Boise State QB Joe Southwick sent home, Nick Patti reinstated

By Chadd Cripe
ccripe@idahostatesman.com
© 2013 Idaho Statesman

UPDATE: Boise State senior quarterback Joe Southwick has been sent home from the Hawaii Bowl for a violation of team rules, ending his career with the Broncos, interim coach Bob Gregory announced late Friday afternoon in Honolulu.

Redshirt freshman quarterback Nick Patti has been reinstated and will return to practice Saturday. Patti will be allowed to play in the game.

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HONOLULU — Boise State senior quarterback Joe Southwick and redshirt freshman quarterback Nick Patti were suspended from Friday’s practice at the Hawaii Bowl for disciplinary reasons and “right now they are suspended for the game,” interim coach Bob Gregory said.

He added that they’re suspended “until further notice” but are still in Hawaii. He said he’s still gathering information.

If the quarterbacks can’t play, Boise State will have only one quarterback available for Tuesday’s game against Oregon State: junior Grant Hedrick. The Broncos also have true freshman walk-on Richard Hoppe, who is redshirting, and true freshman Ryan Finley, who is recovering from shoulder surgery.

Gregory gathered the players for a meeting out of earshot of the media at the beginning of Friday’s practice. That’s when he told the players the news about the quarterbacks.

Southwick was the Broncos’ starting quarterback for a season and a half before he broke his right ankle Oct. 19 against Nevada. He returned to start the regular-season finale Nov. 30 against New Mexico and led the Broncos to a touchdown on his only drive.

Gregory had said Southwick and Hedrick, who has played most of the past six games, both would play in the game but had not named a starter.

Also at practice, wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes had his left foot in a boot. He is considered a game-time decision after ankle surgery. And safety Taylor Loffler worked out with the injured players.

Other highlights from Friday’s press conference:

— Gregory: “The process really has been very smooth. Coach (Chris) Petersen is obviously an outstanding head coach. We are just following the process that we would have normally followed if Coach Pete was here. … We had these calendars mapped out for a long time.”

— Gregory on whether defensive end Demarcus Lawrence will return next season: “I hope so.”

— Safety Jeremy Ioane on playing at home: “I kind of feel like sometimes I have to chaperone. But we have smart guys on this team. They can figure it out.”

— Left tackle Charles Leno Jr. on Oregon State’s five-game losing streak: “They went on a really long winning streak, too.” The Beavers won six in a row.

— Oregon State coach Mike Riley: “We all know about the BCS games and all that. I see this being as good as most any other bowl game that’s out there right now. The Sheraton Hawaii Bowl did a great job.”

Young players work out on beach

The Boise State football team’s true freshmen who aren’t playing this season got their workout in on the beach at sunrise Friday.

See the series of tweets below:

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The kickoff press conference is at 3 p.m. Hawaiian/6 p.m. Mountain today. I’ll have video and notes shortly after it ends.

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Some leftovers from earlier this week:

— Senior center Matt Paradis said the senior class’ leadership was tested by the coaching change: “We definitely had to take a leadership role just ot keep everyone focused and headed in the right direction. It can be easy to get distracted in the process of this bowl game and everything that’s happened.”

— Washington and Boise State have not announced the coaches that will leave for Seattle after the bowl game. The Idaho Statesman has reported running backs coach Keith Bhonapha, defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski, defensive backs coach Jimmy Lake and offensive line coach Chris Strausser have accepted jobs at Washington. The Seattle Times reported quarterbacks coach Jonathan Smith has taken a job there. And linebackers coach Bob Gregory says he hasn’t talked to new Boise State coach Bryan Harsin about a job, so it’s likely he’s headed west as well. But Paradis said the coaches have been straight with the players. “They’re good with communication,” he said. “They’re good at keeping everything open and telling us what they know. We’re a family. No matter what happens and where anyone goes, I’m going to keep in touch with all those guys for a long time.”

— Paradis on players transferring out of the program, like tailback Aaron Baltazar is doing: “I don’t think there should be any concern. I don’t think anyone should leave. This is one of the best places in the country. It has a culture and the family we have here. I have ultimate trust in coach Harsin to put together a great staff for these guys next year.”

— Sophomore tailback Jay Ajayi: “It’s been a lot of drama just with all the coaching changes and all this stuff. Just for us to get back to what we do — what we do is play football — for us to get back to that is so refreshing. … That’s when you don’t have to worry about who your coach is.”


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Chadd Cripe has spent the past 12 years as the Boise State football beat writer. You can follow him on Twitter @IDS_BroncoBeat.

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