Once upon a time, I was given a great chance to intern with Boise State’s video department. During that time, I started to learn how to make highlight videos for the football team. Well, last night as I was looking through my old external hard-drive, I found this gem. My first ever video that was posted to BroncoSports.com. Thankfully I have learned a ton since then. But I thought it might be fun for fans to see this “classic” in all of it’s glory. Here is a video highlighting Ian Johnson, DJ Harper, and Jeremy Avery. But perhaps, the best part of this video is MC Hammer!
Boise State fans might not have much room in their heart for a soft spot for a kicker after BSU kickers have made them beat their heads on a wall. This one kicker, however, did what Brotzman and Goodale failed to do – make a game winning field goal with a huge game on the line! Michael Frisina is a class act Boise State Bronco, and this senior will be missed.
Enter the 7th (yes I said 7th) BTN Offseason Interview Series. Check the previous six articles out. Thanks to everyone that has been reading these interviews!
BTN: Were there any questions about your size as a kicker going through high school about playing at the Division I level? If any, how did you handle them?
Frisina: No one directly said anything to me but I know people talked about it. Distance was never my strength because of my size so I knew I would have to be deadly accurate, but when need be I could kick the long ball as well.
BTN: After what some Boise State kickers have gone through in the past as far as clutch kicking, was there any added pressure being a kicker for the Broncos?
Frisina: No I don’t think so because I was around last year and am really good friends with Dan Goodale, so I know about some of what he went through. I think pressure is only what you make it so I tried not to focus on it.
BTN: Coach Petersen seems to be a very straight forward, serious guy. What was one of the funniest things you’ll remember Pete doing?
Frisina: Last year he told Tyler Shoemaker to leave and go home because he was joking around at Coach Pete’s expense at a function of some sort. I don’t know if it was a Varsity B thing or booster dinner or what but Tyler apparently made a joke and Coach Pete pretended to be mad the next day and told him to leave but as he was about to walk out the door he said I’m just kidding sit back down. The whole room lost it and Shoe was so embarrassed because he thought Coach Pete was serious, and so did the rest of the team. That among others was one of Coach Pete’s funnier moments.
BTN: What’s next for Michael Frisina?
Frisina: What’s next for me isn’t so clear right now. I am still in school because I didn’t use my redshirt year so I am still in my fourth year of college. I will earn my degree in communications in May but as for now I am trying to get some job experience. I am going to start helping out in recruiting in the football offices but also am trying to learn about the ins and outs of broadcasting by talking to Bob Behler and even spending time with him at games and what not to see how it really works.
BTN: What is your favorite personal moment and team moment during your football career at Boise State?
Frisina: My favorite moment personally was the game winner in the Maaco Bowl. To be able to end a career on a high note like that was so awesome. I had worked so hard to achieve a goal and a dream and to go out like that was something I will remember for the rest of my life. As a team, my favorite moment was Senior Day…both seasons. To see the amount of love and support the fans have for this program was so cool. To be able to witness the last game on The Blue for guys like Kellen Moore, Doug Martin, Shea McClellin, George Iloka, Nate Potter, Billy Winn etc. last year and then the same thing for guys like DJ Harper, Dan Paul, JC Percy, Mike Atkinson and others this year was really special. And then to hear my own name called out and running out of the tunnel one last time was so surreal. And to cap it all off when DJ took the handoff on our first play from scrimmage and went 80 yards to the house untouched that just made it even better.
Wow.. That was the heart-wrenching game Boise State fans have gotten used to this season. To our joy, the Broncos won the game and we’ll have our chins up high all off-season. There are many things to take away from this game – we’ll take a look at what instantly stood out to me.
A win is a win – Unfortunately, this Boise State team has shown consistency in blowing leads. This game did not disappoint, as the Broncos blew a 15 point lead. Regardless, a win is a win and we’ll take it, especially over a PAC-12 school. The defense was torched on the ground for the duration of the game, but Jeremy Ioane (the BTN’s Most Improved Defensive Player) read Price’s eyes to intercept the game winning ball.
This receiving core is solid – Matt Miller has been terrific for Boise State the past two seasons. Chris Potter really stepped up this season in Mitch Burrough’s absence, and he’s been an important key all season. Chris will be missed in the screen game and in trick plays. However, this receiving core should have plenty of big play ability next season. Keeping Geraldo Boldewijn on the field will be very important. He showed in the bowl game that he can be relied upon to make big plays. Burks has been a great deep threat for the Broncos this season. With another off-season under Burks belt, he should expand his receiving horizons as he improves his route running skills. Holden Huff should have a big year next year catching balls as a tight end. Obviously, Matt Miller will be a terrific receiver next season. It will be an important season for him if he wants to continue to solidify himself as a Boise State great.
Who’s this Joe Southwick guy? - Joe Stachewick, Joe Southwick the creator of “Boise Nation”, or just plain old Joe Southwick – whichever of his altar ego’s you want to call him – the guy can flat-out play. In Boise State’s four games since the San Diego State loss, Joe has tossed 9 touchdowns with zero interceptions. Offensive Coordinator Robert Prince trusted Southwick to chuck the ball around today, as Joe had 38 pass attempts. The Joe Southwick haters have seemed to quiet as the soon to be 5th year senior will lead this offense to great places next season. With nearly every offensive starter returning, Joe will have many weapons to use.
We all need to buy #84 jerseys – Michael Frisina’s kick had less implications than the game winning kick against Nevada in 2010 or TCU in 2011, but we still need to pay our respects to him here. Here’s the big thing – Boise State finally won a game because of a field goal kicker. Frisina was 3-3 and nailed a career long in this game. What a relief for Boise State fans to be on the edge of their seats and see a field goal go through the uprights to clinch another bowl victory.
Chris Petersen is the man – Kirk Herbstreit said during the game that this might be Petersen’s best coaching performance this season. Going 11-2 after losing what Boise State lost (I really don’t need to list names at this point) is paramount to this university. The football program controls its own destiny in terms of conference realignment. As long as Pete is happy, Blue Turf Nation will be happy.
Tis’ the season folks! A happy holidays must include a Boise State victory over Washington! We previously looked at the Boise State defensive standouts, now it is time to check out the offense.This group has had its ups and downs – that’s for sure. This squad seems to be hitting its stride headed into the postseason.
Offensive Rookie of the Year – Jay Ajayi
Jay has definitely been a gift this year, thanks to our recruiting guru in Santa Chris (Petersen). Ajayi didn’t carry the rock in Boise State’s first two games, but busted on the scene with a great game against New Mexico. Jay had 118 yards and a touchdown off just six carries! Boise Nation (as the fake Joe Southwick twitter nation calls us) was rocking after seeing what the redshirt freshman was capable of. He played a terrific role in the BSU offense, giving a thunder to Harper’s lightning. Ajayi finished the regular season with a staggering 6.9 yards per carry and got in the endzone four times. Great rookie season from #27 and BSU fans hope for better to come.
Offensive Most Improved Player – Chris Potter
Chris Potter has been another treat to watch this season. Offensive coordinator Robert Prince has used Chris in a variety of ways. Potter has scored a rushing touchdown off the wildcat, has two completions off trick plays, and has four receiving touchdowns. The 5’9 159 pound receiver has played much bigger than his small frame and has brought an extra dimension to the BSU offense. Chris had 26 career receptions coming into this season. He now stands at 25 catches this season alone headed into the bowl game. Potter will definitely be missed next season!
Offensive Player of the Year – DJ Harper
Harper has been absolutely fantastic for the Broncos this season. After a long career at Boise State, he finished his last regular season as a Bronco in style. Harper eclipsed 1,000 yards rushing for the first time of his career and ran in 15 touchdowns. He also snagged 20 balls and caught a touchdown against Miami (OH). With a new offensive regime set in place, Broncos fans knew it would be very important to get the run game going and Harper did more than accomplish that. DJ ran for over 100 yards in a single game six times this season. A bowl win over Washington will cap off a terrific career for Harper as a Boise State running back.
Make sure to cheer on the Broncos against Washington in the Maaco Bowl Las Vegas this Saturday December 22, 2012!
Twitter – @Mike_BTN
1.) Pete vs Wilcox: Justin Wilcox has been called the “Mad Scientist” by some of his former Boise State players on Twitter. He is called this because he is so willing to switch up his entire defensive scheme to match another teams strengths. Perfect example – go watch Boise State vs TCU in the Fiesta Bowl. Boise State changed everything to stop the speed and running game of TCU. That takes us to Boise State vs Washington. Pete vs Wilcox. Chris Petersen knows that Wilcox obviously has a ton of knowledge on what Boise State likes to do offensively. This means Chris Petersen will have to get his mad scientist on also. Wilcox will likely try to show the Broncos something new, but I am willing to bet the Broncos will also likely be showing the Huskies something they haven’t seen before as well. This should be a great coaching match-up, but like always I wouldn’t take anybody over Chris Petersen.
2.) DJ Harper: This is it for DJ, the last chance to show Bronco Nation and the rest of the world what he is all about. Expect DJ to come out swinging with a ton of emotion and big plays. In four out of the five losses Washington has had this year, they have given up over 200 yards rushing the ball. Expect this to be a major key in this game. If the Broncos and DJ Harper come out gashing the Huskies early the Huskies will have a long day. However if the Huskies find a way to control the running game of the Broncos it could be fight right up until the finish.
3.) Kasen Williams vs Jamar Taylor: Kasen Williams is listed at 6’2 and 216lbs. He was recruited heavily by most of the country, and that includes Boise State. That being said, he gets to face the guy that has shut down whoever they put in front of him in Jamar Taylor. This should be the best match-up on the field. It will be up to Jamar to try to shut down the big WR who has caught 71 catches and added six touchdowns along with it. It will also be up to Washington to not let Jamar Taylor do what he does best and that is make a game changing play. We already know Jamar Taylor feels right at home in Las Vegas.
4.)Joe Southwick vs Keith Price: Look at these two QB’s and you see statistically they are close enough to be twins. Southwick 17 touchdowns, Price 18, Southwick 7 interceptions, Price 8, Southwick 2,466 yards, Price 2,486. This game very well could be decided by one of these two quarterbacks. The question will be which one steps up and can be more efficient – and maybe more important which QB can ride their momentum into this game. Both QB’s showed some major gains towards the end of the year making this battle a little more intriguing. Perhaps the deciding factor will be Joe Southwick’s mustache!
5.) Be The More Excited Team: Bowl games are weird. They are played weeks after the season is “over” and they often start sloppy. With Washington vs Boise State it really could come down to which team just wants it more. Which team is more excited to be in Las Vegas and takes advantage of the opportunity. Considering this is the third straight year Boise State has been in Las Vegas that might be a challenge. It might be a challenge for Washington though as well. Both teams know this game is a warm up to the opener next year. And with that both teams will have a chance to make a statement to the other. The question is which team will it be? My prediction, Boise State wins 28-17.
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Thank you to the Boise State Senior Class! This Saturday, is your last chance to check out this group of seniors on The Blue. Get your tickets and give this class of players one last great experience at home. Go Broncos! BLEED BLUE!
1.) Rattle The Young Quarterback: San Diego State will start Sophomore Adam Dingwell in place of injured starting QB Ryan Katz. Dingwell has looked good in the limited action he has seen thus far, throwing 5 TD’s to only 1 interception, while completing 52% of his passes. The problem for Dingwell however is that this is the first real hostile environment he will have played in. He will be facing a defense that ranks 6th in the nation in pass efficiency, and has sacked the opposing QB 20 times this year. If San Diego State has to go to a silent count from crowd noise, this defense will have a chance to rattle Dingwell early. Look for Boise State to blitz and switch up coverages early trying to force an early costly turnover from the young QB.
2.) Win The Battle of Running Backs: DJ Harper and Jay Ajayi vs Adam Muema and Walter Kazee. Both Boise State and San Diego State come into this game featuring a two back system. San Diego State is currently ranked 18th in the nation for yards per game (223.1) while Boise State is ranked 58th (165.8). With both teams dedicating a lot of the offense to running the ball. It is very likely that the team that is more successful in this department comes away with the win. DJ Harper, Jay Ajayi, and the offensive line need to have strong performances for Boise State to win this game.
3.) Overcome Injuries, Suspensions, and Expectations: Lee Hightower, who many thought had the brightest future at Boise State has been suspended indefinitely. Breakout corner Bryan Douglas has suffered a season ending ACL injury. Then you also have TE Gable Linehan out, TE Kyle Sosnowski out, and WR Mitch Burroughs out. All this while the fans and media are starting to make some noise about Boise State once again beig BCS bound. This means some young players are going to have to step into some major roles very quickly. This can lead to some growing pains, with a perfect example being TCU last year. With depth being thin there will be times when a new face will be asked to make a play. If they can do this Boise State will be fine.
4.) Get The Big Play on Offense: We have seen glimmers of it all season – the deep ball. Aaron Burks, Dallas Burroughs, and Geraldo Boldewijn all have the ability to stretch a defense. With the offense being more run orientated this season the deep ball has been there every game. The question is can Joe Southwick and his receivers find a way to become consistent in completing the throws down the field. San Diego State gave up 536 yards in the air against Fresno State. Let me say that again – 536 yards in one game. If there was ever a game where the deep ball could become a big factor it could be this one.
5.) Feed Shane Williams-Rhodes: I like to call him Mighty Mouse, the 5 foot 6 inch 154lb hybrid player. You can’t say he has a position, because so far he has run the ball, caught the ball, and juked anybody who has tried to tackle him out of their jock. Shane Williams-Rhodes is the player on this offense that the more he gets the ball, the more you wonder why he doesn’t get it all the time. Rhodes is averaging over 6 yards whenever and however he touches the ball. Against San Diego State I expect we will see him once again make a big play that helps Boise State on their way to victory.
Score: Boise State 38 San Diego State 17
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1.) Don’t Overlook UNLV: UNLV is 1-6, so this is not an easy task. Much like last year, Boise State is expected to destroy UNLV. This year however, Boise State needs to start out better. Last year UNLV was 2-6, and at halftime the score was 21-14. This year, the Bronco’s are at home with oddly enough, a ton of excitement going into this game. Problem is, the excitement is about the new uniforms and crowd scheme, not the team the Bronco’s are playing. It will be important that Boise State doesn’t take a moment to overlook UNLV. If they do, we could see another tight half of football like last year.
2.) Be Boise State: The fans want it, the media is looking for it, and the players and coaches are striving to obtain it: the blowout – the dominance that put Boise State on the map. When a team like UNLV steps foot on The Blue, the expectation is they lose by no less than 40 points. That swagger has yet to make an appearance with this 2012 squad. With UNLV coming to town, and new uniforms being unveiled, it is the perfect time for that old attitude to return.
3.) D-Jay-Harper-Ajayi: Thunder and Lighting, Smash and Dash, whatever you want to call them, it doesn’t matter. All that matters is they keep getting the ball. This RB duo has done a great job so far this season and they feed off each other. They give each other fresh legs, they keep the defense off-balance, and most of all they present completely different running styles: DJ the patient agile runner, Jay the powerful bruiser. It has become clear this is the Boise State offense of 2012. Boise State needs to continue to dominate the run game and keep the pressure off Joe Southwick. Much like 2006, this is a run first team that looks to pass when the opportunity presents itself. It will be up to DJ and Jay to take Boise State to the next level, and lead BSU to a win Saturday.
4.) Find Matt Miller: Boise State should, on paper, win this game easily. That being the case, it is the perfect time to find ways to get better. One way to do this would be to continue to target the most talented WR on the team. Matt Miller currently leads the team with 30 receptions (2 TD’s). Yet, something seems slightly off with him and Southwick. The timing is just not on all the time and many of his catches are difficult ones. UNLV comes in with a suspect defense on both sides of the ball. Because of this, it looks like the perfect chance to get Matt going at full speed. Boise State should target Matt early and often, and look for ways to get him and Joe on the same page. As the season goes on this relationship will be very important.
5.) Punch it in!: If this team finds itself in short yardage situations it is time to punch it in. No more goal-line stands can be tolerated this late into the season. It is one thing to struggle in the red-zone but when you are within the 5 yard line you have to score touchdowns. Boise State has struggled in this area. If the situation presents itself on Saturday, Boise State must capitalize. They do these 5 things, Boise State should walk away with an easy win over UNLV.
Boise State 49 UNLV 10.
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1.) Unleash DJ Harper: Some players just have that team they perform well against. New coaches, new defensive schemes it just doesn’t matter sometimes. It is just the site of that other jersey that gets a player going. The team that does that for DJ Harper just might be Fresno State. Since 2007, DJ Harper has carried the ball 43 times for 294 yards, 5 Touchdowns, and an average of 6.8 yards per carry. Oregon torched Fresno State for 366 yards when they faced off this year. Considering DJ’s past, we might just see another big day from Harper. If Harper can find space on the edges early watch out. DJ very well could have one those career days against a team he just seems to like to play.
2.) Win The Turnover Battle: Fresno State has forced 18 turnovers which is good enough for tops in college football. Boise State has forced 17 turnovers, good enough for second in college football. Boise State needs to come out at home and win this battle. It will get the crowd involved, and it will give an offense that has struggled at times more chances to score. Fresno is a fairly balanced offense that throws a little more than it runs the ball. It doesn’t matter where the turnovers come from. All that matters is at the end of the game Boise State caused more, and turned them into points. Boise State does this, they will win this game.
3.) Keep Them Guessing: Last week vs Southern Miss we saw the playbook slowly start to open up. Grant Hedrick got more plays in the wild-cat, and seven different players had a rushing attempt. On the receiving side, eight different players caught the ball. This is old school Boise State football at it’s best. Pre-snap shifts, and the ball is going to anybody and everybody on offense. It is hard to prepare for a team that is willing to attack from all angles. Last week we saw that start to come together. If Robert Prince can keep this going, I expect to see continued growth on offense and more points scored.
4.) Rattle Derek Carr: Boise State is in Derek Carr’s head, and maybe we can thank his older brother David for that. He was the one who hung the Boise State flag in Derek’s home after all (you can read about that more here) and said you can’t take it down until you beat them. Last season, Derek had his first crack at that, and he did not exactly light it up. Derek didn’t get a touchdown, he only threw for 126 yards and threw an interception. Now he has spoken about how much a win means – not just to him – but his team. He has openly spoke about how this game is circled on his calendar, and he has wanted it since he was little.(Carr interview) Now it is up to Boise State to stay in his head. Hit him early and often and hopefully force an early turnover. Keep the fans excited, and keep Derek Carr pressing to try and erase the bad memories Boise State has left for him and his family. If Boise State can rattle Carr early, expect a smooth game for Boise State as Fresno tries to force the issue against Boise State.
5.) Protect The Milk Can: Rivalries are part of what makes college football great. The Milk Can is a great example of that. Boise State is 10-4 all time vs Fresno State. But games like this are how rivalries are built and maintained. In 2001, not many people gave Boise State a chance vs the 10th ranked Fresno State Bulldogs. But after 4 quarters of play Boise State was celebrating as they knocked off Fresno 35-30. Fresno State would love nothing more than to return the favor and come into Bronco Stadium Saturday and knock off the ranked Broncos. Especially in what many think maybe the last time the two teams meet for a while as Boise State heads to the Big East. With that being said, it will be up to the Broncos to match the intensity of Fresno State. The Broncos need to enjoy the rivalry for what it is. Come out and continue the tradition of dominance Boise State holds over Fresno State, and at the end of the game, take the Milk Can and put it back where it belongs. The Boise State trophy case.
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Football is back in Boise and on The Blue. After coming off a loss, many fans including myself wonder: what can we expect from this young Boise State team and coaching staff? If our poll conducted (See Poll Here) is any indication, fans seem split on what they are most concerned about. And though those concerns are warranted. I give you 5 predictions that hopefully will make you feel a little better as we head into the home opener vs Miami (OH).
1.) The Secondary Will Continue it’s Domination: Three interceptions against Michigan State was no fluke. Coach Jimmy Lake has came in with a different style of defending the pass. That style is being aggressive, finding the ball and making a play on it. Miami (OH) QB Zac Dysert has thrown the ball 89 times (53 vs Ohio State) in his first two games. Against Ohio State he threw 2 interceptions as they tried to play from behind. Things won’t be different in this game, expect Miami (OH) to have to throw the ball a lot to try and stay in the game. This will lead to forced turnovers by our secondary, a couple of which I expect to be interceptions.
2.) Joe Southwick Will Be Fine: Call me a believer in Joe Southwick; I have been since before he won the job. Despite what looked to be a very rough day against Michigan State I expect a huge turnaround vs Miami (OH). Ohio State threw the ball very efficiently against Miami (OH) and even Southern Illinois had spurts of success. Expect Joe Southwick to get some rhythm throws early. Look for some screens and slants and that rhythm to continue during the game. We will see an efficient and effective Joe Southwick leading to a more confident Joe Southwick vs BYU.
3.) No Le’Veon Bell sightings: Miami (OH) doesn’t have any Le’Veon Bell type RB’s and that is good news. In fact, in their first 2 games they have barely ran the ball at all. (27 times for a total of 102 yards) With this I expect our D-line to spend more time rushing the passer and less time chasing RB’s. Something I believe this D-line is built for, expect a few sacks this game.
4:) DJ Harper Will Bounce Back: I think it is safe to say Michigan State is the best defense Boise State will face all year. With that, DJ Harper won’t have another game like he did against them this year. DJ Harper is a explosive player and against Miami (OH) he will show it. I made a tribute video to DJ before last season you can see here. Expect the DJ seen in the video to make an appearance on Saturday.
5.) Winner Boise State: Miami (OH) is in a bad position. Coming off a loss, Boise State has a lot to prove. Add to that, it is the home opener and you have a possible disaster for whoever the team coming to Bronco Stadium is. I expect a big win for Boise State setting up a big game against BYU next week. Score prediction, Boise State 45 Miami (OH) 10.
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