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Kyle Brotzman is doing fine a year after missed field goals

COLLEGE FOOTBALL SPOTLIGHT

The former Boise State kicker denies rumors that he was depressed after missing field-goal attempts against Nevada that cost the Broncos a berth in the Rose Bowl. Boise beat Nevada, 30-10, on Saturday.

October 01, 2011|By Mike Hiserman
  • Boise State kicker Kyle Brotzman has shaken off his kicking woes of last season.
Boise State kicker Kyle Brotzman has shaken off his kicking woes of last… (Dean Hare / Associated Press )

Kyle Brotzman understood why his phone was ringing all last week.

Boise State was playing football against Nevada on Saturday and lots of folks were curious about what happened to one of the most infamous goats in the college game's recent history.

Brotzman, in case you spent the end of last season under a rock, was the Boise State kicker who missed a 26-yard field-goal attempt at the end of regulation, then another 29-yard chip shot in overtime that allowed Nevada to pull an upset that knocked Cinderella Boise out of the Rose Bowl.

Afterward, there were rumors about threats made against him, and reports he was dangerously depressed.

The truth? In a phone interview, Brotzman chuckled and said, "Yes, there were threats made. People get excited about a game, and sometimes they get wrapped up in it and take things a little too far.

"I understood it. I was disappointed, too, but I didn't get depressed. I know I didn't lose a game. I just didn't win it."

Yes, a year later, Brotzman is doing just fine. He coaches the football team's kickers at Rocky Mountain High in his hometown of Meridian, Idaho. He is refereeing soccer games. And, when the Arena Football League starts up again next year, he will be handling the kicking duties for the Utah Blaze.

Of the Boise-Nevada game, he said, "A win would make me feel good. It's a little bit of revenge because they got us last year. But I already feel good no matter what."

Brotzman joined Boise's football team as a non-scholarship player and ended up the highest-scoring player in Football Bowl Subdivision history. He had hoped an NFL team would give him a look, but that didn't work out, and the only Canadian Football League team that was interested wanted him to pay his own way to a tryout — which he couldn't afford.

Then the Blaze called two-thirds of the way through its AFL season. In six games, Brotzman became a force on special teams, quickly picking up nuances so important to the indoor game — onside kicks and mastering how to use the nets to give his team the best field position.

He also made one of two field goals and 41 of 48 point-afters — a high percentage considering the goal posts are only 9 feet apart, about half the normal width.

The Blaze has already signed him for 2012, noting how valuable he had so quickly become.

"I'm happy," Brotzman said. "The future is bright."

And Boise got its payback, 30-10.

Doesn't add up

As the idiom goes, possession is nine-tenths of the law. However, it didn't mean much in the Air Force-Navy game.

Navy had the edge in total yardage, 466-359; in number of plays, 105-51; and in possession, a staggering 40 minutes 46 seconds to 19:14 — and lost, 35-34 in overtime.

The Midshipmen got beat because quarterback Kriss Proctor had a little too much to say to a couple of Air Force defenders after putting Navy up with a touchdown on its first possession in overtime. Proctor was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct, pushing the Midshipmen back 15 yards for the point-after conversion, which was blocked.

Air Force responded with a touchdown and Parker Herrington's PAT won it.

Afterward, Proctor and Navy Coach Ken Niumatalolo criticized the penalty, with Niumatalolo saying of the officials, "I hope those guys can sleep well tonight."

If they watch the replay, they will. Proctor appeared to earn the call against him.

Almost perfect

Turns out, Robert Griffin III is human after all.

Barely. The Baylor quarterback completed 23 of 31 passes for 346 yards and five touchdowns against Kansas State — but his first turnover of the year was converted into the field goal that handed the Bears their first loss.

Griffin came into the game with more touchdowns than incompletions, and he finished it not much worse for the wear. He has completed 93 of 113 passes for 1,308 yards with 18 touchdowns.

Ouch

What you don't know could hurt you.

Last week, after his Colorado team lost to Ohio State, Jon Embree took the unusual step of asking his counterparts on the Buckeyes coaching staff to share their appraisals of his players. Then he passed the information along.

Here's what Colorado tight end Matt Bahr said he heard: "I'm not a great route-runner, and I don't need to be covered very well because I'll probably drop the ball."

mike.hiserman@latimes.com

Times wire services contributed to this report.

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