The season is over for Boise State football; now breathe.
I could be wrong (and normally I am), but it may have been D J Harper who said he knew it was going to be ugly this year. I suppose when you are used to flat out gorgeous than beautiful may come away as being ugly.
An 11 – 2 was much better than what was expected and at the same time five points from a victory against Michigan and three points against San Diego State.
This season featured the future of Boise State. To start with there is Joe Southwick, who with the exception of two games, performed as a if steady well-oiled machine. Jay Ajayi gave a taste of power and speed that may move him to the tier of elite runners in the nation. Shane Williams-Rhodes may just develop into one of the most versatile athletes and all purpose offensive threats Boise has ever seen.
There will be a whole host of personnel who contributed significantly return next year. It will be interesting to see how each one develops and matures in the off-season.
It is obvious Chris Petersen does not run a half-way house for disadvantaged, delinquents, and the wayward. When a man comes to Boise State he is expected to be a good person, good student, and good citizen first. It is man-up time. What ever you think you are or was has to be left at the state line. There are consequences for bad behavior and breaking team rules.
Boise State was effected by such consequences. Those rules, unknown to the public, apparently are not trivial. Petersen and his staff believe in them so rigorously that no one is so valuable that they are exempt. Those rules are not overlooked for the sake of any game no matter how important.
This past season a few key players were suspended. Likely it may have actually cost a game. What has to be remembered; it was not the rule, it was the person that broke it.
There are probably few programs in the nation that would adhere to team rules to the point of suspending a key player at the peril of losing a game.
It was mentioned in a previous paragraph that suspensions may have cost a game, but who knows how many games such discipline may have won?
The Maaco Bowl Game against the University of Washington was a great ending to a pretty good year. Nothing to gloat over, but they did what was needed to win.
It was a come-from-behind win in the waning minutes of the game. Not only the winning score, but the defense stopping a potential winning drive.
A lot of comments have showed up on various sites by disgruntled Husky’s fans. They said their team was bigger, stronger, and faster. They may be right, but games are not won by how well players perform in the combines, but by the final score.
The season rested on the timely performance of two players, Mike Atkinson and Michael Frisina.
In the game against the Huskies Frisina accounted for ten points; clearly one of the differences between winning and loosing.
It was Mike Atkinson who came up with an interception and ran it back for a score against a 7 – 6 win against BYU. Frisina kicked the point-after.
It is interesting the part of the game (field goal kicking) that has caused the loses over the last five years has finally won a game for Boise. Kicking is important!
Those were the ones who showed up in the headlines and the box scores. There is a whole host of unsungs who did their job when called to do so; the good block, tight coverage, the batted pass, the pressure on the quarterback, and so on.
So closes the D J. Harper era a Boise State. Perhaps one of the most underrated backs in college football. He survived two torn ACLs. I’ve tried to find a statistic on D J that has been eluding me. He may not have fumbled this year. If so, WOW!
D J epitomizes the Boise State program; work hard, don’t make mistakes, and don’t give in or up.
August 31, 2013, Husky Stadium.