Senior Night could not have gone better for the Broncos.
After struggling at home this season, Boise State shut out New Mexico in their final home game of the season 37-0 on Saturday, Nov. 20.
“The guys did an unbelievable job of preparing through the course of the week and did a really good job of playing against that zone option,” said head coach Andy Avalos. “They played with extreme discipline. We knew it was going to test our discipline and consistency, and it became a challenge within how well we can do that throughout the course of the game. The guys did a really good job tonight. It was good for the seniors to be able to go out like that.”
The Broncos are now on a four-game win streak, improving their season record to 7-4 and their conference record to 5-2.
The Bronco defense set the tone early in the first quarter. On the first drive of the game, fifth-year defensive back Kekaula Kaniho blocked a punt resulting in a scoop and score by redshirt senior safety Tyreque Jones.
“It goes back to being focused on preparation throughout the week,” Jones said when asked about his special teams play. “It’s all about earning the right to play every week and emphasizing the price of playing on The Blue.”
The quarter ended with a field goal by sophomore kicker Jonah Dalmas to put Boise State ahead by 10 points.
Just like the first quarter, Boise State opened up the second quarter with another score off of a blocked punt. Redshirt sophomore Alexander Teubner was able to block the New Mexico punt, resulting in a touchdown for redshirt junior Dylan Herberg.
“There’s no doubt that there’s momentum there in being able to get those explosive plays on special teams,” Avalos said. “Not only that, but to be able to get points on the board early on in the game as well. Great job by coach Collins in finding something there and being able to get the guys squared away to be able to execute that.”
After two incredible plays by the Broncos special teams unit, the Bronco offense decided it was their turn to make an incredible play. Junior quarterback Hank Bachmeier completed a pass to senior receiver Khalil Shakir for a 56-yard touchdown as time expired in the half.
Boise State continued to roll in the second half of play, tacking on two more field goals by Dalmas.
Redshirt senior quarterback Jack Sears made an appearance late in the game, scoring a one-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to give Boise State a 37-point lead.
The Broncos played well all around and gave all of their seniors on the team the last home victory of their college careers.
On offense, they finished off the game with 427 total yards, including 239 rushing yards. Redshirt sophomore running back George Holani had his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game after rushing for 114 yards against New Mexico, 102 yards against Wyoming and 117 yards against Fresno State.
The defense had held New Mexico to only 94 yards throughout the game and had one forced turnover from an interception from junior safety JL Skinner.
The Broncos special teams were the most important unit on the field throughout the game and were vital to the team’s success. From the three field goals from Groza Award finalist Jonah Dalmas to the two blocked punts resulting in touchdowns, the special teams unit stepped up in a big way.
Boise State has one more regular-season game against San Diego State in Carson, California on Friday, Nov. 26.