Clady finishes 3rd in Rookie of the Year voting

Ryan Clady finished a distant third to the Atlanta Falcons' Matt Ryan in the AP's Offensive Rookie of the Year voting...but hey, he got some votes didn't he? As hard as it is for a non "skill" position player to garner much attention in balloting, it speaks volumes that Clady finished one vote behind Titans' running back Chris Johnson and one vote in front of the Bears' Matt Forte. Clady, as previously noted, will be conspicuously absent from the Pro Bowl, but Clady has impressed everyone this season, giving up just a half a sack while playing Left Tackle for the Denver Broncos.

Mark it down...Clady will be an All-Pro next season.

Ryan wins AP Offensive Rookie of the Year [ESPN]


Every cloud...

Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da...

Well the season is over and the as the last of the Christmas leftovers are being digested, some much needed perspective has finally settled into the spot where disappointment and heartache sat just six days ago. The Boise State/TCU game provided everything that fans were looking for (besides a Boise State win) and really could've gone either way. Were we disappointed with the outcome? Absolutely—the way the game ended, with Kellen's out-of-leftfield INT, quickly soured the optimistic mood that most fans probably had going into the last 2 minutes of the bowl, but It is great to be a Bronco fan. Their insistence on trying to break the record for "most bowl game ended with a pick in one decade" certainly sprouts some gray hairs among even the most loyal Bronco fans, but no player or fan should be hanging their heads about the 2008 campaign...it didn't end on the highest of notes, but the future looks bright in the land of blue and orange, and here's some reasons why.

10. 1-point away from a perfect season in what "should" have been a rebuilding year.

9. Will absolutely be ranked in the 2009 preseason polls, setting up a more attainable BCS run.

8. Another undefeated regular season, another WAC title.

7. Ian Johnson surpasses Marshall Faulk for all-time WAC rushing TD mark.

6. Kellen freakin' Moore. Need I say more? Ok, I will...he's got 3 more years with the Broncos and his favorite targets are all back next year (even Titus Young)

5. Byron freakin' Hout. True Freshman linebacker/DE hybrid tore it up the second half of the season and will be a force on the Bronco D for 3 more years.

4. George freakin' Iloka. True Freshman safety didn't have the best bowl game, but the youngster surpassed everyone's expectations this year and was a key cog in the phenomenal Bronco D in '08.

3. Preseason WAC fave Fresno State was beaten soundly by the Broncos to finish the year.

2. Barring a pollster coup...the Broncos will finish the season in the top 15 yet again.

1. Boise State has 77 freshman and sophomores on the squad...most were key contributors this year. Experience and conditioning will only make this team better.

12-1 isn't what anyone expected in 2008, and while 13-0 has a better ring to it, Bronco fans better get ready for a ride because the next few years will be some doozies.


Know your enemy (for this bowl, anyway)

Uh-oh...they've got a ginger.

Boise State's final test of the season is a doozy. The #11 TCU Horned Frogs bring a nation-leading defense to the quiet confines of Qualcomm Stadium and the #9 Broncos bring a battle-tested offense and a freshman QB with moxie. Most fans, like me, know next to nothing about the 10-2 Horned Frogs outside of LaDainian Tomlinson and that one 4-eyed coach guy. Needless to say, there is a lot to be learned about our bowl foe (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately)...so let's explore through the magic of factoids and childish jokes. For the mutual benefit of the Horned Frog faithful, I will let you get to know us a little bit too...so take notes.

Ten things Bronco fans might not know about TCU

10. Texas Christian University was founded by brothers Addison and Randolph Clark in 1873. The brothers, using the contraction of their first names, called the school AddRan Male and Female College (no, that isn't a joke). Addison, being the wordsmith that he was, actually named his first son AddRan as well; either because he really loved his brother or hated his kid.

9. The TCU mascot, the "horned frog" is actually a Texas horned lizard and not a frog at all. These fearsome creatures eat mainly harvester ants, termites, and grasshoppers and have the ability to puff up their bodies or shoot blood out of their eyes to dissuade predators. If the lizard's predator is actually Predator, however, I would imagine they are screwed.

8. The Horned Frogs play their home football games at Amon Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, TX. The Stadium, which seats 44,000, is named for Amon G. Carter, the founder and publisher of the Fort-Worth Star Telegram newspaper. Carter had a well-publicized disdain for Fort Worth's neighbor-city Dallas, and when taking business trips to the city would bring a sack lunch so he didn't have to spend any money there...kind of like when Boiseans visit Garden City.

7. The Professor from Gilligan's Island was said to have a PhD from TCU, among his six degrees. Now that it has been established that fictional degrees can be handed out, I propose that Boise State immediately award Darrin Stevens an MBA (the first one, not the second one).

6. Slingin' Sammy Baugh, who sadly just died on December 17th, is one of TCU's most famous alumni. Baugh was a two-time All-American for the Horned Frogs playing quarterback, defensive back and punter and played 15 years in the NFL for the Washington Redskins. Baugh was among the first inductees into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and even did a little acting on the side. They just don't make guys like that anymore, unless they are willing to spend six million dollars, of course.

5. TCU won the national championship in 1938, only one year after finishing 4-4-2. On their way to the title and an 11-0 record that year, TCU defeated the likes of Arkansas, Temple, Texas A&M, Texas, Rice and SMU and eventually downed Carnegie Mellon in the Sugar Bowl. The very next year, TCU went 3-7. Weird.

4. The longest tenured coach in TCU history was Leo "Dutch" Meyer who coached for 19 years while posting a 109-79-13 record. A model of inconsistency, Meyer only posted 9 winning seasons in his 19 year career, but made them count...winning the aforementioned national championship in 1938 and posting a 12-1 record in 1935. Also, Meyer's 1936 squad could've given this years' Horned Frog defense a run for their money...they posted 7 shutouts.

3. The TCU head coach with the highest career winning percentage was Francis A. Schmidt, who won nearly 85% of his games in his 5 years at the helm. Schmidt seemed to drop off a bit after moving on from TCU, winning only 70% of his games at Ohio State and then completely lost it at Idaho, winning only 36%...but then again, it was Idaho.

2. The namesake of the award for the nation's best college quarterback, the Davey O'Brien Award, is named for...you guessed it...Davey O'Brien—a TCU quarterback who won the Heisman trophy, Maxwell award and the Walter Camp award in 1938. O'Brien was only 5'7" and weighed but 150 lbs. when he won the awards (and the national championship) with the Frogs, which is like Frankie Muniz tearing up NCAA defenses.

1. Horned Frog Miscellany: TCU, for all their storied past and successes, has only won 52% of the games in their history. The Frogs have won 14 conference championships (only 9 outright) in 5 different conferences since 1920 and are 10-13-1 in bowl games in that same span. The Horned Frogs last bowl loss came in 2003 to none other than the Boise State Broncos. Their #11 ranking that they bring in to the Poinsettia Bowl is their highest ranking since 2005, when they finished the year at #11 in the AP and #9 in the Coaches poll. The last time TCU was shutout was in 1991.

Ten things TCU fans might not know about Boise State

10. Receiver Vinny Perretta's father Ralph was an offensive lineman for 6 years with the San Diego Chargers. The elder Perretta played out his career between '75 ad '80 on the same field on which Vinny will end his collegiate career...Qualcomm Stadium (formerly known as Jack Murphy Stadium). Pereta is italian for rubber syringe. Good to know.

9. In 1933, Boise State (BJC) head coach Dusty Kline liked all his football players to get vitamins. Being as it was the depression and vitamins were not exactly an easy get, coach Kline did the traditional thing for that time and gave the players a spoonful of cod liver oil every day. Only problem was that coach Kline gave everyone their dose from the same spoon, causing a nasty case of "trench mouth" (necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis) to break out among the team—some players even lost their teeth to the malady. Fortunately, with the lack of adequate protective headgear at the time...they probably would've lost those teeth anyway.

8. Until last year's draft that saw Bronco OT Ryan Clady go in the first round, Boise State's highest ever draftee was Defensive End Markus Koch. Koch was drafted 30th overall by the Washington Redskins in the 1986 draft. After returning to Boise State in 1993 for his Hall of Fame induction...Koch basically disappeared. Friends and ex-teammates completely lost track of the Bronco great and could not find him until the Clady draft story caused searchers to redouble their efforts. Koch was finally tracked down in Port Townsend, WA where he had been living and working as a yacht broker for 15 years. Koch sadly could not provide any information on the whereabouts of D.B. Cooper.

7. Boise State's lone alum that resides in the Pro Football Hall of Fame is linebacker Dave Wilcox. Wilcox played at Boise State in its Junior College days and as such, had a stop at the University of Oregon before being drafted by the San Francisco 49ers. Wilcox's son Justin, is the current defensive coordinator for Boise State.

6. Legendary Bronco coach Lyle Smith, often called "the father of Bronco football", won his first 37 games with the Broncos and never had a losing season in his 20 years as head Bronco (1947-1967). Smith's high school nickname was "Iron Man" and he lived up to that name when his coaching career started, often chalking the field, doing the team finances and even the laundry, his first year in Boise he was also the head basketball coach (his team went 24-9). After his coaching career was over, Smith became AD and handpicked his successor, Tony Knap—who also never notched a losing season at Boise State.

5. Boise State started out as a junior college in 1932 and became 4-year Boise College in 1968. Hal Zimmerman was the starting QB for BJC in 1967 and in 1968 was the starter for Boise College. How many can make that claim?

4. The first U.S. commercial air flight was an airmail flight in 1926 from Pasco, Wash., to Boise on Varney Air Lines, predecessor of United Airlines. The dirt landing strip was where Bronco Stadium is now. Prior to the campus being built, it was Boise's first airport...and before that: a landfill.

3. Many think that Boise State ripped off their colors and mascot from the Denver Broncos...well it may be the other way around. Boise State's mascot and colors were picked in 1932 by student Owen Sproat and others after a basketball game. As Sproat put it:

“most of the guys rode horses — it was pretty much cattle country in those days.”
The johnny-come-lately Denver Broncos didn't come on the scene until 1960.

2. Bronco Stadium's Lyle Smith Field is the nation's first non-green collegiate playing surface. "The Blue" or the "Smurf Turf" as it is affectionately known was first installed in 1986 and is currently in its 4th iteration. Contrary to popular belief...geese do not break their necks after mistaking it for a white lined lake. Jimmy Hoffa is also NOT buried under the field (as far as we know)

1. Boise State's QB, redshirt frosh Kellen Moore, owns pretty much every high school football record in the state of Washington. Moore had 787 completions, 173 touchdowns, and over over 11,000 yards passing at Prosser High School. He threw 66 touchdown passes his junior year and 67 his senior year. His brother Kirby, the national record holder for career receiving TDs is joining Kellen on the blue next year. Consider this a warning.

Now that we're properly acquainted...let's kill one another on the football field tomorrow evening! GO BRONCOS!


Just Winn, baby.

"Talk to me Warriors!"

Which Bronco made the Sporting News All-Freshman first team? Just Winn, baby. DT and soon-to-be DE Billy Winn was named to the Sporting News (prestigious?) All-Freshman team today for his efforts this season. Winn has 23 tackles and 2.5 sacks on the year from the DT position and will be splitting time with fellow frosh Byron Hout at the injury-addled DE position in the Poinsettia Bowl next week. Only two other freshman from non-BCS schools were chosen for the first team...a punt returner from FIU and a kick returner from Tulsa. True freshman Safety George Iloka made the second team as did demi-god Kellen Moore. The youth movement at Boise State is indeed impressive—the rest of the nation will take notice shortly.

First teamers [SportingNews.com]

Clady snubbed. Weak.

You wouldn't like Clady when he's angry.

Joining the long list of snubs Boise State fans have come to expect this year is one of a different variety. Boise State alum Ryan Clady, who would be prepping to shut down TCU's Jerry Hughes right now if he hadn't left early for the NFL was snubbed by the Pro Bowl selection committee today. This will not stand. I mean come on, NFL...Clady has been getting Rookie of the Year type buzz as he's shut down wave after wave of franchise defensive ends this season and has given up but half a sack this year as well. Last week alone, against the Carolina Panthers, he "schooled" Julius Peppers (their words, not mine) and every writer on NFL.com placed Clady on their Pro Bowl ballot. Sadly, the writers at NFL.com do not actually cast ballots...but you get the point. Clady was robbed, and all of you Pro Bowl voters just awoke a sleeping giant.

Pro Bowl rosters [NFL.com]


The Leno Show

"I'll protect you, Kellen."

Boise State received their 19th verbal commitment (20th if you count the softy) of the 2009 class today as big OT Charles Leno pulled the proverbial trigger. Leno, a 6'5" 265 pounder out of San Leandro HS (CA), had scholly offers from Idaho, SDSU, SJSU, UNLV and Utah as well as interest from several Pac-10 schools. Leno is rated as the #24 Offensive Tackle of the '09 class by ESPN and also grades out as a 79 using their formula. Besides receiving passing grades from ESPN's recruiting team, they had this (among other things) to say about the big man.

Leno is on prime time when he's on the field. He has very good size and is extremely athletic. Runs more like a tight end than a tackle; gives great effort when leading downfield on the screen pass or getting crossfield to pick up a defender. Plays the game with a great sense of urgency and gives 100% every play.
Coach Pete will get that ratcheted up to 110%, so don't worry.

By the way, Leno visited the blue during the Fresno State game so it's a miracle that it took him two weeks to pull the trigger—still one of the most memorable nights at Bronco Stadium I can remember.

Leno scouting report [ESPN]
List of Boise State commits [Scout.com]


The definitive Poinsettia Bowl preview

A few days ago, I was asked to write a "thorough" Poinsettia Bowl preview for Bleacher Report that was to be between 300-600 words...well, it's a good thing I can't follow directions because what the Bleacher Report got was a 1,600 word analysis that would give Deep Blue pause. Rather than post the preview on FFBSU and give people's mouse-scrolling-hand cramps...here is the link. If you've anything to add, please do.


Horned Blogs: Bronco Nation Podcast talks with the enemy

JT from BNN had a little chit chat with a horned frog blogger (say that three times fast) yesterday and discussed all things Poinsettia. Have a listen and check out JT's site when you have a chance...it's nice.

icon for podpress  The Bronco Nation Podcast - Spit Blood TCU Interview [36:35m]: Hide Player | Play in Popup | Download



Logged on to facebook today and saw this horrifying development. Kellen...don't fall in with the wrong crowd!


Consolation prize

So the BCS machine surprised no one last night by choosing 10-2 Ohio State over the Broncos for the final at-large spot in a BCS bowl. I suppose watching the Buckeyes get run over by the Longhorns will be much more enjoyable than watching the Broncos get run over by the Longhorns and maybe there is a silver lining. The Broncos overachieved this year by most accounts with the stellar performance of Kellen Moore and dominating defense, but youth precluded them from really putting perfect games together outside of a few...maybe they just weren't ready for a BCS bowl. The team will almost certainly be ranked in the preseason polls next year and be better set up for a serious BCS run in 2009 and beyond. The first step towards that end would be to take down the pesky TCU Horned Frogs in San Diego on the 23rd of this month. The bowl represents what may be one of the top 5 matchups of the postseason, #9 and undefeated Boise State vs. #11 and 10-2 TCU. The Horned Frogs have a smothering defense and impressive team speed...the Broncos have a smothering defense and a dynamic offense. Something has got to give. Early analysis says that the Horned Frogs and Broncos may be close to a "push" on defense and the edge had to go to the Broncos on offense...setting up an exciting game in sunny San Diego in a few weeks. I will be posting lots of info as it comes out about the matchup and you better believe that there will be a bowl version of "Know Your Enemy" so take heart Bronco fans. The BCS wasn't in the cards this year, but we'll get there again...sooner than you think.


JC Safety commits to the Broncos

Safety Will Shamburger, who verballed to the Broncos in August, backed out of his commitment yesterday. It took all of half a day for a new Safety to take his scholly, when JC transfer Winston Venable threw his verbal at Boise State. Venable, who looks like a lineman in his photo, will have 3 years to play 2 at Boise State and looks like he will immediately vie for the 3rd safety spot that we saw Ellis Powers flourish in this year. Venable is 6'1", 210 lbs. and possesses 4.5 speed...oh yeah, and he punts too so look out Elkin Brotzman! Venable was the Co-Defensive Player of the Year this season at Glendale Community College and made league's first-team defense at two positions (Safety and Punter). With Shamburger's departure from the commit list, Venable still represents the 18th commit of the 2009 class.

Full list of current commits [scout.com]
A few more tidbits on Venable [OBNUG]


50k the hard way

Just noticed a little something...FFBSU has just passed the 50,000 page-view mark. Not too shabby for a messy little Bronco blog. Thanks to all the readers and fans of the blog, I'll try to make the blog bigger and better for the next 50,000 and beyond.


So long and thanks for all the towels

(Cue sad Incredible Hulk music) Hal Mumme has been canned at New Mexico State and towels around the state are flying at half mast. Mumme was 11-38 during his tenure at NMSU, including an awesome 1-7 WAC finish this year, getting blown out by Utah State in their finale. Maybe SMU is looking for a blowhard offensive coordinator.


Duh: Kellen Moore WAC Freshman of the Year

Yes WAC, you get 3 more years of this.

The All-WAC selections were announced today and the list has a heavy blue and orange tint.

The "duh" awards:
WAC Coach of the Year—Chris Petersen
WAC Freshman of the Year—Kellen Moore

1st Team Offense:
WR Jeremy Childs
OL Andrew Woodruff

1st Team Defense:
DE Ryan Winterswyk
S Ellis Powers
DB Kyle Wilson

2nd Team Offense:
WR Austin Pettis
QB Kellen Moore
RB Ian Johnson

2nd Team Defense:
DE Mike T. Williams
S Jeron Johnson

2nd Team Specialists:
PR Kyle Wilson (2nd team?)

Colin Kaepernick received Offensive Player of the Year honors and first team QB honors...no qualms with the OPOTY award, but I think they're being awful fast and loose with the term "quarterback" when Kaepernick is involved. Here's what I mean: Colin Kaepernick threw for 2,479 yards this season, completing 54% of his passes for 19 TDs and 5 INTS. Conversely, Kellen Moore threw for 3,264 yards this season, completing 70% of his passes for 25 TDs and 9 INTs. Which was the better "quarterback"? You tell me. Kaepernick is certainly a dangerous offensive weapon and deserves the offensive accolades, but if this is how we're judging excellence at the quarterback position, Kellen Moore can look forward to two more years as 2nd team WAC QB, even though he'll likely be a national leader in TDs and efficiency. Nice.

Hard to believe, but this will be coach Pete's first Coach of the Year award...he was famously snubbed for the honor in 2006, though he led the team to a 13-0 record and snared the Bear Bryant award. Thankfully, June Jones is now gone and there is no more butt for Hal Mumme to kiss in his absence.

I think it is also worth noting that preseason WAC favorite Fresno State (who you may remember got demolished by Boise State on Friday) placed but one player on a WAC first team (OL Bobby Lepori)

All-WAC Honors
Boise State 2008 Team Awards


Bronco Nation Podcast 11-26-08

We have another game?! The epic showdown that wasn't will take place on Friday afternoon when the Fresno State Bulldogs come to town. A revenge-minded (2001, anyone?) Bulldog team will have something to play for and the Broncos, thanks to a Utah win on Saturday and the WAC championship firmly in hand, won't. Upset anyone? Not likely on Senior Night, but JT (BNN), Buck (Statueleft), and Logan from the Redwave podcast sort it all out. Who's up for some turkey?

icon for podpress  The Bronco Nation Podcast - Bring It On [53:38m]: Hide Player | Play in Popup | Download


Thank you seniors!

Fresno heads to the blue on Black Friday this week after Boise State clinched their 6th league title in 7 seasons in their "biggest little win" of the year. Fresno has had a curious year and failed to meet many preseason expectations (sound familiar?), but are always a dangerous squad and I'm sure would love to do to the Broncos what the Broncos did to them in 2001. The fans are already in post-season mode, but as long as the players aren't...it should be a very tough game for the 'dogs to win. Lost in the commotion is the fact that Friday is Senior Night and the Broncos will honor a slew of seniors that have given their heart and soul to the program. Among them are Ian Johnson, who placed 8th in Heisman voting in 2006 and passed LaDainian Tomlinson on Saturday for second all-time in WAC rushing TDs, Vinny Perretta, who tossed the game-tying TD in the Fiesta Bowl and notched 126 yards against the Wolf Pack on Saturday, and Andrew Woodruff, who has been a mainstay on the Bronco O-line and paved the way for some of the best rushers this school has ever seen. Hopefully Bronco Nation will show up early on Friday afternoon to honor this senior class that has represented Boise State so well and given us all memories to last a lifetime. If you'd like to express your gratitude and wish the Bronco seniors well, I've set up this online petition so you can do just that. Remember, the first page after you sign is just a preview of your post...you must hit 'sign' again after reviewing for your signature and comments to go live.

Thank you Bronco seniors


Know your enemy (for this week, anyway)

What's that whistling sound? Just Colin Kaepernick standing in the wind.

Boise State and the Bronco Nation head to Reno this Saturday to take on the Nevada-Reno Wolf Pack. The Broncos are coming off Vandal hammering (no, pun intended) and Nevada is coming off a dominant performance against San Jose State. Most fans, like me, know little about the Wolf Pack outside of the lil General and "the fastest thing on stick legs" Colin Kaepernick. Needless to say, there is a lot to be learned about this week's foe (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately)...so let's explore through the magic of factoids and childish jokes. For the mutual benefit of the Wolf Pack faithful, I will let you get to know us a little bit too...so take notes.

Ten things Bronco fans might not know about the Wolf Pack and their iniquitous den to the south

10. Ron Toomer, who holds a Mechanical Engineering degree from UNR, designed the first upside down roller coaster, the Corkscrew. The Corkscrew was a mainstay at Knott's Berry Farm for years, but now resides at the Silverwood amusement park in Athol, Idaho. Corkscrews are also good for popping corks...say on a champagne bottle...whilst celebrating an outright WAC title.

9. The Wolf Pack play their games at Mackay Stadium (29,993). The stadium is named for Clarence H. Mackay, the son of John W. Mackay, a silver and telegraph mogul. Clarence Mackay was an early financier of the university and gifted the school the Mackay School of Mines. Mackay was a tad eccentric, some might say...he collected medieval suits of armor, refused to marry his second wife for 15 years until his first wife died, and disinherited his daughter after she married composer Irving Berlin.

8. The oldest secret society at the University of Nevada-Reno is the Coffin and Keys Society, which was founded in 1916. The club was formed to be "a force to give the proper impetus to affairs of school life". Currently, the society appears to be mainly involved in putting t-shirts on statues, arranging canned food in decorative ways, and lounging in jaunty caps and Halloween masks. Spooky.

7. The UNR football program has produced an NFL Hall of Famer in fullback Marion Motley. Motley was only the second African American player inducted into the Hall of Fame after playing nine years in the league with the Steelers and Browns. During Motley's tenure with the Browns, in which he played fullback and linebacker, the Browns were 47-4-3 and won every championship in the AAFC. Sounds like Motley had quite the Crüe.

6. Each year, UNR and UNLV battle on the gridiron for the Fremont Cannon. The cannon goes to the victor of the contest for a year and it's undercarriage is painted in the winning school's colors. The cannon is a replica of the howitzer cannon that explorer John Fremont and his party hauled west and abandoned in the Sierra Nevada in 1844. Fremont was also the first Republican nominee for President of the United States...he didn't win, of course—maybe the nation was looking for a leader that didn't just leave cannons lying around.

5. Archaeological digs show that ancient native Americans known as the Martis, lived in the area where Reno now stands. The Martis resided in the area from 3,000 BC to 500 AD. Man, they just missed Chris Ault.

4. The UNR campus was the setting for five motion pictures in the 1940s, among the tititles: Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble, Apartment for Peggy, Mother is a freshman, and Mr. Belvedere goes to College (no, not that Mr. Belvedere), which was one of Shirley Temple's last films.

3. Nevada coach Chris Ault, "inventor" of the Pistol offense, is one of only 4 active coaches that have already been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. The other 3 are Joe Paterno, Bobby Bowden, and Joe Gagliardi. If that doesn't sound like an advertising dream team for Geritol® and Efferdent®, I don't know what does.

2. UNR football's first All-American (1923) was James "Rabbit" Bradshaw. No relation to this guy OR this guy.

1. Boise State has clinched outright WAC titles in Reno in every even numbered year since 2002. The Wolf Pack haven't had a sellout at Mackay since 2003. The Wolf Pack have the number one rushing offense in the country and Boise State has the number 2 scoring defense in the country. Boise State has not lost to the Wolf Pack since 1998. Something's gotta gonna give on Saturday...excited yet?

Ten things Wolf Pack fans might not know about the Broncos and their heavenly home to the north

10. Idaho governor C.L. "Butch" Otter is an alum of Boise Junior College where he played linebacker for legendary Bronco coach Lyle Smith. Otter didn't stuff the run...he vetoed it.

9. Former Boise State cornerback DaWuan Miller had only one arm. He had several key interceptions in the 1994 Division 1-AA playoffs that helped get the Broncos to the national championship game. Looks like the arm he was left with was his good arm. Amazing.

8. Former Bronco QB Jared Zabransky once told ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit that he could throw a potato 80 yards. The comment found its way into the NCAA Football 07 game when Herbstreit, doing the voice over work says at random points in games "That reminds me of the time that kid at the Liberty Bowl told me he could throw a potato 80 yards."

7. Boise had it's very own "trial of the century" in 1907, when the leaders of the Western Federation of Miners labor union went on trial accused of hiring assassin Harry Orchard to kill Idaho governor Frank Steunenberg.

6. Boise's Statehouse building is heated geothermally by underground hotsprings. Most hot springs I've ever been to are rife with scantily clad hippies...can't imagine who you'd meet at an underground one.

5. Hollywood director Michael Hoffman is a Boise State alum and was the school's first Rhodes Scholar. He won two Oscars for the film Restoration, but I think his finest work is the documentary film Out of the Blue, which is about Boise State's undefeated 2006 season...oops, I just spoiled the ending.

4. Boise State has been shutout only twice in football, the last coming against Washington State in 1997. Boise State registered two shutouts over their opponents just last year. 20 of Boise State's 24 opponent shutouts since 1968 have occurred at home. Their most lopsided win ever? The first ever game on the blue turf: a 74-0 win over Humboldt State which answered once and for all the question, "can Hippies play football?"

3. Since 1973, Boise State has won 13 conference championships including 5 straight WAC titles from 2002 to 2006. Prior to 1968, they competed in the JC ranks, and as stated before...were a dominant force at 153-25-6 and winning the JC national championship in 1958. Boise State won the 1-AA national championship in 1980 by defeating Eastern Kentucky and played in the championship again in 1994, but lost to a Jim Tressel-led Youngstown State.

2. Boise State sophomore wideout Austin Pettis is the nephew of former major league baseball player Gary Pettis. Gary Pettis still holds the record for most stolen bases in the Angels organization (186)...Austin holds the Boise State record for stealing the most corner fade routes from defensive backs (all of them).

1. Boise State freshman QB Kellen Moore set state records for career completions (787), career touchdown passes (173), completions in a season (317), passing yards in a season (4,600) and touchdown passes in a season (67) at Prosser High, in Washington, but he never won state. His brother Kirby, who will join Kellen on the Blue next season, recently became the national record holder for receiving TDs in a career. Something in the water in Prosser, Washington besides apple residue.

That's about the long and short of it...apologies for the delay this week...one of my biggest resources was out of commission so I had to wing this one and bring back some oldies-but-goodies.

Bronco Nation Podcast 11-18-08

Boy, I hope you like the sound of Jadon Dailey's voice...cuz he came in with some pretty epic analysis last night and showed why he's going places in the industry. We break down the Idaho game and the hammer "controversy", Byron Hout and his POTW hardware, and talk each other down over the Nevada game on Saturday.Make sure to listen towards the end when JT basically says that I suck.

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WAC Player of the Week: Hout'd!

Bronco true frosh LB/DE/MVP/BMOC Byron Hout was named the WAC defensive player of the week today, striking fear into WAC opponents for the next 3 1/2 years. You may remember that Hout's redshirt was burned halfway through the season as coaches found him too good/terrifying to keep off the field. We applaud their foresight. Hout has been a force in every game he has played in this year proving largely unblockable and downright mean. All this from a kid that was and still is expected to play linebacker. Hout had 2 sacks, 5 tackles and a forced fumble against Idaho on Saturday...the fumble was returned for a TD by Ellis Powers. If your keen eyes can't pick up Hout on the field in the mess of D-line substitutions that the Broncos pull—he's number 94 (he'll be the guy shedding his block effortlessly).

In other news, Jeremy Avery got robbed as the offensive player of the week. Nevada's Colin Kaepernick got the honors instead. Hey Colin, dare you to repeat.


WAC Players of the Week get Hout

Still got it

Ex-Bronco and current bobblehead Chris Carr still gotz the skillz.


See you Latah

Hooray for county puns! The Vandals had exactly one big play and exactly one decent drive yesterday afternoon as they were annihilated for the 10th straight time by the undefeated Broncos. On the first play from scrimmage, Vandal receiver Daniel Hardy turned a short-gainer into an 81-yard TD after the Bronco D gave up on the play, thinking he was down. It was a heads up play by Hardy...and it was the last big play the Vandals would have all day. Sure, the Broncos chose to let the Vandals stay within striking distance at the half by missing two field goals and not capitalizing in the red zone, but once the 3rd quarter started, it was curtains for the Black and Gold.

Jeremy Avery showed why he should get the lion's share of the carries torching the Vandals for 156 yards and two TDs on only 11 carries. I will say this now: Ian Johnson deserves the WAC TD record and the coaches should do everything in their power to give it to him...but Avery is the better back for this offense and as such, should get the touches. Kellen Moore failed to throw a TD for the first time since game two, but was an efficient 23/31 on the day with no turnovers. Hey Kellen, corner fade to Pettis...that's all I'm sayin'.

Ellis Powers repeated his feat of returning a fumble for a TD and Kyle Wilson ran back yet another punt for a TD. The defense looked solid against the run and didn't allow anything over the top, but still look a bit soft over the middle against non-spread offense. Thankfully, next week's tumble against the Wolf Pack will feature the spread option and power run game...two things the Broncos handle very well.

With the 45-10 win, the Broncos move to 10-0 for the 3rd time in 5 seasons and clinched at least a share of their 6th WAC title. They will can claim the outright title with a win over Nevada on Saturday.


Know your enemy

You should see it when it's empty.

Ah, rivalry week...the one week every year when we stop trying to ignore the "tribe from the North" and start trying to ignore Robb Akey. The Broncos are coming off a cake walk win against Utah State, the Vandals are coming off a surprisly tough win over Bye. Most fans, like me, know too much about Idaho and their antics on the Palouse. Needless to say, there is still a lot to be learned about this week's foe (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately)...so let's explore through the magic of factoids and childish jokes. For the mutual benefit of the Vandal faithful, I will let you get to know us a little bit too, not that you haven't already drawn your own conclusions...so take notes.

Ten things Bronco fans might not know about the University of Idaho and their hellish hovel to the north

10. In 1871, brothers Asbury and Noah Lieuallen and about 20 families arrived in what is now Moscow, Idaho. The settlers were drawn in by the abundant grassland and availability of timber for building. The abundance of camas bulbs, then used as fodder for pigs, in the area led the settlers to first name the town Hog Heaven. Years later, several U of I sororities adopted that same name.

9. Besides the University of Idaho—Moscow is home to 21 other academic institutions...among them, Mr. Leon's School of Hair Design and the Moscow School of Massage. Surplus baby oil from the School of Massage is donated every year to the football team.

8. The Vandal football team started play in 1893, and went 2-0-1 in their first year with two wins over Washington State and a tie against Spokane AC. It took the Vandals until 1900 to win another game. Ahh, tradition.

7. Idaho's longest tenured coach in their history was John G. "Pinky" Griffith, who coached for 10 seasons in Moscow and went 28-22-2. Griffith left Idaho to coach at Iowa after the 1906 season but returned as Vandals coach in 1910 and took over the University of Idaho's Entomology Department. Prior to coaching, Griffith was a fullback and team captain for the Iowa Hawkeyes' football team.

6. A mule named Idaho Gem, the world's first cloned equine, was created by researchers at the University of Idaho and Utah State University. Later that same year, the school cloned Buddy Hackett to be their basketball coach.

5. The Kibbie Dome, shown here, is the smallest football venue in Division 1-A with a capacity of 16,000. The dome should be full this Saturday, but don't worry, Bronco fans, there's always a little extra room in Robb Akey's mustache.

4. The campus master plan for the University of Idaho was developed by the Olmsted Brothers, founders of the American Society of Landscape Architects and sons of Frederick Law Olmsted, who designed New York's Central Park. The Olmsted Brothers radical design ideas for the campus included grass, trees, gravel, and trees.

3. Before moving to the Kibbie Dome, the Vandals' football team played their home games at Neale Stadium, an "earthen horseshoe" that was named after UI president Mervin G. Neale. The stadium was condemned in 1969 and burned down by an arsonist that same year. Why are you looking at me? I wasn't born until 1980.

2. Two famous alums of the Vandal football team are Jerry Kramer and Bill Fagerbakke. Kramer went on to fame and fortune as the Intermountain Gas spokesman after his playing career in Moscow was over and Fagerbakke went on to become a starfish. Ok, Kramer was pretty good.

1. Idaho has an all-time win percentage of only 44%. Sure they, won 12 straight against the Broncos in the 80s and 90s, but that was much more anomalous than anything they've experienced before or since. They've never won a national championship, notched an undefeated season or even made a dent in the Division 1-AA playoffs. Despite their "streak", the Broncos lead the all-time series with the Vandals 19-17-1 and it's gonna get more lopsided from here on out. Just remember all this when your revisionist Vandal co-workers try to reminisce about the "good old days".

Ten things Vandal fans might not know about the Broncos and their peaceful hamlet to the south

10. In 1978, after taking abuse from the Vandal mascot at Bronco Stadium and in tears, the Bronco mascot (who was female) was approached by Boise State wrestling coach Mike Young to pull a switcheroo on the Vandal attacker. Young donned the costume at halftime and proceeded to tackle the Vandal mascot and steal his sword. Comeuppance, I believe is what that is called.

9. Longtime radio personality and ex-"Voice of the Broncos" is actually an University of Idaho alum, as is the father of Bronco football, Lyle Smith. This is a lot like if Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine decided to fight for the Rebel Alliance after graduating from Dark Side University.

8. Boise State's second president, Eugene Chaffee (1937-1967) enlisted in the army in 1942 to fight in World War II.

7. During World War II, enrollment at Boise State dropped to 152, but by the end of the war had jumped to nearly 900. Today, enrollment is close to 20,000.

6. Aurelius "Buck" Buckner was Boise State's first African-American student athlete. Buckner attended Boise State from 1944 to 1946, and was on the football team and basketball team, where he was the high-scorer in the 1945/46 season. Bill Buckner, who also lives in Boise, is no relation.

5. Once upon a time the land on which most of Boise State's campus sits was an island. Its most famous resident was Sage Brush Ann (also known as Tarpaper Annie), who lived alone in a modest tarpaper shack. I got nothin'...this one speaks for itself.

4. Boise State is currently ranked the 40th among all universities in merchandise sales just behind Georgia Tech. Boise State is the highest ranked non-BCS school on the list of the top 75 that the CLC releases each quarter and is ranked directly ahead of Mississippi, Stanford, Colorado, Pitt, BYU, and Boston College. Here is an artist's rendering of the owner of the Blue and Orange Store.

3. Many Vandals think that Boise State ripped off their colors and mascot from the Denver Broncos...wrong. Boise State's mascot and colors were picked in 1932 by student Owen Sproat and others after a basketball game. As Sproat put it:

“most of the guys rode horses — it was pretty much cattle country in those days.”
The johnny-come-lately Denver Broncos didn't come on the scene until 1960.

2. Lyle Smith's teams won 16 of 21 conference titles in the Intermountain Collegiate Athletic Conference (now the Scenic West Athletic Conference). Dominance, Lyle Smith be thy name.

1. The Broncos have won ten oops...getting ahead of myself...nine straight games against the Vandals going into this Saturday's game. The last win by the Vandals was a thrilling 36-35 win on the blue 1998 in Boise. Since that fateful date in November of '98, the Broncos have won 105 games and 7 conference championships. The Vandals have won 30 games in that span and have not been to a bowl game since the 1998 Humanitarian Bowl. The Tormey Curse or the Pokey Curse...take your pick.

Bronco Nation Podcast 11-13-08

Buck (Statueleft), JT (BNN) and I fired up the podcast last night to discuss the awesomeness of the Broncos. We talked about the wild and whacky Utah State/Boise State game, which remaining WAC team has a pulse, and sheer evil that resides in a airplane hangar in Northern Idaho. There are some pretty good rants on this one, so take a listen if you want to hear Robb Akey and crew get berated.

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Why the hate?

As a young boy, I thought the University of Idaho wasn't so bad. I grew up in Boise and liked the Broncos, but would root for the Vandals when I saw them play. I had aunts and uncles who attended the University of Idaho and a couple that actually played on their sports teams. As a naive child it seemed to me that Idaho and Boise State were separated by geography alone. Then I grew up, as we all do, and realized that much more separate Boise State and Idaho than geography. The Broncos, quite frankly, are winners...and well, the Vandals are losers...and I don't just mean in a statistical or historical way (although the stats will back up this assertion). But alas, I am still a relatively young buck and can scarcely recall "the streak", Johnelle John L. Smith, or John Friesz—so I thought it best to solicit the older Bronco fans out there to find out just how deep the hatred runs. Turns out: pretty deep. Screen names were provided to protect the innocent from Vandal drive-bys, which we've heard are known to happen.


I am sure you are aware that first game, the DAVs* tried to duck Boise College and were forced to play us.

Prior to the game their coach said the 1st half would be more like a scrimmage and in the second half they would embarrass Boise (You guessed it, the Vandals lost).

The third game was the first one played in Moscow. That same coach Robbins, led the Vandals through the Boise locker room singing "Kiss my Ass BJC" (classy). This cost the (Vandals) the game—the Vandals were heavy favorites and the Broncos didn't think they could win, but that stunt was all that was needed to get Boise on the winning track. My source was Al Davis a Boise player and starter.
The Vandals used to control the SBOE when I was a kid (in the 50's). No matter what we (BSU) or ISU for that matter tried to do to improve ourselves or grow.....the Vanholes would squash it.....add to that the never ending string of scandals and lies to come out of that cesspool up north and you will have a damn thick novel not a story. There is too much for anyone here to jot down in an email. Those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it. Every BSU student should really go back to the early days of the school and the state of Idaho and understand just what kind of people you are dealing with. Some of you young guys don't understand why some of us older guys hate the Vandals so much....well I will "F'ing" gar-un-tee you that it is well deserved and make no mistake they hate us.....they have always hated us, and they have tried since BSU was formed to shut us down.

I have never considered this a rivalry; even when I was a child.....I have always viewed it as some kind of twisted punishment that we have to have anything to do with those A-holes. I do not care to associate with criminals and scum, yet the state of Idaho makes us do that every time we have to come into contact with those losers.

What goes around comes around and the Vanholes are now reaping what they have sown. They could have taken the high road and been the flagship institution in this state but instead they chose the low road and they deserve every rotten thing that happens to them.
Tell us how you really feel, badger.

In a nutshell...the Vandals have always percieved themselves as a superior breed. I don't know why exactly, but Idaho alums talk about U of I like it's the Harvard or Yale of the northwest. It wouldn't be so bad, but once you realize how self-centered, and self-righteous, and self-congratulatory, and self-aggrandizing, and self-absorbed, and dumb most of these guys are...well, the hate just comes natural.

It's the feeling you'd have if Richard Simmons billed himself as one of the greatest athletes of the 20th century. You'd wanna pick him up by the hair and slap him until he cried. They should just drop back into AA, and disappear, as far as I'm concerned.

Make no mistake, this isnt a rivalry, its a class war, and when it comes to class, BSU has it, and U of I never will.
Richard Simmons isn't one of the greatest athletes of the 20th century?

Some Broncos take exception to the 1996 game that saw the Chris Tormey-led Vandals running up the score on an in-his-final-days Pokey Allen and the Broncos. They even ran a fake punt when they were up by nearly 50 points.

Me personally? I don't like the drunken frat boys that come to the games at Bronco Stadium and try to pick fights in the student section. I don't like the book-cooking that the Vandals do with their pathetic home attendance numbers. I don't like sleeping porches or beefcake photos. I don't like Dennis Erickson, Johnelle John L. Smith, Chris Tormey, Tom Cable, Nick Holt or Robb Akey. That's right...I don't like Robb Akey—the hybrid of Alex P. Keaton's dad on Family Ties and the neighbor from Office Space. I do like Rob Spear, though. Stay gold, Rob...stay gold (and please NEVER leave Moscow).

*DAV=Dog Ass Vandals, apparently Tony Knap rallied the troops and coined this term after the Vandal locker room hijinx in 1973.

Holy cow...another commit.

Boise State has been tearing up the recruiting trail this season garnering 17 verbals between May and yesterday...now, add one more. Jake Broyles, a 6'6" 250 lb. OT from Henderson, NV has told Boise State that he intends to be a Bronco, according to the Las Vegas Sun. ESPN had this to say about Broyles:

Broyles displays some athleticism as an offensive lineman. He has a great frame and is an impressive looking football player. Comes out of stance square and with a good flat back with legs underneath him; fits well into the base block. At times is an instant late out of his stance in both the run game and in pass protection. An alert player that does a good job of picking up the blitz; football smart. Needs to learn to be more aggressive with hands; tough to sustain blocks unless locked into the defenders frame. Likes to play physical and has the will to fight defender at the line of scrimmage and when setting back in passing game. Tendency to get a little high when deep pass setting; lunges and really doesn't get anchored down on a consistent basis. Needs to set back quicker and have some patience. Broyles has the chance to be a very good offensive guard once he learns to have violent hands that he can use as a weapon to stalemate and control the opposition.
Broyles appears to have had the interest of Nevada, UNLV, Washington and Fresno State, Brown, and Princeton (he's smart). That's 18, folks, and they aren't done yet.


Tool alert!

I was lucky enough to stumble on to this Coug fans deliciously condescending blog discussing a potential Boise State Mountain West invite. I strongly urge Bronco Nation to let "Adam" know exactly how many MWC teams Boise State has lost to. You've been called out kid. This oughtta whet your appetite:

I don't like the Boise State Broncos. I know a lot of BYU fans do, but I don't. I don't sympathize with them, I don't like them and I think they need to be humbled in a big way.
How dare you distract me from my Vandal-hating in this of all weeks!

Adam's Sports Blog


Thank you sir, may I have another...

Boise State's crowded 2009 recruiting class may just get more crowded...and with another talented quarterback, no less. California quarterback Joe Southwick was the first verbal commit for the Broncos way back in May, and many thought that he was to be the only quarterback in the class...that is, until the coaching staff announced this summer that Nick Lomax would be transferring. The Broncos suddenly found themselves with very little depth at QB behind starter Kellen Moore and many suggested that the staff may go after one more signal caller. Enter Michael Tamburo, a Jared Zabransky clone out of Gwinnett High in Georgia who holds offers from a half dozen programs. Tamburo apparently visited the Boise this weekend and came away impressed...very impressed:

...(Tamburo) likes the turf, the school, the program, the city, the coaches … well, he likes just about everything that has to do with Boise State. In fact, the North Gwinnett senior quarterback likes the place so much he was on the verge of committing to the Broncos Monday night. Tamburo was wating to talk to the Bronco coaches before giving them his final commitment.
I guess as long as the coaches had their cell phones turned on tonight, we may well be seeing a new verbal in the morning.
``It’s where I want to be,’’ Tamburo said.
Did I say, "may be seeing a new verbal"...I meant, "will be seeing a new verbal". And that makes 17.

Not too shabby...

Tamburo profile


Sweet 16th?

Sometimes the best high school football recruits fly under the radar...this couldn't have been more true for new Boise State verbal commit Nicholas Alexander, who Scout.com listed as having no interest in Boise State. Alexander's lack of interest in the Broncos was either grossly exaggerated or the Blue really impressed the 6'5" 235 lb. Strongside DE upon his visit to yesterday's tilt against Utah State, because rivlas.com is reporting that he verballed to the Broncos today. Alexander, from Crenshaw High in LA, is currently rated as a two-star recruit by rivals.com and scout.com and had at least one held a scholarship offer from Washington State. Alexander's grandfather was an All-American at Minnesota and later an NFL Hall of Famer with the Minnesota Vikings. Bloodlines, baby.

Of course, verbals before letter of intent day in February are non-binding...but Alexander represents the 16th known commit of the 2009 class. SIXTEEN!


Boise State stocking up on local talent

Boise State went back to the well that brought them the likes of Jarrell Root, Kyle Efaw and recent verbal Geraldo Hiwat and landed another verbal out of Capital High on Thursday. Bryant Thomas, a 6'2" 250 lb. offensive lineman has given Boise State the nod and will join the crowded '09 recruiting class that is currently up to 15 commits (all non-binding until February, so cross them fingers). Thomas certainly has the size to make an impact on the line, and sounds like he is more than a little excited to play on the blue:

“I put a lot of work in and finally get a chance to see it really pay off,” Thomas said. “I can’t wait to play for Coach Pete. I will be dedicated to his program on and off the field.”
Yer already off to a good start, Bryant.


Bronco Nation Podcast 11-5-08

Alex Guerrero swings by the podcast to help us lambast Hal Mumme, analyze the WAC and tell us about an excellent fundraising opportunity this Saturday. The usual suspects are there as well in the form of JT Ray (BNN), Buck Rogers (Statueleft), and me. Alex Guerrero is gonna play for the Burn this season...so listen in while you can because he's gonna be too busy for us small potato bloggers in short order.

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Know your enemy (for this week, anyway)

If you look at the scoreboard upside down, we actually won.

Boise State gets the distinct pleasure of playing another Aggies team this weekend on the blue...the dreaded Utah State Aggies. The Broncos are coming off a cake walk win against New Mexico State, the Aggies are coming off a surprising win over Hawaii. Most fans, like me, know little about Utah State outside of Johnelle John L. Smith and his bifurcated tail. Needless to say, there is a lot to be learned about this week's foe (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately)...so let's explore through the magic of factoids and childish jokes. For the mutual benefit of the Aggie faithful, I will let you get to know us a little bit too...so take notes.

Ten things Bronco fans might not know about Utah State

10. Why is the New Mexico State Aggie a cowboy and the Utah State Aggie a pig cow bull? Well, an Aggie mascot generally denotes that the school is an agricultural institution. Utah State was established in Logan, Utah as the Agricultural College of Utah and didn't become Utah State University until 1957. The first athletics teams actually were known as "the Farmers". I personally think that "Soil Strikers" would've been much more fearsome a nickname.

9. Utah State University faculty played a key role in advising Iran on water, soils, and crop management. They also helped Ahmadinejad pick out his snappy jacket.

8. Utah State manufactures a college ice cream known as Aggie Ice Cream, which is sold in 26 flavors. The football team's favorite flavor: Rocky Road.

7. The Aggie football team's most celebrated alum is Merlin Olsen, a Hall of Fame defensive tackle with the Los Angeles Rams. Olsen was a 14 time Pro-Bowl selection and named to the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team in 1994. You may also remember Olsen as playing Charles Ingalls' pal Jonathan Garvey on Little House on the Prairie and trying to guilt you into buying FTD flowers.

6. In 1909 the first senior class gift was an "A" placed on the west side of Old Main tower. The "A," now on all four sides of the tower, can be seen throughout the valley, especially at night when lit in white. For special occasions and athletic wins, the "A" shines blue. In other words, it only shines during basketball season.

5. Utah State plays their football games at Romney Stadium (capacity 25,313). The stadium is named after coach E.L. "Dick" Romney, the Aggie coach from 1918 to 1949. Romney (yes, those Romneys) has the most career wins in Aggie history (128), and as you might expect, the most career losses as well (91).

4. Prior to becoming Boise State's head coach in 1968, Tony Knap led the Aggies for 4 seasons, going 25-14. Knap was 71-19 at Boise State.

3. In 1919, Utah State defeated Idaho State 136-0 in Logan. Every October, Aggie alums mark the anniversary by driving to Pocatello and kicking it in the groin.

2. In 1989, for a tax write-off on the unsold inventory, Apple Computer Inc. buried about 2,700 unsold Apple Lisas in a guarded landfill in Logan. Wonder what they're gonna do with all those unsold Brent Guy bobbleheads?

1. Utah State has long-standing ties with NASA and conducts extensive aerospace research. Utah State is one of only six universities to participate in NASA's New Millenium program, and as such, conduct research on the Geosynchronous Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer (GIFTS). I don't think I am overstating when I say that the Geosynchronous Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer is the most important issue facing Americans today.

Ten things Aggie fans might not know about Boise State

10. Boise State 2009 wide receiver commit and Kellen Moore kid-brother, Kirby Moore, last week became the new national record holder for career touchdown catches. Kirby now has 85 career TD grabs, which broke the record set by ex-LSU wide receiver Abram Booty. If anything, this record will provide newspapers a rare chance to print the words "Moore Booty" in a headline without any legal ramifications.

9. Boise State alum James Cassan ('60) is the founder of Dollar Rent A Car, which has the most misleading name since the Radio Flyer.

8. Boise was once a key trading post for the Hudson Bay Trading Company. Back then, you could get two potatoes for a smallpox-infested blanket...darn inflation.

7. Boise State's only member of the College Football Hall of Fame is Randy Trautman. Boise State's next member of the College Football Hall of Fame is my 1 year old son (a dad can dream).

6. Sideline reporter for Boise State football's local telecasts, David Augusto, is only 12 inches tall. His appearance on the sidelines as a man of 5'5" is accomplished by the use of stilts and a forklift...and never letting him stand next to Larry Gebert, whose mustache would quickly envelop him.

5. LOST star Matthew Fox's brother Francis teaches sculpture at Boise State.

4. Boise State offers the nation's only masters of science in Raptor Biology. I thought about being a raptor biologist myself, but watching Jurassic Park turned me off that idea.

3. Boise State recently passed a campus-wide smoking ban that prohibits the practice indoors and out on all university-controlled property. Boise State's football team will likely face a hefty fine after smoking the Aggies on Saturday.

2. In the 1970s at the height of the streaking fad, a male streaker attempted to duck through the Boise State Student Union lobby and out a back door. Unfortunately for him, the door was locked and he was caught in the act by a surprised University President John Barnes.

1. During 2008 Spring Practices, 8 representatives of the American football club at Hosei University in Tokyo spent two weeks observing the Broncos' spring practices and meetings. The visitors may have been confused when they met Boise State wide receiver Toshi Franklin, Toshi means "town" in Japanese.

Well, there you have it...we now know a little bit more about the Aggies and they know a little more about us. Group hug.


Know your enemy (for this week, anyway)

Trump called...he digs your hair

Boise State heads to Las Cruces on Saturday to take on Hal Mumme and his Air Raid offense. The Broncos are coming off a hard fought win over a legit San Jose State team, the Aggies are coming off a demoralizing loss to the Vandals. Most fans, like me, know little about New Mexico State outside of Polo Gutierrez and his foot-filled mouth. Needless to say, there is a lot to be learned about this week's foe (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately)...so let's explore through the magic of factoids and childish jokes about Hal Mumme. For the mutual benefit of the Aggie faithful, I will let you get to know us a little bit too...so take notes.

Ten things Bronco fans might not know about New Mexico State

10. NMSU coach Hal Mumme has developed a series of instructional DVDs on the intricacies of the "Air Raid" offense (you can get all 3 for only $109.99). According to Mumme, "the beauty of the Air Raid Offense is that players love to play this offense and fans flock to see it". I apologize to anyone that was mid-sip on their daily beverage. Order now!

9. Hal Mumme is in love with Hawaii. In 2006, he openly stated that Hawaii was the best team in the league (over eventual 13-0 Boise State), voted for June Jones as WAC coach of the year (though Chris Petersen won National Coach of the Year) and last year was the only coach to vote the Warriors number one in USA Today poll. Get a room, you two.

8. The founder and first president of New Mexico State University was Hiram Hadley. Hiram Hadley wished to see "3 principal items" accomplished in his lifetime: National Prohibition, Women's Suffrage and International Peace. Hadley died in 1922, and as such, lived to see two of those 3 items come to fruition. Item number 4, "Never hire Hal Mumme", which was scrawled on a lost piece of parchment, was sadly discovered far too late in 2006.

7. New Mexico State is home to the world's hottest chile pepper. In 2006, NMSU professor Paul Bosland discovered the Bhut Jolokia pepper, which measures at 1,001,304 Scoville Heat Units (SHU). For comparison, an average jalapeño pepper measure 10,000 SHU. Last year during the ESPN broadcast of the NMSU/UNR game, annoying sideline reporter extraordinaire Rob Stone decided to give it a little taste test.

6. New Mexico State has never lost a bowl game. Of course, they've only been to three, and none since 1960—but still, no one can away their 1960 Sun Bowl victory over Utah State, their 1959 Sun Bowl victory over North Texas or their 1936 tie with Hardin-Simmons in, you guessed it, the Sun Bowl.

5. The New Mexico State head coach with the best winning percentage was Arthur H. Badenoch, who won 86% of his games between the years of 1910 and 1913 (4 seasons). Badenoch also coached the NMSU basketball team during those years, but had less success—posting only 3 wins and 22 losses.

4. At the Whole Enchilada Fiesta in early October, the city of Las Cruces makes the world's largest enchilada. Afterwards, the city then takes the world's largest Alka Seltzer.

3. The outlaw Billy the Kid resided in Las Cruces for a portion of his short life, as did his killer, lawman Pat Garrett. Popular legend suggests that Garrett killed Billy the Kid by feeding him a portion of the world's largest enchilada and then lighting a match near his residence.

2. Well before the Air Raid sirens went off, New Mexico State actually had a run game. In 1998, running back Denvis Manns rushed for 1,469 yards...still an Aggie record. In fact, Manns was only the 3rd ever NCAA runningback to rush for at least 1,000 yards in four consecutive seasons. Despite Manns' offensive prowess, he never enjoyed a winning season as an Aggie...a feat that Chase Holbrook is sure to match.

1. In 1912, the Aggie football team defeated Fort Bliss, TX 116-0. Apparently, the football team at Fort Bliss were all 4-F.

Ten things Aggie fans might not know about Boise State

10. Hollywood director Michael Hoffman is a Boise State alum and was the school's first Rhodes Scholar. He won two Oscars for the film Restoration, but I think his finest work is the documentary film Out of the Blue, which is about Boise State's undefeated 2006 season...oops, I just spoiled the ending.

9. Cornerback Kyle Wilson's older brother Gerry, a Princeton grad, is the founder and CEO of Yoonew.com, the world's first futures exchange for event tickets. Basically you can guarantee yourself a ticket to the big game if your team makes it. Weird, a search of the term "Idaho Vandals" offers no results on the site.

8. In 1982 Jay Luo received his bachelors in mathematics from Boise State University. No biggie, right? Wrong...he was only 12 years old. When I was 12 I beat Super Mario Bros. 3. I think we all know who made the bigger accomplishment there, am I right?

7. The founder and CEO of Money Tree Payday Loans, Dennis Bassford, is a Boise State alum. Now you know who to punch for unleashing the Money Tree caterpillar upon the world*.

6. Astronaut and "Teacher in Space" Barbara Morgan holds an honorary doctorate from Boise State and is a Distinguished Educator in Residence. Morgan was Christa McAuliffe's backup on the ill-fated Challenger shuttle voyage. While in space, Morgan was able to see the great pyramids, the great wall of China, and the hole in the ozone caused by Hal Mumme's overuse of Aqua Net.

5. One of the most famous moments in NCAA tournament history happened in Boise State's basketball arena (formerly the Pavilion, now Taco Bell Arena) when UCLA's Tyus Edny drove the length of the floor in the closing seconds and nailed a layup to defeat Missouri in 1995. There was a memorable game in the WAC tournament in Las Cruces last year too, but I forget how that one ended.

4. Werner Hoeger, a Boise State professor of excercise physiology competed for his native Venezuela in the 2006 Torino Olympics in the luge event. Hoeger was the flag-bearer for Venezuela and, at 52, was the oldest individual competitor at the games. Hoeger, rather than gracing a Wheaties box, was featured on a box of Centrum Silver.

3. The city of Boise has the largest concentration of Basques outside of the Pyrenees mountains. As such, Boise also has a large concentration of unpronouncable last names.

2. Pokey Allen came to Boise State in 1993 and turned a 3-8 squad into a 13-2 squad playing in the 1-AA national championship. Pokey got sick with cancer soon after and missed almost all of the 1996 season, Boise State's first in Division 1-A. The Broncos were 2-10 that year and Pokey missed the first 10 games while undergoing treatment. He returned and coached the last two games of that year...his last win as Bronco head coach was in Las Cruces against the Aggies. Pokey died a little over a month later.

1. Boise State has been shutout only twice in football, the last coming against Washington State in 1997. Boise State registered two shutouts over their opponents just last year. 20 of Boise State's 24 opponent shutouts since 1968 have occurred at home. Their most lopsided win ever? The first ever game on the blue turf: a 74-0 win over Humboldt State which answered once and for all the question, "can Hippies play football?"

Well, now we know a bit more about each other. Enough fraternizing...let's get ready to RRRUMMBLE!**

* FFBSU does not condone violence...well maybe a little.
** No, Michael Buffer, I don't owe you a cent.


Bronco Nation Podcast 10-29-08

I think it goes without saying that J Bates is the only local sports personality with a personality...so we grabbed him for last night's podcast and let the fur fly. I did my best JT impersonation this week and hosted the show while the real JT nursed a sore throat and Buck, J, and I hashed out the WAC week in review, the San José State game, Hal Mumme's overwhelming Mumme-ness, and whether or not Austin Pettis is actually human. Listen up.

icon for podpress  The Bronco Nation Podcast - Marco Polo [36:22m]: Hide Player | Play in Popup | Download


Fightin' words

"The world's most dangerous marching band"

This week's opponent, the New Mexico State Aggies, have a rich tradition of losing, Bill Gates rich. Seriously, they haven't been to a bowl game since JFK was in office. But why do the Aggies struggle so mightily on the field? Well, I put all of FFBSU's resources into analyzing the Aggies' dire situation and, in a "Eureka moment", found the culprit of their futility: the fight song. Let's break down the lyrics of their depressing anthem and see if we can get to the heart of the problem, shall we?

Aggies, Oh Aggies
Try to recite this first line without having Barry Manilow's Mandy popping into your head.

The hills send back the cry
That's called an echo...not the first thing you want to hear in a football stadium.

We're here to do or die
Those are the only two options? Must've been a lot of fatalities after losing to Idaho on Saturday.

Aggies, Oh Aggies
...you came and you gave without takin'...

We'll win this game or know the reason why
The reason why? Hal Mumme is our coach.

And when we win this game
I think the word you're looking for is "if".

We'll buy a keg of booze
Can we see your collective IDs?

And we'll drink to the Aggies
Just don't take a shot every time Hal Mumme wipes his nose on camera...very bad for the liver.

Till we wobble in our shoes
Friends don't let friends party in Las Cruces.

This part is a public service benefitting the adult literacy program.

Aggies, Aggies, go Aggies
Aggies aggies aggies...

Aggies, Oh Aggies
...well you kissed me and stopped me from shakin'...

The hills send back the cry
The hills were angry that day, like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli...

We're here to do or die
The latter, if you don't mind.

Aggies, Oh Aggies
...but I sent you away, Oh Aggies...

We'll win this game or know the reason why!

Why, I haven't seen such an inspiring ditty since Ronnie James Dio's Holy Diver. Fix this, Aggies, and your troubles may be behind you. You may want to give recruiting, coaching, facilities, offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator, uniforms, and conference a close look also.