Wednesday, August 4, 2010.
Get out your calendars, y’all. Boise State has set its fall camp schedule, with practice commencing Friday. Both of the public scrimmages are conveniently set for Saturdays. The first will be August 14 at 3PM, and the festive one will be August 21 at 7:30PM. Two-a-days have long been legendary leading into college football seasons, but the Broncos double up on practice sessions only four times this month—the first will be next Wednesday. One thing you’ll want to make a note of is the guy wearing Titus Young’s old No. 4. He’ll be sporting Kyle Wilson-style dreadlocks, bearing a striking resemblance to Jerrell Gavins. That’s because it is Gavins. The senior cornerback has made the switch from No. 10.
It’s always interesting to see if you get anything from national Chris Petersen interviews that you don’t get from local ones. The short answer is: not really. But sometimes the Boise State coach frames things a little differently. Petersen was on ESPN’s “Jim Rome Is Burning” yesterday and acknowledged that the Broncos are no longer a secret across the country. They are indeed getting the respect they craved for so long. “Instead of proving people wrong, we want to prove them right,” said Pete. He wouldn’t go down the Mountain West road with Rome, though, saying, “We haven’t even had one team meeting—not one—talking about the following year.”
As the hype heats up surrounding Labor Day’s Boise State-Virginia Tech game, let’s delve into Hokie fans’ sense of humor. There’s a contest of sorts at TechSideline.com to see who can come up with the best (tongue firmly in cheek) line paying homage to the Superman qualities of Bronco quarterback Kellen Moore they keep hearing so much about back there. Some highlights: Sharks have an entire week dedicated to Kellen Moore (he must be…the most interesting quarterback…in the world). Justin Beiber opens for Kellen Moore. Kellen Moore doesn’t sleep—he waits. Kellen Moore made Lebron James go to Miami. Kellen Moore can slam a revolving door. Kellen Moore can divide by zero. Kellen Moore makes onions cry. Tim Tebow wears Kellen Moore pajamas. (My son tells me some of these are stolen from Chuck Norris parodies.)
“It’s a great quarterback league this particular year and I think we have the best one, when you talk about being productive and winning.” Okay, who do you think said that at Media Days? It could have been any one of four WAC coaches. But it was actually Virginia Tech’s Frank Beamer at the ACC meetings, talking about his senior, Tyrod Taylor, who will face Boise State in the much-ballyhooed opener. And this is the conference that includes Florida State’s Christian Ponder and Miami’s Jacory Harris. Taylor finally turned the corner last season after throwing only two touchdown passes as a sophomore. Beamer stuck with him—and was rewarded with a pass efficiency rating of 149.4. Ask Chris Petersen about the importance of that stat.
If this Brett Favre retirement thing really sticks, Ian Johnson won’t be catching passes from him in practice anymore. But that’s the least of Ian’s concerns, as the Boise State icon tries to hang onto at the very least his spot on the Minnesota practice squad. The media in Minneapolis isn’t automatically dismissing Johnson’s chances of making the Vikings roster this season. Judd Zulgad of the Star Tribune notes that second-round pick Toby Gerhart from Stanford will slide into the backup spot behind Adrian Peterson. But, Zulgad writes, “Albert Young, Ryan Moats, Darius Reynaud and Ian Johnson are expected to have a heated battle for the No. 3 spot at running back.” Johnson will take that.
Not much to report from the CFL, but we’ll update it anyway. Of the three backup quarterbacks with Treasure Valley ties up north, only Jared Zabransky has seen action. The one-time Fiesta Bowl MVP actually attempted passes in two different games for Edmonton in July, going 1-for-2 for 14 yards. Fellow former Bronco Ryan Dinwiddie (Saskatchewan) and Caldwell’s Cody Pickett (Calgary) have been exclusively riding the bench. Drisan James, he of the hook-and-lateral, has gone long when he’s gotten his hands on the ball for Hamilton—he’s had only six catches, but they’ve covered 113 yards.
The Boise Hawks played their shortest game of the season last night. That’s because the Hawks kept trotting back to the dugout. They managed only two hits in a 3-0 blanking at the hands of the Tri-City Dust Devils. It took just an hour and 59 minutes. Both Boise hits came courtesy of Alvaro Ramirez, who remains the preeminent bright spot. Ramirez improved his average to .384, increasing his massive Northwest League lead over teammate Pierre LePage, who’s batting .341. The Hawks have now lost 10 of their last 12 games—they wrap up the series in Pasco tonight.
New Idaho Steelheads coach Hardy Sauter has a molly and a molerat in his stable. Those are actually pronunciations for defenseman Dustin Molle and forward Kael Mouillierat, who have signed with the Steelheads for the upcoming season. Both played for the Steelies late last season. Mouillierat showed potential as a scorer, with two goals in nine games.
Back to football—the indoor variety. The Spokane Shock finally lost on the Boise Burn’s home turf. Home being a relative term. During the Burn’s three-year existence, they were 0-fer against their rivals to the north. After the Burn ceased operations, though, they sold all their field supplies—the turf, goalposts, down markers and so on—to the Jacksonville Sharks of the reconfigured Arena Football League. That’s the circuit that Spokane joined, and in the final game of the regular season last week, the Shock fell to the Sharks on that turf at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, 64-49. Wouldn’t you know it, though, Spokane still finished 13-3, the best record in the AFL. The Shock thus have home field advantage throughout the playoffs.
This Day In Sports…August 4, 2007:
A day of irony in baseball history. To a mixture of cheers and boos in San Diego, the Giants’ Barry Bonds hits his 755th career home run, tying Hank Aaron on the career list—asterisk and all. And the guy most people expect to surpass Bonds someday, the Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez, clubs his 500th homer (maybe with an asterisk himself now). A day later, the Mets’ Tom Glavine would get his 300th career victory.
(Tom Scott hosts the Scott Slant segment Sunday nights at 10:30PM on KTVB’s Sunday Sports Extra and anchors five sports segments each weekday on 1350 KTIK/The Ticket. He’s also handled color commentary on KTVB’s telecasts of Boise State football the last five seasons.)