Boise State Football

Boise State football hires new assistant as Harsin shakes up roles, including special teams

Boise State football coach Bryan Harsin directs the annual Spring Game on April 14 at Albertsons Stadium in Boise.
Boise State football coach Bryan Harsin directs the annual Spring Game on April 14 at Albertsons Stadium in Boise.

The Boise State football team has filled its vacancy on the coaching staff, and with it, the Broncos’ coaching responsibilities have been shifted.

Jeff Schmedding, formerly the defensive coordinator at Eastern Washington, has been hired by Boise State as its co-special teams coordinator and outside linebackers coach. Schmedding had been on the Eagles’ staff since 2004, serving as special teams coordinator from 2008 to 2014 before taking over as defensive coordinator/safeties coach.

Eastern Washington reached the FCS national championship game earlier this month, losing to North Dakota State. The Eagles allowed a Big Sky-best 16.8 points per game in conference play, were No. 2 in the nation in turnovers gained (34) and tied for the national lead with six defensive touchdowns.

Kent Riddle is no longer the special teams coordinator, as Schmedding will share responsibilities with running backs coach Lee Marks. Riddle had served in the role since 2014, but the Broncos had a brutal year in the kicking game in 2018, including a blocked extra point in the Mountain West championship that would have given them the lead. They ultimately lost in overtime. He will still coach tight ends.

Spencer Danielson, who was coaching STUD ends, will now be the defensive line coach. The STUD ends often were used as outside linebackers, and in announcing Schmedding’s hire, the players who played STUD last season were listed as outside linebackers. Defensive coordinator Andy Avalos will coach the inside linebackers, similar to what he has done previously.

Wide receivers coach Eric Kiesau is now the Broncos’ co-offensive coordinator with Zak Hill. Kiesau was hired in 2017 and has made a big impact, overseeing Cedrick Wilson’s excellent 2017 campaign, and then helping a group with a ton of question marks last season turn into a strength. Hill worked on the same staff as Schmedding at EWU from 2009 to 2015.

NEWS AND NOTES: The Broncos placed junior middle linebacker Benton Wickersham on scholarship for this semester. The Elko, Nev., native played in 2017 as a true freshman walk-on and backed up Tyson Maeva in 2018. ... Senior safety Damion Wright has left the team. He graduated in December and can pursue one year of eligibility at another school. A Los Angeles native, he played in only two career games, both last season. ... The spring game is currently slated for April 6. ... Cody Von Appen appears to be a new defensive graduate assistant, as the former Northern Arizona secondary coach has updated his Twitter bio to reflect the move.


Head coach: Bryan Harsin

Co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks: Zak Hill

Co-offensive coordinator/wide receivers: Eric Kiesau

Running backs/co-special teams coordinator: Lee Marks

Offensive line: Brad Bedell

Tight ends/associate head coach: Kent Riddle

Defensive coordinator/inside linebackers: Andy Avalos

Defensive line: Spencer Danielson

Outside linebackers/co-special teams coordinator: Jeff Schmedding

Cornerbacks: Jalil Brown

Safeties/nickels: Gabe Franklin