Boise State notebook: Southwick on the run

ccripe@idahostatesman.comSeptember 14, 2013 

— Boise State’s evolving offense added the quarterback run in a heavy dose Friday. Senior Joe Southwick rushed six times for a career-high 53 yards and his first TD.

Southwick ran the option for 6 yards on third-and-3 on the first drive of the game and pitched to tailback Aaron Baltazar on the option for 4 yards on third-and-1 on the third drive. He added a 14-yard run on a quarterback draw and a 1-yard TD run when he faked a handoff and escaped around right end to cap the third drive.

Southwick gained 42 yards rushing in the first two games, mostly on scrambles.

“He’s really, really progressed for us in terms of being a good runner in scrambling situations,” offensive line coach/run game coordinator Chris Strausser said this week, “and so now for us to find the right times to get him to carry the ball in the game is probably that next step.”

Said Southwick: “I think it’s been a part of it since we started this whole thing that that needs to be part of (the offense). Otherwise, you can just focus on the running back.”

Hitting the century mark

Sophomore tailback Jay Ajayi and junior wide receiver Matt Miller posted the second 100-yard games of their careers. Ajayi carried 17 times for 125 yards and four touchdowns. Miller made a career-high 10 catches for 112 yards. Ajayi’s previous 100-yard game came last year at New Mexico (six carries, 118 yards). Miller’s was last year at Nevada (seven catches, 127 yards).

Huff out with injury

Sophomore tight end Holden Huff missed the Air Force game with a foot injury. He had one catch for 6 yards in the first two games. Huff might miss one more game, coach Chris Petersen said.

Conference opener success

Boise State has won 14 straight conference openers. That’s the second-longest active streak in the country behind Alabama’s 21. Boise State’s last loss in an opener came at North Texas (Big West) in 1999.

Bad penalties

Boise State helped two Air Force drives with roughing-the-passer penalties.

The first, on defensive end Tyler Horn, sparked a touchdown drive. The second, on linebacker Corey Bell, gave the Falcons a fourth-down conversion that led to a field goal.

“The two personal fouls were very poor football, very poor judgment,” Petersen said. “We’ve got smarter guys than that. … They’ll pay for it (at practice) — that’s all I can say.”

The Broncos finished with five penalties for 55 yards, including two chop-block fouls on offense.

QUICK HITS

Air Force won the coin toss and took the ball. … Boise State’s game captains were wide receiver Matt Miller, cornerback Bryan Douglas, defensive end Beau Martin and kicker Dan Goodale. … Boise State wore its all-blue uniforms for the blue-out. … Air Force quarterbacks coach Blane Morgan went home Friday to be with his wife, who went into labor. … The Falcons brought their band. … Boise State’s honorary captains for the Air Force game were offensive tackle Greg Phillips (1969-72) and defensive back Jim Voulelis (1981-84). … Former Boise State cornerback Deon’tae Florence has transferred to Weber State. … Air Force has scored a rushing touchdown in 50 straight games, the longest streak in the last 10 years in the Football Bowl Subdivision. … Air Force punted with less than 7 minutes left in the third quarter — the first punt of the game.

Chadd Cripe: 377-6398, Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat

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