Boise State Update: Bronco Offense Lagging Behind the Defense

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It’s nearing the end of August, and we still haven’t talked about Boise State
very much. The Broncos have had a couple of scrimmages of their own and are
getting excited to play the Hokies. Today’s article focuses on those scrimmages,
as well as a Boise State running game that could decide the outcome of the
season opener.

Boise’s Defense Dominant

If you aren’t a close observer of Boise State, you might think that it’s
their offense that gets the Broncos so many wins. At first glance you would be
right, as Boise finished first in the country in scoring offense in 2009. But
I’ve been saying since the spring, and I’m saying it again now, the Bronco
defense is better, and it might not be particularly close.

Let’s take a moment to look at Boise State’s intrasquad scrimmages. In every
recent example I could find, going back to the spring, Boise’s defense has flat
out dominated their offense. Back in March, the Bronco offense had six
consecutive three-and-outs in a scrimmage, including three by the first team
offense. Quarterback Kellen Moore was just 5-of-12 for 15 yards that day.

Fast forward to August, and we’re seeing more of the same. In Boise State’s
first scrimmage of the month, the offense had 31 carries for zero yards. Yes, zero.
The Boise defense dominated the offense in the trenches.

In this past Saturday’s scrimmage, the defense dominated yet again. The
offense did not score until the ball was placed at the 25 yard line for redzone
work. Defensive end Shea McClellin had four sacks all by himself, and the Boise
offense was shut down despite the fact that the defense was missing five
starters due to injury.

Kellen Moore was 8-of-12 for 44 yards, and the offense found things to be
very tough against the Boise defense.

Sure, defenses are generally ahead of offenses at this point in the year, and
we don’t know exactly how the Broncos run their scrimmages. But to shut down the
Boise offense like that defense has been doing, while missing five starters to...