Bronco Beat

Boise State WRs Butler, Williams-Rhodes injured; WR Sperbeck honored

A few notes from Boise State coach Bryan Harsin’s weekly press conference. Videos will be posted later.

Here is a separate post on QB Brett Rypien’s first media availability.

— Senior wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes has an ankle injury and will try to practice this week, Harsin said. Williams-Rhodes left in the first half Saturday against New Mexico.

— True freshman wide receiver Akilian Butler broke his collarbone fielding a punt in the final 2 minutes Saturday. He’s out indefinitely.

— Harsin didn’t sound hopeful that senior cornerback Donte Deayon (knee) will be able to play Friday on Senior Day. Safety Dylan Sumner-Gardner and quarterback Ryan Finley still are out with their broken ankles, Harsin said. Finley still has a ways to go in his rehab, Harsin said.

— On playing Air Force this Friday after losing to New Mexico on Saturday: “Probably the best thing for us is having a short week. After reviewing the game, we just hurt ourselves. It really came down to a game of inches with a few catches here or there. Some of the balls deflected off receivers. Those turnovers were third-down conversions, potentially ... and New Mexico did a good job of being there. We’ve got to do a better job in the red zone when we have opportunities.”

— On the offense: “We’ve got to continue to do what we’ve been doing but we’ve just got to do it better. It’s really not any more complicated than that. The key is we need to have more guys contributing and competing at a high level, not just the same guys making plays. We’ve got to have more.”

— On the team: “We’ve got to do a better job, everybody on our team, of playing at a higher level. Period. We have to do that through the entire game and that’s what it takes to be a successful football team. We’ve done it at times. We haven’t done it consistently enough.”

— He said players trying to catch the ball with their bodies instead of their hands was part of the problem with the drops. However, the one by wide receiver A.J. Richardson that turned into an interception was designed as a “body shot” — a throw to his chest. He just didn’t make the play. Sean Modster let the ball get to his body instead of using his hands.

— On QB Brett Rypien’s short passes during the 2-minute drill: “With the time and no timeouts, you’re better off throwing the ball away in some of those situations. When you’re playing the game you’re playing to win and you’re also looking at every option. And Jeremy McNichols isn’t a bad option to get the ball in his hands. Just it probably wasn’t the best decision to make that decision at t hat time. You learn from it.”

— Boise State junior wide receiver Thomas Sperbeck was named the Mountain West offensive player of the week Monday. Sperbeck set Boise State records with 20 catches for 281 yards Saturday against New Mexico. Those were the highest totals in the nation this season. The 20 catches also set a Mountain West record.

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