Boise State set school records with eight teams ranked in the national top 25 and finished among the best in the nation with four conference championships.
In light of the above accomplishments, there are so many successful Bronco coaches that five nominees for Bronco Coach of the Year are too few. Greg Patton (tennis), Chris Petersen (football), Greg Randall (wrestling), Mark Tichenor (women's tennis) and co-head coaches Tina Bird and Neil Resnick (gymnastics) all led their teams to conference championships, were nationally ranked, or both.
Patton, the 1997 National Coach of the Year, once again led the Boise State tennis team to a national ranking and the NCAA National Tournament. The Broncos achieved a sparkling 24-8 record with a challenging schedule that included seven matches with Top 25 teams. Boise State blew away #17 Pepperdine 6-1 on the road, split with #14 Alabama, and battled #1 Virginia, #7 UCLA, #9 Stanford and #15 Texas A & M on the road.
Boise State reached as high as #19 in the College Tennis Online rankings and finished at #25. Patton's Army reached the Western Athletic Conference championship match before losing to host Hawai'i. Boise State was selected as an at-large team in the NCAA's, where they disposed of Middle Tennessee State 4-0 in the first round and downed #14 Alabama 4-3 on their home courts in a thriller before losing to #3 Ohio State in the Sweet Sixteen.
Patton was named WAC Coach of the Year, while Clancy Shields was honored as the WAC's Player of the Year and James Meredith was Freshman of the Year. Shields, Meredith and Kean Feeder all made the All-WAC team for singles. Feeder and Meredith were on the All-WAC doubles team and Shields & Stanley Sarapanich made the second team.
Patton guided Shields to becoming the #24 singles player in the nation. Two of Patton's other stars, Feeder (72) and Meredith (84), are ranked in the top 100 as well. Feeder and Meredith are ranked #43 in the country in doubles. Shields received an automatic invitation to the NCAA Singles Championship while Feeder and Meredith are headed to the NCAA Doubles Championship.
Petersen, who was the National Coach of the Year following his team's 2007 Fiesta Bowl victory over Oklahoma, is nominated for Bronco Coach of the Year for the third year in a row. Coach Pete was honored by the WAC as Coach of the Year this past season after leading his team to its sixth conference title in the last seven years. For the second time in three seasons as the head man for the football team, Petersen guided the Broncos to an undefeated regular season campaign (12-0) before losing to TCU 17-16 in the Poinsettia Bowl. Boise State was ranked ninth in the nation prior to their bowl loss and finished the season at #12.
Under the guidance of Petersen, Boise State was a complete team that ranked among the nation's top 25 in nearly every category. The Bronco defense was second in the nation in pass efficiency defense, third in the country in scoring defense (just 12.6 points per game), fifth in interceptions (22), seventh in turnovers gained (33), 18th in sacks (34), 20th in total defense (308.15 per game) and 22nd in rushing defense (118 per game). The Boise State offense ranked 13th in the nation in passing offense (288.5 yards per game), 18th in total offense (440.85), 12th in scoring (37.62) and 11th in passing efficiency. Boise State's special teams ranked fourth in net punting (44.57 yards per punt), 14th in punt return yard defense (5.28 per return) and 20th in punt returns (12.25 per return).
11 of Petersen's Broncos were honored on the All-WAC team while quarterback Kellen Moore was named Freshman of the Year. Moore led the WAC in passing (259 of 370 for 3,264 yards, 25 touchdowns and a 161.53 efficiency rating). Wide receiver Jeremy Childs (65 catches for 741 yards and 7 TD's), cornerback Kyle Wilson (28 tackles, 10 pass breakups and a WAC-leading five interceptions), offensive lineman Andrew Woodruff (who helped Boise State to a #4 national ranking for fewest sacks allowed at just one per game), defensive lineman Ryan Winterswyk (4.5 quarterback sacks and 10 tackles for loss) and Ellis Powers (71 tackles, 49 unassisted, eight tackles for loss, 2.5 quarterback sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries for touchdowns) all made the All-WAC first team.
Wilson also made the second team as a punt returner despite leading the conference in punt returns (470 yards) and three returns for touchdowns. Joining Wilson on the second team were Moore, running back Ian Johnson (738 yards and 12 touchdowns), receiver Austin Pettis (45 receptions for 502 yards and nine TD's), defensive end Mike T. Williams (35 tackles, four sacks and six tackles for loss) and safety Jeron Johnson (84 tackles, 60 unassisted, with three fumble recoveries). Ian Johnson broke Marshall Faulk's all-time WAC rushing touchdown record with 57 career TD's.
Randall has steadily improved the Bronco wrestling team and has the team in the national top ten. Boise State was ranked ninth in the nation with a 17-3 record (8-0 in the Pac-10). Seven of Randall's wrestlers were ranked in InterMat's top 20: Andrew Hochstrasser (#4 at 133 pounds), Kirk Smith (#4 at 184), Brent Chriswell (#6 at 197), Adam Hall (7th at 157), Nate Lee (13th at 174), Jason Chamberlain (16th at 149) and Tyler Sherfey (#18 at 165 pounds).
For the second consecutive year, Randall's squad dominated the Pac-10
Championships like never before, setting an all-time record for points.
Six of Randall's wrestlers (Hochstrasser, Chamberlain, Sherfey, Lee, Smith and
individual titles in their weight classes. Adam Hall finished second while
Brian Owen, Cory Fish and Sam Zylstra took fourth place.
Randall was honored as Pac-10 Coach of the Year for his tremendous season. From there, Randall and Boise State charged into the NCAA National Championships in St. Louis, where they recorded one of the best finishes (12th) in school history. Three Broncos were honored with All-American status. Hochstrasser finished fourth in the nation, Brent Chriswell ended up sixth and Sherfey placed eighth in his weight class.
Tichenor also has molded his women's tennis team into a national force, guiding Boise State to its highest-ever ranking at #35. The Broncos (24-5, 7-1 in the WAC) gave seven-time conference champion Fresno State a legitimate challenge for the first time in Fresno's reign as league champ. Boise State was ahead of the Bulldogs in the WAC championship match until a furious comeback allowed Fresno to repeat. The Broncos were selected as an at-large team to the NCAA National Tournament, where they proceeded to score the biggest victory in program history. Tichenor's Boise State team downed #24 Alabama 4-3 for their first NCAA Tournament win before losing to #2 Georgia.
#1 singles player Pichittra Thongdach was ranked #80 in the nation for Coach Tichenor. Thongdach and Lauren Megale were named All-WAC in singles and paired up to make the All-WAC doubles team as well. Vivien Silfany was named WAC Freshman of the Year and also was selected to the all-conference second team in singles. Silfany and Klaudia Wlodarczyk were on the All-WAC second team in doubles.
Bird and Resnick teamed up to lead the Broncos to their second consecutive WAC gymnastics championship and their best finish ever at the NCAA Regional Championships (third). The team also broke the school record on vault in the season finale vs. Southern Utah. Under the guidance of WAC Coaches of the Year Bird and Resnick, Boise State recorded the seventh best team score in school history of 196.525 to win the conference title, shattering their season-best by .300 and topping their closest opponent by 1.175. Boise State was ranked in the national Top 25 for nearly the entire season and finished 20th. Boise State was 30th in the country in attendance, averaging nearly 1,000 fans per meet.
Hannah Redmon (Bars and Floor), Mallory Dziawura (Bars and Beam), Chelsee
Apple and Shaniece Craft (Vault), Kelsey Lang (Beam) and Sarah Smith (Floor) all
were honored as All-WAC performers for Bird and Resnick while Lindsay Kazandjian
(Beam), Redmon (Vault) and Katie Tuller (Bars) were named to the second team.
Craft (Vault) and Lang (Beam) won individual apparatus WAC championships.
Craft (Vault) and Lang (Beam) won individual apparatus WAC championships.
The Broncos were ranked 18th in the nation in floor exercises (48.802), 21st in the country in vault (48.903) and 22nd in uneven bars (48.745).
These outstanding individuals have helped make this past year an historic one for Boise State and Bronco fans. To vote for Bronco Coach of the Year, go to the Blue Turf Board and cast your ballot!