If we look at game one of this season against the Washington Cougars, you would never guess what the Broncos offense would do over the course of the next four games. In that first game they tallied just 346 yards and six points, hardly impressive and far below Boise State standards. The Broncos offense is the highest scoring team in the NCAA since 2000. Joe Southwick and company came under a great deal of pressure right away. Since that first game, the Broncos of old have returned.
Against Washington, the Broncos rushed for 171 yards and over 200 in every game since. They passed for 175 yards against the Huskies but over 250 the next week and more than 300 in the last three games. Washington’s defense is currently ranked number 14 in the country in yards allowed and fourth in points allowed. They are giving up a meager 10.8 points per game. So the question is, was this a case of Washington's defense or a Boise State offense not yet in sync?
The games since that first one, Boise is averaging over 51 points. The offense has put up over 2100 yards, averaging more than 527. They rank 19th overall in scoring and 22nd in yards. Their average starting field position for the Huskies game was the BSU 26 yard line and against Fresno State, their own 27 yard line. Both games ended in a loss. The other three games their average starting position was beyond the Broncos 30 yard line. Secondly, and most obvious was the passing game. Against Washington, Boise State struggled to just 175 yards through the air and 252 against Air Force. Interestingly, these first two games were very similar in completion percentage, approximately 63 percent. Boise State was aided by six turnovers and an average starting field position from their own 42 yard line in that Air Force game. The completion rate over the last three games, a whopping 81 percent, nearly 20 percent higher than the first two games. Thirdly, the average yards per pass in the Washington game was a lowly 3.8 yards. The next four games they average 7.9, 9.8, 7.7, and 11.7, respectively.
There is no question the Washington Huskies presented the toughest matchup for the Broncos. The Huskies are by far the best defense they have faced this season and probably the best they will see all year. That said, I wonder how a rematch would play out. There is no question the Boise State offense is clicking now and firing on all cylinders. They will travel to face Utah State who is averaging an impressive 40.2 points themselves while only giving up 17 a game.
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