Boise State Football: Broncos Plow Through Wyoming In The Snow, 17-9
It wasn’t the prettiest performance, but the Broncos ended the regular season with a win over the Pokes.
Boise State finishes conference play unbeaten.
When you think about what a mid-December, late afternoon football game in Laramie, Wyoming would be, you come to yesterday’s game conditions: 19 degrees, snow, and a little wind provided some challenges for the Boise State Broncos, Wyoming Cowboys, and the officials throughout the game.
With the conditions being what they were, it’s no surprise that most of the action happened on the ground, with both teams combining for 40 carries in the first half. Boise State was able to loosen up the defense with Hank Bachmeier connecting on 12 of 19 passes for 105 yards, while Khalil Shakir made the most of the poor conditions and led the Broncos in both rushing and receiving yards. George Holani returned to game action and found the end zone when Bachmeier hit him on a swing pass for a four-yard touchdown.
Wyoming got the lone turnover of the first half when C.J Coldon intercepted Bachmeier on the first drive of the game. The Cowboys were not able to do much with their drive, but John Hoyland converted a 42-yard field goal to take the early lead.
Broncos special teams got in on the excitement by blocking a punt and they appeared to return it for a touchdown. The return was called back due to a generous block in the back call, and the Broncos were unable to get back into the end zone. When holder Connor Riddle couldn’t get a high snap down in time, Boise State did not get any points out of the favorable field position.
The officials were a little more prominent in the first half than everyone probably would have preferred. With phantom calls on both teams, missed calls, clock issues, unique explanations of penalties, and just general confusion on the first half’s final drive, they were most of the entertainment.
The halftime score could have been 17-6 in Boise State’s favor, but the Broncos settled for a 10-3 lead instead.
Wyoming chipped away at their deficit with a 36-yard field goal from John Hoyland after getting the ball back on a fumbled punt catch from Avery Williams, a rare mistake from the Broncos’ special teams star. Levi Williams and Xazavian Valladay made their first big plays of the game connecting for a 29-yard pass to get deep into field goal range. The Broncos were able to respond with an eleven-play drive covering 75 yards to get Andrew Van Buren a two-yard touchdown dive.
As the weather steadily got worse, and after both teams combined for 11 total yards over the next four drives, Levi Williams was pulled for freshman backup Gavin Beerup. Williams wasn’t effective and began to limp in addition to the sore shoulder he suffered last week. Beerup didn’t prove to be much more effective, but Wyoming was able to put together a 12-play drive that resulted in another 36-yard Hoyland field goal. That score proved too little and too late for the Cowboys, however, as the Broncos were able to close out the game with a 17-9 victory
The player of the game honor goes to wide receiver Khalil Shakir. Shakir had five carries for 38 yards to go with eight catches for 105 yards. He didn’t find the end zone, but he was still the most productive player on the field, hands down.
Boise State put together a good game in their first game in three weeks. The Broncos were able to produce enough offense to control the clock and get the points needed to win. The defense was able to hold Wyoming to just 146 yards of total offense. Special teams was a mixed bag of good and bad plays. Overall, this was a good performance by the Broncos and a good boost leading into the Mountain West Championship Game.