By Chadd Cripe
© 2012 Idaho Statesman
Boise State senior wide receiver Mitch Burroughs will play Saturday at Nevada, coach Chris Petersen said Monday.
Burroughs missed five games with an injured wrist before making a token, one-play appearance on senior day. He lined up at wide receiver and didn’t touch a defender on a run play.
Burroughs is a two-year starter. He has 12 catches for 124 yards this season.
Petersen also expects senior nickel Dextrell Simmons to play a regular role Saturday. He returned from injury two weeks ago against Colorado State but didn’t make a tackle.
Safety Lee Hightower and tight end Hayden Plinke remain suspended. Nothing has changed with their status, Petersen said.
Here is the audio of Petersen’s press conference.
He was asked toward the end about his name coming up in connection with most major jobs in the country.
“Twenty-two minutes, that’s better than I thought,” he said. “… It’s just rumors. I don’t even think half the time it’s reporters. Everyone’s a reporter these days. … The only trouble is in recruiting. Ninety-nine point nine percent is always completely false. The problem is .1. But there hasn’t even been a .1.”
The Broncos took Thursday though Saturday off for Thanksgiving. Quarterback Joe Southwick and Petersen said they looked sharp in their return to practice Sunday.
Cornerbacks Jamar Taylor and Jerrell Gavins stayed in Boise and worked through the break, but they were the exception.
“Everybody for the most part went and took time off, which was good,” Petersen said. “When we first looked at the schedule we were thinking it’s not ideal having a bye right before the last game. The way it worked out was fine.”
Said Southwick: “I completely got away from it. … Practice was really clean yesterday. Whatever guys were doing, I think it was good. … I feel refreshed. The arm feels a little refreshed. It was nice to get away and see the family. You’re kind of excited to go back to practice and get better.”
Said Taylor: “I don’t like having byes.”
Petersen on playing for a share of the Mountain West title: “That’s really important to us. It’s always that fine balance. You want the kids to feel it, to feel that sense of urgency, but not so much to not put your best foot forward.”
Taylor, on the ugly scene at the end of the 2010 game in Reno: “I remember a fan came up to me and kicked my helmet. They did some outrageous stuff. But that’s what you expect from their fans. They’re kind of a crazy group of people.”
Petersen, while talking about the Broncos’ defense, said he didn’t want to get into that unit being “great” because every time that happens the defense struggles the next time out.
“This is going to be a great test,” he said of Nevada. “This is not your conventional offense that’s pro style and we know how to play against some of those things. … This will be our best test, our biggest test of the year on defense, without question.”
The Wolf Pack have scored at least 30 points in every game this season. The Broncos have not allowed 30 points in a game this season.
Petersen said playing Washington in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas is not ideal because of the 2013 season opener, but that it might be the best situation when all the bowl pieces fall into place.