2012 BOISE STATE FOOTBALL SEASON PREVIEW:
The Boise State Broncos, known for their dramatic comebacks and bright blue field, have been one of the most successful college football programs of the past decade and continually remain a model for small schools looking to hit the big time. Coach Chris Petersen's squad once again was in the national title hunt during 2011, but one tough loss against TCU dashed their hopes. That said, the Broncos still finished with an impressive 12-1 record overall and a 7-1 record against the Mountain West Conference (MWC). While many starters have been lost to graduation and the NFL Draft, Boise State's stacked recent recruiting classes have allowed them to absorb these changes and come out swinging during 2012.
The Broncos' offense scored a staggering 44.2 points per game in 2011, so this year's squad will have their work cut out for them to repeat those numbers. Quarterback Joe Southwick, who is expected to start, had a veteran presence in the huddle during this year's spring practices. Though the Broncos lost Doug Martin in the NFL Draft, they are likely even more excited about the potential of D.J. Harper, who will split carries with Drew Wright. Mitch Burroughs and Matt Miller should provide consistency at the wideout positions while the offensive line returns two starters in guard Joe Kellogg and Charles Leno at tackle.
The defensive line looks to be a bit of a concern for the Broncos in 2012, but they will bring back nose tackle Mike Atkinson and rely on a few talented underclassmen. The linebacking corps will feature Tommy Smith and J.C. Percy, two juniors who have been spot starters in the past but will receive a major boost in playing time. Finally, Boise State's secondary should be a much-improved unit in 2012, with Jamar Taylor and Ebenezer Makinde returning to start while Lee Hightower and Jeremy Ioane will line up at safety. With so many high-flying MWC offenses to contend with, better play from the secondary should amplify the Broncos' national title hopes.
Fresh off a nearly undefeated season, the Broncos may need some help in the national rankings to earn a spot in the national title game. Along with a moderate MWC schedule, the Broncos face off against Michigan State, Brigham Young and Southern Miss, which may not be enough to propel them into the national championship. Thankfully, Boise State's stock in the national rankings couldn't be hotter, so if they win all of their games in 2012, they'll have quite the resume to make it to a major BCS bowl.
BOISE STATE BRONCOS EXPERIENCE:
Location: Boise, Idaho
Stadium: Bronco Stadium
Conference: Mountain West
Rivals: Idaho Vandals, Fresno State Bulldogs
Mascot: Buster Bronco
Notable Alumni: Kimo von Oelhoffen, Jeb Putzier, Quintin Mikell, Bryan Johnson, Chris Carr, Daryn Colledge
Notable Bowl Games:
The Boise State Broncos football program has proven itself to be a powerhouse and a BCS Bowl contender. The Broncos are known for their powerful offensive-minded teams. The Boise State Broncos have an incredible home win-loss record and with their high scoring, they’ve become tough to beat at home or on the road. A game at Bronco Stadium in Boise is usually a high-scoring affair you won’t soon forget.
The Boise State Broncos first played football as a junior college in 1933. The Broncos then became a full-fledged Div II independent team in 1968, joining the Div I-A Big West conference in 1996, and finally the WAC in 2001. The team is currently coached by Chris Petersen who, only in his 2nd year, already has an impressive win-loss record. And who can ever forget the 2006 season when Boise State went 13-0, playing the Oklahoma Sooners in the Fiesta Bowl? In one of the most memorable games in football bowl history, the Boise State Broncos managed to tie the game on a 4th Down and 15 yard “hook and ladder” play that scored a touchdown and forced overtime. In overtime, the Boise State Broncos again scored a touchdown on 4th down and followed it with a game-winning 2-point conversion. The number of successful trick plays and gambles won turned the heads of the whole nation.
In 2011, the Broncos moved from the WAC to the Mountain West Conference, joining it as BYU and Utah depart. The Broncos will now compete with the Rebels of UNLV and the Horned Frogs of TCU, among others, making for exciting match-ups in the seasons to come.
The Boise State Broncos play their home games at Bronco Stadium in Boise, Idaho. The stadium is well recognized by its blue playing surface, affectionately known to fans as the "Smurf Turf". Buy Boise State Broncos football tickets and witness these giant-killers as they fight to make Boise State a BCS Championship contender!
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