Boise St – Nevada

Last Friday night I was amazed/stunned/mesmerized by the Western Athletic Conference showdown in Reno between Boise State and Nevada.

Now your first thought going into this game might have been: “Who cares about these two little schools. They are playing at 10:30 pm on a Friday night. I already got by football fix for the day! I saw a hell of a game between Auburn and Alabama, the big boys of college football. I am going to bed.”

Well if you did get your beauty sleep that night, you missed an unbelievable game. There were four plays I saw over the course of the second half that were simply jaw dropping. And if you want to see what I’m talking about, here is a link to the highlights. I’ll include where to skip to in the video to make it easy

– (:39 seconds in): With Boise ahead comfortably 24-7 on the third quarter, Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick rolled out of the pocket, pumped, took off, made a defender miss, and then leapt over the pylon with the ball in his hand to complete the 17 yard TD run. It was an amazing play that gave Nevada a huge burst of momentum and cut the deficit to 10. I thought it was Vick-esque and couldn’t stop saying “WOW!”.

– (:51 seconds in): Still down ten, Nevada got the ball back this time early in the fourth quarter. A little bit of trickery as Rishard Matthews got the handoff on an end around. Boise appeared to have the play sniffed out beautifully, with three men ready to bring Matthews down about eight yards behind the line of scrimmage. But Matthews darted through all three, broke through a  tackle around the first down marker, and then let his legs do the rest as he motored down the sideline for a 44 yard score. Nevada had narrowed the gap to just a field goal. UNREAL! At this point I was wide awake (keep in mind this is all happening at approx 12:30 am eastern time)

– (1:10 in): After a Nevada field goal to tie it up, Boise got the ball with a little over five minutes to go. They had faced adversity in their opener at FedEx Field against Virginia Tech yet still pulled out a W. I was thinking “Could they do it again? Could they do it here?” We didn’t have to wait long for an answer. On the first play of the drive, Boise QB Kellen Moore found Doug Martin on a screen pass underneath. Martin then got some stellar blocks down field, weaved through them, juked one defender, shed off another, and thanks to some poor pursuit angles by the Nevada safeties, went the rest of the way untouched for a 79 yard TD.

Talk about responding! It looked like Boise would prevail again. But Nevada had their own responding to do. They engineered a 14 play, 79 yard TD drive which tied the game up and ate up almost all of the clock. This leads to jaw dropping play #4.

– (1:41 in): Boise got one final chance with just nine seconds to play and the ball on their own 38. Moore heaved the ball deep down the field and Titus Young made a spectacular diving catch with just one second left. This was straight out of arena football, or an EA Sports video game! How could Nevada have allowed themselves to get beat deep?

Of course the end of the game was quite memorable, with Boise kicker Kyle Brotzman missing a field goal at the end of regulation and in overtime…both of which were under 30 yards.

Just an incredible game, it was as much fun watching a college football game as I can remember. It made it that much more memorable that the conclusion occurred at 1:52 a.m. and that it shook up the BCS standings (Boise entered the game ranked 4th).

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