It was difficult to find many bright spots on Saturday, but the defense definitely showed up for the Broncos. They held the Aztecs to only 267 total yards and forced 2 turnovers. 12 out of 19 SDSU points came off of short fields from Bronco turnovers or miscues. Despite the situations the defense was put in, they held the Aztecs to two field goals and forced a turnover in the red zone on another possession.
The Bronco defense racked up 4 sacks and 7 tackles for loss. They also accomplished all of this without starting DL David Moa and Safety DeAndre Pierce. Moa is still out with a calf injury, despite practicing all week and warming up prior to the game.
Pierce’s injury was a mystery until Idaho Statesman reporter Dave Southorn shed some light on the subject on Sunday night. He reported that Pierce suffered a lacerated spleen in the win at Laramie and will be lost for the season. A bright spot for the Broncos on Saturday was seeing a healthy Tyler Horton and Jabril Frazier on the field.
Same story different day for the Broncos special teams units. Through 5 games in 2018, Boise State’s special teams have woefully underperformed, despite a strong showing in 2017. Saturday’s miscues included a missed PAT, a kickoff out of bounds, a dropped snap on a punt, and multiple blocking penalties on punt returns.
It is disappointing to see the lack of progress and adjustments on special teams after obvious needs for change in their first 4 games. Special teams were an important component of the Broncos 2017 Mountain West Championship, major adjustments must be made if they would like to maintain hope of winning another championship in 2018.
Boise State was out-schemed on Saturday again, this time by Rocky Long and the Aztecs. As stated above, the Broncos need to improve their offensive line execution and special teams play moving forward. If this isn’t accomplished, Coach Harsin has shown in the past that he is willing to make a change to better his team, one would have to wonder if this downward trend continues if he doesn’t make another this offseason.
The talent that Boise State brings in annually recruiting the offensive line, is not currently matching up with the product on the field. The Broncos were able to make a major change last year to turn their season around, will their line be able to do the same in 2018?
The Broncos travel to Reno on October 13th. Last year Boise State easily handled Nevada 41-14. If Wolfpack QB Ty Gangi is unable to play again this week, look for the Broncos to take care of business again.