Wed Oct 05 01:39pm EDT
In 2001, his brother David was the quarterback for the No. 8 Bulldogs and they had just appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated when an unranked, relatively unknown Boise State team came into town. The Broncos were making their first foray into the WAC after defecting from the Big West, and were still five seasons removed from the 2007 Fiesta Bowl win over Oklahoma that would vault the program into the national limelight. So there was no reason to think that a team that had never beaten the Bulldogs would ultimately destroy what was shaping up as the best season in school history.
But that's exactly what happened. Boise State upset the Bulldogs 35-30 in Fresno. According to the Idaho Statesman, David Carr never forgot it — and he's passed the burden of revenge on to his younger brother.
The Carr family hasn't forgotten.
In fact, David Carr placed a Boise State flag in his little brother Derek's living room when Derek arrived at Fresno State in 2009. Carr, a redshirt sophomore, will get his first shot at the Broncos on Friday night.
"That was my brother's little moment to mess with me," Carr said of the flag. "He said I can't take it down till we beat them."
The flag is not popular with teammates.
"It's definitely come down a lot," Carr said. "I have to keep putting it back up."
Derek said he remembers watching the 2001 game from the stands above the ramp where players entered Bulldog Stadium "like it was yesterday." ("It made me feel for my brother, and it really made me want to come to Fresno State.") Since then, Fresno State is 1-8 against Boise State, the only win coming in 2005, losing by an average of 25.8 points per game. In the past three years, the Broncos have really poured it on, scoring 163 points, including last year's 51-0 blowout.
If there's one thing that plays in Fresno State's favor on Friday — and it may be the only one, besides the home field advantage — it's that Fresno State is undefeated against the Broncos when they're are in different conferences, which they now are with Fresno State in the WAC and Boise State in its first season in the Mountain West. The two teams had met three times when Boise State was in the Big West and the Bulldogs handled the Broncos easily. Of course that was more than a decade ago — before Boise rattled off a string of conference titles, national rankings, BCS bowl appearances and a Heisman-contending quarterback, Kellen Moore.
The chances of Carr taking that Boise State flag off his wall this year are slim to none. But, if the cosmos have their way, maybe it will come down the next time he sees the Broncos, when he's a senior in 2013.