This talk about how Boise State isn’t getting any national respect and how the Broncos’ defense isn’t getting any credit for a 2-0 start are complete fallacies.

Boise State is ranked 10th in the nation in mid-September and the Broncos have never previously attained such status prior to the month of November. So the writers and coaches who vote in the two major polls certainly are showing Boise State more respect than ever.

The only non-BCS team ranked ahead of the Broncos is Brigham Young and any objective college football fan or analyst will tell you No. 7 BYU deserves to be ranked against of Boise State.

This whining about the defense not getting credit is also out of line. On the night Oregon didn’t even get its initial first down until the middle of the third quarter, the ESPN announcing crew gushed about Boise State’s defense repeatedly. The Broncos followed that 19-8 victory over the Ducks by shutting out Miami (Ohio) and if people didn’t rave about that performance, there is one very simple reason — because 11 neighborhood Pop Warner kids probably could have stopped the RedHawks too.

If Boise State’s defense wasn’t talked about enough in the days following the Oregon victory, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t respect for what occurred. The fist felt all around the Treasure Valley (and shown over and over again on the Bronco Stadium scoreboard) that was thrown by LeGarrette Blount was national news.

While Oregon quickly moved to suspend Blount, Boise State wasn’t quite as decisive or forthcoming. People are still in the dark over what Byron Hout’s discipline actually was or what Hout might have said to become the recipient of a right cross to the jaw.

So instead of some follow-up stories on the impressive defensive performance put together by defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox, the focus rightfully was on the fallout of the punch. If Boise State coach Chris Petersen would’ve revealed what Hout said, then everyone would have been able to judge whether or not the internal discipline was proper and people would have moved on a few days sooner.

At least Petersen got to experience the type of scrutiny he’ll face once he moves on to a BCS program. He learned the national media doesn’t accept non-answers and move on right away to the next topic like his local media does.

But if there are Boise State fans who truly feel the team’s defense is being shortchanged, that could all change Friday night. The Broncos play a Fresno State team that has an impressive stable of offensive weapons. Shut down the Bulldogs in a similar way to Oregon — the Fresno State game is also on ESPN — and there can’t be any doubt that Boise State is a good defensive team.

You have to believe Pat Hill’s Fresno State squad will be pumped up for this contest and not just because it’s the Western Athletic Conference opener for both teams. The highly competitive Hill must still be having nightmares of that 61-10 thumping Boise State put on his team last season.

Anyway, Boise State is getting plenty of respect — both as a team and for its defensive prowess. And the Broncos can receive a lot more if they notch a convincing victory against Fresno State.


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