Cornerback play continues to cause problems for Boise State football team; QB recruit Nick Patti to play in All-American game

By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman

Boise State likely will play four cornerbacks in Saturday’s game against Wyoming as coaches continue to search for two consistent performers.

The Broncos will play without either starting cornerback for the fourth straight game, with the exception of Jamar Taylor’s brief appearance against TCU.

Six players have started at cornerback this season. Three of them — true freshman Lee Hightower, redshirt freshman Bryan Douglas and sophomore Quaylon Ewing-Burton — are expected to play against Wyoming. Senior Antwon Murray also will get into the rotation.

Starters have not been named. Douglas and Hightower started last week.

“Right now, it’s the two that have the best week of practice,” defensive backs coach Marcel Yates said, “just because that position is not a solid position as far as who the starter is.”

The Broncos’ defense has struggled in the past four games, allowing about twice as many points per game as it did in the first six games. Taylor played hurt in one of those games, sat out two of them and played about a quarter against TCU. The other starting cornerback, Jerrell Gavins, has missed the past seven games and won’t return until next season.

That has put the defense in a precarious position. Cornerback is the worst position on defense to have a rash of injuries.

Yates compared it to quarterback.

“Those are the two positions where you have to be the most disciplined, and (cornerback) happens to be the position we’re the youngest at now,” he said.

The Broncos have tweaked their defense to protect the cornerbacks, which affects the rest of the defense. That hasn’t been effective because the cornerbacks haven’t covered well in zone, either.

“We’ve been lucky to play a lot of man to man with the guys we’ve had here in the past,” Yates said. “… We’ve done some things to help them out and they haven’t held up their end of the bargain. … It affects the whole defense.”

One of the biggest problems has been “bad eyes” — which means the cornerbacks are looking at the wrong things. Instead of focusing on the receivers, they look at the quarterback. That’s what led to some big plays for TCU.

“Every high school DB, when they come to college, they all have a bad habit of looking at the quarterback,” Yates said. “Most of them are such better athletes (than their opponents) that they can look at the quarterback and still make plays. In college, the receivers are too good. … You can’t cover something you can’t see.”

Said defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski: “They’re just not executing at the level that they need to, and we’re seeing big plays because of it. … They’re hanging in there. We need them to learn a little bit faster. And if they just trust their eyes and trust their techniques, then it usually works out.”


Boise State senior tailback Doug Martin needs 115 rushing yards to crack the 1,000-yard barrier for the second straight season. He already has topped 3,000 career yards — the sixth Bronco to reach that milestone.

Wyoming has one of the worst rushing defenses in the country, ranking 116th at 229.8 yards per game.

“I’m pretty sure every running back wants to get over 1,000 yards during the season,” Martin said. “It would be nice to have, but we have two more games left so we’ll see what happens.”

Martin carried a career-high 36 times last week at San Diego State because backup D.J. Harper (ankle) wasn’t available. Harper is expected to return against Wyoming.

Martin played last week at about 90 percent and hopes to be full strength this week.

“I couldn’t really plant my right foot as hard as I wanted to,” Martin said of the San Diego State game. “During the pass blocking, I couldn’t get my toe in the ground like I wanted. I kind of caused some havoc in the backfield a little bit for (quarterback) Kellen (Moore).”


Boise State’s kickoff and punt teams are the key reason they have dominated field position this season.

The Broncos rank seventh in the nation in net kickoff at 47.2 yards (that puts the opponents at the 23-yard line on average). They aren’t highly ranked in net punting because they punt from near midfield frequently, but they have downed 24 of their 38 punts inside the 20-yard line.

The coverage units also contributed two fumble recoveries last week against San Diego State. Walk-on Josh Borgman had four tackles and a fumble recovery, and the fumble forced and recovered on kickoff involved three true freshmen — Blake Renaud, Lee Hightower and Corey Bell.

“We’ve got a bunch of guys who play with chips on their shoulders,” said junior linebacker J.C. Percy, a top special-teamer. “Some of the guys that are on those teams, that’s their time to shine, that’s the time when they get on the field. They’re going to make the most of it.”

That includes Borgman, who was in returner Leon McFadden’s face as he tried to field a 50-yard punt. McFadden dropped the ball.

“He’s done a great job,” Boise State coach Chris Petersen said. “He’s kind of been one of our special-teams demons for a while around here. He did play his best game. Josh runs well and can make plays. It’s nice to see it all kind of come together.”

The Broncos’ kickoff unit might be the most improved group on the entire team. The group gave up long returns on a regular basis last year.

“We’ve got a lot of speed out there this year,” Borgman said. “We take more pride in it. They call us the tone-setters.”


Boise State quarterback recruit Nick Patti will play in the JuniorRank Sports/U.S. Marine Corps Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl on Jan. 3 in Phoenix. The Fiesta Bowl is the night before, and it's possible Boise State could be in that game.

Patti, of Orlando, Fla., will play in a high school regional semifinal Friday.

Here's a story in the Orlando Sentinel.


Don't forget that Boise State is selling leftover student tickets at half-price beginning at noon today.


Happy Thanksgiving to all the Bronco Beat readers ...

1322151733 Cornerback play continues to cause problems for Boise State football team; QB recruit Nick Patti to play in All-American game Idaho Statesman Copyright 2014 Idaho Statesman . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Happy Thanksgiving

Wanted to wish a Happy Thanksgiving to all posters and hope everyone enjoys some time with their families.

Same to ya, JL,

always enjoy your comments...Sunny...



Yo tfunky

Thanks Sunny and tfunky.

K...funky...give the rest of us guys a "rooting guide" for tomorrows games (maybe for Saturdays as well) and do it from the perspective of the Broncos achieving a BCS bowl. I get we want Tulsa over Houston but it gets foggy from there. Do I really need to cheer for the Buckeyes? Notre Dame? Geezus it might be a rough weekend.

Here's today's games JL

Come Saturday you'll more than likely need to cheer for Ohio State and/or Notre Dame

The Texas win last night could help move them in front of TCU. They are pretty far behind TCU in the human polls but will more than likely pass them in the computers. It probably assures that the winner of the Texas/Baylor game will stay in front of TCU.

Today's games


This game will be another TCU caliber game. Wyoming will be the second toughest opponent in the MWC. Should be a good game. Hope the weather holds off this one im home for and will attend. Happy Bird Day and Go broncos.

ugly - we are at .$9,796

The Expand Bronco Stadium fund was at $9791 when I went to bed last night.

That means that during the night, at least one to five Broncos must have dug deep and come up with 5-$1 or 1-$5 bucks to donate.

All is appreciated - even pennies.

Remember the school kids in North Caroline had a penny drive years ago and now North Carolina is the home of some big Navy Boat that the Navy decomissioned and scrapped, in one of the salvage harbors in that state.

And many years ago, there was a milk crton drive in Washington state somewhere and the proceeds of the collected milk cartons went to buy some trees to plant in Seattle somewhere.

So it can be done in Idaho too, if Broncos want it bad enough.

We know this was a Bronco that donated and not a Vandal, becuas it was under one hundred dollars.

When we see a donation for one hundred dollars or more then we wil know the donor was a Vandal.

VNDL....It is obvious that it was 5

Broncos sacrificing $1 their credit, they did this for the Broncos and probably will drink one less oly today to pay for it....much grace, muchos gracias....

Yes, we definitely know it was not a Vandal, or it would have been 3-4 digits in giving....

the $1 is a give away because at Spring scrimmage game in April, the average giving per fan was less than 75 cents we must say praises to these 5 Broncos that dug deep and went the extra mile and found the greenback with George and gave it away....

It is instances like this that makes me proud and very thankful on a beuatiful Thanksgiving Day....

Life is precious and it is also short....Happy Holidays everyone!

VNDL....You and all bloggers, cripe and murph, and especially the 5 that broke down last night and gave, Have a Happy Thanksgiving and enjoy the moments with your families....

Don't put your checkbok away, just yet

Broncos can also give to the Horsepower program which gives the money you donate to the student athletes, who do the real work on Game Day.

Here is a link on how to join and how you can set up monthly Electronic Funds Transfer, from you to the BAA people who then give the money to the athletes so they can go to school and become Communicators and Undeclared Studies students:

If you are looking for a tax dodge/relief thingy, this just might be a good deal for you. Just ask your accountant if it would help you or not.

Just give a buck or five or ten a month (anything appreciated - even send in old coins and pennies and such - don't even have to be rolled first like banks make you do).

There are lots of opportunities for Broncos to give money to Coach Pete, the BAA, and the Bronco fotball playrs, and as I find them, I will post them here, so we can share our knowledge about how to give back to the City of Boise for sponsoring a university and a wonderful college football team.

Go Broncos.

BAA Member #63799

To all

Let's all have a good Thanksgiving. I wish the best to all players, on all teams all conferences.
We have to remember these guys are STUDENT Athletes.
Their coaches help make these guys the young people we look up to.


just fix it.

Another Vandal donated $250.00

ugly: I guess another Vandal donated a little bit ago.

I see it was a $250.00 donation and the total now is $10,046.

We are gaining. Woot Woot !!

It is great that we still have Vandals who are digging deeper than the Broncos and donating money for the expansion of Bronco Stadium and helping Broncos help themselves and helping Coach Pete and giving him money, at the same time.

I was very happy that 5 Broncows donated a buck apiece. It shows that Broncos do support their team. Maybe not at the high level that Vandals support the Broncos, but those 5 dug as deep as they could, given the harsh economic times we live in and a whoe herd of impoverished Broncos that JLandon refers to in his postings.

JKLandon: Have a Happy Thanksgiving. It is heartening to learn you are a member of the BAA and have contributed money to the expansion of Bronco Stadium project. You are a true innspiration to your fellow Broncos. Possibly, you will want to join ugly, me, SIF, and a slew of other Vandals in our efforts to support Coach Pete and the Bronco Football Team and become a Member of our Vandal Team. I can always get ahold of Joe Vandal on his private line and get him to declare you a Vandal for a limited amount of time, while you help us help your fellow Broncos.

Just let ugly or me know and we can set it up. Joe V. owes us some favors and it is time to call in some chips.

BAA Member#63799

Brother Broncos: Give Even One small dollar

Here is an easy painless way for Broncos to donate even just a dollar, like some really unselfish broncos have done. Even a dollar goes a long way to give Coach Pete what he wants as a recruiting tool - a new footballjk office complex for the coaches, weight room and lockerrooms for the players:

It is not too much to ask is it?

For common Bronco Fans to give at least a dollar.

There are Bronco Fans on these boards (JLandon, TBK, and windex) that have given at least a dollar and joined her BAA and contributed to Coach Petes's dream of improving the football office complex and adding 10,000 seats to Bronco Stadium.

Com on Brother Broncos. Together we can get at least a dollar from each of you who have not given so far.

If you ask JLandon, TBK, and windex, how good it feels to have given (and they have) selflessly of themselves, during these tough economic times; they will probably tell you it is a good thing to do, they feel great and somewhat liberated, and it is something all Bronco Fans should do, and that hey have great sleep at night for having done so.

I will ask them.

JLandon, TBK, and windex: Do you guys have any remorse, whatsoever, for joining the BAA and contributing to the expansion of Bronco Stadium project; or are you happy to have done it and encourage your Brother Broncos to do the same: and, has having done so improved your sleep at night?

Go Broncos.

BAA Member #63799

The 'Bad Eye' Theory is Crap

Okay, BSU has 4 conerbacks: one is a true Freshman and two are redshirts from previous years, and one is a senior who may or may not have had a redshirt year as the article didn't say for sure if he did or not.

Lets look at combined time taining with the team:

True Freshman: Summer Camp and Fall Camp and one almost complete season. This equals about 6 months actual experience practicing with the team and practicing the corner back position.

The two redshirts: They each have at least one complete year undr their belts and a summer camp and almost a complete season. This equals about 18 months actual experience practicing with the team and practicing the corner back position. Or, 36 total months of college level cornerback experience for the two.

One Senior: four years of practicing with the team and almost one complete season or about 57 months of college level cornerback experience practicing with the team and playing in games.

This is a total of 102 months experience for all four of them practicing with the team and game experience - and,

They still have 'Bad Eye'??

They still look at the QB first?

I don't believe it.

I think it is an excuse for a coach to blame his players for their not performing well.

There is no doubt that BSU cornerbacks have performed kind of crummy lately, during the games - but for a coach to blame his players for his (the coach'es) failure to train and teach his cornerbacks to not look at the QB first but to look at the receivers, seems kind of crummy, low class, and cheap to me.

I kind of lost respect for that coach after reading this stuff in the article about 'bad eye' and how his cornerbacks still haven't learned to look at the QB first.

Maybe it is the coach that should be counseled and not the players. Maybe the players do not respect the coach and don't listen to him.

Or, maybe those Bronco cornerbacks have played the best they could have, got burned a few times by some other outstanding athletes (things like that happen at the D1 highest level), and are paying the price for cornerback being a high visilbility position and always under scrutiny and a microscope.

I am not giving up on these four cornerbacks. They need our support and encouragement, and not our collective disdain that they may have 'bad eye' or some other coach manufactured excuse to dodge his responsibility to train and teach them better.

Just my thoughts and opinion.

Go Broncos

BAA Member# 63799

Maybe Coach Yates should sell popsicles

An interesting read from an interesting site about cornerback training. And guess what - reading a quarterback and looking at him is what a corner back should do:

Here is what Coach Yates said, per the article above: . . . defensive backs coach Marcel Yates said, “ . . (cornerback) happens to be the position we’re the youngest at now . . . We’ve done some things to help them out and they haven’t held up their end of the bargain. … It affects the whole defense. One of the biggest problems has been “bad eyes” — which means the cornerbacks are looking at the wrong things. Instead of focusing on the receivers, they look at the quarterback. That’s what led to some big plays for TCU. . . Every high school DB, when they come to college, they all have a bad habit of looking at the quarterback . . . Most of them are such better athletes (than their opponents) that they can look at the quarterback and still make plays. In college, the receivers are too good. … You can’t cover something you can’t see.”

Are cornerbacks supposed to read the QBs first and look at them, or not?

I did not play cornerback. My experience was a Wingback in a Single Wing offense, so I will be the first to say, I am not sure what the correct training is for a cornerback - to read the QB first and look at him, as high level cornerback training sites say to do (we often hear experienced commentators when referencing corneback play say: He didn't read the QB right or he mis-read the QB); or, Don't look at the QBs and try to read them and just look at the receivers, so the cornerbacks have 'good eyes' and not 'bad eyes' per Coach Yates cornerback training technige.

Any thoughts on this from anybody who has played a defensive back position in college?


ugly - another Bronco has donated $25.00

we now have a total of $10,071 on the fundly site:

Little by little we are starting to get common Bronco Fans getting serious and giving Big Money ($25.00 is Big Money to most common Bronco Fans and $5.00 is Big Money to many other common Bronco Fans, that are not as fortunate economically as the ones who give $25.00, but are more fortunate than the ones who can only go one dollar at a time.), too.

Remember an important thing about Thanksgiving is to give thanxs to the economically blessed common Bronco Fans that can donate $25.00 to the expansion of Bronco Stadium project that is being led by your Vandal Team.

Go Broncos.

BAA Member#63799

ugly - another Bronco stepped forward

and donated $25.00, the total is now $10,096:

This has been an amazing past several days. It is like the floodgates have opened and Bronco fans are steppping forward to be counted and giving freely of their precious treasure (and yes - $25 bucks is precious treasure to some Broncos, as JLandon has told us) to give Coach Pete more money for his Dream (expansion of Bronco Stadium - nicer ofices for the coaches, showers that are not old and work, locker rooms and weight rooms with heavier weights, for the players) to become reality and to keep him happy so he stays living in Boise and coaching Bronco Football.

It is critical to give Coach Pete what he needs to help the recruiting efforts and have nicer stuff for potential new recruits to have if they come to BSU. New tiles in the shower would attract higher caliber athletes than older tiles, I am guessing.

We canot tie Coach Pete's arms behind his back and not give him the new things he neds to get/motivate these kids to come to Boise and play for BSU. We have to give him what he needs and he has said several times, he needs better stuff at Bronco Stadium to get these kids.

Come on Broncos - keep up the momentum of having Broncos donate about $25.00 daily for this multi milllion dollar project. I know the pace of contributions has slowed down because, as JLandon has in a round about way, said - Broncos are basically poor economically disadvantaged people who are struggling to feed their families and survive these tough economic condition (not an actual direct quote attributed singularly to him, but in the spirit of what he said), but even so - Broncos can give possibly a quarter, some nickels, a half dollar, whatever they can spare.

Possibly Broncos can go right now, after reading this, and go to your couches and sofas and look behind the cushions. Maybe there is some loose change that you can take down to the BAA Offices and give to Coach Pete for the expansion of Bronco Stadium, to make his Dream come true.

Ugly - you are the Most Deep Thinker on these boards and can see things most cannot due to your 3-dimensional insight. What do you think? Should the search for lose change be limited to the living rooms or should family, rumpus, and bonus rooms also be included?

Go Broncos.

BAA Member #63799

VNDL....Ugly is perplexed and does not

know what to think....

I have done much study today....I have found only 3 main ways to donate to Bronco Stadium Expansion....all the other ways were personal fundraisers on facebook taking the task, and acting fustrated cause of not much response....

JL has inside info....he was the last to talk to a BAA person on the phone that said Stadium Expansion was going very well and there are hundreds of ways to donate.... said JL was very polite, mild mannered, handsome, and a modern-day Rock Hudson look-alike....arent those the same attributes of a Russian Spy?

we need JL to talk....

He has inside info that we do not have....he said Boiseans are famished and barely making payments; yet I read in Boise that Black Friday is going well....maybe the kids needed wifi and not potatoes?

Quarters under sofas? will take too long....we need Coach Pete to stay in Boise and present him the $250,000 check as our thanks for his out-standing service to Boise for making it a National recognized powerhouse in college football....

We need to think somehow in 3D to get the common Bronco to respond more? Coach Pete wants the facilities and stadium upgrades done, yes done, by Fall of 2013....

He wants to open his office and sit in chair in Sept 2013, not to hear that we have reached $30,000 with only $220,000 to go cause another Bronco gave $20, but to train his high caliber athletes for the big games leading to an NC in front of 44,000 rabid Bronco fans that helped him reach his, and supposedly Boiseans, goals....

VNDL....can you get JL to talk?

vndl said those things?

Well I'll be dam*ed. He must of meant that tfunk fellow or maybe the dude who worked as our server. He surely didn't mean me. I look like that little hobbit kid from Lord of the Rings...Frodo? Naw, his little fat friend. 5 4 270. Better than that little Smeagle tho.


That's some funny chit.........


Sorry if wrong description....just going off bits n pieces from postings after your guy's first Board Meeting....

Whenever you feel ready, you may share some of the Good News that the BAA had to say?

Tomorrow night, the Bowl settings will be much clearer....

What if Patti joins the Marines?

Is this one of those events where players announce their college or service choice at halftime?


Everybody wants to hue the knurled