Monday Morning Report Card: Washington 38, Boise State 6

bmurphy@idahostatesman.comSeptember 2, 2013 

Brian Murphy hands out the grades for Boise State’s 38-6 loss at Washington.

OFFENSE

Boise State had 346 yards of total offense, but averaged an anemic 3.9 yards per play. The lack of explosive plays — the Broncos’ biggest gain was 18 yards — led to long drives but few points. The Broncos were just 8-of-19 on third down in the debut of their new-look, no-huddle spread offense. It was an inauspicious start to the offense, which Boise State revamped in the offseason. The blame game will again fall on quarterback Joe Southwick (25-for-40, 152 yards and one interception) and offensive coordinator Robert Prince, who took some of the blame after the game. A lack of creativity was an issue. Five drives ended at or inside the Washington 35, and the Broncos just scored six points. “We had too many missed opportunities and I’ve got to do a better job of getting our guys in better positions,” Prince said. “That’s how it is.” There were some bright spots: running backs Jay Ajayi (23 carries, 93 yards) and Aaron Baltazar (10 carries, 49 yards) and wide receiver Geraldo Boldewijn (8 catches, 62 yards) had promising games. Grade: F

DEFENSE

Washington piled up 592 yards of total offense and put up a bunch of impressive numbers, including 7.0 yards per play and 11-of-15 on third-down conversions. Washington’s up-tempo offense wore down the Broncos, whose pass rush was non-existent for much of the night and whose secondary eventually broke down. The Broncos weathered the storm in the first half, limiting Washington to 10 points. But in the second half, the mistakes multiplied. Washington scored touchdowns on its first four possessions of the second half. Answers need to come quickly for the unit as future opponents will no doubt take note of the Huskies’ successes. “We’ve just got to get better at the fundamentals of each position,” defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski said. Grade: D-

SPECIAL TEAMS

Kicker Dan Goodale made 2-of-3 field goal attempts. His first attempt was blocked. Boise State used two punters. Veteran Trevor Harman averaged 47.3 yards on his three kicks. Freshman Sean Wale had two punts and a 28.0-yard average. Outside of the blocked field goal, there were no glaring mistakes for the special teams units. But the units did not deliver any game-altering positive plays, either. Grade: C

COACHING

It was the Broncos’ worst performance in 93 games under Chris Petersen — and nothing else even comes close. Boise State has struggled on offense in some games in the Petersen era and struggled on defense on occasion, but never have both groups played so poorly in the same game. Some of the struggles have to be pinned on the coaching staff. The Broncos actually did a good job of holding it together for a while. They trailed just 10-3 at halftime and notched a field goal on their first drive of the second half. At 10-6, Boise State was very much in the game. The final 25 minutes of game action was a disaster. Much of the criticism will be directed at Prince, in his second season as the offensive coordinator. Grade: D

IN THE POLLS

The Associated Press Top 25 poll will be released Tuesday. Will the No. 19-ranked Broncos fall out of the rankings after a poor showing against Washington? Watch for the new poll results Tuesday at IdahoStatesman.com.

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