By Chadd Cripe
© 2013 Idaho Statesman
WYO — Robert Herron 19 pass from Brett Smith (Stuart Williams kick), 11:01. Key plays: Boise State quarterback Grant Hedrick fumbled on a sack by Eddie Yarbrough to give the Cowboys the ball at the Broncos’ 46-yard line. Three plays later, a personal foul on defensive tackle Armand Nance negated a sack by Gabe Perez. Drive: 6 plays, 46 yards, 1:27. Wyoming 7, Boise State 0
BSU — Jay Ajayi 22 run (Dan Goodale kick), 6:09. Key plays: Wide receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes made three straight catches for 24 yards, then was the decoy on a fake reverse that allowed Ajayi to cruise into the end zone. Drive: 6 plays, 55 yards, 1:41. Wyoming 7, Boise State 7
BSU — Matt Miller 14 pass from Hedrick (Goodale kick), :49. Key plays: Redshirt freshman tailback Devan Demas, in his first extended action, gained 28 yards on three carries. Miller, after missing a catchable ball at the goal line, made a tough grab for 11 yards on fourth-and-6. On the next play, he dragged his defender into the end zone. Drive: 10 plays, 69 yards, 3:03. Boise State 14, Wyoming 7
BSU — Ajayi 12 run (Goodale kick), 14:51. Key plays: Safety Taylor Loffler returned an interception 35 yards — the longest return by a Bronco this season — to put Boise State at the Wyoming 15. On first down, the Broncos tried a hook-and-lateral to left tackle Charles Leno Jr., but it only gained 3 yards. Drive: 2 plays, 15 yards, :34. Boise State 21, Wyoming 7
BSU — Miller 48 pass from Hedrick (Goodale kick), 10:14. Key plays: Hedrick fed Williams-Rhodes in the flat for a big gain on third-and-8. On the touchdown, Hedrick underthrew a deep ball to Miller, who fought the defender for the ball, caught the deflection and ran into the end zone. Drive: 6 plays, 83 yards, 1:57. Boise State 28, Wyoming 7
BSU — Goodale 47 field goal, 12:23. Key plays: Hedrick kept for a first down on third-and-3 and a face-mask penalty pushed the ball to the Wyoming 31. The field goal was forced by a holding penalty that wiped out a big gain. Drive: 10 plays, 45 yards, 2:37. Boise State 31, Wyoming 7
BSU — Ajayi 2 run (Goodale kick), 11:59. Key play: Defensive tackle Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe forced a fumble and linebacker Corey Bell recovered to set up the Broncos at the 2. Drive: 1 play, 2 yards, :09. Boise State 38, Wyoming 7
BSU — Miller 5 pass from Hedrick (Goodale kick), 4:24. Key play: Miller made a 51-yard catch, too. Drive: 5 plays, 72 yards, 1:46. Boise State 45, Wyoming 7
BSU — Goodale 35 field goal, 4:17. Key play: Quarterback Nick Patti ran for 12 yards on third-and-3. Drive: 11 plays, 49 yards, 5:52. Boise State 48, Wyoming 7
Boise State sophomore right tackle Rees Odhiambo started Saturday night. He missed three of the previous four games — and most of the fourth — after sustaining an injury Sept. 28 against Southern Miss.
Linebacker Ben Weaver, the team’s leading tackler, missed a game for the first time this season with an injury. Wide receiver Kirby Moore missed his sixth straight game with a foot injury.
Linebackers Blake Renaud and Tanner Vallejo played in backup roles. Renaud missed the previous three games and Vallejo was injured during the Nov. 2 game against Colorado State.
Defensive tackle Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe returned from a one-game absence with concussion symptoms to start and free safety Darian Thompson, who was sidelined late in the game at Colorado State, also started.
Quarterback Joe Southwick, who is recovering from a broken ankle, took shotgun snaps, dropped back and threw passes in sweats during pregame warm-ups while the other quarterbacks were doing drills in uniform. He also threw passes to the wide receivers. Southwick is expected to return in the next two weeks.
Slow starts continue
Wyoming took a 7-0 lead on a first-quarter touchdown that followed a fumble by Boise State quarterback Grant Hedrick. That continued a trend of poor starts by the Broncos.
Boise State’s opponent has scored first in seven of 10 games this season. Wyoming was the fourth straight opponent to score first. The previous three games all started out 10-0 in favor of the opponent.
‘Stay strong Boone!’
Boise State honored injured Kuna High football player Boone Bartlome between the first and second quarters Saturday night at Bronco Stadium.
Bartlome, a junior wide receiver and defensive back, broke his neck in a state playoff game earlier this month and remains hospitalized. He moved his arms earlier this week during a visit from Boise State coach Chris Petersen.
The pubic address announcer listed off Boone’s athletic achievements and pictures of him in a football uniform appeared on the video board.
The final slide read: “Bronco Nation will always stand behind you.”
Demas, Loffler get chance
Coming out of a bye week, the Broncos gave extended playing time to a couple of young players.
Redshirt freshman tailback Devan Demas got his first extended action of the season late in the first quarter. He carried on three of the first four plays of the drive and gained a total of 28 yards, including a 16-yard run.
Redshirt sophomore safety Taylor Loffler, who has played mostly on special teams this season, played more than usual, too. He intercepted an overthrown pass late in the first quarter and returned it 35 yards — the longest interception return for the Broncos this season — to set up a touchdown. The Broncos rotated four safeties — Thompson, Jeremy Ioane, Dillon Lukehart and Loffler.
The Broncos ran a hook-and-lateral for senior left tackle Charles Leno Jr. on the last play of the first quarter. Wide receiver Matt Miller caught a 3-yard pass and flipped to Leno, who was tackled almost immediately.
Boise State is 18-0 under coach Chris Petersen when they have 10 or more days to prepare for a game, not including season openers and bowl games. The Broncos beat Utah State and Wyoming after byes this season.
Boise State wore black pants, blue jerseys and black helmets. … Boise State’s captains were kicker Dan Goodale, Ioane, defensive end Demarcus Lawrence and right guard Marcus Henry. … Cornerback Chaz Anderson, a redshirt freshman, carried the Hammer. … Boise State won the coin toss and deferred.
Monday blog: Notes from Monday’s press conference
Tuesday story: Big stakes for Broncos in last three games
Tuesday blog: Wyoming has been inconsistent
Tuesday blog: Mountain West Football Report
Wednesday story: Wyoming seeks complete game
Wednesday story: Rocky Mountain athlete commits to Boise State
Wednesday blog: Broncos hope to get Matt Miller the ball more
Thursday story: Grant Hedrick fitting in as Broncos’ starting QB
Name the Score Contest
Thursday blog: Nick Patti benefits from Southwick’s absence, too
Friday story: Are injuries, high snap counts related?
Friday blog: Broncos defense posting 1990s-era numbers
Saturday story: Mountain West enduring bad season
Saturday story: Coaches say late games are worth it for ESPN exposure
Saturday column: How the D-line stays fresh