Of the 25 receptions hauled in by Boise State players in the Broncos’ 41-14 win over Nevada on Saturday night, two in particular caught more than just the Nevada defense off-guard.
The 30,858 fans inside Albertsons Stadium marveled at a bit of the Broncos’ evolving creativity on offense as quarterbacks Brett Rypien and Montell Cozart each caught passes against the Wolf Pack.
After a reverse to Cedrick Wilson in the first quarter, Rypien released down the right sideline and fought off Nevada safety Asauni Rufus for the football.
“That was a heck of a catch. We all went crazy on the sideline. He basically just Mossed him,” Boise State free safety DeAndre Pierce said, referring to the ESPN segment “You Got Mossed,” in which former NFL wide receiver Randy Moss highlights receivers’ leaping catches. “I’m happy for him. He started off struggling this season, but he’s really been picking it up and firing on all cylinders.”
Rypien’s 15-yard reception on second-and-10 from the Nevada 26 helped set up Haden Hoggarth’s 20-yard field goal.
“Some people were telling me it was a Moss, but to me it just kind of felt like I got it on the side and went down,” Rypien said. “I’m going to have to go back and see the replay. It’s probably one of the highlights of my career.”
Cozart’s 31-yard reception in the third quarter was the second-longest of the day. Cozart lateraled to Wilson, then slipped past his right tackle and right up the middle for a wide-open catch.
An old, new look for helmets
The Boise State football team brought back a look familiar to its old rival Nevada for Saturday’s game.
A new-look white helmet (with orange jerseys and white pants) was worn for the game. The script “Broncos” is the same as what the Broncos wore from 1997 to 2001, but they never had that appear on a white helmet. The helmet also featured chrome facemasks.
Boise State coach Bryan Harsin called white-orange-white the “creamsicle” look.
“We decided a few weeks ago that we were going to do something different,” Harsin said. “… It was something fun for our guys. I thought it looked good out there. Hopefully people liked it.”
Penalty on coach made up by big play
In the second quarter, junior STUD end Jabril Frazier stopped Nevada running back Kelton Moore for a 1-yard gain on third-and-8.
A very excited Boise State staff member leaped onto the field to celebrate, but bumped an official. That drew a 15-yard penalty. Twice last month, Boise State got sideline warnings called, but no penalties.
“We’ve had some warnings … it was unfortunate, it allowed them a first down,” Harsin said. “That’s on me, having to make sure we do a better job on the sideline.”
The culprit was graduate assistant Spencer Danielson, who coaches the STUDs. Harsin pondered aloud if the refs could work around the action, but said the issue does need to be fixed.
Three plays later, the drive ended when redshirt freshman STUD end Curtis Weaver intercepted Nevada quarterback Ty Gangi.
“We were saved, I guess,” Harsin said.
Nevada coach Jay Norvell said safety Asauni Rufus broke his leg in the third quarter. He was taken off the field on a cart after the injury. A key defender, he has 75 tackles and three forced fumbles on the year. … The announced attendance was 30,858, putting the average Albertsons Stadium attendance at 32,067, on pace for the worst since 2007. … Boise State has now gone 297 minutes and 56 seconds without turning the ball over. … Junior defensive tackle David Moa was out for the matchup against Nevada. He hurt an ankle late in the first half last Saturday at Utah State, but did not play after halftime. Moa led the team with 8.5 sacks last season and has two thus far through eight games. … Boise State defensive end Durrant Miles left the game after getting poked in the eye on the first play and was seen with a patch over the eye after the game. Wide receiver Cedrick Wilson left in the second half after crashing to the turf on a leaping catch.