Boise State has plenty of returning starters, but one of the biggest holes it has to fill is kicker. You may have thought that after Kyle Brotzman missed two crucial field goals against Nevada last year, costing the Broncos their undefeated season and a chance at a BCS game.
But Brotzman was a veteran four-year starter, a guy who left school as the highest scoring kicker in FBS history. He may be remembered for those misses. He may not have always been automatic, but he did anchor a position that Chris Petersen did not have to worry about over the course of the past several seasons.
Not so going into 2011. When asked about his kicker situation last week, Petersen joked that his team would always go for it on fourth down. Nobody has emerged as the bona fide starter so far during spring drills in a competition between Dan Goodale, Jimmy Pavel, Michael Frisina and Jacob Hauter. All four are walk-ons and should get opportunities in the spring game Saturday. Scholarship signee Jake Van Ginkel could end up coming in and taking the job when he arrives in time for fall practice.
Of the four who are in school now, Goodale has been the most improved. Like Brotzman, he is a walk-on from the state of Idaho.
Here is what Petersen said of Goodale: “If he can take another step -- and he needs to take another step -- between now and when we play in the fall, he can do some things for us.”