Boise State Football's Top 10 Moments: Does Statue Left Top the List?
After countless hours of research, I have determined the top 10 moments in Boise State football history.
Upon reflection, it probably would have been easier to be a congressman and vote on health care reform.
With the past 14 years of Bronco football sometimes referred to as the "golden years" of the program, I do have quite a few moments from this time. However, there are moments from the years past that have helped make the program what it is today.
10. 2008 NFL Draft-Ryan Clady Selected No. 12 Overall by Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos selected Ryan Clady No.12 in the first round of the 2008 NFL Draft.
Clady, a 2007 All-American, was selected to his first Pro Bowl in 2009. The 6’6” 325 pounder is the best offensive lineman in Boise State history, leaving after his junior year.
He was a three-year starter, missing only two games in that time. He was also responsible for the main block in the Statue Left play.
9. 2000: Dave Wilcox Inducted into Pro Football Hall of Fame
Dave Wilcox is the only former Bronco that is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Wilcox played for Boise Junior College in 1961 and 1962 before transferring to the University of Oregon. Wilcox played guard on offense and defensive end on defense.
Drafted by the San Francisco 49ers (third round) and Houston Oilers (sixth round), Wilcox opted to go with the more established 49ers squad, where he was turned into an outside linebacker. He played 11 years with San Francisco, including seven Pro Bowl selections.
As an interesting side note Wilcox's son: Justin Wilcox was the defensive coordinator at Boise State from 2006-2009.
8. 2003 Season: Ryan Dinwiddie Sets Division I-A Career Passing Efficiency Record
Arguably the best quarterback in Bronco history, Ryan Dinwiddie was a very efficient passer. In 2003, his senior year, Dinwiddie passed for 4,031 yards, 28 touchdowns, and only five interceptions.
Following this season he set the Division I-A career passing efficiency record with a passing efficiency of 168.9.
This mark was later broken by Hawaii’s Colt Brennan, who posted a mark of 169.25. The record was once again broken by Tim Tebow of Florida, who had a career passing efficiency mark of 170.8.
7. 2002 Humanitarian Bowl: First Win Over BCS School
From 1996-2002, Boise State was 0-9 against “BCS” schools until the 2002 Humanitarian Bowl.
Boise State was playing in their third straight Humanitarian Bowl and was 2-0 in the previous two. Facing the Iowa State Cyclones of the Big 12, Boise State won decisively 34-16.
This ended the first year the Broncos had ever been ranked in the AP Poll. They finished No. 15 that year.
6. 2008 Poinsettia Bowl: Ian Johnson Sets New WAC Touchdown Record
Midway through the first quarter versus TCU, Johnson scored on a 20-yard run, setting the new WAC touchdown record, a mark previously held by Marshall Faulk.
In a conference in which great running backs such as LaDainian Tomlinson and Faulk flourished, this record only furthered Boise State’s reputation as one of the all-time WAC programs.
5. 1958 National Junior College National Championship Game
Only 11 years after hiring perhaps their best coach in history, Lyle Smith, Boise Junior college won the 1958 National Junior College National Championship.
The game was held at Bronco Stadium, where they defeated Tyler College of Texas.
4. 2010 Fiesta Bowl: The Riddler
Facing a 4th-and-9 on their own 33 yard-line, Boise State reached into its bag of tricks once again.
Punter Kyle Brotzman took the snap and completed a pass to a wide-open TE Kyle Efaw for 30 yards. This would set up the game-winning touchdown run by Doug Martin, giving Boise State its second Fiesta Bowl win in four years.
3. 2007 Fiesta Bowl: Hook and Ladder
With only 18 seconds remaining, Boise State was down 35-28 and faced a 4th-and-18 from mid-field.
Zabransky completed the pass to Drisan James three yards short of the first down. James then quickly pitched the ball to Jerard Rabb, who took it another 35 yards to score the tying touchdown with only seven seconds remaining in regulation.
2. 1980 NCAA Division I-AA National Championship Game
Played in Sacramento, CA, Boise State defeated Eastern Kentucky 31-29 in the title game. In the semifinals, Boise State defeated Grambling 14-9 in Boise.
In the 1981 season, Boise State lost in the semifinals to Eastern Kentucky.
1. 2007 Fiesta Bowl: Statue Left
Trailing 42-41 in the first overtime of the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, Coach Chris Petersen decided to go for the two-point conversion rather than kick the extra point and go to a second overtime.
Quarterback Jared Zabransky faked a fade route and handed the ball behind his back to Ian Johnson, who ran left into the end zone untouched, winning the biggest game in Boise State history.
The game is labeled as one of the greatest college football games ever played.
Being a teenage fan of the Broncos, I did my best not to have bias for the recent Boise State teams. However, in the end, Statue Left to defeat almighty Oklahoma was just too great to not be number one.