Boise State’s Kellen Moore deserves better final-game stage than Las Vegas Bowl

Posted: 12/22/2011 in college football
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Few things describe being a have-not in the college football landscape better than the fact that Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore will end his stellar career in one of the third-tier, pre-Christmas Day bowl games.

One of the top players in college football history wraps up his career in the MAACO Las Vegas Bowl, well before any of the important bowl games are played. What a shame.

Boise State joined the Mountain West Conference this season and an 11-1 record landed them in the same bowl destination as they went as members of the Western Athletic Conference a year ago. Apparently, school administrators must not have done their bowl legwork prior to the joining the Mountain West and seeing what poor bowl game options the league has negotiated.

So Moore ends his career tonight against a middle-of-the-pack Pac-12 team in Arizona State. The Sun Devils played in the weakest division known to man this season and couldn’t beat out a very poor UCLA squad for the right to lose to Oregon in the conference title game.

Arizona State (6-6) lost its last four games and fired coach Dennis Erickson. (see stellar preview here —

Moore deserves a better final stage. He holds the NCAA record for wins by a quarterback – he is 49-3 – and ranks second in career passing touchdowns (140) and fifth in career passing yardage (14,374).

He passed for 3,507 yards and 41 touchdowns as a senior but was never more than a second-tier Heisman Trophy candidate. And he fell off the award’s radar when the Broncos lost 36-35 to TCU in November.

That game could have been Moore’s chance to get back in the Heisman race but coach Chris Petersen suddenly lost all doses of aggressive play-calling and decided to settle for a field-goal attempt in the final seconds and Dan Goodale’s 39-yarder sailed far to the right.

Leaving your BCS bowl game hopes on an inconsistent freshman kicker that Petersen stopped using after the miss was ludicrous, even more so when you have college football’s winningest quarterback wearing your uniform.

If Moore comes through and throws a game-winning touchdown pass on those extra couple shots, then Boise State is playing on the type of stage that Kellen Moore deserves to end his career.

But instead, it’s the Las Vegas Bowl. That’s normally not a bad place to spend a week.

But in college football parlance, that’s one sad way for Boise State’s all-time best player to compete for the final time as a collegian.


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