Boise State Football: Projecting the Broncos' 2013 Offensive Depth Chart

Martin SondermannAnalyst IIDecember 30, 2012

Boise State Football: Projecting the Broncos' 2013 Offensive Depth Chart

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    Boise State completed the 2012 season with a win over Washington in the Maaco Bowl Las Vegas. In 2013, the team will start its season against those same Huskies in Seattle. However, when the two teams meet once again, the Broncos will be missing 14 senior starters.

    The 2012 season was a "rebuilding" year for head coach Chris Petersen and his Boise State team. After losing 15 starters to graduation from the 2011 team, many didn't give Boise much hope of another impressive double-digit-win season.

    However, after an 11-2 finish, a share of the Mountain West Conference title and another bowl victory in 2012, it appears that even in construction mode, Boise State knows how to win.

    Now, in 2013, Petersen and his coaching staff find themselves looking for replacements for another large group of seniors. However, there are some big differences between what had to happen this season and what will need to happen next.

    For starters, Boise State has much more of a core coming back in key positions on both sides of the ball this time around. Not only that, but they also have much more experience from a group of solid backups that will certainly need to step up in 2013.

    The 2013 recruiting class appears to be solid as well, and that includes some junior college players who could contribute right away.

    On offense the Broncos have five returning starters, which include a couple of key players on the line, both leading wide receivers and their quarterback. This is much more than what the 2012 Broncos had, and it bodes well for next season.

    With that in mind, let's look at the Boise State offense and what the depth chart might look like going in to 2013.

The Offensive Line

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    Anyone who knows the game of football knows how important an offensive line is. In 2012, the Broncos had a very good line that was crucial to another great season.

    One of the most impressive stats related to Boise State's O-line is the number of sacks allowed on their starting quarterback. In 2012, the Broncos only gave up seven sacks on Joe Southwick, and that kind of protection is something many quarterbacks wished they had.

    To give it some perspective, Keith Price, the quarterback Boise State faced in the Maaco Bowl, was sacked a total of 37 times, which includes four by the Broncos.

    Boise State also had another running back go over 1,000 yards on the season. D.J. Harper finished his senior season with 1,137 yards, and the line deserves some credit for that as well.

    In 2013, Boise State should have another incredible offensive line. They have two returning starters, and several players with playing time coming back.

     

    Projected 2013 Offensive Line Depth Chart for Boise State:

     

    C: Matt Paradis, Spencer Gerke

    RG: Jake Broyles, Travis Averill

    RT: Rees Odhiambo, Marcus Henry

    LG: Spencer Gerke, Chris Tozer or Mario Yakoo

    LT: Charles Leno Jr., Steven Baggett

     

    Center Matt Paradis, right guard Jake Broyles, left guard Spencer Gerke and left tackle Charles Leno Jr., have all had some starting experience. Right tackle Rees Odhiambo has been a backup and the three freshmen, Averill, Baggett and Yakoo, are players the Broncos are very excited about.

    Tozer, along with a few others, could also make the depth chart, but it really is anybody's guess at this point. What isn't a guess is that Boise State should have another solid offensive line in 2013.

Backfield

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    Boise State found a solid backup running back in 2012, and his name is Jay Ajayi. On the season, Ajayi carried 82 times for 548 yards and had a very impressive 6.7 yards per carry average.

    In 2013, Ajayi should be the starter. However, he will get some competition. Boise State signed a junior college transfer out of Butler Community College in Dothan, Ala., named Derrick Thomas. Thomas is a very good back who should give Ajayi a push in camp.

    The Broncos also have Jack Fields on the roster. Fields will be a sophomore, and he had a total of 43 carries in his true freshman season. He should be a solid backup in 2013.

    Although not a done deal yet, Boise State is expecting a very impressive freshman running back in 2013 from Chula Vista, Calif. Aaron Baltazar is something special, and if he follows through with his commitment, the Broncos could be looking at an impact true freshman.

    Fullback will be another story all together. Conner Peters is listed as a tight end on the Broncos roster, but he was the backup fullback in 2012. The only other fullback currently on the Boise State roster is redshirt freshman Jamal Wilson.

     

    Projected 2013 Backfield Depth Chart for Boise State:

     

    RB: Jay Ajayi, Derrick Thomas or Jack Fields or Aaron Baltazar

    FB: Jamal Wilson, Conner Peters

     

    Boise State also utilizes some creative runs that involve Shane Williams-Rhodes, and you can expect more of that in 2013.

    Overall, the Broncos should have a solid backfield next season, and it will be interesting to see how Derrick Thomas fits in. It will also be very interesting to see what kind of impact Aaron Baltazar has as a true freshman.

Receivers and Tight Ends

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    Boise State had a very good wide receiver corp in 2012, and that will continue in 2013. Leading the way will be two starters who actually led the team in receptions in 2012.

    Matt Miller will be back for his junior season and Kirby Moore will be a senior. On the season, these two were impressive. Moore, however, had to deal with a thumb injury late in the season that greatly reduced his impact. However, you can expect him to have a very good senior season.

    Miller caught 66 passes for 769 yards to lead the Broncos, and that kind of performance on the heels of an outstanding freshman season bodes well for continued success in 2013.

    Dallas Burroughs, Aaron Burks, Geraldo Boldewijn, Troy Ware and Shane Williams-Rhodes will all be back. Each of them have game time experience and are extremely capable.

    At tight end, Holden Huff will be back for his sophomore season, and Gabe Linehan will be back as a senior. He dealt with the injury bug in 2012, but as long as he is healthy in 2013, he will probably be the starter.

     

    Projected 2013 Receivers and Tight Ends Depth Chart for Boise State:

     

    X: Matt Miller, Aaron Burks

    Z: Dallas Burroughs, Shane Williams-Rhodes

    H: Kirby Moore, Geraldo Boldewijn

    TE: Gabe Linehan, Holden Huff

     

    Boise State will have a very good corp of receivers in 2013. Every one of the players listed in this depth chart have serious playing time. Not only that, but there are also others on the roster who could step up if needed.

Quarterbacks

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    Joe Southwick tried to do the impossible in 2012. The task of following Kellen Moore was a massive assignment, but someone had to do it.

    Southwick didn't have the best start, but he got better and better as the season progressed. He finished the year with four very good games, which included leading his team to a bowl victory over Washington. Overall as a starter, Southwick went 11-2, which in any other city is probably enough to win it over. However, not in Boise.

    Some fans of the Broncos are still skeptical about Southwick, but make no mistake, he is the odds-on favorite to lead the team in 2013 as it stands right now.

    There will be competition of course. Redshirt freshman Nick Patti will be back to give Joe a run in camp, as will Jimmy Laughrea and Grant Hedrick.

    Ryan Finley is a player out of Phoenix, Ariz., that has given his verbal commitment to the Broncos. He is an excellent quarterback, but it would be hard for a true freshman to win the starting job in Boise. Kellen Moore didn't even do that.

     

    Projected 2013 Quarterback Depth Chart for Boise State:

     

    QB: Joe Southwick, Nick Patti or Grant Hedrick or Jimmy Laughrea

     

    The way Joe Southwick looked in the Maaco Bowl, it is hard to believe he won't be the starter, but anything can happen. One thing is for sure, if Southwick continues to scramble and make things happen like he did in Las Vegas against the Huskies, Boise State is going to be hard to beat.

    A mobile quarterback is a difficult task for any defense, and if Southwick continues to utilize that portion of his game, it bodes well for the Broncos in 2013. If Nick Patti does happen to win the job, he is mobile also, so either way, defenses will be challenged by Boise State.

The 2013 Boise State Offensive Depth Chart

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    The 2013 Broncos will be a very good team. They finished 2012 with an 11-2 record and ranked in the Top 20 in every poll. They will start the season against the Huskies in 2013 and should be ranked and ready to go.

    Spring and fall camp will be interesting for Boise State, but the quarterback battle that filled the headlines in 2012 won't be nearly as loud in 2013. Joe Southwick appears to be the clear leader, but he will be challenged.

    The offensive line should be solid, the wide receivers are talented and numerous and the running backs feature some strong and talented players. Tight end will be solid as well, and overall the offensive outlook for 2013 is very good for Boise State.

     

    Projected Boise State Offensive Depth Chart for 2013: 

     

    QB: Joe Southwick, Nick Patti or Grant Hedrick or Jimmy Laughrea

    RB: Jay Ajayi, Aaron Baltazar or Derrick Thomas or Jack Fields

    FB: Jamal Wilson, Conner Peters

    X: Matt Miller, Aaron Burks

    Z: Dallas Burroughs, Shane Williams-Rhodes

    H: Kirby Moore, Geraldo Boldewijn

    TE: Gabe Linehan, Holden Huff

    C: Matt Paradis, Spencer Gerke

    RG: Jake Broyles, Travis Averill

    RT: Rees Odhiambo, Marcus Henry

    LG: Spencer Gerke, Chris Tozer or Mario Yakoo

    LT: Charles Leno Jr., Steven Baggett