LARAMIE, Wyo. – The Boise State Broncos showing off their talent against Wyoming sat just fine with coach Chris Petersen.
Showing up the Cowboys, though, simply wasn't acceptable.
Petersen sat standout receiver Austin Pettis for much of the game after he somersaulted into the end zone during the third-ranked Broncos' 51-6 rout of Wyoming on Saturday night.
Respectfulness is just as important to Petersen as rankings.
"There's a right way to do it and a wrong way," Petersen said. "We'll live and learn. Message sent."
That was about the only blemish on the Broncos' performance. They were efficient and effective all night.
Kellen Moore threw for 370 yards and two touchdowns and Boise State's defense forced three turnovers as the Broncos extended their winning streak to 16.
The Broncos (2-0) showed no signs of rust after a 12-day rest, piling up 648 total yards. They scored 37 straight points to begin the game, allowing Moore & Co. to watch the final quarter from the sideline.
This time, their fast start held up. That's contrary to the season-opening game against Virginia Tech when the Hokies came back from a 17-point deficit and the Broncos needed a late drive to pull out a 33-30 win.
"We didn't want to go out and not do anything in the second half," Petersen said. "That's so typical of teams sometimes — if you get a big lead to kind of trip all over yourself. We really didn't want to do that."
Moore, a Heisman hopeful, led the Broncos offense, spreading around the wealth as he threw long TD passes to both Pettis and Titus Young.
Young had 94 yards on four catches, hauling in a 49-yard pass as he simply flew past Wyoming (1-2).
Pettis finished with three catches for 88 yards, including a 58-yard TD reception on a flea-flicker in which he punctuated the score by somersaulting into the end zone, drawing a penalty.
He only played basically on special teams after his first-quarter flip.
Doug Martin finished with 105 yards and a touchdown and defensive lineman Shea McClellin added another score by pouncing on the football in the end zone.
The Boise State defense came up big all night, holding the Cowboys to minus-21 yards rushing and 135 total yards. The team put constant pressure on quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels, picking off two of his passes.
Carta-Samuels got the Cowboys on the board in the third quarter when he connected with fullback Greg Saydjari on a 35-yard TD, the result of a breakdown in the Broncos' secondary.
While the Broncos were idle, they dropped seven of their eight first-place votes. Virginia Tech's loss to lower-tier James Madison didn't help, tainting the Broncos' big win.
Boise State has been waiting all week for another chance to show the team is worthy of the national title talk.
The Broncos know to get back into the conversation they can't just win, they have to win convincingly.
And they can't just look good — they have to look spectacular.
This helped their cause.
"The style points aren't for the country, they're for us," Moore said. "We're able to execute the way we wanted to. You still have to come out in the second half and get that momentum going."
Boise State could've scored more, but had a long punt return called back and three drives stall out inside Wyoming's territory, leading to three field goals from Kyle Brotzman.
"Boise State looked the part of a top-ranked team," Wyoming coach Dave Christensen said. "They were everything they were built up to be."
The danger heading into this game for the Broncos was glancing ahead. But Boise State's concentration was squarely on Wyoming, even with a matchup against No. 25 Oregon State looming next week. The Beavers held off Louisville, 35-28, earlier in the day.
That game will have a national audience, with ESPN's GameDay hosting from Boise, Idaho.
"About time," Petersen said.
As for all those questions about Boise State's validity as a national contender resurfacing again, Petersen said his team can handle it.
"We don't listen," Petersen said, grinning. "We're used to it."
The Broncos resorted to gadgetry to score their first offensive touchdown as Moore handed the ball off to D.J. Harper, who then flipped it back to Moore.
With the Wyoming defense taking the bait, Moore hit Pettis in stride.
Moore watched the play from his back after taking a hit, throwing his hands up in the air as Pettis somersaulted into the end zone.
Before the game, Wyoming held a moment of silence to honor freshman linebacker Ruben Narcisse, who was killed in a car accident in Colorado on Sept. 6.
The team handed out 5,000 T-shirts with "Ruben Narcisse, Always a Cowboy" printed on it and wore decals with his initials on their helmets.