Coach Chris Petersen on Monday (my recorder cut off at 18 minutes, so not all of it is here)
By Chadd Cripe
© 2013 Idaho Statesman
Boise State football coach Chris Petersen said Monday that he wasn’t completely surprised by Saturday’s 38-6 loss at Washington, the program’s worst since 2005.
It was the Broncos’ fifth straight season opener against a Bowl Championship Series-conference team.
“You open up every year like we open up, you’re going to get your nose-bloodied,” Petersen said. “It’s just a matter of time. I know that. Nobody else seems to, but I know that. … But the kids, we’re proud of them. They fought hard. We practiced this morning — good focus. They went back to work.
“… A loss is a loss. There’s no moral victories. You lose by two points or lose by whatever, it’s all the same to me. It’s not like, ‘Oh, we were close.’ I don’t feel one bit different than I did last year at Michigan State. We weren’t good enough and that’s a bad feeling.
“… Did I think the game was going to be closer and we were going to be right there battling? Absolutely. Am I shocked it went like it did? Well, I knew it could if we didn’t make some plays on offense to score some points because we’ve got a lot of guys on the other side of the ball who hadn’t been in that arena before.”
Other highlights from Petersen:
— On what he saw on video: “The kids played hard. That was good to see. Sometimes when you’re out there, you can’t figure out, are we playing hard enough? Are we backing down? They were good on the sideline when things weren’t going well. You put the tape on, they were playing hard. That was really good to see.”
— On offense: “I thought our offensive line … they played solid. I thought they came off the ball pretty well and played physical. I thought our running backs ran hard. I thought the receivers were average, which affected our whole pass game. Joe (Southwick) has played better. … It’s similar to opening against Michigan State, where they’re not going to give you much. When you’ve got a chance, you’ve got to strike. … Had we been able to score early on, it could have changed the whole momentum of the game.”
— On defense: “I thought the guys played hard. A little bit handcuffed because it was a lot of new stuff our guys hadn’t seen. When you have new guys that you haven’t really had a chance to show them things, they have to adjust on the fly … that can be tough.”
— On wide receivers: “I’ve been saying all along that group needs to step up. Everybody wants to anoint them … because they’re all seniors. It’s not that they played bad at that position, but this is a veteran group that needs to take the next step against some pretty good secondary guys and make plays. That just didn’t happen.”
— Southwick was making the right decisions on the short passes, Petersen said. “Every time the ball went out there, we got good yards,” he said.
— On defending the spread the rest of the season: “Washington has got as good of skill as probably a lot of people out there. We’ve seen it at a very high level. Now we kind of know what the standard is and we’ve got to go from there.”
— He hopes to get wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes more involved on offense. Williams-Rhodes had an injury in fall camp that forced him to wear a cast during practice and Petersen said that missed time was a factor in his limited role against the Huskies.
— The three backups suspended for the opener will be back this week — tight end Connor Peters, linebacker Andrew Pint and tailback Derrick Thomas.
— On the NCAA’s ruling on Johnny Manziel vs. its past rulings on Boise State’s Geraldo Boldewijn and Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe: “I’ll just say this. I’m so bothered by the NCAA and I have been for a long, long time — and that’s not anything on Johnny Manziel. I just look at our situation and still just shake my head.”
Senior linebacker Jonathan Brown, the co-starter on the strong side, will miss about six weeks with a knee injury, Petersen said.
Corey Bell becomes the solo starter on the strong side with redshirt freshman Chris Santini as the backup. True freshman Aaron Baltazar is listed as the solo No. 2 tailback this week — it was clear in the game that he was in that role.
Highlights from linebacker Blake Renaud:
— On this week: “We just knew we had to come out today and regroup and forget about what happened and get ready for the next game. Watching the film, you get a little pissed off. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth. I think our guys are ready. The lucky thing is we’ve got more games to play this year and we’re looking forward to it.”
— He said mental errors, misalignments and missed tackles played a key role. The Broncos are particularly inexperienced on defense and the Huskies used plays and formations that were different than last year. “We’ve just got to do what our coaches tell us to do. People get flustered out there and forget. Just go with what our coaches tell us — it’s day one stuff. It would have helped us if we would have remembered that, or thought about that. … (The younger players) just aren’t used to that environment. They’ve got to know their stuff. Sometimes you’re not going to be able to hear a front or an alignment called out and they’re going to have to just figure out on their own where to line up.”
— On the loss: “It’s definitely a wakeup call. You realize what it takes to be a winning Division I team in college football and we’ve got to be better.”
— On what the veterans need to say to the younger guys this week: “Grow up. It’s college football now — anyone can be beat. Teams can have great seasons with two losses, one loss. Just get ready for next week.”
Highlights from wide receiver Geraldo Boldewijn:
— On the short passing game: “That was the game plan. We’ve been working on that all summer.”
— “It’s a game full of momentum. As soon as we get momentum on our side, things will go better.”
— On the offensive changes: “I have a lot of trust in the coaches. I think it’s going to work. It was the first game. We have a lot to work on.”
— On what went wrong: “In my eyes, it was all fixable. It’s nothing major. It’s just the little stuff that counts.”
“It looks pretty cool, actually,” Boldewijn said. “It’s big. Maybe some day you get a chance to look at yourself running into the end zone.”
The Carolina Panthers have signed former Boise State safety Quintin Mikell. That gives the program 17 players in the NFL.
LB Blake Renaud
WR Geraldo Boldewijn
Video recap of Boise State-Washington game