Boise State’s NFL Draft streak was snapped. Will a powerful runner get picked next year?

Boise State offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter compares running back Ashton Jeanty to former Bronco Doug Martin, who was the 31st overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft and enjoyed a seven-year career in the league.

Former Boise State running backs coach Keith Bhonapha compared Jeanty to a bowling ball because of the way he runs through tacklers. Current running backs coach James Montgomery just calls him money.

“He’s a sure thing because of how he works,” Montgomery said. “The same effort fans see on Saturdays, we see every day on the practice field and in meeting rooms.”

No matter what they call him, Boise State’s coaches know there’s a good chance they’ll be telling Jeanty goodbye next April if he has anything close to the kind of season he had last year.

Boise State’s 14-year streak of having at least one player drafted came to an end over the weekend. Running back George Holani and offensive lineman Cade Beresford earned undrafted free-agent opportunities, but no Broncos were picked in the draft.

Transfer portal: Boise State is down to two quarterbacks competing for starting job

Jeanty may be the team’s best chance to start a new streak.

He was named Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year last season after leading the conference with 1,347 rushing yards. He ranked No. 2 in the conference with 19 total touchdowns (14 rushing) and led the country in yards after contact for part of the year.

Jeanty also ranked No. 2 at Boise State in receptions (43) and receiving yards (569) and tied former Boise State wide receiver Eric McAlister with a team-high five touchdown catches.

Jeanty certainly seems to have first-round talent, but running backs have become so devalued in the NFL that it’s rare to see one go in the first 32 picks anymore.

No running backs were picked in the first round this year. Only two have gone in the first round in the past three years, both of whom were selected last year: Bijan Robinson, who went to the Falcons, and Jahmyr Gibbs, who was picked by the Lions.

It’s way too early to know if Jeanty will get invited to Green Bay, Wisconsin, for the 2025 NFL Draft or when he’ll come off the board, but one thing does seem certain. If he decides to throw his name in the hat, Boise State will have the beginnings of a new draft streak.

Here’s a look at a few more Boise State players who have a chance to hear their names called in the draft next April.

WR Chris Marshall — Marshall joined the Broncos this year as the No. 1 junior college transfer in the country, according to 247Sports. He’s only been on campus since January, but he’s already shown flashes of NFL talent. The 6-foot-3, 208-pound native of Missouri City, Texas, looks like an NFL receiver. His long arms and sturdy frame help him win one-on-one battles, and his instincts were on display during several acrobatic catches near the sidelines this spring. Marshall began his college career at Texas A&M in 2022 and had a brief stint at Ole Miss in 2023. He has two years of eligibility left, but don’t be surprised to see him enter the draft early if he plays up to his potential this year.

DE Ahmed Hassanein — Hassanein led the Broncos with 12.5 sacks last season. He’s the first Boise State player to rack up more than 10 in a season since Curtis Weaver, who was picked by the Dolphins in the fifth round of the 2020 draft. Hassanein is still raw as a football player. He didn’t start playing until he moved to the U.S. from Egypt when he was 16, but players get drafted every year based on how they test and he seems like the kind of athlete who’s going to pop in workouts, especially given his background in CrossFit. The key to Hassanein getting drafted may be getting invited to the NFL Scouting Combine.

OL Ben Dooley — Dooley has dealt with injuries the past two years, but Boise State’s coaches have called him one of, if not the, best offensive lineman on the team since he made his first career start in 2021. The 6-5, 310-pound graduate student has started 28 games the past three seasons and played three different positions: right tackle and right and left guard.

K Jonah Dalmas — It’s not often that a kicker gets drafted, but it’s not unheard of. The San Francisco 49ers picked former Michigan kicker Jake Moody in the third round in 2023. Dalmas has a chance to end his career as the most productive kicker in NCAA history, which should improve his chances of getting drafted. He already owns Boise State’s career field goals record with 80. He needs just four to break the Mountain West career record and 18 to break the NCAA record, which former N.C. State kicker Christopher Dunn set at 97 in 2022.

More players to keep an eye on: WR Cam Camper, DE Tavion Woodard, NT Sheldon Newton, DT Herbert Gums, CB Markel Reed, CB A’Marion McCoy, DB Seyi Oladipo.