The most efficient teams in the country know how to get their best players the ball, and specifically in space.
For the Boise State Football team, there has been a consistent beat out of the backfield in sophomore running back Jeremy McNichols. The former Utah Ute commit was most likely only to play at the receiver position in Salt Lake, but then Bryan Harsin & Co. offered him a scholarship.
The running back position was on the table at Boise State; something McNichols had longed for, but wasn’t going to receive at the University of Utah. With the departure of star back Jay Ajayi last season, McNichols surprised Bronco Nation and has filled the big shoes in a big way.
“McWeapon” has scored 10 of Boise State’s 18 touchdowns on the season. Not too shabby for a sophomore.
Though many look at those touchdowns and think McNichols is creating a lot for himself, many lose sight of what is really going on around the play.
McNichols is getting a little help from his friends. Though the big uglies in the trenches have helped account for 8 of those 10 touchdowns, there was a specific play against Virginia that shows even the wide receivers can get aggressive in their blocking schemes, and it showed last Friday night.
Mid-way through the second quarter, the Broncos were looking to extend their lead in the redzone. With trips left consisting of Shane Williams-Rhodes, Holden Huff and Thomas Sperbeck, you wouldn’t expect the Broncos were looking to block down field, especially with the size of Williams-Rhodes and Sperbeck.
Little did the Cavaliers know, the Broncos were looking to execute just that.
Let’s take a look at one of Boise State’s most succesful plays from last Friday night. You’ll see where his help comes from.
A little help from his friends
As McNichols goes in motion, SWR, Huff and Sperbeck head hunt their man they are assigned to block.
You can see in the play below that SWR already has his man off-balance. Huff is in the action to block the defender as well. Sperbeck is going to bring his man all the way to the end zone to clear out space.
The defender is respecting Sperbeck’s catching ability, but has little knowledge of where the ball is in this particular play.
The two blocks by SWR and Huff couldn’t have been more textbook.
They were timed perfectly, and effective to get the defense off-balance. Just enough time for McNichols to beat them to the corner of the end zone.
The red arrow you see below is Sperbeck. He drives his man towards the inside of the field to clear out the corner of the end zone.
With Sperbeck maintaining the integrity of his block on the outside, it was smooth sailing for Mr. McNichols.
Keep an eye out for the blocking on the outside by Boise State’s wide receivers in the upcoming games. You’d be surprised by just how much help they offer McNichols.