By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
The Boise State defense manhandled the offense Friday afternoon in the Broncos’ closed scrimmage. It was the first scrimmage of fall camp.
“What’s the phrase?” coach Chris Petersen said Saturday. “ ‘They took you out back to the woodshed and let you have it?’ Our defense let our offense have it in a good way. I don’t know if it was in a good way, but from their perspective it was in a good way. In a big way.”
Stats weren’t provided to the media, but Petersen and the players provided some description.
The offense committed four turnovers and scored two touchdowns, Petersen said. The defense also scored a touchdown. The first-team offense didn’t score.
True freshman defensive back Darian Thompson grabbed an interception and returned a fumble for a touchdown. Petersen also liked what he saw from redshirt freshman wide receiver Matt Miller, true freshman linebacker Blake Renaud, true freshman nickel Corey Bell and senior punter Brad Elkin.
“There were some young guys that really played hard and played with great energy,” Petersen said.
As for Elkin: “Brad Elkin had a really, really good day punting the ball,” Petersen said. “When our offense performs like that, hopefully that punter comes through for you — and he did.”
Petersen said he didn’t need to tell the offense how bad it was. He just showed them some key stats.
“They were screaming loud and clear,” he said.
Senior nickel Hunter White said the pass rush created problems for the offense but he expects that group to bounce back. The same side of the ball doesn’t usually dominate two scrimmages in a row.
Traditionally, it’s the defense that wins the first scrimmage of the fall.
“It seems to be that way and the offense always with a chip on their shoulder comes back in the second scrimmage,” White said. “We’ll have to be ready for that and ready for all that trickery.”
The next scrimmage is at 7 p.m. Aug. 20. That one is open to fans.
Petersen addressed the firing of athletic director Gene Bleymaier. Petersen was told Tuesday night and the move was announced Wednesday.
Petersen opened his press conference with comments about Bleymaier.
“I’ll probably just start … by thanking Gene Bleymaier for all he’s done for this university, for the athletic program and certainly for the football program,” he said. “… He’s done great things here. From here, I think it’s really important for us to focus on this season, to focus on the future and move forward. That’s the one thing we talk to our team always about is not getting caught up in things we don’t control, not being distracted. That’s the main focus right now with our team and our staff.”
On the firing: “Like everybody you’re surprised but then when I also look back, nothing really surprises me anymore, the way college athletics is going. I think this is a tough business and tough decisions have to be made and are going to be made.”
On whether the firing will stall progress with the program: “I have a lot of confidence in Bronco Nation. I always think about that when a little bit of adversity hits, that’s when a team needs to come together. That’s when our team needs to play better. That’s when all our supporters need to rally together.”
On whether he wants to be an athletic director: “Absolutely not. That I have figured out very clearly.”
A couple notes from Friday’s NFL games:
— Ryan Winterswyk, now playing tight end for Atlanta, had three catches for 9 yards.
— Ian Johnson, playing tailback for the Detroit Lions, had a team-high nine carries for 21 yards.