Welcome to a fun off-season series that Michael, Hunter (both of FKWG), Zach, and Mike (both of MWCConnection) are rolling out for your viewing enjoyment (hopefully). Back in February, excitement was at an all time high for fans and coaches alike as the 2023 class was officially signed. Like every year, fans often tout a class as potentially one of the best on paper. However, once players get on campus and actually on the field, the true story begins to reveal itself. It can often take years for a class to truly be judged as the impact of many players won’t be seen for a few seasons. That being said, this series will aim to revisit and evaluate Boise State’s 2019 class. There has now been enough time that many members of the class have either left or are entering their final seasons, which means players are able to be looked at for their production (or lack thereof) rather than projection and hype.
Anyway, each week, the four of us will look at a different position group from the class. While we will contribute two posts each week over the next month, the location of the posts will change. The start of the week will feature a post on FKWG while the end of the week will see a post up on MWCConnection, that way readers of both sites can follow along. Each post will have all of us weighing in on the same talking points for each season: our expectations of the player from when they signed, the production they gave each season on the team, and their overall impact. The impact will fit into one of 3 categories (exceeded expectations, met expectations, or below expectations). We will each keep a running tally of our totals and then at the end we can each determine the over impact the 2019 class had. It should be a fun and interesting study to see what kind of careers each player had and revisit some names that may have been forgotten.
The 2019 recruiting class was arguably the best in Boise State history and one of the best classes by a Group of 5 school ever. It was flooded with four-stars and other highly-rated players and seemed poised to make a big impact on the field for the Broncos. It definitely raised the ceiling for what the coaching staff could do on the recruiting trail. Perhaps more importantly, this class raised the floor for BSU recruiting as well, as not many players would be labeled as projects or under-the-radar types. But how has it translated on the field? To hear our thoughts on specific players from the class, read below.
Part 7: Linebacker
Boise State appeared to step it up a notch when recruiting linebackers in this class. Although they only took two, both of them were highly rated-players. Unfortunately, one never arrived on campus and the other ended up transferring.
Expectations when he signed: Pretty high. He had some fun highlights and seemed like he was going to be a stud.
2019 Season: Left to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
2020 Season: Cont’d
2021 Season: Completed his mission and then never came back to BSU. Actually ended up walking on at Washington State.
2022 Season: Left Wazzu to join the Utes in Salt Lake.
Overall Impact: 0 impact. Did not meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: Solid get. Lolani had great production in HS and correctly took the ‘Broncs over some P5s. He wasn’t the star LB of the class, so maybe that lowered expectations some, but I think many thought he’d be on the field.
2019 Season: Decided to serve a mission (which would put him out 2 years, COVID willing).
2020 Season: Still mission-ing
2021 Season: Went to Wazzu.
2022 Season: Somehow got to Utah?
Overall Impact: None. Wasn’t ever really on the team. Did not meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: Langi was a huge get. He seemed like he would be a huge boost to the linebacker group. There was some uncertainty of whether or not he was going on an LDS mission, so when he would arrive on campus was a mystery.
2019 Season: Decided to go an LDS mission.
2020 Season: N/A
2021 Season: Decided to attend Washington State instead.
2022 Season: Ended up at Utah where he saw some action on special teams.
Overall Impact: Langi never even stepped foot on campus. So he failed to meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: I thought Langi would a fantastic addition to this class. He was a late get, committing in January, and seemed like he would go a long way towards solidifying the linebacker position for years to come.
2019 Season: Lolani surprised everyone, including the coaches, by announcing he would be taking a two-year LDS mission.
2020 Season: Serving an LDS mission, but there were lots of whispers he was not going to return to attend Boise State.
2021 Season: When his mission was completed, Langi announced he was walking on at Washington State. That lasted until May when he announced he would be transferring. He suited up for Utah during the season and redshirted.
2022 Season: Lolani played in about half the game, primarily on special teams. After the season, he transferred once again.
Overall Impact: He has failed to meet expectations at any of the three schools he has been associated with. Maybe the fourth time is a charm?
Expectations when he signed: Very, very high. He was coming here to play linebacker, but still. I mean, look at this. He was a four-star talent and a man among boys in high school. Let’s see how that went for him.
2019 Season: Redshirt.
2020 Season: One tackle
2021 Season: One tackle.
2022 Season: Switched to TE and then switched from the school entirely.
Overall Impact: By all accounts, Casey was a good dude and teammate. That said, he very much fell short of very high expectations that he had deservedly generated. He was a menace in his prep career. He seemed like he was going to be a big deal, but…on the field, that never materialized at Boise State. Did not meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: Golden child. Along with his ability to play football, it was rumored he had plans of curing cancer on campus. Realistically, he was one of the highest rated prospects in school history, especially on defense.
2019 Season: Redshirt on a bluefield.
2020 Season: Logged one tackle.
2021 Season: Logged another tackle.
2022 Season: There was talk he moved to TE, and that’s the last thing I heard before he portaled.
Overall Impact: Sadly, none. Hopefully he finds success at Central Oklahoma U, but things didn’t work out in the City of Trees. Did not meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: Kline is one of the highest ranked prospects in program history. There was speculation that he would be able to make an immediate impact.
2019 Season: Redshirted, which was a surprise.
2020 Season: Saw the field sparingly on special teams and in mop up duty.
2021 Season: Played in the majority of the games, but barely saw the field.
2022 Season: Kline moved to tight end, but the writing was on the wall and he decided to enter the transfer portal.
Overall Impact: Kline had huge expectations coming in. He was expected to be a force and had potential NFL upside according to most recruiting websites. Unfortunately, it never panned out and he failed to meet expectations.
Expectations when he signed: Even before Kline committed, I thought he was a can’t-miss prospect would play right away and be a game-changing cornerstone on the defense during his time with the Broncos. I considered him one of the crown jewels of this recruiting class.
2019 Season: He redshirted, which was a bit unexpected. I thought he would at least get in a few games while preserving his red shirt. It sounded like he was injured, so I figured his future was still bright.
2020 Season: Casey got in a few games, five of them to be exact, and according to the internet, he assisted on one tackle.
2021 Season: I thought this was his do-or-die season, and unfortunately, there was no breakout for Kline. He played in nine games as a defensive end and once again, he managed to get one assisted tackle.
2022 Season: It was announced that Casey was transitioning to tight end, which to me spelled the end of any hope he would be a contributor in his career. Following fall camp, he announced he was entering the transfer portal to find a place he could get on the field.
Overall Impact: For someone I thought was recruit guaranteed to be a success, Kline undoubtedly failed to meet expectations. I hope he can find some on-the-field success at a new school for his last season or two.
Michael: 2 exceeded expectations, 2 met expectations, 12 failed to meet expectations
Hunter: 0 exceeded expectations, 4 met expectations, 12 failed to meet expectations
Zach: 0 exceeded expectations, 4 met expectations, 12 failed to meet expectations.
Mike: 1 exceeded expectations, 4 met expectations, 11 failed to meet expectations.