Ever since Boise State beat Oklahoma, 43-42, in overtime in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, the Broncos have been known for their ability to call – and execute – trick plays. Boise State completed three do-or-die trick plays against Oklahoma, and the Broncos’ play-calling hasn’t gotten any less exciting ever since.
Even better? Boise State encourages its players to give trick-play suggestions.
“It’s amazing what you can learn from PlayStation,” Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “These guys, I think we got some really smart football players. They don’t just throw ideas out there that are not possible to actually go out there and run. That’s really where the creativity and the idea starts. You got to have first that idea and the players come up with that quite a bit of the time and our coaches just take it to another level and try to create it and see if it’s something that fits in our schemes.
“But how fun is that?” Harsin continued. “To be a player that has input into a play that you run in the game and then for it to be successful and score? That’s a pretty powerful deal. I’m glad our players are into it. I’m glad they enjoy providing information to us and we’re able to use that for the most part and put it into our offense.”
Harsin was jokingly asked if PlayStation has developed the next generation of offensive coordinators.
“Yeah, I think so,” Harsin said, laughing. “I think we’re seeing the next wave of offensive coordinators right now.”
Harsin, who was the offensive coordinator for the Broncos during that magical Fiesta Bowl, spent a few years at Texas and was the head coach at Arkansas State in 2013 before returning to Boise last season. It was said to be a rebuilding season for the Broncos, but that didn’t show in their final record. Boise State went 12-2 and beat Arizona, 38-30, in the Fiesta Bowl.
Did that rebuilding tab light a fire under Harsin and his players?
“No, we’re rebuilding right now,” Harsin said. “This is a new year. We have a different team. We’re playing different opponents, so every year really goes back to that rebuilding mentality. So last year we had to come in and establish our plan with the players, the coaching staff and get everybody on the same page. We’re further along with that right now, but we’re still rebuilding and still trying to figure out what this team’s going to look like going into this season. We still have quite a bit of work to do before we play in that first game.”
That first game is at home against Washington on Sept 4. followed by a road game at BYU on Sept. 12. Boise State hasn’t opened at home since beating Oregon in 2009.
“I’m excited,” Harsin said. “I’m excited for our guys – to see all the work we’ve put in. I’m excited to be at home for our players. It’s been six years since we’ve played at home. We’ve been in a lot of kickoff classic games – a lot of different places against some very good teams. So we get to be at home in front of our fans on the blue. That’s what I’m excited about – to open up at home. We’re just excited to go play and see what this 2015 Broncos team is all about.”