Boise State likely to feature two tailbacks, Petersen says; Mackey rejoins team

By Chadd Cripe

Boise State football coach Chris Petersen said Thursday the Broncos likely will use a 1-2 punch at tailback and find a role for the third tailback.

Deciding which of the three standouts — senior Jeremy Avery, junior D.J. Harper or junior Doug Martin — gets the smallest role will be difficult.

"You have to make some hard decisions in terms of maybe two guys that are really going to be the 1-2 punch out of the gate and figure out who else fits in," Petersen said. "So we're kind of working on that. ... All those guys will be a factor. We probably need to get a 1-2 punch."

Petersen has hinted all year, and again Thursday, that he expects the injury bug that has been a problem at tailback for several years to strike again.

"As the season goes on," he said, "we know things will change."


Senior linebacker Daron Mackey rejoined the Broncos this week after being suspended for fall camp. He is not suspended for any games, but the fall camp suspension might have been worse.

"It's very hard missing fall camp," Petersen said. "As hard as fall camp is, nobody wants to miss fall camp. Everybody understands that that's almost a death sentence in terms of your ability to get in the mix in a hurry."

Mackey, who practices Tuesday for the first time since tearing an anterior cruciate ligament in November, likely will need at least a few weeks to get in game shape. He can't even wear full pads until next week because of NCAA rules that require a five-practice break-in period.

Mackey, the starting middle linebacker part of last year, was arrested last month and he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of driving without a valid license, failure to maintain insurance and failure to appear for a court hearing.


Redshirt freshman linebacker John Michael Davis, who was expected to contribute this year, is enrolled in school but has been removed from the roster.

Davis missed fall camp while "dealing with some personal things," Petersen said.


Sophomore defensive end Darren Koontz likely will miss most of the season with a broken foot, Petersen said. The injury is the main reason the Broncos will play junior-college transfer Tyrone Crawford this year.

Petersen remains hopeful that the five defensive starters who were out for last week's scrimmage will be ready for Virginia Tech. I talked to safety George Iloka, who was one of them, on Thursday and he said he's healthier this year than he has been in his entire college career — so don't worry about him.


The Broncos are unveiling their Bronco Stadium expansion plan Friday.

"I haven't seen anything more pressing for us to get done than this project," Petersen said.


Here is the audio from Petersen's press conference. We've edited out the interruption from KTVB, who tried to air the press conference live despite Boise State's memo to the media that live broadcasts wouldn't be allowed this year. The live video is available exclusively at

What a Tough Decison...

Picking 2 of the 3 to Start The Season With...Nice to know we're never without a fresh back..


I understand KTVB was up in arms they didnt get to broadcast this. Is that true?

I hate the fact one great Bronco Running Back will be on the sideline. I get the reason for it but it seems weird one guy wont get a lot of playing time back there. That, and eventually one guy will probably be injured. Depressing.


They staged a ridiculous protest by interrupting Pete in the middle of one of his answers. Lucky for them Pete isn't (in terms of personality) Nick Saban or Urban Meyer...


Anyone else think KTVB thinks they are big time? Geezus, today I heard themselves call each other celebrities. Coach Pete is a cla-s-sy guy. Kinda wish he would of tore into them. Typical bush league by KTVB. Tacky.

Seems to me they threw a lot of dough at BSU TV rights...

Maybe somebody will remember that and maybe sip it.

All the sea monkeys have Alzheimer's?



"Say a prayer for the pretender..."-Jackson Browne


Pete's the one who should be lucky that he isn't Saban or Meyer or else he'd have to deal with the amount of press that those guys have to deal with. Petersen is pretty much insulated here at BSU and that's not the case most everywhere else.

Anyway, I thought that having 3 backs last season was fantastic. What changed this year?

There weren't three last year

Martin moved back to offense after Harper blew his ACL in the third game.

Martin had already scored 2 rushing TD's when DJ went down

both of which came in the 2nd game vs Miami(Oh)

I agree with you

about one of the backs being stuck on the sideline. It is a bit of a downer, however, there is a strategic upside to it. Having three equally qualified tailbacks gives the Broncos a fresh pair of legs late in the game, just when the defensive players are growing tired.

The choice is easy

Harper & Martin are the two feature backs. No question.

Not easy

I can promise you one of them will be Jeremy Avery. Fans don't seem to appreciate him, but he has over 3,000 career yards from scrimmage and he makes a lot of big plays. My hunch is it's Avery and Harper with a sprinkling of Martin, particularly for short yardage, and a ton of Martin on special teams.

I know I appeciate Avery but

I know I appeciate Avery but many of his yards are against Wac teams with hardly a D1 defense. In my mind Harper is our best TB and Martin is second. Martin was too much for TCU's solid D and I can't say that about Avery. There's no shame in being 3rd in that lineup, and it's hardly a slam on Avery to suggest he's 3rd.


It looked to me last year that Avery was the best receiving back of the three, and the most elusive of the bunch in the open field (not necessarily the fastest). I don't envy the coaches having to make this decision.

Martin is a better runner than Avery

Avery is good for the occasional burst of speed and strength, but he's not a consistent enough benefit to use frequently. Sure, he'll run a 30+ yd run, then follow it with 10 runs of under 2 yds. And, that's when we're not playing teams with good rushing defenses. Avery just isn't good enough, in my opinion.

I understand your point.

Good thing we don't have to make that decision. Telling a senior he's not starting a big game like this would be.....difficult. I know this staff has always said the best guys will play, but I wouldn't want to deliver the news. It wouldn't surprise me if they don't all have an opportunity to start at some point this year.

Not really that difficult

How do you think Bush Hamdan liked starting behind Moore in 2008? Granted, Hamdan wasn't very good.

But, the fact remains that Avery isn't as good as the other 2 RBs. If Martin had been on offense the whole season, his stats would be the best on the team.

just having Avery on the field.

When you have Avery on the field, it changes what the defense has to do. It keeps them honest. It opens things up for the rest of the offense. I said this first 3 years ago when he showed up in camp. I was right. He is the best back.

BarackNoKid, you forgot to use your one of your other usernames

it's evident that you know absolutely nothing about football


The link doesn't seem to work..can you check it?


Works for me. Anyone else having issues?

Ok Thanks

mine doesn't..I can get it another way..

Works for me in Firefox.

Works for me in Firefox.

Thanks Lilly

I just have to disable my network firewall to get it then back on..


Have you read this....


Youare going to have to put the word sportslill ustrated together. Statesman wont let me say L-U-S-T

Thanks JL

I had not seen it. We've been thru Go Left Twice this season...Here's a pic...check it out..those guys are nuts...


Great pic man. Did it once this year. Jeron Johnsons quote made me laugh.

(No subject)


I got a glimpse of your header b4 you edited. We have a friend that guides and has all the permits for all areas. Raft. He also permits the Middle and Selkirk.


cool that you're into the rivers. That's what brought me out to Boise. Came out on a paddling vacation through the rockies back in 96 and after spending some time here, decided Boise was where I wanted to be. I've been kayaking for 22 years, not so much lately though

Yeah Kid

We're floating the Cabarton this weekend. While I think it's simple water, am excited b/c it's a new stretch for us. Got to do a 4 dayer in Frank Church when I was 12...lucky...and still at it..Kayaking looks's on our to do list..We've been around some..American, Trinity, Smith, Klamath Rivers in Calif, McKenzie, Sixes, Illinois, Rogue, Deschutes in Oregon..


is a cool stretch of river. Nothing crazy, but always fun. Sounds like ya'll have hit some of the reginal classics. cool. guide

buddy is taking us so we're looking for a kick back day...Thanks

at the current water level...

there's going to be some fantastic beaches! Too bad the temps are going to drop off, but regardless..I'm sure it'll be a hoot, just make sure that you take enough beer because the flat stretch to Cougar Mtn is a loooong one


Coach Pete said two. One is Koontz and the other is....???? He must be a starter or get starter minutes because Coach Pete didnt tell us but told the media.

Jeron (although hes back, kinda) or Swyke.....

The other one ...

... was Matt Miller, previously reported.


Thanks...some of us were chewing off fingernails.

Thanks for tracking the injury bug.

I think most of us are beginning to understand the position you are in w/ the coaching staff, & what information you're allowed to print. It would seem a bit of a challenge to keep that to yourself. Thanks for providing the information you have.

3 Backs

It's not that important who starts. The game will dictate who is hot and who is not.
Staying strong in the 2nd half will be key. VT will be doing the same. Our D has to stuff their running game, instill a bit of no-confidence late in the game. 4 quarters is a long game.

Doug Martin will Work

his way into more than his share of the carries. You have to remember he was thrust into that role when Harper got hurt. He got better literally with every few snaps, and did not have the benefit of working with the O like the other 2. Some players give it all in practice AND games, and their GAME results are just better. Martin is one of those kind of players.

3 TBs

I think that WRs will be the main course anyway. But if VT believes that then maybe we should use the TBs....I know, the only thing that would have VT completely surprised would be Kellen running the ball! Well maybe not...

All Day Avery

Everyone that isn't needs to acknowledge J. Avery and how good he has been. If you argue with JA being the number 1 guy in this rotation you just aren't paying attention. Not to take anything away from the other two. We are so lucky to have 3+ outstanding tailbacks. Martin is definately the third of the three, but he is a heck of a third. Probably the best athlete of the three, but Avery and Harp are definately going to be the 1-2. If Harp stays healthy he'll have a gigantic year.

all three for time...

I think that Martin will be the so called "3rd back"...not because he isn't as good as the others, he's just different. He is a hitter, and he will be used, a lot, in certain situations. I would bet that one of them goes over a thousand this year, but the other two still get up in the 600-700 range...and I bet that Martin gets the most rushing TDs. 3rd and goal, in Maryland, down by 4 in the 4th...yeah, Martin gets the call if he is fresh. I think that stopping the run game this season is going to be key to success, and has long been a stitch in the side of the Broncos' D. With a good nickel back in most of the time, and a good study of film before each game, I think the Bronco D could end the season ranked in the top 5 easy...offense in the top 5 also. It's blue and orange time, baby. The rest of the country knows it, too. I was doing some of those dumb polls on lot of questions were about Boise State, and a lot of people from around the country rated the Broncos pretty high. 'Course there were a lot that said they hated BSU, mostly from Ore-yawn. I wouldn't be surprised to see them in the Rose Bowl this year. If Alabama and Ohio State both go undefeated, there isn't a sane person in the country that will put BSU in the title hel-lo(honestly, I can’t say h-e-l-l-o on this site) again, quacks! This time there will be no excuses, BSU will make you and the rest of the quack-10 look stupid...and the rest of the country will be left wondering if BSU really is the best in FBS...BB

to the site manager...whoever that is

If someone actually uses a swear the f-bomb, alone in a sentence...then flag it. If someone wants to write the word 'illu-strated', please, let them...and cla-ss, and hel-lo, just to name a few. It has been a while since someone complained about the over sensitive mama's boy of a censor engine ya'll use on this site. We are football fans, lady. Swear words happen...and the very least of your worries should be that someone sneaks the word
l-u-s-t into another word...I mean, my God, what could possibly have happened in this person's childhood that would make them want to hide the word a-s-s inside the word 'class'? Next thing you know, you'll be asking us to greet each other with the word hecko, instead. Go Broncos-BB

barking up the wrong hierarchy...

First of all, this whole thing uses DRUPAL. Look it up.

Secondly, McClatchy Corporate or whatever administers this server in about the same way as any of their other sites (they have more than a few).

Hollering at the Statesman might make you feel good but it doesn't do any of us much good.

If you ever read a Terms Of Service statement then you know the lawyers allow them to kick the President's dog and send it to Mars.


"Say a prayer for the pretender..."-Jackson Browne