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Next Bronco Up: Defensive Line

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NCAA Football: Nevada at Boise State Brian Losness-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE! Drew pointed out an error to me, so I fixed it! Holliday will be on the OL and Keeghan Freeborn will be a DL monster. I have updated the article to reflect such.

DEFENSE! DEFENSE! Who doesn’t love a good defense? Well the Broncos should have a pretty good one this fall. Let’s get everyone on the same page, specifically on defensive line.

Graduated/Left

Daniel Auelua - 6’2 298 lbs - graduated, registered 11 tackles for the Broncos as a senior.

Austin Silsby - 6’3 255 lbs - graduated, not seeing any stats registered as a senior.

Dane Kordopatis - 6’2 263 lbs - walk-on, left team.

Current

David Moa - RS Senior - DT, 6’3 279 lbs, 20 total tackles, 2 sacks, 3.5 TFL.

Paul Semons - RS Senior - DT, 6’3 278 lbs (believe he is still a walk-on. Could be a scholly candidate this fall). No stats.

Chase Hatada - Junior - DT, 6’3 271 lbs, 11 total tackles, 1 sack, 1.5 TFL.

Jabari Watson - RS Sophomore - DT, 6’1 273 lbs, No stats. Nothing on BSU site re: 2017, which is odd.

Matt Locher - RS Junior - NT, 6’2 271 lbs, 11 total tackles, 1 sack, 3 TFL.

Sonatane Lui - Junior - NT, 6’1 316 lbs, 16 total tackles, 2.5 TFL.

Emmanuel Fesili - Junior - NT, 6’2 316 lbs, 5 total tackles, 1 sack, 1 TFL.

Durrant Miles - Senior - DE, 6’5 266 lbs, 33 total tackles, 2 sacks, 6 TFL.

Kayode Rufai - RS Sophomore - DE, 6’4 259 lbs, 6 total tackles, 1 sack, 1 TFL.

Derriyon Shaw - RS Sophomore - DE, 6’2 236 lbs, No stats. No stats. Nothing on BSU site re: 2017.

Jabril Frazier - RS Senior - STUD, 6’4 236 lbs, 32 total tackles, 6 sacks, 6.5 TFL

Sam Whitney - RS Junior - STUD, 6’2 230 lbs, 21 total tackles, 1 sack, 1.5 TFL (injured most of the season).

Curtis Weaver - RS Sophomore - 6’3 266 lbs, 30 total tackles, 9 sacks, 11 TFL. Earned All-MW First Team honors as well as FWAA Freshman All-America honors.

Aisa Kelemete - RS Freshman - 6’4 243 lbs, sat out for red-shirt season.

Incoming

Scale Igiehon - DT, 6’2 327 lbs, 32 total tackles, 4 sacks, 15 TFL as a senior at Del Valle.

Keeghan Freeborn - DT, 6’1 297 lbs, Played OL in HS, but will move to DL for the Broncos.

Kukea Emmsley - DL, 6’5 230 lbs - Cannot find final senior season stats for Kukea.

Demitri Washington - STUD, 6’5 235 lbs - Injured for half the season. 45 total tackles, 5 sacks, 7 TFL.

Wooo nelly. That’s a lot to go through. Moa is a lock to start at DT. I don’t see anyone supplanting him to start the season. Hatada will support him closely, though I do anticipate Watson to get some reps. Keeghan will most likely red shirt. I don’t see a reason to burn it. I have heard, though, that he’s mean and will be a force to be reckoned with on the line.

We haven’t generally utilized a traditional nose tackle, but it seems we have moved that way. Well, maybe we’ve done that for a long time and I have just failed to notice. Regardless, we should be set at this position. Fesili, Lui and Locher all seemed to play interchangeably at this position. My gut tells me Lui is our starter, but it kind of remains to be seen in Coach K shakes anything up. Scale MIGHT play as a freshman, but I doubt it. Fall camp will be telling as far as he is concerned.

Miles should start at end, but I anticipate A LOT of shuffling at the end positions. I think Shaw has been injured, so if he is going to play this fall, he’s got some work to do. Rufai got some work last season and should continue to do so. Emmsley is a bit of a mystery to me, but I anticipate he will land at end or STUD. I recently read he may be considered at DT, but that seems weird to me. Emmsley could very well play as a freshman, and while we have plenty of experience there, Emmsley has the talent to push for time.

STUD will be fun. As you well know, Curtis Weaver is a MONSTER. He’s also a sophomore. I anticipate him to be our 1 at STUD, but Frazier got a lot of praise coming out of spring camp. Remember when I said I anticipate A LOT of shuffling at end (it was literally in the paragraph before)? Imagine a world with Frazier and Weaver on the field at the same time. Now stop because it might make you go insane with excitement. Frazier will see the field plenty AND Sam Whitney will be ready to go come fall camp. Kelemete will get his first shot this fall, and he should be a terror too. 4 players that could all wreak havoc at the same position. We also have Washington coming in, who will assuredly red shirt, can shake things up as well.

The defensive line should be a lot of fun, to say the least. We have a lot of depth and experience, and didn’t lose much at any position. STUD should be especially fun to watch with all of the chaos that will be caused from there.

That’s it for this week, tune in next week for linebackers! GO BRONCOS!