Boise State Defensive Preview

Boise State's Defense has struggled against good run offenses. The Aggies will try to exploit that.

DEFENSE

DEFENSIVE LINE

(DEFENSIVE END)

6-2 258 senior Beau Martin (Scout NR) is in his first season as a starter for Boise State. Martin saw action in 25 games over two seasons prior to 2014 totaling 26 tackles, 6.5 sacks, 11.5 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery and 4 pass breakups. In 2014 Martin has already surpassed his combined career totals in just 11 games as a full time starter recording 28 tackles, tying for second on the team with 3.5 sacks, a third on the team 10 tackles for loss and 2 pass breakups. Former Aggie recruit, 6-4 231 sophomore Gabe Perez (Scout 3*) backs up Martin. As a true freshman in 2013 Perez appeared in 12 games as an OLB for the Broncos collecting 29 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, 2 forced fumbles and 1 fumble recovery. Now currently playing dual roles as a backup at the DE and OLB spots in 2014, Perez has appeared in all 11 games thus far being credited with 20 tackles, tied for second on the team with 3.5 sacks, tied for fifth on the team with 4.5 tackles for loss and 1 pass breakup.

(NOSE TACKLE)

Returning to the Boise State lineup this season is a player who started in 8 of 12 games last year in 6-0 301 junior Armand Nance (Scout 3*). Originally recruited as a tight end, Nance had a breakout season as a sophomore in 2013 as he tallied 51 tackles, 2 sacks, 4 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery and 1 pass breakup. In 2014 Nance has started in all 11 games for the Broncos rolling up 28 tackles, 1 sack, 3.5 tackles for loss, 2 pass breakups, 1 QB hurry and 1 blocked kick. Backing up Nance is 6-1 290 junior Antoine Turner (Scout 2*). Prior to coming to Boise, Turner, who originally recruited as a defensive end, played at Fullerton CC where as a sophomore in 2013 he recorded 34 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, 4 pass breakups and 1 interception. In 2014 Turner has appeared in all 11 games up to Saturday's Utah State game being credited with 11 tackles, 0.5 tackles for loss and 2 pass breakups.

(DEFENSIVE TACKLE)

6-3 250 sophomore Sam McCaskill (Scout 2*) is the second of two first year starters on the defensive line for Boise State this season. In 2013 as a redshirt freshman McCaskill saw action in 11 games as a reserve along the front line and was credited with 7 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 sack and 1 fumble recovery. In 2014 McCaskill has started in 10 of the Broncos 11 games logging 17 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and 1 QB hurry. 6-4 271 sophomore Elliot Hoyte (Scout NR) is the backup to McCaskill. Originally from England, Hoyte saw action in four games for the Broncos as a redshirt freshman in 2013 making 4 tackles. In 2014 Hoyte's playing time has increased considerably as he has appeared in all 11 games tallying 12 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and is tied for third on the team with 3 sacks.

LINEBACKER

(STRONG SIDE)

The lone full time first year starter at LB for Boise State is 6-3 247 Kamalei Correa (Scout 3*). As a true freshman in 2013, Correa, who was originally recruited as a defensive end, was a key contributor for the second team unit as he totaled 12 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and 1 sack while playing in all 13 games. Starting all 11 games for the Broncos in 2014, Correa has made an immediate impact racking up a fourth on the team 43 tackles, a team leading 13.5 tackles for loss, a team leading 8.5 sacks, 1 pass breakup, 2 QB hurries, 2 forced fumbles and 1 blocked kick. Former Aggie recruit 6-4 231 sophomore Gabe Perez (Scout 3*) backs up Correa. As a true freshman in 2013 Perez appeared in 12 games as an OLB for the Broncos collecting 29 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, 2 forced fumbles and 1 fumble recovery. Perez, who is also the backup at DE, has appeared in all 11 games thus far being credited with 20 tackles, tied for second on the team with 3.5 sacks, tied for fifth on the team with 4.5 tackles for loss and 1 pass breakup.

(WEAK SIDE)

2013 part time starter 6-0 235 sophomore Ben Weaver (Scout 3*) returns in a full time capacity this season. As a redshirt freshman in 2013, Weaver started in 6 of 12 games leading the Broncos in tackles with 89, to go along with 4 tackles for loss, 1 sack and 1 pass breakup. As a full time starter in 2014 Weaver has not enjoyed nearly the same amount of success starting in 9 of the 10 games that he has appeared in while recording 37 tackles and 1 tackle for loss. Backing up Weaver is 6-4 229 junior Tyler Gray (Scout 2*). As a sophomore in 2013 Gray saw action in all 13 games for the Broncos including 7 starts tallying 43 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 7 pass breakups, 3 forced fumbles and 2 interceptions. In 2014 Gray has not started in as many games but his on the field time has expanded as he has started in 2 of the 11 games that he has played in, racking up a second on the team 56 tackles, tied for fifth on the team 4.5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, a third on the team 2 interceptions, a team leading 7 pass breakups and a team leading 3 forced fumbles.

(MIDDLE)

6-1 228 sophomore Tanner Vallejo (Scout 3*) began last season as a part time starter and he has now filled that role permanantly this season. As a true freshman in 2013 Vallejo started in 6 of the 11 games that he played in pulling down 51 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 0.5 sacks and 3 pass breakups. As a full time starter in all 11 games for the Broncos in 2014, Vallejo has amassed a team leading 69 tackles, a second on the team 11.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, 3 pass breakups and 3 fumble recoveries. Experienced 6-2 228 senior Blake Renaud (Scout 3*) provides backup to Vallejo. Over the course of his career Renaud had started in 6 of the 33 games that he had appeared in prior to this season, totaling 71 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 2 forced fumbles and 3 pass breakups. In his final season of eligibility in 2014, Renaud has started in 7 of 10 games while collecting 35 tackles, a fourth on the team 6 tackles for loss, 2 sacks and 1 fumble recovery.

CORNERBACK

(NICKEL)

5-11 208 senior Corey Bell (Scout 2*) is back for his final season in Boise. Bell, who was originally recruited as a safety, had a standout junior season at cornerback in 2013 as he recorded a second on the team 76 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 fumble recovery and 2 pass breakups, while starting in 10 games and playing in all 13. In 2014 Bell has not quite enjoyed the same success as last season, however, he is currently fifth on the team in tackles with 42 to go along with 3 tackles for loss, 1 sack, and 1 pass breakup. Backing up Bell is 5-10 186 redshirt freshman Cameron Hartsfield (Scout 2*). Prior to redshirting in 2013 for the Broncos, as a high school senior in 2012 Hartsfield recorded 100 tackles and 6 punt blocks in his final prep campaign, helping Allen High School to the 5A Texas State Championship, while also garnering first-team All-District 10-5A at defensive back.

(CORNER)

Starting at one CB spot is 5-9 152 junior Donte Deayon (Scout 3*). As a sophomore in 2013 Deayon earned All-Mountain West Second Team honors as he started in all 13 games for Boise State and tallied 54 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 9 pass breakups and 6 interceptions. Deayon has not had as strong a season in 2014 as he has started in all 9 games that he has appeared in and tallied 35 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 sack, a second on the team 4 interceptions, 3 pass breakups and 1 forced fumble. Experience rules at this spot as 5-9 175 senior Bryan Douglas (Scout 3*) backs up Deayon. As a starter in 10 of 13 games as a junior in 2013, Douglas was credited with 35 tackles, 1 fumble recovery, 9 pass breakups and 4 interceptions. In 2014 Douglas has battled injuries and only managed to play in 6 of the Broncos 11 games including 1 start as he has been limited to just 7 tackles and 1 pass breakup.

Starting opposite Deayon is 5-10 187 Jonathan Moxey (Scout 2*). As a true freshman in 2013 Moxey appeared in 12 games with 1 start and was credited with 12 tackles and 1 pass breakup. As a starter in 10 of 11 games in 2014 Moxey has tallied 24 tackles, 1 interception, 5 pass breakups and 1 forced fumble. Former Aggie recruit 5-9 178 senior Cleshawn Page (Scout 2*) provides solid backup behind Moxey. As a JC transfer from LA Harbor CC in 2013 Page saw action in 12 games as a junior making 9 tackles and 2 pass breakups. In his final season at Boise State in 2014, Page has played in 8 of 11 games recording a career high 14 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, a career high 6 pass breakups and 1 interception.

SAFETY

Slated to start on Saturday night against Utah State is 5-10 192 senior Jeremy Ioane (Scout 3*). Prior to 2014 Ioane had started in 25 straight games for the Broncos totaling 129 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 2 pass breakups and 3 interceptions while earning All-Mountain West Conference Honorable Mention as a sophomore in 2012 and All-Mountain West Conference Second Team honors as junior in 2013. In 2014 an injury has limited Iaone to just 3 starts in 5 games and only 10 tackles, 1 pass breakup and 2 interceptions. Should Ioane be unable to play Saturday night, a duo of players will likely fill his spot. First up will likely be 6-1 196 true freshman Dylan Sumner-Gardner (Scout 4*). As a high school senior in 2013 Sumner-Gardner played in the 2014 Under Armour All-American Game getting national recognition while racking up 141 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 3 forced fumbles and 3 interceptions, while being named to the Texas Associated Press Sports Editors Class 4A All-State Second Team, second-team all-area by the Dallas Morning News and District 10-4A First Team both his junior and senior seasons. In 2014 Sumner-Gardner has seen action in 10 of 11 games for the Broncos collecting 14 tackles, 1 tackle for loss and 2 pass breakups. The second player of the duo, who was originally recruited as a running back, is 6-1 208 junior Dillon Lukehart (Scout 2*). In 2013 as a sophomore Lukehart was named the Boise State Special Teams Player of the Year by appearing in all 13 games and logging 46 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and 1 forced fumble. In a more reduced role in 2014 Lukehart has seen action in 9 of 11 games for the Broncos and only managed 12 tackles.

The surefire starter at the second safety spot is 6-2 208 junior Darian Thompson (Scout 2*). Thompson first joined the Boise starting lineup at the backend of his true freshman season and he became a mainstay there, starting 19 straight games prior to the 2014 season totaling 106 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery, 4 pass breakups and 7 interceptions in two seasons. As a starter in all 10 games that he has been available for in 2014 Thompson has racked up a third on the team 54 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, a team high 6 interceptions, and 1 pass breakup. 6-2 208 sophomore Chanceller James (Scout 3*) is listed as the backup to Thompson. James missed his entire redshirt freshman season with a knee injury that he suffered during fall camp. As a freshman sitting out the 2012 season as a redshirt, James was named the Broncos Special Teams Scout Team Player of the Year. Finally healthy in 2014, James has started in 3 of the 10 games that he has appeared in rolling up 36 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and 1 fumble recovery.

PUNTER

Punting for the Broncos this season is 6-2 186 sophomore Sean Wale (Scout 2*). Originally recruited as a kicker, Wale began his punting career for Boise State in 2013 following redshirting the 2012 season, as he saw action in 10 games booting 21 punts for a 41.5 yard per punt average, with 3 punts fair caught, 8 punts downed inside the 20 and 6 50+ yards punts. In all 11 games in 2014 thus far Wale has 46 punts for a 41.2 yard per punt average with 22 punts fair caught, 16 punts downed inside the 20 and 9 50+ yard punts.

KICKER

Returning at placekicker for Boise State is 5-10 185 senior Dan Goodale (Scout NR). Goodale became the Broncos full time kicker as a junior in 2013 as he kicked in all 13 games connecting on 17 of 19 field goals and 57 of 60 extra points. In his final season at Boise in 2014 Goodale has kicked in all 11 games leading up to Saturday's Utah State game and has hit on only 15 of 20 field goal tries, while hitting 52 of 54 extra point chip shots.

Brian Phillips - Football Insider for UstateAggies.com


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