- Associated Press - Monday, August 30, 2010

BOISE, IDAHO (AP) - Kellen Moore is uniquely indistinguishable. He’s modest and reserved, unlikely to draw attention to himself. At 6-feet tall and 186 pounds, he hardly looks the part of a football hero.

Yet much like the Boise State team he leads, Moore is so much more than the sum of his part, an undersized and overlooked small-town kid who has turned out to be Heisman Trophy contender.

“He’s a very calm person who does his homework so when he gets into tough situations he goes back to his basics and keeps it simple,” said his brother Kirby, a sophomore receiver for the third-ranked Broncos.

In two years as Boise State’s starting quarterback, Kellen Moore has thrown for more than 7,000 yards and 64 touchdowns with just 13 interceptions. Last year, his 39 touchdowns to three interceptions was the best ratio in NCAA history. He was a third-team AP All-American.

Maybe the most impressive number Moore has racked up is this: 26-1. That’s Boise State’s record with Moore heading into Monday night’s monumental opener against No. 10 Virginia Tech at FedEx Field in Landover, Md.

“Sometimes it feels like it’s gone for ever. Other days it seems fast,” Moore said. “you’re watching tape and see a clip and it’s two years ago and it feels like yesterday. Other times you think ‘I’ve been here a while,’ especially when you see the freshman.”

It was back when Moore was a redshirting freshman, three years ago, that he started displaying the attributes that have made him maybe the most successful QB in Boise State history.

Offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin, the coach who fought to give Moore a scholarship when Idaho and Eastern Washington were his only other suitors, said Moore’s performances during scrimmages that redshirt year convinced him the Broncos had unearthed a gem.

Harsin knew Moore’s background _ son of a coach, played in a pass-based offense in high school _ gave the kid the football smarts needed to do the job.

But in his first few weeks on campus, during basic drills, Moore never stood out. It wasn’t until Harsin threw Moore into a game setting, that the lackluster drills were forgotten.

“His freshman year we put him in a scrimmage and you see that’s where he really shines is in that game environment and being in that situation,” Harsin said.

For coach Chris Petersen, where Moore set himself apart was the film room, during hours of study. Even when it was certain Moore was never going to play, Petersen noticed he was paying the most attention.

“Here is this redshirt and he is engaged and maybe more engaged than some of the guys who are playing,” Petersen recalled. “Just the focus he would bring to the meetings and when you do that day after day after day you start to really reap the benefits.

“That’s a very simple concept that most can’t do day after day, stay engaged for a full hour in a meeting, totally engaged, but he could.”

For teammate Austin Pettis, it’s Moore’s knack for knowing what the receivers are about to do, even if a route is altered in the middle of a play, that makes the quarterback special.

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