Returning: David Ajamu (RS-FR), Derrick Brown (JR), Darrell Daniels (SO), Michael Hartvigson (SR), Joshua Perkins (JR)
Losses: Austin Seferian-Jenkins
Addtions: Drew Sample
In his three years as a Husky, Austin Seferian-Jenkins compiled 146 catches for 1840 yards and 21 TD's. Staggering numbers for a tight end, and because he was so central to the position the other guys on the roster saw only limited action. The other tight ends have caught just 19 passes for 142 yards and 4 TDs. In no season of the last three did a tight end catch more than eight passes.
The move to a more spread out and wide open offense has favored Josh Perkins, a converted wide receiver. Mike Hartvigson had been the primary backup for his freshman and sophomore seasons, but saw his playing time diminished last season and didn't catch any passes.
Expect to see the tight end in the Chris Petersen/Jonathan Smith offense to be more of an H-back/slot receiver than a traditional tight end. We should see a fair amount of motioning as that was the hallmark of what gave Boise State such great matchup and numbers advantages when they were at their best.
With the questions around the wide receiver position its entirely possible that we see multiple tight ends on the field often. Handicapping it right now I'd put the #1 and #2 being Perkins and Darrell Daniels respectively, as they most closely fit the needs of the offense being converted receivers. Daniels should be a willing and capable blocker as well, as he showed a year ago on special teams that he loves contact and can deliver a blow.
Verdict: Worse. Obviously there's going to be some dropoff after losing the most productive pass catching tight end in school history, who had also been the most productive tight end in all of college football over the past few seasons. There is enough talent and depth at the position where they should expect solid production -- probably above average for the Pac-12 -- just not at the All-American level we've become accustomed to.