BSU Football spring practice

Boise State football coach Bryan Harsin observes members of his team as they go through drills during an early morning spring practice at the Caven-Williams Sports Complex March 1, 2018.

BOISE – It started to feel a little bit more like football season at Boise State’s practice Tuesday.

Florida State’s famed War Chant (the tomahawk chop) could be heard playing from the parking lot and the Broncos practiced inside, turning up the heat to simulate the conditions they’ll face when they open the season against the Seminoles on Aug. 31 in Jacksonville.

“It’s hot right now but they made it a lot hotter in there,” linebacker Zeke Noa said. “It’s a simulation of how the season is going to start with Florida State. It was tough, but coach was talking about how it’s a mindset and a mentality to go out there and still play as hard as you can.”

The Broncos have done the same in previous years to prepare for season openers in the South. They cranked up the heat, watered the turf and hosed down players before practicing inside prior to games at Troy (2018) and Louisiana-Lafayette (2016).

The combination of heat and water again made for an uncomfortably hot and humid practice Tuesday as the Broncos tried to create the conditions they’ll face at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville in a few weeks.

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“We’ve been down to Louisiana and Alabama and both were very hot states,” tight end Matt Pistone said. “I think the indoor, heating that up and wetting us down, is as close as you can get to being down in the South, so it gets us a pretty good look.

“We keep the intensity up and the tempo up so it’s hard to catch up on your breath and all that. You have to keep mentally focused and prepared.”

And that was made even tougher during some portions of practice when the Tomahawk Chop was blasted over the loud speakers. The Broncos will hear Florida State’s famous chant plenty when they meet on Aug. 31, so why not get used to that as well?

“The game is coming up quick,” Pistone said. “We’re all really excited and all preparing and doing everything we can to prepare to play our best in Florida.”

Players were rewarded with shaved ice after practice to help them cool off.

B.J. Rains is the Boise State beat writer for the Idaho Press and a two-time winner of the NSMA Idaho Sports Writer of the Year Award. Follow him on Twitter @BJRains.

B.J Rains has covered Boise State athletics for the Idaho Press since 2013. He is an Associated Press Top 25 men's basketball poll voter, and also contributes to KBOI-TV as a Boise State insider.

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