BOISE — The Boise State football teams foray into up-tempo offense has succeeded wildly in at least one area.
The Broncos have run the most offensive plays in the Football Bowl Subdivision 341, or 85.3 per game going into Saturdays home game against Southern Miss (8:15 p.m., ESPNU).
They averaged 67.1 plays per game last year.
The Broncos ran 100 plays in Friday nights 41-40 loss at Fresno State, the second-most in an FBS game this season. Louisiana-Monroe ran 104.
Fresno States defense appeared to wear down late in the game, when the Broncos scored three straight touchdowns.
The offense, which is using a leaner rotation to maintain its pace, didnt seem bothered by the workload.
I think our guys are fine, coach Chris Petersen said. I dont think anyone is complaining.
The Broncos have averaged 522 yards and 48.3 points per game in their past three contests.
But theyre still working out some kinks in the new system. Petersen said junior wide receiver Matt Miller was on the field too much at Fresno State and hed like to get tailbacks Jack Fields and Derrick Thomas involved.
Its more difficult to substitute in the no-huddle.
There are certainly tradeoffs, Petersen said. Were making progress. Were starting to score some points. We have some balance. But there are still some tradeoffs that are different than how we used to do things some of them are better and some of them arent.
Southwick is 'fine'
Senior quarterback Joe Southwick injured his throwing arm in the first half Friday. He finished the game but said afterward he was hurting.
Petersen said Monday that Southwick is fine, and also said he would no longer comment on short-term injuries.
Southwick was 31-of-45 for 313 yards with an interception. He also rushed for 54 yards and a touchdown.
Joe played tough, Petersen said. Hes playing well. But nobodys playing perfect by a long stretch. There are a handful of plays that he needs to make if we want to get over that hump. Thats the position on offense that all fingers are going to point at. He made some really spectacular plays, were really proud of him, but there also were some plays he has to make at this point in his career. Thats not to single that whole thing out. We could start right here with me.
Petersen on his teams mindset: Theyre fine. They dont like losing. Show me a good loser and Ill show you a loser thats the bottom line. But weve got a short time to shake it off.
Offensive lineman Spencer Gerke on the loss: The closer the game, the more of a heartbreaker it is. It was just a bummer to not finish.
Upon further review
Petersen said after the game that the swinging-gate conversion that failed against Fresno State was wide open. He changed his opinion after watching the video.
Miller, the holder, tried to run into the end zone for the two points but was stopped. There were three defenders, two blockers and Miller in the area.
It wasnt wide open, Petersen said. They executed better than us. I went back and looked at it. I thought we had it. Matt thought we had it.
Chadd Cripe: 377-6398,Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat