Waiting in Octavius Evans’ locker Saturday was a special reward, something he did not expect to see.
Before the Broncos’ Fan Fest, the sophomore wide receiver saw his jersey, but with a new number. No longer was he No. 82 — he’s now No. 1.
Coach Bryan Harsin said it’s a number that carries some weight, as recent stars like Cedrick Wilson, Kyle Wilson, Titus Young and Shane Williams-Rhodes have worn.
“I know it’s something he wanted, but not many guys are going to ask for it,” Harsin said. “The one thing about Octavius ... those guys that have worn it aren’t right at your office, banging down the door.”
Evans (6-foot-1, 199 pounds) has been praised all offseason for his work ethic, and after 15 catches for 131 yards and two touchdowns as a true freshman, he’s primed for a major role in 2018.
“Octavius is one of our hardest workers, a guy that’s done everything we’ve asked of him to do,” Harsin said. “It’s something he’s earned since he’s been here.”
Harsin said he did not see Evans until the team was stretching before practice and made sure to ask him what he thought. Evans thanked him, and his coach said one of his positive qualities is that “he’s so appreciative.”
Evans did not take part in 11-on-11 drills Saturday, but he’s listed as a starter for Saturday’s opener at Troy. Just as Wilson, his predecessor did, Evans hopes to make No. 1 the go-to target for Boise State passers.
“He’ll represent it the right way, and he’ll own it, too,” Harsin said. “He has a lot of respect for what it means.”
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DEPTH CHART RELEASED
The Boise State football team released its depth chart Monday in preparation of Saturday’s season opener.
It has changed little since the initial two-deep was released in late July, there are some noteable names in important roles. Sophomore CT Thomas is listed as a starter at one of the three wide receiver spots — seniors A.J. Richardson and Sean Modster are co-starters at another — and sophomore linebacker Riley Whimpey is No. 1 at the weakside spot vacated by Leighton Vander Esch.
TROY NAMES A STARTER AT QB
Boise State’s first opponent lost one of its best passers in school history as Brandon Silvers graduated, leaving 87 total touchdowns and 10,684 yards passing behind.
On Monday, coach Neal Brown announced junior Kaleb Barker will start at quarterback for the Trojans. Barker (6-1, 199) has thrown 17 career passes, one a touchdown last season as Silvers’ backup. He also has rushed 30 times for 282 yards and three touchdowns.
HOGGARTH EARNS SCHOLARSHIP
Senior kicker Haden Hoggarth, who joined the team on a tryout in January 2017, was placed on scholarship Saturday. He earned the starting job last season as a junior, and hit 18-of-23 field goals and all 57 extra points.
On Saturday, he lined up for a 60-yard field goal during Fan Fest at Albertsons Stadium, and it was announced on the public address system that he had been put on scholarship.
“Getting that scholarship is just putting in place that all the work I put in, it was worth it,” Hoggarth said. “... all the guys know how bad I wanted to be put on one.”
Boise State placed two specialists on scholarship during fall camp — Hoggarth and senior punter Quinn Skillin.
THREE SENIORS NAMED CAPTAINS
Boise State announced its three full-time captains Sunday, and all are seniors — quarterback Brett Rypien, STUD end Jabril Frazier and cornerback Tyler Horton. It is the third year in a row Rypien will be a captain.
The Broncos had a trio of captains last season (Rypien, Cedrick Wilson, Leighton Vander Esch) and would rotate the fourth game captain each week, which is the plan for the 2018 season, too.
No. 22 BOISE STATE AT TROY
When: 4 p.m. Saturday
Where: Veterans Memorial Stadium (30,000, ProGrass), Troy, Ala.
TV: ESPNews (Dave Lamont, Ray Bentley); CableOne ch. 135, DirecTV ch. 207, Dish Network ch. 142
Radio: KBOI 670 AM/KTIK 93.1 FM (Bob Behler, Pete Cavender)
2017 Records: BSU 11-3 (beat Oregon in Las Vegas Bowl); Troy 11-2 (beat North Texas in New Orleans Bowl)
Series: Boise State 1-0 (Broncos beat Trojans 24-13 on Sept. 2, 2017 in Boise)
Vegas line: Boise State by 10 1/2
Weather forecast: Mid-80s, scattered rain