Some are now calling the 38-6 beating Boise State received from Washington the worst loss in the Petersen-era, and rightfully so. The loss resembled the 48-13 drubbing Georgia gave the Broncos on in 2005.
Now, Washington has handed Petersen two of his worst losses as Boise State’s head coach, with the first coming in a 24-10 loss in 2007 at Husky Stadium.
So the Broncos got hammered, any slight chance that the Broncos would earn a spot in the Bowl Championship Series seems to have been squandered, but how did it all happen?
Boise State’s offense looked uninspiring and limited with the pistol format ran by redshirt senior quarterback Joe Southwick and the defense was manipulated at the hands of Washington senior quarterback Keith Price and head coach Steve Sarkisian.
This was all very clear to the untrained eye. Someone who has never watched a football game in their life could tell that Boise State’s read option — minus the read — play wasn’t working.
Boise State was handed only their fourth loss in the Petersen era with at least 10 days of preparation. The Broncos suffered an injury to redshirt freshman safety Chancellor James and lost junior college transfer defensive lineman Tutulupeatau “Duece” Mataele because of academic issues during fall camp.
The Broncos have now lost their last two opening week games, in which they had the entire summer to prepare, with the last coming to Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich. Petersen was once regarded as one of the best minds in college football, but the two-time Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award winner hasn’t faired well in recent opening road matchups.
Boise State’s passing game was nearly nonexistent, and there was clear confusion between Southwick and the Broncos’ receiving core. The statline is evidence of Boise State’s struggles through the air — Southwick completed just 25 of 40 passes with an average of 3.8 yards per completion.
“I thought the receivers were average, which affected our whole offense,” Petersen said. “Southwick (has) played better. We had a couple chances where receivers couldn’t win and the ball was a little off.”
Southwick threw an interception to end Boise State’s first drive, and wasn’t able to find his accuracy outside of 15-yard passes.
“We tried (to throw deep) a couple of times,” Geraldo Boldewijn said. “Those are some missed opportunities we had.”
With the pass game struggling, and the read option dominating the playbook, Boise State’s offense was nothing more than stagnant.
Is the season over? No. Did Boise State blow their last opportunity to move to one of the four major
conferences before the playoff system is implemented? Yes.