Boise State Football

Viral photo included former Boise State star. ‘They could’ve cropped me out of it.’

BSU’s Alexander Mattison puts on the speed at Pro Day

Running back Alexander Mattison improves his 40-yard dash time.
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Running back Alexander Mattison improves his 40-yard dash time.

Even the most casual football fan probably saw a photo of Alexander Mattison in the last few months. He’s the guy on the right in that now-viral shot of him and some fellow NFL prospects training.

A photo of Ole Miss wide receiver DK Metcalf made the rounds online two months ago when athletes training at EXOS in Arizona were in the weight room. Metcalf, at 6-foot-3 and 228 pounds, looks absolutely massive and shredded — he said at the NFL combine on March 1 he has 1.9 percent body fat.

There were memes aplenty, and jokes about how he could name his team and position, and everyone would comply. But what about that other guy in the pic? Oh yeah, that’s Mattison, the former Boise State running back.

“I like to say they got me at the beginning of the program, where my body fat was up there,” Mattison said. “I’ve kind of toned it down. I think I would look a little different next to him now.”

Anyone standing next to Metcalf would look dwarfed, even a guy like Mattison (5-foot-11, 220 pounds).

But Mattison just had to chuckle at the fact he happened to be next to Metcalf in that photo. Most probably aren’t aware he rushed for 1,415 yards last season and scored 17 touchdowns. And he looked in fine shape running the 40-yard dash in the 4.5-second range at Boise State’s pro day last Tuesday.

“DK is a great guy, a hard worker, he was my partner in lifts,” Mattison said. “... That picture did get out there, and I was like, ‘Man, they could’ve cropped me out of it maybe.’ ”

Watch some of Boise State RB Alexander Mattison's top plays from the 2018 season.

Metcalf, who had 26 catches for 569 yards and five touchdowns in seven games last season, is a likely first-round pick. The draft will be held April 25-27. Mattison is a likely third-day pick. ESPN’s Todd McShay said in a Tuesday teleconference he thinks Mattison is an underrated prospect in the final rounds.

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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.