Boise State Football Predictions

Written by Vegas Top Cappers | July 31, 2013

2013 Boise State Football Predictions

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Following an unsettled off-season in which it first appeared the Broncos would inexplicably become a member of the Big East, saner heads prevailed and Boise will remain in the more geographically-friendly Mountain West Conference. Head coach Chris Petersen will lead the Broncos for the ninth year, but just like the spring and summer uncertainty surrounding the school’s future, this fall’s edition of the Broncos poses several personnel issues since Boise returns just nine starters from 2012’s 11-2 squad.

Petersen’s eight year record of 84-8 looks more like something tallied up in a video game. Petersen has stamped Boise State as the Gonzaga of college football; a highly respected program that no one seriously wants on their schedule. The high-octane offense should continue to ring up scoreboards like a pinball machine with QB Joe Southwick (2,730 19 TDs) back for his senior season after answering all the pre-season 2012 questions as to how record-setting Kellen Moore could possibly be replaced.

Southwick has a bevy of experienced and productive receivers such as Matt Miller, Kirby Moore and Geraldo Boldewijn returning, while impressive newcomers such as Kendal Keys and Tanner Shipley should contribute quickly. TE Gabe Linehan is also back, lending excellent run blocking as well as sure hands when his number is called.

The ground game doesn’t have a guaranteed “go-to” guy, but reliable Jay Ajayi and Jack Fields return, while newcomer Aaron Baltazar was highly sought-after. The weakness on offense comes up front where three starters are gone. Newcomers (Mario Yakoo and Travis Averill) will have to step up and prove they belong, while working their way into the mix along with veterans Charles Leno, Spencer Gerke and Matt Paradis. Special teams, always a Broncos strength, should once again shine, with diminuitive (5-6, 158 lbs.) scatback Shane Williams-Rhodes a threat to score every time he touches the ball on kickoff and punt returns.

Boise’s defense remains stout, especially up front, where the Broncos finished 11th nationally in sacks as well as specializing in run-stuffing. Demarcus Lawrence, Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe and Blake Renaud, in particular, are standouts. The entire front line returns, but behind them are some key holes to fill. Petersen’s recruiting focus was on defense, with several highly-touted JUCO transfers looking to replace gaps in both the LB unit and the secondary. Another area of concern is the kicking game, with a new place-kicker needed to take the place of graduated Michael Frisina.

Boise State has firmly established themselves as THE non-major conference national powerhouse with the track record and resources to take on any of the “big boys.” Petersen has turned down numerous opportunities to try his skills with much bigger schools, but how much longer he can say “no” to the big bucks and bigger exposure will no doubt be put to the test once again this winter. Other than games against Washington and BYU, the schedule isn’t daunting, meaning that anything under double-digits in wins will be considered sub-par. Petersen has shown he is very adaptable with personnel changes, and his 2013 team should follow the template.

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