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Time for an all-time All-Idaho All-Star football team

by Tom Scott

Bio | Follow: @thescottslant


Posted on January 12, 2010 at 8:31 AM


Tuesday, January 12, 2010.
BK has compiled a long-overdue list: the All-Time All-Idaho Football All-Stars. There will surely be biased regional reactions (“Hey, where’s my guy?”). But the crew of football-crazy and community-entrenched Bishop Kelly alumni did a thorough job in my mind. The team includes players and coaches who were born in Idaho and/or played high school ball in Idaho, and their college and professional achievements were given plenty of weight. Virtually all of them played in the NFL. You gotta start at quarterback, don’t you? That’s Jake Plummer of Capital High and Arizona State. He’s joined in the backfield by Ray McDonald out of Caldwell and the University of Idaho, Merril Hoge out of Highland and Idaho State, and Cedric Minter out of Borah and Boise State. 
In fact, let’s handle this by position groups. The wide receivers are Jimmy Farris of Lewiston and Montana and Yo Murphy of Idaho Falls and U of I. At tight end it’s Jeb Putzier out of Eagle and Boise State. The offensive line is pretty good—Jordan Gross of Fruitland and Utah, Jerry Kramer of Sandpoint and Idaho, Wayne Walker of Boise High and Idaho, Doug Riesenberg of Moscow and Cal, and Ernie Hughes of Capital and Notre Dame. 
On the defensive line, you have John Grant of Capital and USC, Randy Trautman of Caldwell and Boise State, Brad White of Idaho Falls and Tennessee, and Jason Buck of North Fremont and BYU. At linebacker, there’s Korey Hall of Glenns Ferry and Boise State, Rob Morris of Nampa and BYU, Spencer Toone of Snake River and Utah, and Wayne Walker (the only two-way honoree). And in the secondary, it’s Rolly Woolsey of Rimrock and Boise State, Steve Preece of Borah and Oregon State, Rick Woods of Boise High and Boise State, and Larry Wilson of Rigby and Utah. The kicker is Mike Hollis, who was born in Kellogg and starred at Idaho, and the punter is Zach Thiry of Bishop Kelly and Carroll College fame.
The coaches are Mike Riley (hey, he was born in Wallace), Dirk Koetter out of Highland and Boise State and John L. Smith from Idaho Falls and the University of Idaho. The team includes a Pro Football Hall of Famer (Wilson) and a College Football Hall of Famer (Trautman). Kramer and Wilson were both on the NFL 1960s All-Decade team.  Kramer was named to the NFL 50th Anniversary team, Wilson was part of the NFL 75th Anniversary squad. Fun stuff.
It’s not surprising that Boise State’s Chris Petersen is being mentioned as a possible replacement at USC for Pete Carroll, who was named head coach of the Seahawks yesterday. It is surprising that those mentions are so muted. Could it be that national media really think now that Petersen wouldn’t go to Southern Cal? They’ve been so sure for so long that “Boise State won’t be able to hang onto Petersen.” The L.A. Times reports today that Petersen is on a USC “short list” that also includes Mike Bellotti and Jack Del Rio. But what does that mean? Never say never, but you have to believe that Pete is happy where he is, with a new contract and a team on a roll. The Trojans are looking rather toxic right now, moreso after the allegation yesterday by Sports Illustrated that Carroll helped enable former USC assistant Dave Watson’s addition to prescription painkillers.
It was hard to leave the room (not to mention the stands) during Idaho’s 43-42 win over Bowling Green in the Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl, and the ESPN2 ratings for the game bear that out. The H-Bowl tied the record it set in last season’s matchup between Maryland and Nevada, drawing a household rating of 2.4, equating to more than three million viewers. Nothing like a game-deciding two-point conversion with four seconds left to keep the numbers up.
Three of the five Boise State alums in the NFL Playoffs have been ushered out of the postseason, while two move on this week. Chris Carr and Baltimore go to Indianapolis Saturday night, while Orlando Scandrick and Dallas visit Minnesota this Sunday. Carr is coming off an exhilarating experience—the Ravens’ 33-14 rout of New England during which he intercepted the Patriots’ Tom Brady, setting up the touchdown that gave his team a 21-0 first quarter lead. Carr has started the last three games for Baltimore. For Daryn Colledge and Korey Hall of the Packers, the 51-45 loss at Arizona Sunday was a bitter end to the season, as the Green Bay offense had certainly done everything it could. Philadelphia’s Quintin Mikell may not feel the same way about the Eagles’ defense, toasted in a 34-14 loss at Dallas.
The Boise State men’s basketball team has the look of a group on a slippery slope. The Broncos’ worst WAC start ever was exacerbated last night with a 79-64 loss to Louisiana Tech in Taco Bell Arena. The Bulldogs unleashed a masterful defense that suffocated three key Broncos—Ike Okoye, La’Shard Anderson and Daequon Montreal combined to go just 8-for-37 from the field. Boise State now has to travel to San Jose State and Utah State Thursday and Saturday, and make no mistake: nothing can be taken for granted against the Spartans this season. Meanwhile, Louisiana Tech is proving how quickly you can turn around a hoops program. Coach Kerry Rupp is in his third season, and the Bulldogs are now 16-2 and 4-0 in the WAC. Crazy as it seems, they could start getting some Top 25 love; their only losses were at New Mexico and Arizona.
Coby Karl is back in Boise preparing for his next basketball move. The former Boise State star wants it to be in live action, and he says a return to the Idaho Stampede is “looking like the odds-on favorite.” On Idaho SportsTalk yesterday, Karl said, “I just want to get playing basketball again—and a lot.” Coby didn’t get much time in Spain a year ago, and he certainly didn’t see the court for Cleveland (five minutes in two-plus months). He’s waiting to talk through his options with his agent. If Karl’s still here Friday, the Stampede will be, too. They face the Reno Bighorns in Qwest Arena.
The boomerang continues to fly between the Idaho Steelheads and the Texas Stars. The Steelheads picked up a hot commodity from their AHL affiliate when forward Sergei Korostin was sent their way on New Year’s Day. The Stars recognized that after Korostin scored four goals and two assists in four games, and yesterday they yanked him back to Austin. The Steelies do get forward Michael Neal back from Texas, though. Meanwhile, Lance Galbraith was picked up by the Utah Grizzlies from the Alaska Aces during the holidays, and—lo and behold—the Rooster will be on Qwest Arena ice yet again tomorrow night when Utah takes on the Steelheads.
This Day In Sports…January 12, 1969:
This was the day—Super Bowl III, with the Baltimore Colts three touchdown favorites over the New York Jets. But Broadway Joe Namath guaranteed a Jets victory, and he backed it up with a big day. George Sauer caught eight of Namath’s passes for 133 yards, and Matt Snell rushed for 121 in pro football’s biggest upset ever: Jets 16, Colts 7.
(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 also handles color commentary on KTVB’s telecasts of Boise State football.)