By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
The Boise State offense dominated the first scrimmage of spring ball Wednesday at Bronco Stadium — leaving coach Chris Petersen frustrated with the lack of intensity from the defense.
The second-team offense, led by sophomore quarterback Joe Southwick, opened with a touchdown drive. Southwick was intercepted in the middle of the drive but linebacker Matt Wilson fumbled the ball back to the offense. Tailback Raphiel Lambert scored on a 1-yard run.
The first-team offense also scored on its first possession. The group went 70 yards in 15 plays, including an 8-yard catch by Chris Potter on fourth-and-2, a 7-yard catch by Geraldo Hiwat on third-and-2 and a 21-yard touchdown catch by Hiwat on third-and-14. Senior quarterback Kellen Moore was 9-of-11 on the drive.
Southwick's second drive could have resulted in points. Instead, he threw an interception on third-and-9 from the defense's 24-yard line. The timing of the play was botched by a bad snap.
Moore's second drive produced a field goal. Hiwat again made a big play, making a 9-yard grab in tight coverage on a fourth-and-4 slant.
Freshman quarterback Grant Hedrick added a touchdown pass late in the scrimmage with the third-teamers. He rolled right and floated a pass over a defender to tight end Holden Huff in the back of the end zone. Hedrick also tossed a TD pass to freshman wide receiver Troy Ware in a red-zone drill.
The kickers, who have been much improved in spring ball, looked good. In fact, three different kickers hit from 52 yards. Freshman Dan Goodale (Timberline High) made field goals of 37, 37, 42 and 52 yards and has been arguably the most improved player on the team this spring.
Boise State did not allow complete stats to be reported from the scrimmage, which was closed to the public.
Here are some quotes:
Petersen: "I'm really learning to hate scrimmages as a head coach because I'm mad at somebody all the time. ... That was concerning for our offense to drive up and down the field on our defense like that. That is unlike defense we've played around here. Now, granted, we've got some guys out that are going to be key contributors but we definitely expect our guys to play harder than they played today."
Hiwat: "I feel more like everybody is stepping up and that makes the competition a lot harder. That makes me just want to compete harder."
Moore: "We had good protection. I think we did a great job in the pocket moving around, buying some time to make plays downfield."
Note: Petersen's quote refers to several starting defensive linemen taking limited snaps and injuries to linebackers Byron Hout and Aaron Tevis. Tevis has practiced more than expected this spring.
Beginning this week, I’m posting breakdowns of the Boise State football team by position. The Broncos are in their third week of spring ball and take next week off for spring break.
Returning starters (1 of 1): Senior Kellen Moore enters his fourth year as the starting quarterback. He was a Heisman Trophy finalist last year and is the NCAA’s active career leader in pass efficiency at 166.74 — eight points ahead of fellow Heisman finalist Andrew Luck of Stanford. Moore has completed 68.2 percent of his career passes, breaking the school single-season record in 2008 and 2010 (71.3 percent). He had 35 touchdown passes and six interceptions last season, topping the nation with a 182.63 efficiency rating. This spring is an adjustment period for Moore, who has a new offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach in Brent Pease and a much different set of receivers.
Key loss: Mike Coughlin graduated and Mike Tamburo transferred, leaving the Broncos with just three quarterbacks in spring ball.
Projected starter: Moore.
Other key returners: Sophomore Joe Southwick served as the primary backup for most of last season and has looked sharp in spring ball. He was 17-of-24 for 202 yards and a touchdown last year. He’s a good athlete, frustrating the Broncos’ defense at times with his ability to scramble out of trouble.
Also in the mix: Redshirt freshman Grant Hedrick has terrific tools but is in the early stages of learning how to run the offense. He will be an intriguing player to watch in fall camp, when he and Southwick will set the stage for their competition for the starting job in 2012.
Also on the roster: None.
Not practicing: None.
Joining in August: Jimmy Laughrea (Rocklin, Calif.) likely will spend the fall running the scout team.