Let’s say there’s a 99 percent chance Boise State will land two selections in the NFL Draft this week, Kamalei Correa and Darian Thompson. There could be three more in Donte Deayon, Rees Odhiambo and Marcus Henry, but that’s a crapshoot. Deayon is a sleeper, with a chance to be taken at the end of the draft. There is a parallel between Deayon and former Bronco great Kellen Moore. Not in terms of athleticism, of course, but in fitting the NFL profile for size. Moore is stuck at 6-0, and he’s listed at 200 pounds. NFL personnel people couldn’t—and still can’t—get past those measurables. Deayon, who collected 17 interceptions during his Boise State career, stands only 5-9 (although he did say yesterday on Idaho SportsTalk he’s up to 162 pounds). Seems NFL scouts can’t get over those numbers.
Henry is in the same boat as Deayon—squarely on the bubble in the draft. Odhiambo on the other hand, is all over the board. Some project the former Boise State left tackle as a fourth-rounder; some doubt he’ll go at all. Odhiambo’s draft profile at NFL.com: “The native of Kenya has been impressive over the past three years when healthy, displaying pro-caliber footwork and a solid anchor in pass protection while earning All-Conference honors the past two years (second-team in 2014, first-team in 2015). However, Odhiambo has not been able to start more than nine games in any season due to injuries (he broke his ankle in this season’s ninth game). Still, whether he serves as an undersized tackle or proves strong enough to move inside (like former Boise State LT Daryn Colledge), Odhiambo has starter-quality skills.”
Colorado State had a great idea for its spring game last Saturday, one that I think could work at Boise State. As part of its festivities, CSU held an alumni flag football game that matched a team of former Rams players against a local team, the Choice City All-Stars. With a turnout in excess of 300 former Broncos every spring for the Gridiron Social the night before the Blue & Orange Game, certainly there would be enough willing participants for a little flag football on the blue turf. Maybe the players could be divided into decades—the guys from the 1970’s could go for a couple drives, increasing the reps until you get the alums from the 2000’s. Who wouldn’t like to see Cedric Minter bust a move, or Bart Hendricks throw deep, or Nick Schlekeway make a one-handed sack?
Boise State’s night games are the College of Idaho’s gain. The Coyotes were already free of any home games going head-to-head with Bronco dates on the blue turf after the BYU game was moved to a Thursday. Now, if the rest of Boise State’s home games are played at night as expected, the only definite conflict home or away will be September 10, when BSU hosts Washington State and the Yotes visit Willamette in their only night game of the year. There would be a possibility of conflicts if the Bronco matchups at Oregon State on September 24 and Wyoming on October 29 have afternoon kickoffs. In that case they’d be opposite Yotes home games against Rocky Mountain and Eastern Oregon, respectively. But the C of I looks to be in good shape at the gate this year.
Well, it’s going to go the distance. The Idaho Steelheads had gone 3-0 when scoring first against Allen entering Game 6 of the ECHL Western Conference quarterfinals. And the Steelheads scored first again last night when Tommy Fallen tallied with seven minutes left in the opening period. But the Americans turned it on with four unanswered goals between then and midway through the second period, keying a 4-2 victory. Idaho goalie Philippe Desrosiers was pulled at that point, and Branden Komm stopped all 13 shots he faced the rest of the way. But the damage had been done. The talk about home ice advantage in this series is now moot. Allen has it down in Texas when Game 7 unfolds tonight.
One day we won’t be following Idaho Stampede alums in the NBA anymore, but we’re not there yet. The book is closed on Anthony Tolliver’s season with Detroit after the Pistons were swept by Cleveland in the NBA Playoffs last weekend. Tolliver’s played just 25 minutes over the course of three playoff games, but he was a regular off the bench during the season, his eighth in the NBA, averaging 5.3 points and 3.2 rebounds in 72 games. Tolliver was a “home-grown” Stamp, meaning he was scouted, acquired and signed by Idaho—not assigned by an NBA team. The former Creighton star played for the Stampede in 2009-10.
The reaction in Las Vegas to former UNLV coach Dave Rice taking an assistant’s position under Eric Musselman at Nevada has been interesting. First, as always, the Las Vegas Review-Journal calls the school up north “UNR.” It’s never, ever “Nevada.” But down south they speculate that Rice is kind of a coach-in-waiting for the CBI champion Wolf Pack. Writes Mark Anderson, “Given Musselman’s penchant for moving around, he could parlay a big season into a job with a major conference. That could set up Rice, a UNLV graduate who was a member of the 1990 national championship team, to succeed Musselman in Reno. Now that would really add some sizzle to an already hot rivalry.”
Also in Las Vegas, Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis says his franchise will seek relocation to the city if a domed stadium is built, according to a Sports Illustrated report. The goal would be a 65,000-seat facility along the Strip. It already has the backing of a major casino operator. Davis is scheduled to visit Las Vegas tomorrow to meet with the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee. What would this mean for UNLV football? The Rebels would be tenants in the domed stadium as well, but their status in Vegas would be akin to that of San Jose State football in the Bay Area, in my opinion.
This will be quite a day at Hunter Elementary in Meridian. Seattle Seahawks tight end Luke Willson, team cheerleaders, and Blitz, the official mascot, are hosting an assembly for Hunter’s 750 students in conjunction with the United Dairymen of Idaho. The school was awarded an NFL player visit as a result of its outstanding participation in the national “Fuel Up to Play 60” program. Willson had 17 catches for 213 yards and a touchdown last season. Look for some No. 82 Seahawks jerseys to pop up on the Hunter campus this fall.
This Day In Sports…April 27, 1956…60 years ago today:
One of the great sports careers of all time comes to an end, when Rocky Marciano retires as the only unbeaten heavyweight boxing champion in history. His record was 49-0 with 43 knockouts—11 in the first round. Marciano won the crown from Jersey Joe Walcott in 1952 and successfully defended his title six times. In the tournament to decide Marciano’s successor, Floyd Patterson knocks out Archie Moore to claim the heavyweight championship.
(Tom Scott hosts the Scott Slant segment Sunday nights at 10:30PM on KTVB’s Sunday Sports Extra and anchors five sports segments each weekday on 93.1 The Ticket. He also served as color commentator on KTVB’s telecasts of Boise State football for 14 seasons.)