Boise State’s Week 2 Best, Worst Performances
How did the Broncos players fare vs. Marshall
Who deserves some recognition this week and who had an off week against the Thundering Herd?
Well, that game happened. The high points, low points, and even points of boredom. The Bronco defense was stingy, the offense was streaky, and the special teams wasn’t special, but Bronco fans have seen worse. Without further ado, let’s dive in to the 14-7 win Boise State had over Marshall.
Curtis Weaver– The Preseason Mountain West Defensive Player did not disappoint in this one. Weaver had 6 tackles, four solo, 1.5 tackles for loss, and a sack. He was a constant presence in the offensive backfield applying pressure to Marshall quarterback Isaiah Green and forcing a Quarterback Rating of just 13.8. Green completed 10 out of 17 for only 56 yards and one interception. If Curtis keeps up this pace, he could finish his junior campaign with 14 sacks on the season and 34.5 sacks for his career. This would firmly place him first on the all-time Mountain West career sack leader.
George Holani– Boise State fans had a slight moment of panic when it was reported that Robert Mahone was sidelined with a shoulder injury. Never fear, George Holani is here…or was there, but you catch my drift. The true freshman showed flashes in the Florida State game but earned his first 100-yard rushing performance against Marshall.
Holani had 103 yards on 22 carries, averaging 4.7 yards per carry and having a long of 17 yards. Between Holani, Mahone, Van Buren, Shakir, Hightower, and even Bachemier, the Broncos have an array of talented rushing threats.
Khalil Shakir– Boise State fans knew that Shakir was destined for great things when the 4-star recruit showed incredible athleticism and speed as a true freshman. As a sophomore, he focused on adding bulk during the offseason, while not sacrificing his elite speed.
All of that work appears to be paying off thus far this season with 13 receptions for 173 yards and a touchdown. Against Marshall, he led the way for Bronco receivers with 5 receptions for 95 yards, good for an average of 19 yards per catch. His efforts also extend to blocking for teammates.
Shakir showed off that improved frame as he led the way for an Akilian Butler screen pass that would’ve been a touchdown if it was not called back on a questionable and late holding penalty.
The Bronco Defense– Curtis Weaver was already highlighted above, but the Boise State Defense as a whole deserves some recognition themselves. They were so-so in the first half giving up 172 yards and seven points.
That nonsense ended in the second half when they gave up ZERO yards and ZERO points. That is quite a feat definitely deserves a helmet sticker. The defense also forced two turnovers, had 3 sacks, and 6 tackles for loss. Even without defensive leader DeAndre Pierce, the Broncos proved they have quite the formidable defense.
Back to the Film Room
Boise State’s Offensive Line– It’s never good to make this list, much less two weeks in a row. Broncos quarterback Hank Bachmeier continues to prove his toughness, although Boise State coaches wish he wouldn’t have to. The offensive line gave up seven tackles for loss and two sacks against a strong Marshall defense.
Bachmeier showed his mobility and elusiveness as he shifted in the pocket to avoid a stout and fairly continuous rush. It should be noted that the Bronco big men were without starting right tackle John Ojukwu, forcing John Molchon to once again shift over to right tackle and Jake Stetz to take over for him at left guard. This unit will need to continue to improve to keep their true freshman quarterback healthy and their season on track.
Andrew Van Buren– This is another Back to the Film Room repeat offender. It appears the true sophomore may be putting a bit too much pressure on himself to perform to the standards he is capable of. Van Buren rushed 5 times for just 18 yards and had a fumble inside the 5-yard line that was thankfully recovered by big man John Molchon.
His inability to take care of the football is starting to become a trend and is more than likely responsible for his lack of carries. Especially with Mahone out, Van Buren should have at least split carries fairly evenly with Holani if not took the majority of the reps as the more senior back. Here’s to hoping Van Buren settles down and allows his talent to shine through.
That’s it for this week, check back to see which players or position groups continue to impress and which need to go back to the film room!