THE SEASON IS ALMOST HERE!

Every off season feels like the longest one ever, but 2015 has been crazy.

Boise State didn’t go away last season, like some thought they would. In a shocking plot twist, the Broncos went 11 – 2 and won the Fiesta Bowl after Chris Petersen left for purpler pastures. Nationally, apparently some people are stunned. Boise State was supposed to sit down, shut up, lose 5+ games again, and fade into the obscurity of the Mountain West during the power conference era, when the haves widened the gap and left all the have-nots, out.

Except that isn’t what happened. It’s been an eventful 2015 so far, and Boise State appears to be keeping up. Yes, it’s with a much smaller margin of error, but this program is in battles (and winning some!) for recruits that wouldn’t have even returned a call three years ago. Cost of Attendance is handled, the content coming out of the football complex is much more polished than at any time before, and Bronco Nation is chomping at the bit for the biggest OOC game on The Blue since Oregon came for their eventful visit in 2009. Fall camp is in full swing, the stadium banners have been unveiled, Hars has taken a pie to the face, Yates has chastised everyone for talking up the defense, and we’re under a month to go until the start of something that could be really special.

Mystique is totally a thing still, Rocky. Whether you want it to be or not.

This is the best and worst time of year. The anticipation is intoxicating. Every team is 0-0 and hope is easy to come by. Go on the Internet and almost every fan base is being insufferable. Utah State is coming for Boise State, just like they are every season. With their 78 77 76 75 74 73 72 returning starters and one of them being perpetual Heisman candidate until that knee happens, Chuckie Keeton, well why wouldn’t the Broncos be running scared? Washington might be in trouble as far as skill positions, but they’re still in the Pac 12 and that automatically spots them two touchdowns and a few friendly calls from the officials. BYU’s fan base is secretly checking every interesting looking rock in Utah County for a prophecy to translate and convince the Coaches Poll voters to put them in the next top 25. Even Bronco Twitter is in on the action, making it a life goal to get blocked by Nevada’s resident humorless corndog connoisseur and the coach of the Wolf Pack, Brian Polian. Once he called us out during Media Days, he had to know he was flipping that troll switch, right?

Can’t forget the realignment rumors flowing as sure as the rivers of smack. The Big 12 is the destination this time, and as fun as the speculation is, it’s still a long shot for the Broncos to move out of the MWC anytime soon. Still, the idea of the wailing and gnashing of teeth coming out of Austin and Norman is incredibly soothing in this run up to kickoff.

Not quite as soothing as cuddling up with your best equine buddy in the living room, though.

What we know for sure right now isn’t much. We know the Broncos return a lot of experience and depth in every position but QB, RB, and CB, and the options there are solid if unproven. We know that the coaching staff didn’t have much of a drop off, even with losing former OC Mike Sanford to Notre Dame over the offseason. Harsin seems stunned when anyone asks about the transition, like its nuts to expect anything other than awesome out of Coach Drink. We know that Boise’s OOC schedule might just be enough to carry them into the playoff if the MWC shocks the world a couple times and doesn’t lose a bunch of games they shouldn’t.

The possibilities and questions are endless. We’ll spend the next few weeks thinking over the alternatives and talking about position battles and pouring over practice reports and player interviews trying to get a bit more understanding. All of it in a pointless attempt to predict the future performances of a bunch of young men that hold their own destiny, thankyouverymuch. We’re just along for the ride.

 

A Simple Fan Prediction – Wins & Loses

www.sltrib.com

www.sltrib.com

Let me first off start by saying how odd of a season I feel like this is. When you look at 4 of the first 6 games you have some really compelling matchups. After that though, outside of Air Force, it will be really tough to see Bronco fans interested in the outcomes of the remaining schedule. That being said, I really wish the schedule would have been reversed and we finished with the first 6 games and didn’t start with them. My biggest concern here is following Washington with a game at BYU. The emotion of playing Washington is going to be very real and I can foresee a big win here despite breaking in a new QB and RB. After that though, I have a bad feeling our new QB whoever he is (Ryan Finley), is going to have a tough time going into BYU and getting a win. BYU has some questions on defense, but this game is early enough where Taysom Hill should be healthy, and it is the home opener for BYU. Even in my most optimistic approach to the season, I don’t see us leaving Provo with a win.

Here is how I see the season going for Boise State right now. (Subject to change depending on how fall camp plays outs).

  • Boise State vs Washington – Win
  • Boise State @ BYU – Lose
  • Boise State vs Idaho State – Win
  • Boise State @ Virginia – Win
  • Boise State vs Hawaii – Win
  • Boise State @ Colorado State – Win
  • Boise State @ Utah State – Win
  • Boise State vs Wyoming – Win
  • Boise State @ UNLV – Win
  • Boise State vs New Mexico – Win
  • Boise State vs Air Force – Win
  • Boise State @ San Jose State – Win
  • MWC Championship – Win
Record – 12-1

 

 

OBNUG Named to Blue Turf Nation’s Best Boise State Bloggers Award Watch List

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One Bronco Nation Under God (AKA OBNUG) has been named to the annual Blue Turf Nation Best Boise State Blogger Award watch list.

The BTNBBSBA  is given to to the best blog site covering Boise State football following every season.  This award has been given out every year since 2015.

The following sites are currently on the BTNBBSBA watch list:

OBNUG

Blue Turf Nation

The award will be voted on by  Blue Turf Nation Staff after the conclusion of all 2015 college football blogging activity.

 

 

 

Attack The Opponent: Boise State Broncos (Spring Game Edition)

To start, if you have not yet seen the latest video out of the football complex, please watch it now. In fact, if you have seen it, watch it again until you have it memorized because it is one of the best illustrations of the whole “what it is to be a Bronco” concept that has ever been. Anybody else think Hars has a future in voiceover work if this whole football thing ever gets old for him?

After an offseason rife with controversy (both the position battles as well as a little of the, uh, off field kind), it’s nice to have a day with real football in the long drought after March Madness ends.  Yeah, there will be some interesting stuff going on in the interim, but time itself is marching toward the biggest season opener since some short lefty kid from BFE, Washington went to Eugene and took down the mighty Ducks.

Attempting to analyze the spring game as an indicator of where a team will be in 4 months is a little like trying to project out what a child will be like as an adult by tearing apart every detail of how they play in the yard as a toddler. However, since this is football and there’s nothing else to do between now and The Beginning, we’re going to do just that.

There are two questions that will be argued about all summer long, no matter what happens today. Who is going to carry the offense, and will the team be ready to play UW next fall and win? Because everybody knows that while yes we will keep cheering and showing up whether the Broncos win that game or not….we’re really going to need them to step up and win that game. For themselves, their program, and Bronco Nation as a whole.

Boise State didn’t lose a whole lot of seniors last year, but the gaps that they have left are looming large. The QB position is loaded, but at this point, nobody really knows what’s going to happen. We need to look at not only throwing and footwork mechanics, but also understanding of the offense as well as the speed of making the reads. At RB, while The Weapon himself, Jeremy McNichols won’t be out there today, we should be watching for which guys have that vision and patience that set great BSU running backs apart. The Broncos need to find their workhorse, and while depth shouldn’t be an issue at that position, it would be nice to not have to RB by committee all the time.

It would be nice to see some progression on the lines, both sides of the ball. Last year they were talented and strong, but it’s going to take stepping up to exceptional to make the playoff dream even part of the discussion. On offense, there is a lot returning. 5 OL are back this season, with two more around who saw significant playing time last season. These were the guys that made Jay Ajayi a star, and now to be able to come in with experience and depth, well, the new RB and QB will be very lucky, well protected and well blocked for guys. Defensively, losing a guy like Beau Martin would normally be very difficult to do. However, BSU is basically sitting on a gold mine of experienced leadership on the line, rolling 2-3 deep at every position. This defense will be the envy of the Mountain West for sure, and could easily make national noise.

The receivers and TE’s also will be fun to watch today. Getting to see what Chase Blakely and David Lucero are working with will be good. I’m looking to see that they have a handle on the playbook and also try to get an idea of what role the TE’s will have this season. It was nice to see them back last year, but it felt like they could’ve been utilized a bit more. Jake Roh and his awesome hands are returning, and Holden Huff has a great opportunity to step up and be a leader right now in this young and potentially epic group. On the receivers side, there are a billion questions. Based on last season, Sperbeck and Anderson are the fire, but leadership is important. Gotta get those spark type plays from Shane Williams-Rhodes. There is depth at WR, but not much experience. There is more speed on the way as well. Highly touted recruits Akilian Butler and Bryan Jefferson will be arriving this fall, but spring is about the guys on campus.

Remember what it was like to have depth on defense, with amazing returning talent, some up and comers with something to prove, and the knowledge that There Will Be Shut Down Defense Played By Boise? 2006-2011 were pretty good times. The noise out of the complex is sounding a bit like a renaissance. Deayon, Moxie, Maston, and Thompson are all back. So is college-football acclimated Dylan Sumner-Gardner.

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Tyler Rausa has been appointed the Broncos new kicker. You only get one chance at a good first impression, bro. Don’t shank it wide left on your first time out in front of the crowd and all will be well.

This spring game is unlike any we’ve seen. First, we will be celebrating the career of one of the greatest Broncos ever or ever will be, Kellen Moore. The university has already confirmed that the ol’ #11 won’t be retired, but are also saying that nobody will be wearing it for a good, long time. Kellen is building himself a career in the NFL, looking to be the #2 QB after re-signing with Detroit this spring. We at the BTN are still beating the JUST PLAY HIM ALREADY drum, but Kellen is obviously a much more patient person than we are and is willing to play the long game. It will be good for Bronco Nation to see him today, and help celebrate a wonderful college career.

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After the game, BSU has invited 2007 American Idol winner Jordin Sparks to perform a concert on The Blue as part of their Bronco Day celebration. Fans will be allowed on the field, and it’s at least a unique opportunity to watch a pop concert on the turf. Hey, if Jordin’s excited about it, why not?!

A Letter to Brooke Pahukoa & the Lady Broncos

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Dear Brooke & Broncos

I am writing this letter to let you know we noticed. We noticed the heart, the fight, the determination, and the effort you gave against Tennessee. Don’t let the result get you down, we all saw you put on an incredible show and you deserve the accolades to go with it. Brooke, your performance against the Vols is something that will go down in history for Boise State Women’s Basketball. The future is bright, and I am here to tell you I will be at your games. You made Bronco Nation proud against all odds, and it was something to behold. You put the Mountain West Conference and the rest of the NCAA on notice today, and we couldn’t be prouder to be  Broncos. Few performances have been as inspiring as yours was today. We have watched a lot of basketball in our time, and what you did today was truly amazing. Once again congratulations, and thank you for choosing to showcase your skills in a Bronco uniform.

To Coach Presnell, and the rest of the Broncos. Congratulations on a great season, your heart and determination was truly inspiring. We all saw the odds you faced, (In Tennessee, the refs against you, ESPN even calling the game in favor of the Vols.) you ladies never quit and you represented Boise State with incredible pride and sportsmanship. To all of the seniors, congratulations on finishing an incredible season. To those of you who will be back, see you next season. We can’t wait to see how you follow up an incredible performance.

Best Regards,

Bronco Nation