If Kellen Moore is installing the offense for the NFC in the Pro Bowl, can the Dallas offensive coordinator’s job be far behind? It was not Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett, whose staff will lead the NFC squad Sunday in Orlando, nor Dallas tight ends coach Doug Nussmeier, another candidate for the O-coordinator post, but Moore who was chosen to work with quarterbacks Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks and Mitch Trubisky of the Chicago Bears on Wednesday. Is that a clue as to Moore’s immediate future? Well, Kellen’s as coy as he was when he studied at the Chris Petersen school of media interviews. “Yeah, we’ll see how it plays out,” Moore told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “Yeah, obviously I love it down here. It’s a good group. Were heading in the right direction. We have to keep building on it.”
While some Dallas fans are incredulous at the possibility, national scribes don’t question the move. Consider this from Albert Breer in Sports Illustrated’s Monday Morning Quarterback: “Kellen Moore getting the call would actually make a lot of sense. Among the coaches in Dallas, Moore is known as a guy who knows how implement college concepts and can take quarterback-friendly ideas and apply them within different formations and personnel groups: simple for the offense, complex for the defense. And Moore is even-keeled and considered good for Dak Prescott. Would it be a risk to just promote the 30-year-old? Sure. But the payoff in maintaining continuity while adding ingenuity could be big. We’ll see if that’s the road the Cowboys take.”
EVERSON WALLS ON THE GREEN TURF
Always finding opportunities to reminisce here in the Scott Slant. Former Boise State star Leighton Vander Esch is the first Cowboys defensive rookie to make the Pro Bowl since Everson Walls in 1981. Which brings us to Walls, a cornerback out of Grambling. Where did he play the final game of his college career? On the green turf of Bronco Stadium in the semifinals of the 1980 Division I-AA Playoffs. And Walls was involved in the play of the game. With the game tied 7-7, Bronco quarterback Joe Aliotti and tailback Terry Zahner executed a perfect flea flicker at the start of the fourth quarter, and Aliotti found Kipp Bedard all alone downfield. Bedard caught the ball at about the 20, Walls caught him at about the 10, and Bedard carried Walls into the end zone for what proved to be the winning touchdown. So there you go.
BRONCO WOMEN KEEP UPPING THE ANTE
Okay, time to run down the laundry list for the Boise State women. First 15-2 start in 41 years. Ten-game winning streak. Program record 16 straight conference victories. The only undefeated team in Mountain West play at 6-0. The Broncos checked all those boxes Wednesday night after a 26-10 third quarter advantage ignited a 79-48 rout of Air Force in Taco Bell Arena. A’Shanti Coleman led the way with 18 points on 9-for-10 shooting. And Boise State did it without reigning Mountain West Player of the Week Marta Hermida, who was out with an ankle injury.
ANYTHING SHORT OF AN ‘A’ GAME…
This Boise State men’s team has very little margin for error. When everything’s humming, it can be pretty good, like it was in the one-point defeat to Nevada. But when all the pieces aren’t working at the same time, you can get a clunker like the one the Broncos delivered in the 74-60 loss at Air Force Tuesday night. One that saw Alex Hobbs, Marcus Dickinson and Patrick Dembley combine to go 4-for-22 from the field. The loss of not only Chandler Hutchison but also Chris Sengfelder and Lexus Williams took its toll on Boise State in terms of talent, leadership and clutch playmaking. RJ Williams? He’s averaged less than four points over the past seven games after averaging more than 15 over the first 11 contests. This was never going to be a reloading year. It is indeed a rebuilding year. Patience required.
The Broncos now ride a three-game losing streak on the heels of a three-game winning streak going into Saturday afternoon’s home game against Wyoming. They’ll try to recover from three bad halves of basketball dating back to the intermission of the Fresno State game when they face a Cowboys team that picked up its first Mountain West win over the season Wednesday night, 59-48 over San Jose State. The first half at Air Force had the look of a good half as Boise State built a 13-point lead with four minutes left before the break. But the Broncos missed their next nine shots, with the drought extending 3½ minutes into the second half.
Other hoops notes: in the Mountain West, Nevada annihilated Colorado State 100-60 in Reno Wednesday night. The seventh-ranked Wolf Pack improved to 19-1, posting 100 points on the night coach Eric Musselman earned his 100th victory at Nevada. Locally, after having its five-game winning streak snapped last Saturday at Alaska-Anchorage, the Northwest Nazarene men head back to Nampa and will host Concordia tonight at the Johnson Sports Center.
A year from now we’ll be talking about Boise State’s first baseball game in 40 years. This year, college baseball means College of Idaho and Northwest Nazarene. The Coyotes open the 2019 season today, starting a four-game series at Benedictine Mesa in Mesa, AZ. The Yotes’ home opener is scheduled for next Thursday against Providence Christian. Yes, that’s Thursday, January 31. But you know what? They may actually get that game in. The NNU season begins two weeks from now.
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January 24, 1982: Two weeks after Dwight Clark makes “The Catch”, the San Francisco 49ers win the first of their five Super Bowl titles, beating Cincinnati 26-21 in the Pontiac Silverdome. Second-year quarterback Joe Montana moved the Niners into position for four Ray Wersching field goals, offsetting a 300-yard day by Bengals quarterback Ken Anderson. Both the 49ers and Cincy had rebounded from 6-10 campaigns the previous season to make their first Super Bowl appearances.
(Tom Scott hosts the Scott Slant segment during the football season on KTVB’s Sunday Sports Extra and anchors five sports segments each weekday on 93.1 FM KTIK. He also served as color commentator on KTVB’s telecasts of Boise State football for 14 seasons.)