Boise State Football

Boise State will make presentation to Big 12 regarding membership

BSU officially in B12 expansion talks

The university confirmed Friday it will make a pitch to the Big 12 as a candidate for potential addition.

The Idaho Statesman obtained the documents Boise State will use in its presentation, along with a letter from President Bob Kustra to conference Commissioner Bob Bowlsby.

Click to see the presentation brochure and the letter.

In the letter, Kustra wrote: “There is no doubt that our national brand and reputation has been significantly impacted by the success of our football program, which has placed a spotlight on the University thanks to three Fiesta Bowl wins in the past ten years and more than 60 nationally televised games in the past five years. We are proud of the progress of our University, whether on the athletic field, in the classroom or the research lab. As you will see, success is abundant across the campus.”

ESPN’s Brett McMurphy reported Friday that 18 schools will make a pitch via video conference to Bowlsby. Also on the list are of note are Air Force, Arkansas State, BYU, Cincinnati, Colorado State, Connecticut, East Carolina, Houston, Memphis, Northern Illinois, New Mexico, San Diego State, SMU, Temple, Tulane, Central Florida and South Florida.

A Boise State statement read: “We have spoken further with the conference, but they have asked that we not comment publicly on the process.”

McMurphy also reported the league is increasingly likely to add two schools to become a 12-team league, instead of the four-team addition that has been mentioned as a possibility.

In Boise State’s brochure, it highlights the growth of the school, particularly since the first Fiesta Bowl win, noting a 131 percent increase in donors, an 18 percent growth in enrollment and a 59 percent growth in foundation assets. Also featured is photos and quotes from President Obama’s visit in January 2015. Athletically, it points out the APR prowess of some teams and of course highlights the football team’s success.

It also notes there are designs to expand Albertsons Stadium to a 48,000-seat capacity. That would put it slightly above the current smallest Big 12 stadium, at TCU. An example of what the expansion would look like is included, but is only a slightly tweaked version of one the school produced in 2010. The projections then had a 53,000-seat capacity stadium, but has since been reconfigured. There are no current plans in place to expand the stadium, but if the added boost of say, joining a Power Five conference came about, then it could happen sooner than later.

Boise State did not confirm when the presentations would take place, but Chuck Carlton of the Dallas Morning News said the conference is expected to make a decision on expansion between mid-September and early October.

CAPITAL GRAD GETS SCHOLARSHIP

Following Friday night’s practice, attended by local youth players, coach Bryan Harsin read a few letters. One said a young player’s favorite player was a local offensive lineman, Capital High graduate Kellen Buhr.

The letter said the walk-on redshirt senior deserved a scholarship.

Harsin then said Buhr was getting one.

“They said I didn’t smile at first. I was just kind of sitting there in shock, then it hit me,” Buhr said. “It was crazy, it was a whirlwind, it was awesome.”

The 6-foot-1, 296-pound Buhr has played in 26 games, mostly on special teams. He is the 13th walk-on to be put on scholarship in the last six years, and the ninth from Idaho. Buhr said he grew up wanting to play for BSU, and even though he’s no longer a walk-on, “I don’t want to lose that chip (on my shoulder).”

NEW STADIUM BANNERS, NEW LOOK

BSU unveiled the four banners that will hang on the east side of Albertsons Stadium on Friday.

It’s a different look from recent years, which featured posed photos of current players, along with phrases like “Toughness” and “Dedication.”

The new ones include photos of the team running onto the field, the others highlighting seniors Ben Weaver, Thomas Sperbeck and Tanner Vallejo, all pointing out the team’s on-field success.

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