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Wannabe: BSU Should Be Ed Gorilla

The Bronco football team received a smattering of No. 1 votes from America’s sportswriters Tuesday, and Boise State University should get the Legislature’s top ranking. At least, legislative candidate Dan Loughrey is pushing the second half of the equation. “We have a higher education system that promotes mediocrity, and not excellence. What we have are four universities, with four highly paid presidents and four different visions,” said Loughrey, a Boise Republican. “It’s high time to recognize that success in higher education must revolve around Boise State University, where half the state’s population resides”/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: What do you make of this suggestion by blue-turf-for-brains GOP wannabe Loughrey that Idaho’s higher education system should revolve around Boise State?

Jazzy: BSU’s Kustra Bad For Education

Jazzy Vandal: Bob Kustra is bad for education in this state. It is utterly embarrassing that a university president is so up front and center about a football program. He is unapologetic about his comments. It angers me that a highly paid state employee can get away with it. He’s feeding into a football frenzy fan base that thinks BSU can do no wrong. The Boise media is largely to blame for this. BSU football is the only good thing going on in Idaho, which is a very sad state of affairs

Question Do you think that Boise State president Bob Kustra is “of the devil,” too?

Musburger Praises Coeur d’Alene Area

Sportscaster Brent Musburger, who hails from Montana, had high words of praise for the Coeur d’Alene area during Boise State’s victory over Virginia Tech in Washington, D.C., last night. After former Lake City High star Byron Hout made a tackle in the second half, Musburger told his broadcast partner  Kirk Herbstreit about Coeur d’Alene, urging him to go to Idaho and to go up north to Coeur d’Alene. “It’s one of the most beautiful spots in the world — with all those lakes,” Musburger said. Herbstreit responded that Mussberger had piqued his interest in our area.

Question: Do you like to hear Coeur d’Alene and/or North Idaho mentioned in glowing terms on national television?

Boise Makes BCS Statement 33-30

Boise State receiver Austin Pettis,left, pulls down the game winning touchdown against Virginia Tech at FedEx Field in Landover, Md., on Monday. (AP Photo/Joe Jaszewski/Idaho Statesman)

Question: Are you ready to put Boise State into the national title game after this big, exciting victory over Virginia Tech?

INW: Boise State Unveils New Uniforms

Jerard Rabb, right, presents a model wearing the new Boise State Nike football uniform, Wednesday in New York. Nike unveiled the uniquely designed Nike Pro Combat System of Dress uniforms that ten of the top college football programs will wear in select games during the 2010 season at a special media event in New York City. Story here. More photos here. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Question: Do you like the new Boise State uniforms?

HBO Poll: Both Football Fields ‘Awful’

  • Tuesday Poll: Readers in Hucks Nation overwhelmingly consider the blue football turf of Boise State and the new red turf of Eastern Washington to be “awful.” 102 of 158 respondents (64.6%) said that both fields were awful. Of the other options available, 31 of 158 (19.6%) picked BSU’s field as attractive. 14 of 158 (8.9%) think the new EWU field is attractive. Only 5 of 132 (3.2%) consider both fields attractive. 6 respondents were undecided.
  • Lewiston Tribune Poll: 372 of 569 respondents (65%) supported Judge John Bradbury’s decision to send ConocoPhillips mega-load permits back to Idaho Transportation Department.
  • Today’s Poll: Now that the combat phase in Iraq is over, do you support the growing U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan?

Boise State: From Darlings To Damned

Boise still has plenty of fans, many of whom would love to see the third-ranked Broncos put together another unbeaten season and crash not just any BCS bowl, but the title game. It would serve as the ultimate comeuppance to the despised way college football crowns its champion. As the 2010 season kicks off this week however, fans of teams from major conferences, especially ones with realistic championship chances, increasingly see Boise as something other than a plucky underdog. The Broncos are a team that, based on a favorable schedule, may have found an inside, and potentially unworthy, route to win a national title. The Boise backlash is more pragmatic than deep-seated, yet it is real/Dan Wetzel, Rivals.com. More here. (Courtesy photo: BroncoSports.com. More photos of new uniforms here.)

Question: Does Boise State have a schedule that’s worthy of a national champion should the Broncos run the table again this year?

Boise State No. 3 In AP Preaseason Poll

The Boise State football team is No. 3 in the preseason Associated Press Top 25 — the highest ranking in any major poll in school history. The poll was released Saturday morning. The Broncos even received a first-place vote. Defending champion Alabama is No. 1. Ohio State is No. 2. Florida is No. 4. Texas is No. 5. Virginia Tech is No. 10. The Broncos open the season Sept. 6 against Virginia Tech at FedExField in Landover, Md. Boise State was No. 5 and Virginia Tech No. 6 in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll. The opener is the fourth matchup of Top 10 teams in Boise State history. The Broncos lost to Louisville in the 2004 Liberty Bowl and beat Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl and TCU in the 2010 Fiesta Bowl. Oregon State, the Broncos’ opponent for the home opener, is No. 24/Chadd Cripe, Idaho Statesman. More here. (AP file photo of BSU coach Chris Petersen)

Question: Will Boise State finish the season ranked in the Top 5?

Blount Throws Another Punch

LeGarrette Blount, shown here in this AP file photo scoring a touchdown for the Tennessee Titans, against Seattle in an exhibition game Saturday in Seattle, punched a teammate during practice Wednesday. The rookie running back capped off a feisty night practice with a short punch to the helmet of defensive end Eric Bakhtiari a few moments after having his own helmet ripped off for the second time in as many plays. As you recall, Blount was kicked off the Oregon Ducks team for several games last year when he punched Boise State’s Byron Hout, a former Lake City High star, after the Broncos beat Oregon in the season opener for both teams. AP story here.

Question: Do hot heads ever grow up?

Mountain West Hijacks 2 WAC Teams

Another tumultuous day on the college athletics landscape left the Mountain West Conference with two new teams, the Western Athletic Conference in peril and BYU’s future in limbo. Fresno State and Nevada accepted invitations Wednesday to join Boise State in the Mountain West. Boise State moves in the summer of 2011, but it’s still unclear whether Nevada and Fresno State will take that step in 2011 or 2012. The schools missed the July 1 deadline to leave the WAC for 2011-12, but there is room for negotiation. … The departures will leave the WAC with six members and could block BYU’s reported intention to leave the Mountain West to play football as an independent and in the WAC in all other sports/Chadd Cripe, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: What should the Idaho Vandals do now?

Report: BYU Leaving Mountain West

Item: Reports: BYU leaving Mountain West/Brian Murphy, Idaho Statesman

More Info: Boise State’s new conference is about to get rocked by a second defection this summer, according to the Colorado State athletic department. Colorado State posted on Twitter late Tuesday that fellow Mountain West Conference member BYU will go independent in football and join the Western Athletic Conference in all other sports. A press conference is scheduled for Thursday, according to the post by @CSUFootball - the official Colorado State football Twitter account. The Mountain West, which added Boise State for 2011 in June, already has lost Utah to the Pac-10.

Question: What should Boise State do, if BYU indeed leaves the Mountain West to go independent and to join the WAC in all other sports?

Vandal Store Opens In Bronco Country

Item: Vandal Store opens in the heart of Bronco country/Scott Evans, KTV

More Info: This afternoon Boise Police shut down two blocks in downtown Boise for the grand opening of the Vandal Store. The governor, Boise’s mayor and the president of the University of Idaho were all on hand. Each gave a short speech to over 100 people that stood on Idaho Street waiting for their chance to get inside. Once inside, Vandal fans were excited to spend money.

Question: What kind of Vandal gear do you own?

UI No. 153, BSU Ranks Regionally

In its best colleges issue, U.S. News & World report ranks the University of Idaho 153rd among national universities, both public and private. Harvard University topped the list. Ranking criteria include graduation rate, class size, acceptance rate and peer assessment. University of Idaho ranked 81st among top public schools. Other public universities in the West on that list: University of Washington (11th), University of Oregon (52nd), Washington State (52nd), University of Utah (63rd) Oregon State University (70th), Utah State (92nd), Montana State University (101st), University of Nevada-Reno (107th). Boise State was ranked 51st among regional universities in the West. The category includes universities that offer a full range of undergrad programs and some master’s programs but few doctoral programs/Katy Moeller, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Would you rather be known as the top academics college in the Western Athletic Conference or have one of the best football teams in the nation?

BSU Makes Sports Illustrated Cover

(Caution: this post is not for University of Idaho football fans) Joe Jaszewski, photog extraordinaire for the Idaho Statesman, takes us behind the scenes at the Sports Illustrated football shoot of the Boise State football team a month ago. The Broncos are on the cover of the most recent Sports Illustrated cover. You can read about Joe’s experience here. And see Joe’s photos here.

Question: Will Boise State go undefeated through the regular season again this year?

Boise State, NMS, Bans Twitter

New Mexico State coach DeWayne Walker doesn’t see his decision to ban his team from using Twitter this season as an issue about control. For Walker, it’s about protection. “You’ve got 105 guys on your football team,” he said Thursday at the team’s media day. “It’s not a matter of not trusting guys. Guys may say things and do things that can affect not only our football team but our university and not even mean it.” Walker showed he was serious about the ban a short time later, declaring on his Twitter account that he’s finished until December. … Walker’s decision comes after Boise State coach Chris Petersen, pictured, banned Twitter for his players/Associated Press. More here. (AP File Photo: Pat Sullivan)

Question: Are coaches Chris Petersen (Boise State) and DeWayne Walker (New Mexico State) being paranoid by banning players from using Twitter during the season?

Cope: Let BSU Play, Let UI Learn

” … never again should (President Bob Kustra’s) poor widdle Bwonco fans have to waddle their fannies up Highway 95 and be subjected to the inebriated nasties of Akey’s Army—most of whom are probably from the Treasure Valley anyway and know all too well what it’s like to be inundated by the orange and blue—and never again should the Brigadoon burg of Moscow be subjected to the incessant hype, the boorish self-satisfaction and the strident cheesiness that I, like many, have come to associate with Bronco Nation. But especially in these times, when Idaho’s institutions of higher learning are under such duress from budget cuts and hostile political forces, we must go further than merely calling the rivalry off. What I am suggesting is that Boise State and Idaho divvy up the functions associated with universities, go their separate ways, and cross paths nevermore”/Bill Cope, Boise Weekly. More here.

Question: What do you think of columnist Bill Cope’s tongue-in-cheek proposal to end the Boise State/Idaho rivalry by giving each institution the area in which it excels — football for BSU, academics for UIdaho?

AM: Byron Hout Learns From Mistake

In this Sept. 4, 2009, image from ESPN, Oregon running back LeGarrette Blount, left, punches Boise State’s Byron Hout as Coach Chris Peterson, foreground right, tries to pull Hout away at the end of Boise State’s 19-8 victory over Oregon. A year later, Hout, a former Lake City High star, says he learned a lesson from the dust-up and is looking forward to the 2010 season. Story here

Question: Tell us about a mistake that taught you an important lesson?

BSU president lambasts UI fans, Moscow

Bob Kustra, president of Boise State, told the Idaho Statesman today that he sees no need to play the the University of Idaho in Moscow — or in Boise — after the football teams meet for the last time this season before BSU moves to the Mountain West Conference. His reason for wanting to stay away from Moscow? “It’s a culture that is nasty, inebriated and civilly doesn’t give our fans the respect that any fan should expect when visiting an away team.”

Kustra’s comments come a day after Broncos coach Chris Petersen, when asked if BSU was willing to do a home-and-home series with Idaho, said, “Why would we go (to Moscow)? I don’t think our fans even like to go up there. Most of Idaho’s fans are in Boise anyway.”

UI coach Robb Akey has maintained that the 40-year rivalry should continue “the right way” — with both teams getting home games.

UPDATE: Idaho president Duane Nellis has issued this statement on the matter.

IFF: Idaho Grads Need Remedial Help

Almost a quarter of Idaho high school graduates attending Boise State University are so far behind on their English and math skills, they’re required to take remedial courses to catch up. In some cases, more than half of the students from an Idaho high school arrive unprepared for basic freshman-level college classes. Data from Boise State University show that in the 2010 class, 388 BSU students less than a year out of high school had to take remedial classes in English, math or both/Erik Makrush, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: What do you make of this report that 25% of high school graduates at Boise State need remedial help to catch up?

Sources: Utah Ready To Join Pac-10

Sources close to UteZone indicate that Utah informed the Mountain West Conference Monday of its intentions to leave the conference. When asked about this report, a representative from the Conference could neither confirm nor deny the alleged report. If sources are to be believed then, the deal to invite Utah has already been done, and is merely a formality at this point. All that would remain of course is the announcement from the PAC-10 and a press conference by the University of Utah/UteZone. More here.

Question: If Utah jumps to the Pac-10 (or Pac-12, if Colorado is considered), what did Boise State gain by jumping to the Mountain West?

HBO Poll: BSU, UI Must Continue Rivalry

  • Monday Poll: 92 of 126 respondents (73%) said they wanted football teams from Boise State and Idaho to continue to meet yearly despite BSU’s jump to the Mountain West. 27 of 126 (21%) said they didn’t. 7 of 126 (6%) were undecided.
  • Today’s Question: Is Rep. Phil Hart a principled man who is fighting the IRS and state tax officials or a tax dodger who is hiding behind principles?

HBO Poll: Not Excited About 3 WalMarts

  • Weekend Poll: Only 81 of 261 respondents (31%) said they were excited that WalMart will have three stores in the Kootenai by mid-September, two in Post Falls and one in Hayden. 170 of 261 (65%) aren’t happy to see WalMart open two new stores in the area. 10 of 165 (4%) were undecided.
  • Today’s Poll: Should Boise State and Idaho do everything possible to ensure that their football teams continue to meet each year despite the Broncos jump to the Mountain West?

Murphy: UI-BSU Rivalry Should Continue

Item: Murphy: Idaho-BSU rivalry needs to stay alive/Brian Murphy, Idaho Statesman

More Info: With no excuses, no hiatus and no exceptions, Boise State and Idaho must continue their annual football game. Boise State’s well-deserved invitation to the Mountain West to begin play in 2011 should not be the pretense to end a 40-year rivalry. It’s important for the state that its two largest universities and major football programs play each year. It’s an economic generator, whether the game is in Boise or Moscow. It’s a state showcase, a proud moment for fans of both teams, whether they attended the schools or not.

Question: Do you agree w/Brian Murphy that the Idaho-BSU football rivalry should continue without any “excuses … hiatus … exceptions”?

Montana To Replace Boise State In WAC?

Karl Benson, the WAC’s commissioner, said in a news release that the conference’s board of directors will start evaluating replacements for Boise State right away. Reports have mentioned Montana, a member of the Big Sky Conference, as a possible candidate. Akey said the Grizzlies make sense for the WAC geographically. Yet moving from the Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) to the NCAA’s highest division is “quite an expenditure,” the UI coach noted. Asked about the perception of the WAC now that Boise State is leaving, Akey said, “To really give you an answer on that, we’ve got to see where we are when the dust settles.” Then he joked: “If Boise is the only team that has left and we replace them with Notre Dame, I think we’re going to be perceived as being a pretty strong conference”/Josh Wright, SR. More here. (AP Photo/Idaho Press-Tribune, Charlie Litchfield: Boise State football coach Chris Peterson)

Question: Which school would you like to see replace Boise State in the Western Athletic Conference?

Akey: Notre Dame’d Make Good Sub

Josh Wright/SR SportsLink (via Twitter): Robb Akey on changes to WAC: “If we replace (BSU) with Notre Dame, I think we’re going to be perceived as a pretty strong conference.” Akey, of course, was joking about Notre Dame. But he does see WAC adding another school. Also worried about losing La. Tech down the line. … Also, Josh reports: Rob Spear says UI’s non-conference schedule is booked through 2012. Playing BSU “will have to be in the future.” So no UI-BSU until 2013.

Question: Should Idaho do all it cans to schedule games with Boise State after 2012? Or should UI quit trying to play keep-up w/the Broncos and look elsewhere for nonconference foes?

Boise State Jumps To Mountain West

Boise State on Friday accepted an invitation to join the Mountain West Conference in 2011-12, the Mountain West announced. A press conference is scheduled for noon. The school sent a release with comments from several officials: Mountain West Conference Commissioner Craig Thompson “We are pleased and excited to welcome Boise State University to the Mountain West Conference. Since our inception just 11 short years ago, the Mountain West has experienced tremendous success, and the addition of Boise State will further enhance that strength. The MWC continues to strategize regarding potential membership scenarios and bringing Boise State into the Conference is an important part of that evolution”/Idaho Statesman. More here. (AP File Photo from September 2009/Gary Kazanjian, File)

Question: What does this mean for the Idaho Vandals and the Western Athletic Conference?

Boise State joins Mountain West

Boise State has joined the Mountain West Conference effective July 2011, leaving the WAC and fellow state school Idaho. Read the release here.

Breaking! Mountain West Won’t Expand

Boise State is not going to the Mountain West today, anyway. Commissioner Craig Thompson announced Monday that the conference’s nine presidents have decided to wait to make a decision on expansion until there is more clarity about what will happen with conferences around the country/Chadd Cripe, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: What do you think will happen with realignment in college football?

Boise State Ready To Leave WAC

Football power Boise State appears to be only waiting for an invitation to become the 10th member of the Mountain West Conference. That invitation could officially come as early as Monday when the MWC’s board of directors meets in Jackson, Wyo. Speculation around the MWC and the Western Athletic Conference is that Boise State will bolt from the WAC. Typical is the comment by Idaho athletic director Rob Spear, who recently wrote to Vandals fans in his blog, “I am predicting June 7 will be the day when the first shoe drops regarding conference realignment”/Irv Moss, Denver Post. More here.

Question: What will be the impact on Idaho if long-time rival Boise State jumps to the Mountain West Conference, as expected?

BSU’s WAC Exit Inevitable, Unavoidable?

Bye-Bye Boise? It’s barely a question mark; almost went with the period instead. Hawaii’s biggest football rival will likely be out of the Warriors’ league in 2011, although Western Athletic Conference commissioner Karl Benson reminded me yesterday that, “there has to be an invitation before it can be accepted.” Most believe it will be a formality when the WAC defectors invite BSU next month at their presidents meeting. I’m sure many of you view the above quote as an example of Benson passively watching events unfold rather than actively participating in them, that he is just setting himself and the conference up for another big blindside hit … like the one in 1998 that formed the Mountain West/Dave Reardon, Hawaii Star Bulletin. More here.

  • Cutline: Boise State coach Chris Petersen gets soaked after Boise State beat TCU 17-10 in the Fiesta Bowl Jan. 4 in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)

Question: Should national powerhouse Boise State consider leaving the Western Athletic Conference?