll absorb the playbook and be ready to go come September 4th. His primary competition for that slot could well be his little brother Cory, who looked great in the Spring game and is almost certain to also see the field in 2015. Devan Demas, Jack Fields and Ryan Wolpin will also try to chip some carries away from Jeremy McNichols and since all have slightly different skill sets, it will be interesting what combination the coaching staff deems most effective. In reality, each running back in the stable could end up being "the guy" this year, or we could see a more balanced committe approach in 2015—I don't think anything has been ruled out as of yet.
All I know is that the Young brothers and Devan Demas have speed to burn (Kelsey reportedly can run a 4.47 40) and the Broncos have to be stoked about the prospects of getting those guys in space. I'd love to see a "Wild Bronco" look with all three or see any or all of them catching some passes out of the backfield. We may not have a so-called "every down" back this season in the mold of Ajayi, but we have speed, versatility, and talent. Kelsey came to Boise for his last season to play and that's exactly what he's going to do. Check out that speed when Young bounces it outside.
Is he on Twitter?
I think this is him, but the only tweets you'll find are him hitting up the Auburn running backs coach for a follow.
Completely made up fact
Growing up as Cory's big brother, Kelsey doled out many a wedgie to his younger sibling. Now that he's a college grad and is full-grown, however, he's vowed to never treat his little bro so shabbilly—except as a touchdown celebration...or to celebrate a first down...or gain of over 5 yards...