Boise State’s defense was the star of the show in the team’s 2021 spring game giving them the 45-23 win over the offensive squad at Albertson’s Stadium on April 10. The announced attendance for the game was 5,777.
The defense picked up three interceptions, seven sacks and forced 11 three-and-outs. Given the game’s modified scoring system the defense was able to pick up a decisive win over the offense.
The game gave Bronco fans their first glimpse of the team led by new Head Coach Andy Avalos who came in after Bryan Harsin left for the Auburn team in the fall. The defense taking over the game the way they did could give fans some excitement for things to come. It is also most likely a symptom of Avalos’s defensive experience from his playing days and his time as a coordinator.
“The defense dominated today, as expected,” said nose tackle Scale Lgiehon after the game. “That’s what we’ve been training all spring for. We go into every practice with the mentality to create turnovers, pressure and confuse the quarterbacks, and just cause havoc.”
The announced attendance for the game was 5,777, marking the first time that fans could fill the stands at Albertson’s Stadium since Nov. 12, 2020.
“That’s a feeling we haven’t felt in a while,” Lgiehon said. “That was amazing to have fans react to a run or a tackle or sack. It’s just great to have that energy from Bronco Nation with you on the field.”
Quarterbacks Hank Bachmier and Jack Sears each got snaps during the game. With no definite starter for the 2021 season, each contender got their chance to impress the coaches. Bachmeier completed 15-of-26 passes for 158 yards, one touchdown and an interception. Sears threw for 11-for-20 for 146 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions.
“It doesn’t start with how they execute on the field,” Avalos said. “It starts with their leadership off the field — how they’re bringing guys together. We’re extremely proud of that whole [quarter back] group.”
Avalos also mentioned the importance of the quarterbacks and center Kekani Holomalia-Gonzalez being on the same page.
“That relationship between the center-quarterback is huge,” Avalos said.
George Holani who is expected to be the Broncos’ premier running back this season led the Broncos with 56 yards rushing on 11 carries. His 2020 campaign was cut short due to injuries. Maclaine Griffin tied the game high with four receptions and a leading 58 yards.
“It’s a blessing, honestly, just to be able to go out there and let it loose,” Holani said. “It was great just being able to be healthy and go out there with the boys and compete and make each other better.”
The Broncos’ offense struggled with penalties during the exhibition. The squad had nine false starts.
“Little things like penalties, those are things we can control,” Holani said. “Honesty, we can do better with cleaning up little things. I’ve seen this offense before and I’ve seen how we operate.”