GERKE, GAVINS START
Boise State junior Spencer Gerke replaced senior Joe Kellogg at left guard for the second straight game. Kellogg missed the BYU game with an injury.
Senior Jerrell Gavins made his second start of the year at cornerback and first in a two-corner alignment. Sophomore Bryan Douglas had started the first three games.
Kellogg came into the game in the second half after starting right guard Michael Ames and backup guard/tackle Jake Broyles were injured on back-to-back plays. Kellogg finished the game.
Tight end Gabe Linehan was in street clothes in the second half and backup tailback Drew Wright didnt make the trip because of an injury sustained in the BYU game.
Petersen didnt provide any details on the injuries but said he hopes all of the players will be back soon.
Boise State is now 0-for-7 on fourth down this season after the Broncos kept the offense on the field for fourth-and-1 at the New Mexico 4-yard line in the second half. Quarterback Joe Southwick rolled right and flipped a pass over the head of fullback Dan Paul.
Weve got to hit that, Petersen said. Weve either got to run for it or hit it. It was open.
TD DROUGHT ENDS
Boise State didnt get into the end zone in the first quarter, the sixth straight quarter without an offensive touchdown.
The Broncos finally cracked the goal line 32 seconds into the second quarter. Chris Potter caught a short pass on a crossing route and cut up the sideline for a 10-yard touchdown.
This year, the Broncos have scored an offensive touchdown in just five of 16 quarters.
MILLER SCORES, THROWS
Boise State sophomore wide receiver Matt Miller caught a 9-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter and operated the swinging-gate two-point conversion that followed. Miller took the snap, rolled to his right to draw the defense and flipped a pass to wide-open tight end Connor Peters in the back of the end zone for two points. The pass nearly was overthrown.
Weve had it in the books a couple weeks now, Miller said. Excited we got to run it in a game situation. Connor Peters sitting in the back of the end zone, he made a good catch on a bad throw.
BIG NIGHT FOR AJAYI
Redshirt freshman tailback Jay Ajayi became the first Boise State freshman to rush for 100 yards in a game since Matt Kaiserman in 2009 at Hawaii and he did it in stunning speed.
Ajayi carried six times for 118 yards at the end of the first half, including a 71-yard dash down the right sideline that set up his own 1-yard scoring run.
He didnt get a carry in the second half.
Senior starting tailback D.J. Harper rushed 19 times for 98 yards.
That was great, Petersen said of Ajayi. I wish the second half would have gone a little bit different for us to hang on to the ball and pound the run game a little bit and get him back in there. Weve said all along, D.J. cant take every rep, but we didnt have the ball that much (in the second half), so hes got to go.
OFFENSE GETS FUNKY
On the opening drive, Boise State used formations that put Harper and wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes in the backfield, Harper and tailback Jack Fields in the backfield, and Harper, Fields and Ajayi in the backfield.
On those plays, the Broncos threw a 9-yard pass to Williams-Rhodes, gained 2 yards on third-and-1 on a handoff to Harper at fullback and lost 5 yards when Harper was tackled as the wildcat quarterback.
J.C. Percy recorded a season-high 13 tackles (his career high is 14). It was his second-straight game with 10-plus tackles. Boise States single-game captains were wide receiver Mitch Burroughs, fullback Dan Paul, nickel Dextrell Simmons and Gavins. Boise State won the coin toss and deferred.
Chadd Cripe: 377-6398, Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat