Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
The two combatants trade blows in a 1Q that was relatively low on fireworks but exposed a few UW flaws. Huskies down 9-3.
The Huskies lost the coin flip and then lost the first possession to a Bishop Sankey fumble after investing most of their initial offensive plays to trying to establish the run game. BSU took over, broke out the no huddle and ran into a Husky D that seemed ready to handle it even if they couldn't account for Joe Southwick scrambling on a well-covered third down. The turnover led to a Bronco field goal as the Husky secondary easily handled the Bronco receivers and the LBs beat the Bronco rushers to the perimeter.
After getting the ball back, the Huskies second drive emphasized the pass game and resulted in a drop, a sack and a too-short completion that led to a 3 and out. Oh yeah, and a gimpy Keith Price. Offensive line play was truly offensive and it resulted in the Boise State getting the ball right back. Fortunately, the Husky D was totally up to the task and forced a 3 and out of their own, even forcing a shanked punt on fourth down.
UW went back to the run and got Sankey untracked. A couple of tough runs and one big one got UW into the red zone, but a Kasen Williams drop on an empty-set 3rd and 2 set up an easy Travis Coons FG. On the return trip, Boise St started getting their offense going in a start and stop sort of way as the two sides traded blows. The rhythm got established and it ended with Southwick tossing a TD pass at the end of a 14 play drive. But, to further exemplify the blows being traded by the two teams, the Huskies block the extra point.
All in all, the 1Q was about what we expected. Both defenses showed up and both teams tried to mix it up offensively. They both unveiled a few surprises - UW with the wildcat and BSU with the hurry-up offense. Still, nothing that the opposing DC's couldn't handle. The big difference between the two teams based on the eyeball test is the pass protection that the respective teams provided their QBs. There was a stark difference and it wasn't favorable to UW.