Bronco Beat

Rypien having struggles? Not really, coaches say

Bryan Harsin talks Utah State

Boise State coach Bryan Harsin discusses Saturday's matchup against the Aggies before practice on Thursday, Sept. 29.
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Boise State coach Bryan Harsin discusses Saturday's matchup against the Aggies before practice on Thursday, Sept. 29.

Boise State sophomore quarterback Brett Rypien, like the Broncos’ offense as a whole, has not played up to par in the second half this season. But is it a sign of larger issues? No.

That’s at least what the Boise State coaches said this week, pointing to more than just their quarterback having trouble getting into the groove after the half.

“I don’t think it’s him, I think it’s everybody,” Boise State coach Bryan Harsin said. “We’ve built these leads in the first two quarters as well, come out and attacked. ... I think Brett’s been pretty good.

“Peyton Manning didn’t play the position long enough to master it.”

Here’s a little statistical look into Rypien’s three games:

On the year, he is 60-of-104 passing for 861 yards with four touchdowns and three interceptions. Pass efficiency: 134.2.

In the first half, he is 42-of-65 (64.6 percent) for 640 yards with three touchdowns and an interception. Pass efficiency: 159.48.

In the second half, he is 18-of-39 (46.2 percent) for 221 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. Pass efficiency: 91.96.

Beside having big leads, thus throwing fewer times, Harsin said part of the issue has been the offense trying some new things in the second half, and also gave credit to the adjustments teams have made.

“Brett’s been doing a great job of being analytical of himself,” co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Zak Hill said. “... he’s detailed in how he analyzes things and how he evaluates himself. There’s definitely areas where he’s excited to improve this week. We all kind of got into that ‘hey, it’s not going the right way,’ got a little tight (Saturday) and things started to snowball a little bit in the third quarter.”

Hill said “one or two throws or completions early could have changed that whole third quarter.” He added that among the keys this week in practice have been working on throwing while on the run, a few of which were off target against Oregon State.

Said senior guard Travis Averill: “we have the utmost confidence in Brett ... we all as a collective group need to pick it up.”

Harsin said Thursday some mistakes at Oregon State were on Rypien, but not a majority, adding “he’s been great this week, his prep’s been great.”

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Boise State reported Thursday afternoon that 1,400 tickets remain for Saturday’s game at Albertsons Stadium against Utah State (8:15 p.m., ESPN2). Student tickets sold out Tuesday.

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A quick statistical look at Saturday’s game:

TEAM STATS

Total offense

Boise State: 505.3 ypg, No. 20

Utah State: 382.3 ypg, No. 90

Rushing offense

Boise State: 184.3 ypg, No. 57

Utah State: 179.3 ypg, No. 64

Passing offense

Boise State: 321.0 ypg, No. 20

Utah State: 203.0 ypg, No. 93

Scoring offense

Boise State: 38.0 ppg, No. 40

Utah State: 26.5 ppg, No. 84

Total defense

Boise State: 358.0 ypg, No. 42

Utah State: 337.5 ypg, No. 31

Rushing defense

Boise State: 72.3 ypg, T-No. 6

Utah State: 142.3 ypg, No. 53

Passing defense

Boise State: 285.7 ypg, No. 112

Utah State: 195.3 ypg, No. 36

Scoring defense

Boise State: 20.7 ppg, No. 34

Utah State: 24.5 ppg, No. 55

Notable

Boise State: 4.33 sacks per game, No. 1

Utah State: 2.75 sacks allowed per game, No. 99

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Michael Katz and I had a live chat Thursday morning. Check out the replay here.

Read my feature story on sophomore defensive tackle David Moa here.

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