There is no spring practice this week for Boise State football because of spring break. Coaches and players alike have taken some time off, but will return next week to continue what has seemed to be a productive spring camp thus far.
Boise State students have a fun & safe spring break & come back ready to Attack your Future! GO BRONCOS!— Coach Bryan Harsin (@bryanharsin) March 22, 2014
Injuries have been kept to a minimum early on, and the attitude and energy of the players and coaches appears to be much better than in recent years.
With no action on the field this week, it might be the right time to review what has transpired the first two weeks of spring camp for the Broncos, and what it might mean for the team this fall.
Players Making an Impact
There are several players making an impact so far. One of those such players is JUCO transfer running back Derrick Thomas.
Thomas has been named a player of the day twice, and coaches seem to be excited with how he looks running and catching the ball.
Running backs coach Kent Riddle is quoted on BroncoSports.com as saying, "Derrick has put together two really nice practices in a row. He showed some nice explosiveness and power on Sunday night, and caught the ball well out of the backfield for a couple of scores."
Other players catching the eye of coaches are safety Darian Thompson, quarterback Grant Hedrick, wide receiver Thomas Sperbeck, cornerback Mercy Maston and running back Jay Ajayi.
Linebacker Corey Bell is having what appears to be an outstanding spring as well. He has been named one of the players of the day at least four times according to BroncoSports.com, and is causing all sorts of havoc.
Defensive coordinator Marcel Yates had good things to say about Bell, "Corey is just always around the ball. When there is a big play on defense, number 38 seems to be in the middle of things or the one causing the havoc."
A surprising name also appeared on the BroncoSports.com list of spring practice players of the day. Redshirt freshman quarterback Ryan Finley was announced as the "Playmaker" on March 17.
Finley, as mentioned by Chadd Cripe of the Idaho Statesman, is coming off of shoulder surgery. Cripe quotes head coach Bryan Harsin in the article when it comes to the reps Finley has received this spring, "what he’s getting right now is a lot more than I thought he’d be getting."
Who will be Grant Hedrick's backup in 2014?
If Finley is healthy this fall it could help the Broncos with a position that is far too thin for comfort. Boise State currently has four quarterbacks on the roster with a fifth to be added when new recruit Alex Ogle gets to town this fall. However, only redshirt senior Grant Hedrick has any game experience with the Broncos.
A New Time
As mentioned in the introduction, Coach Harsin has brought new energy and attitude to Boise State football. With that he has also brought a new level of openness to the program.
While the media still has some limited access during spring practice, the communication and willingness to share more of an inside look at the program have been apparent.
Not only are Coach Harsin and his staff actively engaging the fans and students on social media, but the program is releasing videos that give everyone a much better look within the team itself.
With spring ball going well for the Broncos, it will be interesting to see if the momentum is sustained after spring break.
Boise State will hold its official spring game on April 12, and Harsin is hoping for a record crowd. Harsin said his goal is 20,000 fans for that game, via Chadd Cripe of the Idaho Statesman. However, understanding the scope of that, he is also quoted as saying, "We’re hoping we can get that. That’s a challenge there."
If 20,000 people do show up it would be a tremendous accomplishment. No matter what size the crowd, they will no doubt be greeted by the same kind of enthusiasm and energy Harsin and his staff have produced so far.