Boise State Football: Three Questions For Spring Practice

Boise State Football: Three Questions For Spring Practice

Boise State

Boise State Football: Three Questions For Spring Practice

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Boise State Football: Three Questions For Spring Practice


The Broncos didn’t have the season they wanted in 2021, so there’s plenty to be done in spring to get back to form.


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An unusual spot for the boys in blue.

The Boise State Broncos fell short in their quest to get back to the Mountain West football championship last season, but there wasn’t just one shortcoming upon which blame could be cast. It puts Andy Avalos and his team in a relatively unique spot, for now the question is whether Boise State can re-establish itself as the clear class of the conference.

With that in mind, there’s lots to accomplish between now and September.

Who will step up and seize a role on offense?

Much of Boise State’s promise in 2022 will be wrapped up in just how much progress the offense can make under coordinator Tim Plough, as they were only average in terms of points per drive and available yards percentage earned per drive last year and, at least by offensive SP+, currently have the program’s worst outlook on that side of the ball since that metric was established in 2005.

There’s still plenty of talent, of course, especially if both quarterback Hank Bachmeier and George Holani can hold onto clean bills of health, but there’s more potential at this point than established players. Three of the team’s top four pass catchers are gone and leading returner Stefan Cobbs had 34 catches for 421 yards and five touchdowns in nine games, meaning there’s a lot of opportunity for anyone from veterans Davis Koetter and Tyler Crowe to young guns like Eric McAlister and Ashton Jeanty to turn some heads.

How much competition will we see on the offensive line?

The big men in the trenches have been often maligned by the Broncos faithful over the last few years, sometimes fairly and sometimes not, but it will be interesting to see how the current mix of veterans and new faces will mesh.

At a minimum, left tackle John Ojukwu and guard Ben Dooley seem like safe bets to have secure starting jobs, but how much time will be given, for instance, to identifying a reliable backup at center for Kekaniokoa Holomalia-Gonzalez? What kind of roles are envisioned now for Garrett Curran, Will Farrar, and incoming transfer Cade Beresford? Who might be the next Jake Stetz? With that much experience and better injury luck, they may not be as far away from being a rock solid unit as pessimistic fans might have you believe.

Who will replace Joel Velasquez?

Punting had often been an Achilles heel for the Broncos in recent years but, in 2021, Joel Velasquez had the team’s best yards per punt average since 2016 and helped the Broncos finish with their best net yards per punt average (39.86) since 2017.

Now that he’s moved on, however, you have to figure it will be an open competition for as long as it takes someone to seize the upper hand (or leg, as it were). Gavin Wale saw a brief bit of playing time back in 2020, but Australian import James Ferguson-Reynolds comes in as a three-star recruit and both kickers on the current roster, Jonah Dalmas and Will Ferrin, are also listed as punters. Given that the Broncos defense looks stacked, any edge they can get from special teams in terms of field position will make them that much better.

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