Boise State camp report: The lost art of two-a-days

Today is Boise State’s second and final double-duty day of camp.

ccripe@idahostatesman.comAugust 14, 2013 

SEFERIAN-JENKINS BREAKS FINGER, PLAYING STATUS UNKNOWN Washington tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins suffered a small fracture in his right pinkie Monday and will need surgery, putting his status for the Aug. 31 opener against Boise State in doubt. ”He’ll be out for some amount of time. He came out with a good attitude, doing all the conditioning work, all the fundamental stuff from a footwork standpoint but he won’t be catching balls for a while,’’ coach Steve Sarkisian said. Last season, Seferian-Jenkins caught 69 passes for 850 yards — both single-season records for Washington tight ends — and seven TDs. His status for BSU was already in question after his arrest and guilty plea on a DUI charge in the offseason. Sarkisian has not announced if Seferian-Jenkins would play against the Broncos.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

  • BSU spotlight on LB Travis Saxton

    The local walk-on brigade could produce another breakout performance this fall.

    Saxton, a redshirt junior from Eagle High, started on kickoff return and punt return last season and likely will enter this season as the backup middle linebacker.

    “He’s really improving,” linebackers coach Bob Gregory said. “The guy has gotten so much better in terms of his footwork and speed.”

    This has been a big offseason for Saxton because he is suddenly one of the team's most experienced linebackers, and he's getting quality reps with the top defensive units.

    “I’m learning a lot more, and I’m just feeling like I’m a lot more comfortable with the defense and I’m making more plays out there,” he said. “I feel like I have grown a lot with experience. I’ve learned the plays and learned the speed a lot better.”

    Saxton (6-foot-1, 214 pounds) chose Boise State after committing to Weber State, where he was going to walk on but was promised a scholarship later, he said. He grew up in Star and was convinced by his coaches at Eagle that he could play at this level.

    “It was just bigger football (than Weber State),” he said. “I knew I wanted to go out and play football at a higher level.”

    —Chadd Cripe

— Boise State will engage in an almost extinct activity in college football Wednesday: a two-a-day practice session.

The Broncos have just two two-a-days during this fall. They had one last year, the last year their preseason practice allotment was reduced by three under NCAA penalties.

Two-a-days, which remain popular in high school, have been phased almost out of college because of summer-long conditioning programs that keep players in top shape and NCAA rules that make it difficult to schedule them.

The NCAA requires an acclimatization period for fall camp — two days in helmets only, two days in helmets and shoulder pads and one day in full pads. That means teams can’t hold a two-a-day until the sixth day, which usually is the first two-a-day for Boise State.

After that, two-a-days can’t be held on consecutive days. And the Broncos usually won’t run a two-a-day the day before, day of or day after a scrimmage.

Coach Chris Petersen said he thinks two-a-days should be at coaches' discretion, but he doesn't see a need to load up on them.

“It's not good for the kids. It just beats them down,” he said. “This is still a hard, tough game. I still think you need to be able to suck it up when you don't really feel like it and go get some work done.”

Camp impressions

• The defense came out strong Tuesday afternoon after failing to collect a turnover in the scrimmage Monday. “That’s what we ask for — forget about what happened, it’s in the past now, and come out and try to beat them,” junior linebacker Blake Renaud said.

• On a timed drive, sophomore starting safety Darian Thompson intercepted a deep ball thrown by senior quarterback Joe Southwick. Junior college transfer cornerback Mercy Maston ended the second-teamers’ second timed drive with a pick, too. On the first-teamers’ second try, Southwick hit senior wide receiver Aaron Burks on a deep ball to set up a 26-yard field goal by junior Dan Goodale.

• Later in practice, true freshman stud end Kamalei Correa intercepted Southwick and scampered into the end zone. Petersen, who blows an airhorn when the defense forces a turnover, held the button for 5 seconds to celebrate.

• Petersen chose Goodale as his camper of the day at BroncoSports.com. The starter to begin the 2011 season is in position to win the job again in 2013. “He has worked his tail off since last season, throughout the spring and summer, and it is very noticeable right now,” Petersen said.

Meet the Friday night crew

ESPN named its Friday night TV crew Tuesday: Carter Blackburn, Danny Kanell and Allison Williams. Boise State has three games on ESPN's Friday night package this year.

Chadd Cripe: 377-6398, Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat

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