To say I enjoyed my time away from the blog is an understatement, but with the hectic travel schedule of the week, plus me getting back from Boise fairly late and then taking care of house issues, well, Wednesday is the first blog entry of the week....sorry about that.
Quick thoughts on last week:
Football: We looked better than 49-7, that's for sure. Also, the new SkySuites at Bronco Stadium were pretty nice, but on par with Oregon State's facility as well. Also, ISU went for it on fourth-down three times and missed all three times, but that was good solid coaching by John Zamberlin...field goals wouldn't win that game...touchdowns were needed. Mark my words, the football gods will smile on the Bengals because of John's decisions in that game. The running game looked great, Russel Hill looked solid, no interceptions for him, which means in his first three games of his career he had eight picks, and in the last nine he has had seven ... hmmmmmmm ... I like that trend.
Defensively, Michael Wright looked like a great late add to the team, and it allows for a host of guys to become the nickelback, which should bode well. Also, what a job by Phillip Arias...first start, 10 tackles. Nice. Also, Jon Vanderwielen had a great game, as did Jarrett Huk. Sadly, Chris Kirkegaard will be out this week it looks like, but he might try to go against North Dakota.
Volleyball: While the ladies went 0-3, I chalk a lot of it to first tourney jitters....ISU was whistled for 16 ball handling errors ... 16?!?!?! ISU opponents got whistled just twice, and those 16 points really hurt as ISU played all three matches pretty close. Also, looking at the stats, only one hitter, Britta Bartschi, was in the negatives in hitting, and that normally doesn't happen for her, so there was a lot to like in that first tournament. Next up, five matches in three days in Wichita.
Soccer: That was a pretty solid road split, getting Air Force on their home field for the first time in our history. Also, freshman Bailey Williams picked up a shutout, and according to Allison Gibson she might have the upper hand on the goalkeeping battle, which will probably keep fluctuating this week as the team heads to the Governor's Cup in Moscow. (NOTE ADDED AT 3:13 pm --- just learned that Michelle Harrison is under the weather, and in fact played all weekend in that condition, so kudos for the efforts she gave as well...she had eight saves in a half of soccer against Colorado College)
Cross Country: The men's team, with seven newcomers, thought they would struggle a bit, and the first race of the season was a tough one, but coach Janssen felt there were some good times posted and some improvements. Things were batter on the women's side, where ISU fifnished second, including taking the top four spots in the race.
Onto the Links!!!! Our good friend Kevan, who runs One Bronco Nation Under God, has nothing to do this week with BSU having a bye. So, inspired by ISU's gritty performance, he has pledged a week of fervor towards ISU in the quest to defeat Idaho, swapping One Bronco Nation Under God to One Zamberlin Nation Under Frank Mercogliano. Bless his sweet little heart. Seriously, Bronco fans couldn't have been nicer, and it was a fun game.
Planning Ahead Dan Thompson went to school at Washington State, so he is more than at home in the Palouse. So it makes sense that Dan would be reporting from Moscow all week. Dan checks in with some ISU scheduling notes and some conference links on his blog. (And as for his Utah State thing he talks about....I won't say when, but I will say that it is highly likely we will play the Aggies in Chris Kirkegaard's ISU lifetime).
The Press Box Was Wrong... So Idaho State tried the Statue of Liberty Play against Boise State...and the fans booed. First of all, they are not the first team to run to play...heck, we did it in the street when I was like 10. It was first run in a college game by Michigan in the 1940s, and it was run in a high school game in California in November of 1916. However, the media and the BSU players said ISU didn't run it as well as they did...but they are wrong. ISU ran it almost exactly as they did. The ball was just inside the eight-yard line, and ended up barely touching the five, so although it was officially a two-yard gain, it really gained three. That's all BSU's gained too. ISU's only miscalculation was running it to the short side. Other than that, it looked pretty similar.
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Idaho State Sports Information