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November 8, 2011LAS VEGAS (AP) Boise State is going to have to do more than simply stay perfect to remain on the fringes of the national title conversation.
A 48-21 win at UNLV Saturday night - with Kellen Moore throwing five touchdowns and passing ex-Texas star Colt McCoy as college football's winningest quarterback - wasn't enough to push the No. 5 Broncos any higher in the AP Top 25 despite No. 2 Alabama losing at home.
That's partially because Alabama went down in overtime to No. 1 LSU, but it's also because Boise State (8-0) wasn't fully convincing in its win over the Rebels.
Coach Chris Petersen says the Broncos will have to show more next week against TCU.
"We have to come out with a better game," Petersen said. "Credit to UNLV, we have to come out better."
And things may be getting tougher for Boise State, which lost starting running back Doug Martin in the second quarter with a leg injury. The injury isn't serious, Petersen said, but Martin finished with just six carries for 9 yards.
Boise State didn't really get its running game going until the fourth quarter, as D.J. Harper and Drew Wright each scored a touchdown. The backs combined for 21 carries on 156 yards.
By then, the game was well in hand - thanks to the Broncos' passing and a couple breaks along the way.
Petersen said Boise State needs to play well in all parts of the game to keep their standing in the eyes of poll voters.
"You need all three phases," offense, defense and special teams, he said. "If something is not clicking you hope one phase saves you."
Boise State has four games remaining, including home games against TCU, Wyoming and New Mexico and a game at San Diego State. Those opponents have a combined record of 17-12, and three have winning records.
The Broncos were 46 points behind No. 4 Alabama in the AP Top 25 poll released Sunday, though the Broncos got the only first-place vote besides LSU.