With Deayon and Horn in question, it's back to "next man up"

BOISE -- The Boise State football team finished the Ole Miss game without two difference makers on the defense.

You want to measure their importance?

Ole Miss scored all 35 of their points with both cornerback Donte Deayon and defensive tackle Tyler Horn on the sidelines.

"He's crucial to our defense," said head coach Bryan Harsin on Monday, talking specifically about Deayon.

"(When) you lose a couple key players - with Tyler not being in there, with Donte not being in there - you want to have all your guys in the game that have played," he added.

Neither were on the field for the Rebels first quarter touchdown. Deayon had to sit out one snap per NCAA rules after his helmet popped off on the play prior.

Horn, on the other, was resting as the No. 2 defensive line rotation took their turn trying to get to Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace.

"Is that the reason (they scored)? I don't know. But when you had those guys in there, we were playing well," Harsin said.

In the third quarter the reason they weren't on the field was much more serious.

Horn was injured with just over five minutes left in the period. He was later seen with a brace on his heavily bandaged left leg and needed a crutch to help him walk.

Without him, Boise State finished that initial drive by forcing Ole Miss to punt.

The next time the Bronco defense hit the field was with 1:02 left in the third quarter. In addition to Horn, Deayon was absent, his reason less noticeable

"Donte, he tried to get back into the game. Tyler didn't," Harsin explained on Monday.

Forced to test their depth and shuffle the rotation, the results from there on out were what defensive coordinator Marcel Yates described as "unacceptable football."

Although he sight poor tackling as the main cause, he too brought up the importance of both missing players.

"He's important to our defense," Yates said of Deayon.

"Horn is a guy that has played a lot for us," Yates added about the fourth-year senior. "He's a guy that knows exactly what he's doing. He's a good player. He's that havoc for us in the middle. Him going down, it hurt us."

While the status of both are in question heading into the Colorado State game on Saturday, Yates remains optimistic about Deayon's return.

"I hope he'll be ready to play on Saturday," Yates said on Monday.

Should Deayon be limited, sophomore Jonathan Moxey figures to see increased playing time at cornerback, while sophomores Sam McCaskill and Elliot Hoyte, along with junior Robert Ash could fill in for Horn at defensive tackle.

"I think that we have some guys that can play for us in those spots," Yates said before adding, "Our motto is that the next guy needs to be ready to play."

"He's fine, but if he's out, then we still have to play games."

"Bottom line is, this is football. Things happen. Guys get dinged. Next man up and that next man has to be ready to go in there and play," Harsin said.

"It happens that fast. You're on the sidelines, then all of a sudden you're the starter."

- Deayon played 47 of the first defensive 49 snaps against Ole Miss. Over that span, Boise State allowed 223 total yards, an average of 4.6 yards per play.

- Deayon missed the final 21 snaps. Over that span Ole Miss racked up 235 total yards (11.2 yards per game) and 28 points.


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