Game Recap: Brigham Young Cougars 55, UNLV Rebels 7

There has been noticeable progress in Provo by the Brigham Young Cougars. The BYU offense needed a breakout game. Well, 328 yards total offense isn't exactly a breakout game, unless all of those yards come in the first half. Those 328 yards resulted in 38 points. The offense scored in just about every way possible: a long sustained drive (11 plays, 86 yards), a quick strike (2 plays, 58 yards), a lot of short drives (5 scoring drives were less than 50 yards), on the ground, and through the air. The offense even moved into field goal range in just 30 seconds to tack on three more as the half expired. BYU ended the day with 516 total yards, 300 yards passing, and 216 rushing.

BYU had struggled to score this year. The offense had not scored more than 24 points in an entire game. With Mitch Payne's field goal at the end of the second quarter, BYU scored 24 points in just that quarter alone.

The BYU defense was just as fabulous. Brian Logan set the tone by intercepting UNLV quarterback Omar Clayton on the first play of the game. UNLV only crossed midfield once in the first half, and when they did, Jameson Frazier immediately ended that threat by making another interception. The D only gave up 144 yards for the game.

UNLV showed they really are Rebels as they refused to cooperate. They ended BYU's bid for a shutout with 41 seconds left.

PLAY OF THE GAME: 37-yard Jake Heaps to Cody Hoffman touchdown pass. With this play the rout was officially on. It capped a 2 play 58 yard scoring drive, and made it 28-0.

PLAYER OF THE GAME: Jake Heaps, 19-31, 294 yards, 2 TD, 0 Int., Pass Eff. 162.25

Things to watch for:

  1. Home Field Disadvantage? The home field was not a disadvantage this year. This was the biggest win by BYU ever in the series. The 48 point win is 3 points better than the 52-7 win in 2006.
  2. Will another receiver step up? Luke Ashworth had another solid game with 5 receptions for 83 yards and a TD. Cody Hoffman and McKay Jacobson joined Ashworth in the offensive onslaught. Hoffman didn't have big numbers, but he made the big catch for the first TD pass. Jacobson had 7 catches for 70 yards.
  3. How many rushing yards? A big fat 22. For a defense that gave up so many rushing yards to teams like Florida State, Air Force, Utah State, and Nevada, this has to make them feel good.
  4. Cody Hoffman on kick returns. Hoffman only had one opportunity, and he returned it 50 yards. His potential on returns is one positive that isn't getting much attention, which plays to his favor.

Other observations:

  • We are known. The offensive strategy to be “run first” is no longer a secret. Teams are preparing for it and gearing to stop the run. Heaps and the receivers have to be able to continue to produce the way they did today, otherwise BYU won't keep winning and won't go bowling.
  • A win streak! It took nine games, but BYU finally has a win streak. For the first time this year BYU has won back-to-back games.
  • How is this for offensive balance. Four different players scored the first four touchdowns. Joshua Quezada, J.J. Di Luigi, and Bryan Kariya took turns scoring on the ground before Cody Hoffman caught the next touchdown. On the day, five Cougars scored.
  • Three Touchdowns. Joshua Quezada ran for three touchdowns. He is the first true freshman to do that since Curtis Brown did it against Utah State in 2002.
  • Freshman Firsts. Jake Heaps now holds the BYU freshman record for most yards passing (1,351) and wins (3). Matt Berry had 1,309 yards and two wins in 2002.
  • The 55-0 curse. The last time BYU had a 55-0 lead was against Wyoming in 2006. Wyoming ended up scoring on a fluke 71-yard run in the fourth quarter. Should have kicked the field goal to make it 58-0 instead of going for the first down on 4th and 8.

NEXT: at Colorado State
DATE: November 13
TIME: 12:00 PM (MST)

Other recent posts on BYU FOOTBALL TALK:
Game Preview: Brigham Young Cougars vs. UNLV Rebels
Thursday Trivia: Win-Loss Record in November
Fabulous? Freshman Contributions for the Brigham Young Cougars
Poll Results: Which game will be the hardest to win
Flashback: Steve Sarkisian Has Only 70 Yards Passing (1996)