In the last year Troy Calhoun spent as an assistant coach in the NFL, his Houston Texans faced the Tennessee Titans and their rookie quarterback Vince Young.

Young ran for a 20-yard touchdown and threw for a 20-yard score and the Titans won, a game made all the more memorable because the Texans had passed on Young, a Houston native, with the first pick in the draft six months earlier.

As Calhoun evaluates Boise State freshman quarterback Taylen Green, he sees the same type of player he saw in 2006.

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“No two players are ever exactly the same, but, truly, the resemblance is to Vince Young,” Calhoun said. “You’ve got a guy who is 6-(foot)-5-plus, who is 215 pounds, is a really, I mean incredible talent. Ever since he’s gone in there, they’ve been a completely different team.”

The difference Green has made in Boise State’s season is similar to what Arion Worthman brought to Air Force in 2016 when he replaced Nate Romine midseason and led the team to a season-ending six-game winning season, in large part thanks to his legs.

Calhoun opted for a comparison of a 1985 Oklahoma team that switched from Troy Aikman to Jamelle Holieway and won a national championship.

Given the home state of this week’s opponent, it can be chalked up to a potato/pot(ah)to difference.

When Boise State made the switch from multiyear starter Hank Bachmeier to Green, the Broncos were 2-2 and had just been soundly defeated at UTEP. They then trailed 13-0 at halftime against San Diego State. It looked like this longtime juggernaut was on a trajectory that was angling toward a full-on crash.

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On the first play of the second half vs. San Diego State, the Broncos picked off a pass. Green ran to the right for 14 yards. On the next play he ran to the left for a 17-yard touchdown.

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The comeback was on (Boise State won 35-13), and it hasn’t stopped. They’ve outscored their opponents 75-20 since the start of that second half and enter Falcon Stadium for a 5 p.m. game on Saturday at 4-2, 3-0 Mountain West — positioned to all but eliminate Air Force (5-2, 2-2) with a win.

Green is 34-of-56 passing with two touchdowns and three interceptions. He also has a pair of 100-yard rushing games in his three appearances, scoring four touchdowns.

“I know he’s fast,” Air Force linebacker Johnathan Youngblood said. “He’s agile; he can jump. As coach told us, he was some big long jumper, triple-jumper (as a senior in Allen, Texas, Green set personal bests of 22-foot-6.75 in the long jump and 43-4.5 in the triple jump). The comparison to Vince Young is probably spot on.”

Green isn’t the established passer that Air Force has faced from Boise State quarterbacks like Bachmeier (who has since left the team) or his predecessor, current Denver Broncos Hank Bachmeier; but his running sets him apart.

The Falcons see run-first quarterbacks each year against the service academies, but Calhoun dismissed any advantage gained by that because the formations and offenses are so different.

Maybe the most comparable skillset the Falcons have seen in an opposing quarterback was UNLV’s Armani Rogers in 2017, when the 6-foot-5, 225-pound freshman threw for 145 yards, ran for 148, and helped the Rebels to a 30-7 lead before collapsing in a 34-30 Falcons’ victory.

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But maybe the best comparison will end up being Josh Allen, the Buffalo Bills star who helped Wyoming topple Air Force twice in a row in 2016 and 2017.

Allen became a first-round pick, just like Vince Young. Is Taylen Green on that path?

It doesn’t sound like Calhoun would argue against the possibility.

“To be 6-foot-5 and be that electric,” he said, “he’s something else.”

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