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Ashton Jeanty carries Boise State over San Diego State 34-31

This was a performance for the ages that should put Ashton Jeanty in the national spotlight.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 22 Boise State at San Diego State Photo by Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

For all the thinking that this was going to be a low-scoring, grind it out type of game, having 65 points between the two teams is a surprise.

In fact this was the highest-scoring game between the Broncos and Aztecs since 2014.

Scoring Timeline

1st Quarter

7:37 - 34-yard TD pass from Jalen Mayden to Baylin Brooks (Jack Browning PAT)

Boise State 0 - San Diego State 7

2nd Quarter

11:58 - 25-yard TD pass from Taylen Green to Eric McAlister (Jonah Dalmas PAT)

Boise State 7 - San Diego State 7

9:13 - 22-yard field goal by Jack Browning

Boise State 7 - San Diego State 10

7:13 - 58-yard TD run by Ashton Jeanty (Jonah Dalmas PAT)

Boise State 14 - San Diego State 10

2:48 - 2-yard TD run by Jaylon Armstead (Jack Browning PAT)

Boise State 14 - San Diego State 17

0:22 - 29-yard field goal by Jonah Dalmas

Boise State 17 - San Diego State 17

3rd Quarter

4:52 - 27-yard field goal by Jonah Dalmas

Boise State 20 - San Diego State 17

3:05 - 10-yard TD run by Taylen Green (Jonah Dalmas PAT)

Boise State 27 - San Diego State 17

4th Quarter

14:17 - 10-yard TD run by Jaylon Armstead (Jack Browning PAT)

Boise State 27 - San Diego State 24

2:02 - 6-yard TD run by Ashton Jeanty (Jonah Dalmas PAT)

Boise State 34 - San Diego State 24

0:42 - 10-yard TD run by Jalen Mayden (Jack Browning PAT)

Boise State 34 - San Diego State 31




By The Numbers

  • Ashton Jeanty was an absolute menace Friday night, totaling 254 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns. Some of his runs were absolutely incredible, and I am going to insert them in this article because they deserve to be rewatched. Jeanty averaged 8.9 yards per carry and 12.3 yards per reception.

That is not normal.

*Video courtesy of Jordan Kaye of Bronco Nation News and CBS Sports Network

*Video courtesy of Jordan Kaye of Bronco Nation News and CBS Sports Network

*Video courtesy of Boise State Athletics and CBS Sports Network

  • Taylen Green had an alright outing. Not anything grand or spectacular, but nothing detrimental or catastrophic. Green was able to connect with wide receiver Eric McAlister for a 25-yard TD in the first quarter, but that’s about as far as the aerial assault went. Outside of McAlister and Jeanty, the rest of the receivers and tight ends were only able to muster three catches for 23 yards. TG10’s QBR concluded at a 58.2, but he did have a nice scramble touchdown in the third quarter to widen the gap (temporarily).
  • Boise State’s defense didn’t put up a ton of a fight, but they did hold strong when they needed to most. Two fumbles recovered by Andrew Simpson and Jayden Virgin helped sway momentum in favor of Boise State. This was especially true on San Diego State’s first drive as the Aztecs made it down to the one-yard line before QB Jalen Mayden fumbled the ball before reaching the goal line.
  • Again, linebacker Marco Notarainni led the the Broncos in total tackles (eight). With DJ Schramm being hampered by a shoulder injury, Notarainni’s ability to rise up and fill the void has been vital.
  • The Bronco defensive line wasn’t able to get to Mayden often has they only registered one total sack and the defense as a whole managed a mere three tackles for loss.
  • In the return game, Kaden Dudley shined for the first time this season. He ran back a kickoff for 49 yards and is beginning to look more aggressive when finding potential holes to break a big run.
  • Jonah Dalmas did what we are all accustomed to. Going 4/4 on PATs and 2/2 on field goals, it shouldn’t be overlooked how nice it is to have a reliable kicker.
  • A big round of applause for punter James Ferguson-Reynolds. The Aussie continues to perform at an extremely high level in 2023, averaging 50.8 yards on Friday, placing three punts inside the 20, and hitting a long of 67 yards.

The Eye Test

The Offense

How far can that take a team?

We will find that out over the course of this season because Eric McAlister and running back Ashton Jeanty are the only two players that are actually producing results in passing game. Stefan Cobbs is doing fine, but he seems to either be extremely involved or not much at all. Beyond that, no receiver has more than 50 yards this season.

Put simply, this offense will go as far as Ashton Jeanty can take it. Hopefully, that doesn’t put a ton of mileage on him and he is able to evade injury.

Taylen Green is having what is commonly described as a sophomore slump. Fans hoped that maybe it was just the level of competition that was limiting his production, but he is just progressing at a slower pace than many want. I have to think that Bush Hamdan will continue to call read option opportunities to let Green utilize his legs and give Jeanty a rest.

The Defense

The big picture issue is that veteran players are getting sliced and diced in the secondary. Four games in, this is a certified weakness and not a slight trend.

Whether or not the coaching staff wants to go all-in on the youth that is waiting on the sidelines, that remains to be seen.

However, if the goal is for this team to have national aspirations in 2024, then use this year as an opportunity to get these guys reps and experience.

The Special Teams

I wish I could be more creative with this unit, but they keep performing well week after week. It’s been a while since Boise State has had both a tremendous kicker and a booming punter. With the way that this team is constructed this year, Dalmas and Ferguson-Reynolds could be the difference in whether this team approaches ten wins or settles for seven to eight.

The cherry on top is Kaden Dudley finding his niche role at kick returner. We’ve seen that when Boise State has a talented returner like Avery Williams, this team has a little extra giddy-up.

Going Forward

Despite entering Mountain West play, the Broncos will round out their non-conference slate with a trip to Tennessee to take on the Memphis Tigers out of the AAC.

Led by head coach Ryan Silverfield, the Tigers are currently 3-1 after losing their first game of the season to the undefeated and now ranked Missouri Tigers, 34-27.

What were your takeaways from the game? Let us know in the comments down below!