Hank Bachmeier has taken Boise State by storm this season. But the freshman quarterback missed his second game due to injury Saturday.
Boise State announced sophomore Chase Cord as its starter before kickoff Saturday, and the backup helped lead the Broncos to a 20-17 overtime victory over Wyoming at Albertsons Stadium.
Boise State coach Bryan Harsin did not elaborate on what injury sidelined Bachmeier in the postgame press conference. When asked what happened to Bachmeier and if he could have played, Harsin replied flatly, “No.”
Harsin later added he expects Bachmeier to be ready for next week’s home game vs. New Mexico (2-7, 0-5 Mountain West).
Injuries have mounted all season for the true freshman from Murrieta, California. Bachmeier appeared to hurt his throwing shoulder during the Nov. 2 win at San Jose State. He briefly went to the medical tent and into the locker room, but he returned to lead the Broncos (8-1, 5-0 Mountain West) to a fourth-quarter comeback.
Hawaii also knocked him out in the second quarter of the Oct. 12 game in Boise, and the hip pointer forced him to miss the following week’s contest against BYU, the only loss of the season for the No. 21 Broncos.
Fans and teammates have praised Bachmeier’s toughness throughout his inaugural season. The first true freshman to start a season opener in Boise State’s FBS era took a beating against Florida State, and opponents have kept racking up hits all season.
While he’s shown improvement in protecting himself, he also continues to put his body on the line if it means picking up a first down or needed yardage.
Harsin noted earlier this week the Broncos have encouraged him to preserve his health. But he also doesn’t want to dampen Bachmeier’s competitive fire.
“You don’t coach every, single thing,” Harsin said earlier this week. “You look for competitors. You look for things you don’t have to coach, and Hank has that.
“When you’re a competitor like that, none of those coaching points matter. You’re going to do what it takes to be successful.”
Harsin said Cord prepared all week as the starter, and he opened the game on fire. He completed 6-of-6 passes for 66 yards to six different receivers on the Broncos’ opening drive. He capped the 12-play, 92-yard drive with a 5-yard TD pass to Akilian Butler.
But Boise State struggled against Wyoming’s stout defense the rest of the night. Of its final 10 possessions in regulation, only two lasted longer than four plays as one of the country’s top run-stopping defenses made the Broncos one-dimensional.
Cord finished 19-of-30 for 190 yards with a touchdown, an interception and his first career victory.
“That guy’s a tough dude,” Harsin said. “That guy has got my absolute respect, and I love that about him. I love his mentality.
“… He’s out there trying to operate the things we’re asking him to do, and I appreciate that about him. I thought he played well enough to get the job done.”