Boise State Football

Injury bug hits Boise State football’s defense again as senior tears ACL in practice

Boise State senior STUD end Sam Whitney tore an ACL in practice Monday, football coach Bryan Harsin said.

Whitney has played in 23 games for the Broncos, with 38 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble in his career. He often was regarded as the best run-stopper at his position.

Whitney played in 11 games last season and started five games in 2017 before his season ended because of a torn patellar tendon in a knee. He likely would be granted a sixth year of eligibility, should that be pursued down the road.

“We’re obviously upset for him, a great player, a senior, we’ll figure out what we do moving forward with his situation, and he’s one of our team leaders, too,” Harsin said.

The Broncos’ STUD spot is very thin this spring with Whitney out, plus true freshman Casey Kline and redshirt freshman Demitri Washington out with injuries, too. The only two currently healthy are junior Curtis Weaver and redshirt freshman Dylan Herberg. Two freshmen are set to join this summer in Dylan Hall and Isaiah Bagnah.

Boise State had a rash of injuries on defense last year, including season-ending ones to linebacker Riley Whimpey, safety DeAndre Pierce and defensive tackle David Moa. Only cornerback Avery Williams started every game.

Harsin said most of the major injuries since last fall have come on the Blue, minus quarterback Chase Cord’s torn ACL in October. The turf is set to be replaced next month after having last been replaced in 2010.

“I’m excited about the new turf. ... It’s important, it’s taking care of your players, getting the best surface possible,” Harsin said, noting that the new surface at Air Force, installed last year, was “fantastic.”

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Dave Southorn is a 2004 graduate from the University of Colorado. He has covered Boise State athletics since 2005, and worked at the Idaho Statesman since 2013. He’s won multiple Idaho Press Club awards and once won a contest designing a play for the Seattle Seahawks.If you like seeing stories like this, please consider supporting our work with a digital subscription to the Idaho Statesman.