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Monday, December 31, 2012

BYU LB Kyle Van Noy staying for senior season

In a press release from the Brigham Young Cougars, Kyle Van Noy made it official that he will stay for his senior season. Van Noy was named second-team All-American and Poinsettia Bowl Defensive MVP in 2012.

Just his style: BYU WR Cody Hoffman uses Twitter to announce return for senior season

By now, you have probably heard that Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Cody Hoffman has announced he will return for his senior season. It should have come as no surprise that Hoffman used Twitter to make it official.

BYU in NFL, Week 17: Unga activated, Fangupo crosses the country, Poppinga still popping people

The most exciting part of the final week in the NFL regular season for former Brigham Young Cougars was Harvey Unga finally being active for a game. Hebron Fangupo continued to play musical chairs leaving Seattle for Pittsburgh. Brady Poppinga continued to be a solid contributor in Dallas.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ranking Kyle Van Noy's Four Touchdowns

With two touchdowns in the Poinsettia Bowl, Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Kyle Van Noy now has four career touchdowns. Rarely does a defensive player score a touchdown. It is even rarer that a defensive player scores two in his collegiate career.

Recognizing how unique Van Noy's achievement was, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL used his touchdowns as the subject of this week's poll question. We asked site visitors "Which Kyle Van Noy touchdown is your favorite?"

Thursday, December 27, 2012

All things Brett Keisel--his football career, his charity work, his future after football, and his Monday Night Football intro

The grandpa of former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL is Brett Keisel. He is in his 11th professional season—all with the Pittsburgh Steelers. BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL spoke with Keisel the Diesel recently to ask him about his NFL career, his abundance of charity work, and whether his Monday Night Football introduction is a sign that he is at odds with BYU.

BYU Football: Did you know? (Kyle Van Noy's Pick-6)

Over the last two seasons, Brigham Young Cougars fans have gotten used to Kyle Van Noy doing what has rarely, if ever, done at BYU. He did several things in the Poinsettia Bowl that validate this statement. One that deserves special attention is his 17-yard interception return for a touchdown.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Flashback: BYU blocks last second field goal to win second consecutive Las Vegas Bowl

Five years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars won their second consecutive bowl game in an improbable way.

Former BYU linebacker Poppinga flourishing as a utility knife for the Dallas Cowboys

Four weeks ago, former Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Brady Poppinga was out of football. After playing six seasons for the Green Bay Packers, including the 2010 season when the Packers won the Super Bowl, Poppinga injured his knee and was not brought back for the 2011 season. He popped up in St. Louis the next year and made 51 tackles in 15 games. That wasn’t good enough to satisfy Rams’ management, and he was without a place to play in 2012. Then he got a call from the Dallas Cowboys.

Brigham Young Cougars set three Poinsettia Bowl records, tie three others

The Brigham Young Cougars extended their school record for most consecutive bowl wins to four last week when they won the Poinsettia Bowl. BYU also continued its streak record setting play in bowl games. BYU set or tied six official Poinsettia Bowl records.

Monday, December 24, 2012

BYU vs. San Diego State Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

The Brigham Young Cougars finished the 2012 football season with a 23-6 win over the San Diego State Aztecs. It was a memorable game in many ways.

BYU in NFL Report, Week 16: Keisel and Poppinga strong in defeat, So’oto changes teams again, Fangupo active in Seattle

Two former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL had their best games of the season. Four others were solid contributors for their teams. Vic So’oto has a new home, but there is a familiar face. Hebron Fangupo was cut from the Houston Texans before the season began, but now has a home with the Seahawks.

Friday, December 21, 2012

BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy shows he is ready for the NFL

Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Kyle Van Noy was the obvious star of the Poinsettia Bowl. With each tackle, sack, interception, fumble recovery, blocked punt, and touchdown the junior recorded it was also obvious that Van Noy is ready to play in the NFL.

BYU defense delivers Poinsettia Bowl win by getting offensive

Whoever coined the old adage “defense wins games,” probably didn’t have this in mind, but it nonetheless was true in the Brigham Young Cougars 23-6 Poinsettia Bowl win over the San Diego State Aztecs. Whatever else can be said of the season, it has been a great year for the BYU defense, and they capped a phenomenal year with an even more incredible finish.

BYU vs San Diego State: Poinsettia Bowl 5 Game Observations

In a fourth quarter blockbuster performance, the Brigham Young Cougars extend their series dominance over San Diego State to six games straight.  Without a single touchdown until the fourth quarter, both teams had difficulty with field position and making things happen in the red zone. But the BYU defense led by a stellar Kyle Van Noy paved the way for James Lark and the offense to get the ball moving. Clutch punting by Riley Stephenson put the Aztecs within the 3-yard line four times in the game.

Here are my five game observations from the Poinsettia Bowl Thursday night:

BYU vs. San Diego State: Mo Moments

The Brigham Young Cougars beat the San Diego State Aztecs 23-6 in the Poinsettia Bowl. Perhaps more than any other BYU game this season, the Poinsettia Bowl showed how the momentum from one play can completely change the dynamics of a game.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

BYU WR Cody Hoffman expected to have a big game in the Poinsettia Bowl

Kickoff for the Poinsettia Bowl between the Brigham Young Cougars and the San Diego State Aztecs is just hours away. By the end of the night there will be a winner and a loser. A Most Valuable Player will also be named. Should BYU be victorious, wide receiver Cody Hoffman is the popular choice for MVP.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Flashback: BYU sends off big senior class with dramatic bowl win

The 1983 Holiday Bowl represented the final game of their college football career for 33 Brigham Young Cougars. Many of these 33 players had been significant cogs in BYU bringing a 10-1 record and no. 9 national ranking into the game. On December 23, 1983, they left a lasting impression in the San Diego sod.

BYU vs. San Diego State: Poinsettia Bowl 5 Things to Watch For

The Brigham Young Cougars will head to the sunny coast on Thursday to battle the San Diego State Aztecs for the Poinsettia Bowl title.  This matchup between old WAC and MWC rivals will be a showcase of the Cougar defense and the Aztec offense.  With BYU’s quarterback still unannounced, San Diego State will have to prepare for the style of both Riley Nelson and James Lark.

Here are a few things to keep an eye on in Thursday’s bout:

BYU vs. San Diego State: A Grand Finale or A Fizzling Finish?

The Brigham Young Cougars (7-5) will conclude the 2012 season with the Poinsettia Bowl this Thursday against the San Diego State Aztecs (9-3). BYU can go out with a bang by beating the Aztecs or have a fizzling finish with one more disappointing loss. How the game will end, nobody knows, but one thing is certain—San Diego State won’t make it easy for the Cougars.

Monday, December 17, 2012

BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall’s Poinsettia Bowl chess match

Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall is in a Poinsettia Bowl chess match. It is clear that the chess match is focused on who will be the starting quarterback, but it isn’t so clear who Mendenhall is playing chess with. Is it San Diego State head coach Rocky Long, BYU boosters and fans, or Riley Nelson and James Lark?

BYU in NFL Report, Week 15: Pitta sets new career highs

The star of the week for former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL was clearly Dennis Pitta. He had his best day, individually, as a pro. Bryan Kehl had his best game of the season, and Brady Poppinga continued his immediate impact in Dallas. On a down note, Vic So’oto is no longer on the Packers’ active roster. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Brigham Young Cougars can’t treat the Poinsettia Bowl the same as any other game

One maxim that Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall lives by is to treat every game the same. Next week’s Poinsettia Bowl, however, is not just like any other game, and should be treated differently.

BYU Football: Did you know? (Holiday Bowl Records

Taking a look at the Poinsettia Bowl records that the Brigham Young Cougars could break next week made me wonder how many Holiday Bowl records BYU held. The Cougars from Provo played in the first seven Holiday Bowls and 11 total. It has been almost 20 years since BYU's last appearance (1993).

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Poinsettia Bowl records BYU could break or tie

The last two seasons, the Brigham Young Cougars have played in bowl games with a short history. This has resulted in BYU and its players breaking or tying several records for the respective bowls. In 2010, BYU set or tied 42 team and individual New Mexico Bowl records. Last year, BYU set or tied 17 team and individual Armed Forces Bowl records. The Poinsettia Bowl is another one of the newer bowls, which means the Cougars could repeat the record breaking performances of the last two years.

Here is a list of Poinsettia Bowl records that BYU, somewhat realistically, could break or tie. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Whether it's Nelson or Lark, the BYU offensive line is pivotal

The suspense over who will start at quarterback for the Brigham Young Cougars in the Poinsettia Bowl is capturing most of the headlines. As important as the quarterback position is, the offensive line may be just as pivotal to BYU winning the game as who is behind center.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Explaining why San Diego State loathes BYU

It was no secret that the Brigham Young Cougars would play in the Poinsettia Bowl this year. Once San Diego State became bowl eligible, it was no secret that bowl organizers were going to invite the hometown Aztecs to be BYU’s bowl opponent. San Diego State and its fans don’t make their feelings about BYU a secret: they don’t just hate BYU, they loathe the Cougars.

This deep hatred was manifest when BYU announced its move to independence. San Diego State was possibly the most vocal Mountain West Conference school criticizing BYU for the move.

The root of this loathing is less well known than the loathing itself, but I think I have figured out why.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Mendenhall says Nelson, fans want Lark, I say start whoever gives the best chance to win

Even before time had expired in the Brigham Young Cougars’ 50-14 win over the New Mexico State Aggies in James Lark’s first career start, many BYU fans had already formed an opinion about who should start at quarterback for the Cougars in the Poinsettia Bowl. They wanted an encore from Lark. Almost immediately following the game, BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall pronounced injured quarterback Riley Nelson as the starting quarterback, provided he is healthy by December 20. Who should it be, then: Nelson or Lark?

BYU in NFL Report, Week 14: Poppinga plays first game, Keisel gets lots of pressure, Pitta scores TD in tough loss

Three former Brigham Young Cougars played well, but their teams lost important games. NFL teams with former BYU players who rarely see the field, or don’t touch the ball did win.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Dennis Pitta talks playoff picture and making a Super Bowl run

Dennis Pitta is, arguably, the best tight end in Brigham Young Cougars history. He was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in April 2010 following his stellar BYU career. Pitta is the Ravens’ top tight end, and has 45 receptions for 442 yards and 4 touchdowns through the first 12 games this season.

Pitta was gracious enough to answer a few questions for BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (Cody Hoffman in December)

Earlier this week, Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Cody Hoffman was featured on BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL for his “November to Remember.” With an important bowl game looming for BYU, it is interesting to see what Hoffman has done in the month of December.

Snubbed: BYU punter Riley Stephenson should be a Ray Guy Award Finalist

Tonight as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show, the Augusta Sports Council will hand out the Ray Guy Award to the nation’s best punter. At least, that is the premise for the award. In reality the nation’s best punter might not have even been a finalist for the award. I speak of Brigham Young Cougars punter Riley Stephenson.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Will BYU ever have a second Heisman Trophy winner?

Former Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Ty Detmer was officially inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame on Tuesday. Detmer is BYU’s only Heisman Trophy winner. The 2012 Heisman Trophy will be awarded this Saturday. For the 21st year in a row, no BYU players have even a remote chance to win the award. In fact, it will be the biggest surprise of the season if any Cougars finish in the top 10 of Heisman voting.

Flashback: BYU goes to the land down under for final game of the season

Exactly 25 years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars were 8,473 miles from home playing a conference game against Colorado State. The Rams were an additional 293 miles from home. In Melbourne, Australia, BYU beat a Colorado State team that was tougher than their record would indicate in 1987.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

BYU WR Cody Hoffman has a November to Remember

It is just December 4, and I am already tired of the Lexus “December to Remember” commercials. One thing I never get tired of watching are Cody Hoffman highlights. The last two years, this Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver has had his own December to remember events. This year, he bumped it up a month and had an unforgettable November.

Monday, December 3, 2012

BYU in NFL Report, Week 13: Keisel, Denney, Kehl in the spotlight

There was more movement by former Brigham Young Cougars this week as the Kansas City Chiefs let go of Bryan Kehl. Brett Keisel and his Pittsburgh Steelers came out on top this week in the rematch of Steelers vs. Ravens. After making a clutch long snap last week, did John Denney contribute to the Donphins losing?

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 14 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

Four Brigham Young Cougars opponents have now won 10 games this season. Two others have the potential to win 10 games with their bowl game. Georgia Tech gave Florida State a scare, and did Oregon State run up the score in unsportsmanlike fashion? Six regular season opponents will play bowl games.

Friday, November 30, 2012

BYU coaches fortunate that Lark is a senior

For the better part of three seasons, the quarterback position has been unsettled for the Brigham Young Cougars. Quarterback play has often been inconsistent, which caused Bronco Mendenhall and the BYU offensive coaching staff to face a lot of heat from fans and in the media. These problems are expected to end next year with Taysom Hill as the heir apparent to the quarterback position.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (6 TD passes in one game)

After Brigham Young Cougars quarterback James Lark threw six touchdowns against New Mexico State, it was quickly pointed out that he was just the tenth BYU player to do so. What about among his contemporaries--the other quarterbacks playing college football in 2012?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

BYU vs. New Mexico State: Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

Sure the Brigham Young Cougars were playing "just" New Mexico State, but this was an exciting game that true football fans would appreciate.

Flashback: Unga's four touchdowns leads BYU over San Diego State

Interesting fact: the Brigham Young Cougars have never won a football game on November 28. Only once in the all the years since 1922 when BYU started playing football have the Cougars even played on today’s date. That was in 1936 against Colorado College. BYU lost that game 6-0. This site doesn’t feature losses in the weekly flashback. Therefore, in honor of the announcement this week that San Diego State will be BYU’s bowl opponent, let’s look back on how BYU thumped the Aztecs five years ago.

In Lark's shadow, the BYU defense played another great game

Brigham Young Cougars quarterback James Lark has received most of the attention after the 50-14 win over New Mexico State. That is understandable. Six touchdown passes and the most passing yards by any BYU quarterback in four years casts a long shadow. Hidden in that shadow was an equally strong defensive performance by the Cougar defense.

Pardon me, for a moment, while I shine a little bit of light on how well Kyle Van Noy, Ezekiel Ansah, Brandon Ogletree, and the boys played.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Brigham Young Cougars fans still strongly support head coach Bronco Mendenhall

After four consecutive 10-win seasons from 2006-09, the Brigham Young Cougars have won just 24 games the last three seasons. During the last three seasons, BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall has made several decisions that have caused some fans to question him, and even put him on the proverbial hot seat.

Has Mendenhall lost the support of the BYU fan base, or is this just a vocal minority that is really out numbered by the silent majority?

BYU in NFL, Week 12: Pitta scores a TD, Keisel gets an assist, Poppinga pops up in Dallas

Former Brigham Young Cougars Dennis Pitta and Brett Keisel made big plays, again, to set up another big clash of former Cougars as the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers meet again next week. For the second week in a row, a NFL team adds a former BYU player to its roster.

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 13 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

It was another 7-4 week for the Brigham Young Cougars opponents. With the news that BYU will play San Diego State in the Poinsettia Bowl, the Aztecs have been added at the bottom of the list. A couple of teams got big rivalry wins, while a couple had big rivalry losses. Two WAC teams won their tenth game of the season. Five BYU opponents are now ranked in the BCS Standings.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Lark leaves a mark in BYU record books and beyond

The Brigham Young Cougars turned to fifth-year senior James Lark to make his first career start against the New Mexico State Aggies. Three and a half quarters later, Lark had left his mark on the BYU record books. He also ensured a lasting legacy made of more than what the record books will remember.

BYU vs. New Mexico State: Mo Moments

The New Mexico State Aggies seized the momentum early against the Brigham Young Cougars. The Aggies also gained some momentum in the second half. The rest of the game, BYU had the momentum distinctly on its side.

BYU vs. New Mexico State: 5 Game Observations

Thanks to the Brigham Young Cougars tandem of Cody “Clutch” Hoffman and James “Lights out” Lark, there was a lot more to see against New Mexico State than just the “5 Things to Watch for” that BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL listed. While the 5 Game Observations will only revisit the five things, you can visit the Game Analysis page for links to the rest of BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL’s comprehensive coverage of the New Mexico State game.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Last Shall be First


Although senior quarterback James Lark was playing in his last regular season game, it was his very first start; but you wouldn’t have guessed as much just watching the game. Lark threw for 384 yards on 34 of 50  passing (68% completion rate), with 6 TDs in the Cougars 50-14 rout of the New Mexico State Aggies.

BYU vs. New Mexico State: 5 Things to Watch for

In the regular season finale for the Brigham Young Cougars, fans of the team can look for many things besides a win for the Cougars. Here are five.

BYU needs to come out sharp, put New Mexico State away early

The Brigham Young Cougars (6-5) will take on the New Mexico State Aggies (1-9) today. On the surface, there is nothing about this Aggies team that would appear to give BYU any kind of challenge. If BYU doesn't come out sharp and put the Aggies away early, then this game could get interesting in the second half.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (Leading Tackler Brandon Ogletree)

Brandon Ogletree has been the leading tackler for the Brigham Young Cougars each of the last two seasons. Therefore, it was surprising to see Ogletree had the 9th most tackles in last Saturday's game at San Jose State.

BYU Football: 5 Things to be Thankful for

The 2012 football season has been trying for Brigham Young Cougars fans. This makes it a little hard to feel thankful on this special holiday. There are, however, several reasons for BYU football fans to give thanks. Here are five.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Flashback: BYU rushes for 337 yards in upset of Colorado State

Exactly 53 years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars took on the Colorado State Rams in the season finale. Colorado State was 6-3 and second place in the Skyline Conference. BYU was having a disappointing season. After back-to-back winning seasons in 1957 and 1958, BYU was just 2-7 in head coach Tally Stevens’ first season.

BYU coaches should have played the backup quarterback against San Jose State

Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Riley Nelson passed for 335 yards and came close to rallying his team to victory after trailing the San Jose State Spartans by 13 points in the fourth quarter. Nelson also turned the ball over three times in scoring position, made several errant throws, and suffered a painful injury.

The BYU coaching staff kept Nelson in the game for every offensive play. Was that the right thing to do?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The irony of fan desperation for BYU to join a conference

The Brigham Young Cougars have been involved in the conference expansion hysteria ever since it started in 2010. BYU bucked the trend by leaving the Mountain West Conference and becoming independent. Ever since that time, BYU fans have been divided over how long the Cougars should continue the independent course.

Recent events have started a while new chorus of “the time is now” for BYU to join a conference from the fan base. First, it was the new BCS rules for the champions of the “mid-major” conferences. Just this week, it was the news that the Big Ten conference was expanding again to welcome in Maryland and Rutgers. This time, the chorus has a feeling of panic and desperation.

Ironically, when the desperation seems the highest, BYU has never had more reason to remain independent.

BYU quarterback may miss regular season finale

In the fourth quarter of Saturday’s game at San Jose State, Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Riley Nelson was visibly in a lot of pain. BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall explained Monday that Nelson may miss the Cougars’ final regular season game Saturday, November 24 at New Mexico State.

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 11 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

The good teams on the Brigham Young Cougars schedule made some big statements this week. The bad teams just continued to be bad, except for Weber State. The Wildcats closed out their season with a win. All in all, BYU's opponents finished the week 7-4.

Monday, November 19, 2012

BYU vs. San Jose State Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

The Brigham Young Cougars made a furious rally to get within striking distance of San Jose State only to come up empty handed in the end. The final score and box score doesn't tell the whole story in this game.

BYU vs. San Jose State: 5 Game Observations

San Jose State came flying out of the gates against the Brigham Young Cougars Saturday night. They jumped out to an early lead and held out until the end. The Spartans did everything right in the first half and left BYU trying to keep up. The BYU defense kicked in for the second half, effectively holding back the San Jose State offense that was dominant in the first half. The BYU offense couldn’t kick start in time to overtake the Spartans and San Jose State won their fifth straight game.

BYU in NFL, Week 11: Pitta concussed, Keisel strong in loss, So’oto back with the Packers

The big head-to-head showdown of former Brigham Young Cougars in the Baltimore Ravens-Pittsburgh Steelers game was cut short when Baltimore TE Dennis Pitta left the game with a concussion. Brett Keisel played the whole game on the other side for the Steelers. A week after being cut by the Oakland Raiders, Vic So'oto was back on an NFL roster.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Rough Start, Tough Finish for Brigham Young Cougars versus San Jose State


In San Jose, things didn’t start well, and they didn’t end well for the Brigham Young Cougars (6-5) in their 20-14 loss to the San Jose State Spartans (9-2).

BYU vs. San Jose State: Mo Moments

The momentum shifted early and often in the Brigham Young Cougars game against San Jose State. Things settled down in the middle of the game, but momentum made the game exciting down the stretch.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Boise State is preferred opponent for BYU in the Poinsettia Bowl

The Brigham Young Cougars accepted an invitation to play in the Poinsettia Bowl last Saturday following their win over Idaho. The Bowl has a contract with the Mountain West Conference to select one of its schools to play BYU, so the question becomes who?

Hometown San Diego State? Fresno State, another California based school? A rematch with Boise State? How about Nevada--the only other MWC school that is currently bowl eligible?

BYU Game Preview: Don’t let the opponent fool you, this game’s got intrigue

The Brigham Young Cougars will play the San Jose State Spartans this Saturday. The Spartans haven’t beaten BYU since 1968. They have just one winning season since 2000. Don’t let San Jose State’s name or lack of football prominence fool you. This year, this game is intriguing.

BYU vs. San Jose State: 5 Things to Watch For

The Brigham Young University Cougars will head for the coast and warmer weather at Spartan Stadium to face San Jose State on Saturday. Both BYU and San Jose St. are coming into this game with big momentum. San Jose State has four straight victories and are tied for first in the WAC, while BYU is coming off two blowout victories and the assurance of a Poinsettia Bowl appearance.

There is much to watch for in this mid-November showdown, here are just a few.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Brigham Young Cougars make another scheduling announcement

The Brigham Young Cougars continue to plug holes in future schedules. BYU made its fourth scheduling announcement this month today by announcing a two-game series with the UNLV Rebels. These games will be played in 2014 and 2015.

"Big picture” perspective helps BYU wide receiver Dylan Collie benefit while redshirting

As a wide receiver, Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dylan Collie knows how important it is to run a route correctly. Sometimes, however, a receiver needs to adjust his route. A defensive back may bump him at the line of scrimmage, or the safety may cheat to one side of the field. In that case, properly adjusting the route becomes just as important as running the route the way it was drawn on paper.

Although he has been at BYU just a few months, Collie has already had to adjust his route. Keeping a “big picture” perspective of the situation has helped him benefit and improve during his freshman season. Even if he didn’t meet the initial expectations he had for his college career.

BYU Football: Did you know? (Jamaal Williams Rushing Touchdowns)

Brigham Young Cougars running back Jamaal Williams is scoring touchdowns at an impressive rate. He is surging up the charts for rushing touchdowns scored in a season, and not just for freshmen.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Flashback: BYU pulls away from UTEP in the fourth quarter

On this day, 14 years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars saw the UTEP Miners play evenly with them for three quarters before pulling away in the fourth quarter for a comfortable 31-14 win.

Poll Results: Which BYU senior had the best night on Senior Night?

A massive groundswell of support for Robbie Buckner came in the final hours of this poll, which led to the Brigham Young Cougars cornerback finishing with 59 percent of the vote. Quarterback Riley Nelson was second with 30 percent. Three year starter Brandon Ogletree was a distant third with five percent followed by David Foote and “other” with three percent each.

My vote also goes to Buckner.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Perseverance pays off for BYU cornerback Robbie Buckner

Robbie Buckner isn’t your typical Brigham Young Cougars football player. He is the only BYU player on the current roster from Arkansas. He is also a cancer survivor.

Through perseverance, Bucker was able to win his fight against cancer. He then resumed another fight he started years before.

BYU in NFL, Week 10: Two former Cougars have big roles in their teams' victories

Two former Brigham Young Cougars had big games to help lead their teams to victory. Ironically, their teams will play each other next week. Another former Cougar saw his season cut short.  

Monday, November 12, 2012

BYU vs. Idaho Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

There is a lot to talk about after the Brigham Young Cougars beat the Idaho Vandals 52-13. Great win for the seniors, and a historic game from a scoring standpoint.

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 11 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

The only good thing for the Brigham Young Cougars opponents this week was that Notre Dame stayed undefeated, and Georgia Tech is one win away from bowl eligibility. Former BYU quarterback Steve Sarkisian avenged the Cougars' earlier loss to the Utes by leading his Washington Huskies to a win. Washington State almost pulled out a huge upset. Oregon State fumbled away its chance to beat Stanford. 

BYU vs. Idaho: Five Game Observations


The Brigham Young Cougars seniors made their last home game an offensive rout and put on a show for senior night beating the Vandals 52-13. As anticipated, BYU came out with a lot of ferocity and scored 28 points by the end of the first quarter alone. With Nelson alternating between pounding the running game via Jamaal Williams and going airborne with Cody Hoffman, the Cougars outplayed Idaho in almost every way.

BYU vs. Idaho: Mo Moments

For a game as one sided as the Brigham Young Cougars' 52-13 win over the Idaho Vandals was, it had a surprisingly high number of momentum swings, shifts, and boosts. Just as the Cougars came out the clear victors on the scoreboard, BYU was an overwhelming winner in mo moments.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

BYU buries Idaho with a scoring avalanche



The second quarter was barely half over and the Brigham Young Cougars had already scored 42 points. That was more than enough to gain bowl eligibility with a 52-13 win over the Idaho Vandals.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

After bye week and turmoil, Brigham Young Cougars face Idaho

The Brigham Young Cougars (5-4) will play football again. BYU had a bye last week, but it felt much longer than a one week break in the schedule. In light of recent events, nothing could be better for the team than to play a game. Even if the game is against Idaho (1-8).

Poll Results: Will BYU's final 2012 home game be a sellout?

When the Brigham Young Cougars play the Idaho Vandals tonight at LaVell Edwards Stadium, a crowd less than the 63,470 capacity will be in attendance, according to 85% of poll voters. Just 14 percent of voters thought the game that will kickoff at 8:15 p.m. Mountain Time will be a sellout. One percent of voters was undecided.

I feel very confident that the game will not be a sellout, which is rather disappointing.

Friday, November 9, 2012

BYU vs. Idaho: 5 Things to Watch for

The Brigham Young Cougars play the Idaho Vandals Saturday night in Provo. Whether you are watching the game bundled up in the stands or on television in the comfort of your own home, here are 5 things to watch for, even if the score gets out of hand.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Brigham Young Cougars suspend two defensive players

Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall announced that senior free safety Joe Sampson and sophomore linebacker Zac Stout were suspended from the football team for an undisclosed violation of team rules.

Doctor is astonished with Austin Collie's recovery from knee surgery

Two weeks after having surgery on his right knee to repair a ruptured patellar tendon, Indianapolis Colts’ wide receiver Austin Collie had his doctor astonished with how fast he was recovering. Two more weeks later, Collie’s father Scott was on his way to Los Angeles to meet with Austin and the doctor for a follow up appointment.

Bronson Kaufusi, Basketball, and the 800 pound Gorilla in the room

Brigham Young Cougars freshman defensive lineman Bronson Kaufusi confirmed this week the rumors that started leaking this weekend about him and the BYU basketball team. BYU basketball head coach Dave Rose contacted Kaufusi about playing basketball after the football season ended. Kaufusi says he is interest in exploring Coach Rose’s offer.

Former BYU football players to conduct receiver skills training in Colorado

Former BYU wide receiver Scott Collie has put together a special skills training program for receivers. His sons Austin and Zac, who also played for BYU are also expected to be there and assist in the training. Collie will bring his program, Receiver Tech, to Colorado on Saturday, November 17, 2012.

BYU Football: Did you know? (Final record after starting 5-4)

The Brigham Young Cougars have played nine games and have a 5-4 win-loss record. BYU is hoping to win the final four games on the schedule and finish 9-4.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

BYU makes third schedule announcement in the last week

The Brigham Young Cougars have made their third football schedule announcement since November 1. Today, BYU announced it would play the Virginia Cavaliers in 2013 and 2014.

BYU Football: Poor placekicking is a two-way street

The Brigham Young Cougars have struggled with placekicking this season, but so have their opponents—at least when they play BYU. Surprisingly, BYU has made a greater percentage of attempted field goals than opponents, and the extra point percentage is pretty close as well.

Flashback: Jim McMahon breaks BYU and NCAA records as Cougars route Colorado State

Exactly 31 years ago today, Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jim McMahon made the Colorado State Rams suffer a bad case of deja-vu.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

BYU and Michigan announce 2015 game

The Brigham Young Cougars and the Michigan Wolverines have scheduled a game in Ann Arbor for September 26, 2015.

BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall answers questions covering the whole gamut

Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall fielded questions about the offense, defense, the bye week, this week’s opponent, injuries, recruiting, Senior Day, and individual players after the team’s practice on Monday.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 10 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

The Brigham Young Cougars may have had a bye, but all 12 of their opponents were in action. Three 100-yard kickoff returns for touchdowns and two touchdowns on the final play of the game highlighted these games. It also took a triple overtime squeaker to have BYU’s twelve opponents finished the week 6-6.    

BYU in NFL, Week 9: Keisel continues to carry the torch

Once again, the Pittsburgh Steelers' Brett Keisel carried the torch for former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL this weekend. Dennis Pitta had a few good plays as the Baltimore Ravens were back in action. Next weekend is a former Cougars face-off weekend. Four of the six former Cougars will play in two games as their teams go head-to-head: Ravens-Raiders, Steelers-Chiefs.   

Ten reasons to stay fully invested in BYU football 2012

It is November again, and the Brigham Young Cougars football schedule has nothing but WAC opponents. BYU’s bowl destination is already known. For these two reasons, many fans find their interest waning. Despite BYU being out of the running for a BCS bowl and no big name opponents left on the schedule, there are still several reasons to stay “fully invested” in the 2012 football season.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Stay or go: Should Kyle Van Noy and Cody Hoffman leave BYU early?

The Brigham Young Cougars have a bye this week, so it seems like an appropriate time to look at whether linebacker Kyle Van Noy and wide receiver Cody Hoffman are having junior campaigns that would make it wise to leave BYU early for the NFL.   

Poll Results: Who impressed you the most against Georgia Tech?

In a landslide, the most impressive player for the Brigham Young Cougars in the Georgia Tech game was running back Jamaal Williams. He was selected by 58 percent of the voters. In a close race for second, Ezekiel Ansah (20%) edged out JD Falslev (19%). Kyle Van Noy was last with just 3 percent of the votes.

While each of these players had big plays, I was most impressed with Falslev.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Brandon Doman deserves one more year

About a month ago, I argued that the Brigham Young Cougars should part ways with offensive coordinator Brandon Doman at the end of 2012. I no longer feel that way. What I have seen the last four games has convinced me Doman deserves, at least, one more year.

Brigham Young Cougars and Cincinnati Bearcats to play in 2015 and 2016

The Brigham Young Cougars announced a two game football series with the Cincinnati Bearcats today The series will be played in consecutive years starting in 2015.

BYU Football: Did you know? (Rushing Yards by Air Force)

The Brigham Young Cougars held the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets to 117 yards rushing last week. Under normal circumstances, that total would be a little disappointing for BYU. With Georgia Tech being an option offense, this rushing total is phenomenal.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Falslev is Mr. Do-it-all for BYU

When the Brigham Young Cougars needed someone to help fix the problems in the kickoff return department, head coach Bronco Mendenhall knew just who to call: JD Falslev. With his first return of the game, for 44 yards, Falslev became the only BYU player to record all-purpose yards in four different categories.

Falslev is not just an all-purpose player by definition, but also by performance. He has made a real impact in games with his rushing, receiving, punt and kickoff returning.

BYU linebacker Van Noy close to duplicating rare achievement

Last year, Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Kyle Van Noy had his breakout season. He displayed a wide array of skills and talents as he made plays all over the field. By season’s end, he was the only college football player to have recorded a stat in all the major defensive statistical categories. With a blocked punt against Georgia Tech, Van Noy has nearly duplicated his rare achievement.

Flashback: BYU continues to haunt Air Force

Exactly 25 Halloweens ago, the Brigham Young Cougars treated themselves to a win over the Air Force Academy, but not until after playing a trick on the Falcons first.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

BYU breaks its fourth quarter scoring slump

Brigham Young Cougars running back Jamaal Williams took a shovel pass from Riley Nelson, weaved his way through the Georgia Tech defense, and ran down the sideline to score his fourth touchdown of the day. That score tied Williams with Harvey Unga for the most touchdowns in a game by a freshman, but more importantly, it gave BYU its first fourth quarter touchdown in four games.

BYU Athletic Director says football team has “chemistry issues” and uncorrectable "shortcomings"

In an interview yesterday with “The Voice of the Cougars” Greg Wrubell, Brigham Young Cougars Athletic Director Tom Holmoe discussed the football team’s 5-4 record this season. Among other things, Holmoe said the coaching staff had “chemistry issues” and the players had “shortcomings” that could not be corrected this year.

BYU vs. Georgia Tech Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

Some miscellaneous thoughts and commentary on the Brigham Young Cougars 41-17 win over the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 9 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

Brigham Young Cougars opponents were 5-4 last week, identical to BYU’s season record. Oregon State suffered its first loss. Washington State gave Stanford a scare, and Notre Dame had the marquee win of the week, and on the road, no less.   

BYU in NFL, Week 8: Keisel’s two tackles for loss are big for Steelers

The amount of activity was a little low again for former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL. A strong day by Brett Keisel and a controversy surrounding Vic So’oto highlight the weekend in the NFL for former Cougars.  

BYU vs. Georgia Tech: Mo Moments

The Brigham Young Cougars were able to control the momentum for most of the game as they dismantled Georgia Tech, 41-17. Dominating defense, consistent offense, and big special teams plays gave BYU the edge in mo moments 5-1.

BYU vs. Georgia Tech: 5 Game Observations

The Brigham Young Cougars took care of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in impressive fashion. BYU put on a show for the Cougar faithful. Among all the great plays and big performances, were the observations to BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL’s 5 Things to Watch for.  

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Recap: Williams Leads the Way in BYU Win Over Georgia Tech

Freshman running back Jamaal Williams scored four touchdowns and had the second 100-yard rushing game of his career and the defense shut down the triple-option threat of the Yellow Jacket offense in the BYU Cougars victory over Georgia Tech.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Preview: BYU at Georgia Tech--The outcome will depend on the Cougar defense

The Brigham Young Cougars (4-4) caught Notre Dame in a trap game situation last week. It could be argued the tables are turned this week against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (3-4).

Poll Results: What will BYU’s final 2012 record be?


Despite the Brigham Young Cougars’ two tough back-to-back losses and a wild-card this week with Georgia Tech’s triple option, the most popular choice for poll voters was 9-4 as BYU’s final record for 2012. I apologize for not having a specific breakdown of the votes for each selection. There were some technical difficulties approximately one day ago, and all votes that had been cast were lost. As I monitored the results throughout the week, slightly less than half of all voters (approx. 45-48%) were selecting 9-4. The next highest voter getter was 8-5, which was consistently over 30%. Almost all of the remaining 20-25% voted for 7-6 or 6-7.

It pains me to say it, but my vote is for 8-5. 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (Riley Nelson Rushing)

Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Riley Nelson does not fit the mold of the typical BYU quarterback. Perhaps, nothing accentuates this fact more than his season rushing totals.

BYU vs. Georgia Tech: 5 Things to Watch for

The Brigham Young Cougars will play the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in Boddy Dodd Stadium, which has a fantastic view of the Downtown Atlanta skyline. That may be fun to watch for a few seconds as the game coverage transitions in and out of commercial breaks, but it is not one of the five things fans should be watching for during the game on Saturday.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

High praise for BYU from Georgia Tech head coach

At 4-4, a cloud of disappointment is hanging over the Brigham Young Cougars 2012 season.  No one in the BYU fan base will tell you this is one of the better Cougar football teams. This didn’t stop upcoming opponent Georgia Tech’s head coach from showering praise on BYU.

Georgia Tech coach not concerned about Cody Hoffman

Although the Brigham Young Cougars offense has had some ups and downs this year, wide receiver Cody Hoffman has been this unit’s only constant. When BYU needs a big play, the Cougars turn to him, and he usually comes through. So, why isn’t Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson worried about him?   

Flashback: Jenkins carries BYU to win with record setting performance

On this date, 14 years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars survived a shootout with San Jose State. They couldn’t have done it, however, without running back Ronney Jenkins tying the school record for most touchdowns scored in a single game.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Mendenhall: Jamaal Williams is on the right track

The Brigham Young Cougars entered the 2012 season expecting a legion of seniors to lead the team. It was expected that 29 seniors would be on the roster. Their experience and leadership was going to carry the team. There didn’t appear to be any room for a young sapling to grow among this forest of redwoods.

Jamaal Williams, the youngest of BYU’s saplings, has shown otherwise.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Mendenhall was right—execution matters most

Brigham Young Cougars fans have gotten tired of hearing head coach Bronco Mendenhall continually stress the importance of execution and how that would be the key for his team to win games. Whether it is trite or overly simplistic, execution is exactly why BYU lost to Notre Dame. If BYU had executed better in five simple ways, then BYU would have left South Bend victorious.

BYU vs. Notre Dame: Mo Moments

In the Brigham Young Cougars’ fast moving, low scoring game, there were four plays (besides the scoring plays) that helped change the outcome more than any others. As the score indicates, the momentum swings in this game were not major swings in momentum, but they made a difference.

BYU vs. Notre Dame: 5 Game Observations

With the Brigham Young Cougars game against Notre Dame in the books, it is time to follow up on 5 Things to Watch for. BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL was keeping an eye on defense, turnovers, Ross Apo, 60 minutes, and Riley Stephenson. Here is what we saw.

BYU vs. Notre Dame: Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

Following the Brigham Young Cougars' tough 17-14 loss to no. 5 Notre Dame, The Editor reflects on reasons why BYU lost, and what the loss means.

BYU NFL Report, Week 7: AFC North is where it's at

Several former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL had a bye this week. The Cougars in the AFC North provided all the action.  

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 8 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

Brigham Young Cougars opponents were 7-3 last week. Weber State got its first win. It should be encouraging to know that BYU’s November WAC teams appear to have NO defense.  

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Notre Dame too big and strong for BYU

A 14-7 halftime lead was not enough for the Brigham Young Cougars (4-4) to ruin the Notre Dame Fighting Irish’s dream season. Notre Dame (7-0) wore down BYU in the second half and narrowly escaped 17-14.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Game Preview: BYU's hopes hinge on execution



There is something about Brigham Young Cougars starting quarterback Riley Nelson that makes me think of Ryan Hancock every time I see him. Hancock was the BYU quarterback in 1992—the same year BYU made its first visit to Notre Dame. Almost 20 years later, to the day, BYU will be back in South Bend. Although two decades have passed, the Cougars and the Fighting Irish share similarities with the 1992 counterparts. Does my unexplainable association of Nelson and Hancock mean the 2012 game will resemble the 1992 clash?

Poll Results: Will a BYU win over No. 5 Notre Dame salvage the season?

The Brigham Young Cougars can salvage their season by beating Notre Dame today, if the Cougars can go on to win the five remaining games as well. That was the response of 43 percent of poll voters. Another 32 percent of voters simply said “No,” not even a win over an undefeated top 5 team can salvage the 2012 season.  The remaining 25 percent of voters were split between, “Yes, even if BYU loses later,” (20%) and undecided (5%).

While I will gladly celebrate the win, I don’t think a win will salvage the season for me. Not even if BYU wins all the rest of its games and finishes 10-3.

Friday, October 19, 2012

BYU loss to Oregon State just what was needed to beat Notre Dame?

The Brigham Young Cougars' loss this last Saturday to now no. 8 (in the BCS standings) Oregon State was disappointing. But there were good signs – to see BYU compete for almost four quarters against a top 10 team is encouraging. Despite the loss, scratch that, because of the loss, I think the Oregon State game was exactly what BYU needed to best prepare them for Notre Dame.

BYU vs. Notre Dame: 5 Things to Watch for

There are many things to watch for as the Brigham Young Cougars face a top 10 opponent for the second week in a row. The five biggest include defense, turnovers, an MIA wide receiver, 60 minutes (not the TV show), and the punter.

In depth look at BYU opponent Notre Dame

With the Brigham Young Cougars travelling to Notre Dame this week, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL had the special privilege to swap notes with The Unofficial Home of Notre Dame. Below is an in depth look at the Notre Dame Fighting Irish offense, defense, and special teams provided by uhnd.com. A final analysis and score prediction is also included.

Note: To read BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL's report on BYU at The Unofficial Home of Notre Dame, click here.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (60-yard punts)

It is never fun to see the punting unit come out on the field. The offense is supposed to score a touchdown. At least the pain can be eased sometimes when the punter gets off a really long punt.  

Manti Te’o helps BYU accomplish its goal as an independent

The Brigham Young Cougars primary reason for leaving the Mountain West Conference in 2011 and becoming a college football independent was greater exposure for the school and its sponsoring religion—The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Logically, the better BYU is the more exposure the Church will receive. Having the best players possible is one key ingredient to the BYU football team being better.

Manti Te’o, a practicing member of the Church of Jesus Christ, did the opposite yesterday on the nationally syndicated Jim Rome show.

BYU quarterback Riley Nelson needs to listen to Steve Young

Thirty years ago, Steve Young was the Brigham Young Cougars quarterback. He went on to have a hall of fame career in the NFL. Now, Young is an analyst for ESPN. In that capacity, Young appeared on the ESPN program Pardon the Interruption last night. Hopefully, current BYU quarterback Riley Neslon was listening. Young’s parting words on that program were sage advice to any quarterback who runs the ball.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Flashback: BYU holds off inspired San Diego State squad, 38-28

Exactly three years ago today, the Brigham Young Cougars were on the road in San Diego for a more competitive than expected game against the San Diego State Aztecs.

Notre Dame coach calls BYU a Big Ten team and compares Van Noy to Te’o

The Brigham Young Cougars face the Notre Dame Fighting Irish this weekend in South Bend, Indiana. During his weekly press conference, Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly fielded several questions about his team and this week’s opponent. Before any questions were asked, Kelly made a surprise comparison in his opening remarks of BYU to the teams in the Big Ten conference.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Poll Results: On a scale of 1-5 (5 being the best) how do you rate BYU’s all-black uniforms?

The Brigham Young Cougars wore all-black uniforms for the first time ever on Saturday, and they were a hit! Close to half of poll respondents (41%) rated the uniforms a “5” on a 1-5 scale. Another 27% rated the uniforms a “4.” That represents over two-thirds of all respondents who rated the uniforms either a 4 or 5. The rest of the votes were split 12% for “3,” and 10% each for “2” and “1.”

On a scale of 1 to 5, with five being the highest, I would give them a 4.

BYU ready for "business trip" to South Bend

The Brigham Young Cougars travel to South Bend, Indiana, this week. South Bend is not only the home of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, it is the home of the College Football Hall of the Fame. South Bend is a Mecca for college football fans. For the BYU football team this won't be a vacation. This is a business trip.

BYU vs. Oregon State Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

The Brigham Young Cougars lost to the Oregon State Beavers, 42-24. Below is thoughts and analysis of this game from The Editor from BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL.

Monday, October 15, 2012

BYU vs. Oregon State: Five Game Observations

The Brigham Young Cougars are starting to have an identity now after seven games. Unfortunately, it may not be the identity BYU fans want. Looking back on my pregame questions, the Cougars only answered the call on one or two of them. But, there were still some valuable lessons learned from this game that hopefully can be applied to Notre Dame next week.

Football Opponent Tracker: Week 7 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

The results of the Brigham Young Cougars’s opponents last week can be summed up simply by saying the good teams kept winning, and the bad teams kept losing. A few bad teams were spared thanks to having a bye week.

BYU NFL Week 6 Report: Denney makes noise on special teams

John Denney made the biggest play of the week for former Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL. Two others had pretty good games, while one made his first appearance of the season.

BYU vs. Oregon State: Mo Moments

One reason why the Brigham Young Cougars lost to the Oregon State Beavers is BYU never seized the momentum. Neither did Oregon State until late in the fourth quarter. With the momentum frequently switching from one side to the other, but never in major proportions, the game stayed close for nearly 55 minutes.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Tipped passes tip the scales in favor of Oregon State


The Brigham Young Cougars (4-3) and Oregon State Beavers (5-0) were tied 21-21 going into the fourth quarter. Two tipped passes in the final quarter resulted in touchdowns for Oregon State, and allowed the Beavers to pull away from BYU and win 42-24. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Poll Results: Who was most impressive against Utah State?

Ezekiel Ansah is the answer to this week’s poll question. The Brigham Young Cougars defensive end received 77% of the votes. Tied for second were Kyle Van Noy and Cody Hoffman with 8% each. Running Back Jamaal Williams was fourth with 4% of the vote, and the final 3% went to Taysom Hill.

Maybe I missed something, but my vote goes to Hill.

BYU vs. Oregon State: Five Things to Watch For

The Brigham Young Cougars have had some big games so far this season, but none as much in the national spotlight as this weekend's game against the Oregon State Beavers. Big games bring big questions. This week's Five Things to Watch For focuses on BYU and Oregon State's quarterback situations, the effect of the blackout homecoming game and the legitimacy of the Beavers' top 10 ranking.

BYU’s Homecoming game will be historic

It is homecoming for the Brigham Young Cougars (4-2) this weekend. While many have spent the week remembering the history of BYU, the football team is set to make history when they welcome the no. 10 ranked Oregon State Beavers (4-0) to Provo.

BYU and Wisconsin to meet in 2017 and 2018

For the second time in three months, the Brigham Young Cougars and the Wisconsin Badgers have announced a scheduling agreement. Back in July, only one game was announced. This time, a two game, home-and-home series has been agreed to.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Oregon State defense: Legit or smoke and mirrors?

The Brigham Young Cougars have a really good defense. I am sure of this. Ask Oregon State fans, and they think the Beaver defense is just as good. That piqued my interest, so I took a look at the numbers. After considerable analysis, I can’t decide whether the numbers are legit or just smoke and mirrors.

BYU Linebacker Uani Unga getting primed to face former team

When the Brigham Young Cougars take the field Saturday to play the Oregon State Beavers, head coach Bronco Mendenhall won’t be the only one going against his former team. Linebacker Uani Unga spent the first two seasons of his college career in Corvallis wearing Beaver black and orange.

BYU Football: Did you know? (First Career Touchdown)

The Brigham Young Cougars have seen 11 different players score touchdowns this season.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Flashback: BYU surprises Fresno State with “unorthodox” offense

On this date 20 years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars took on the Fresno State Bulldogs for the first time as conference foes. In 1992, Fresno State joined the WAC. When they came to Provo to play BYU, the Cougars had a couple of Aces up their sleeves.

BYU Football: Mid-season Awards

The 2012 season has reached the midway point for the Brigham Young Cougars. There have been many great moments and some not so good moments in these first six games. As part of BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL’s mid-season evaluation, here is a look at the front runners for the awards that will be given at the end of the season.

Each award has three nominees (except Team MVP). The first five awards are for an individual player. To keep things interesting, once a player won one of these awards he was removed from consideration for the others. 

BYU Football: Mid-Season Grades

The Brigham Young Cougars have reached the halfway point of the 2012 season. Six games are in the books, and six games remain on the schedule. Time for some mid-term grades. 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

BYU QB Taysom Hill: A Tale of Two Half-Minutes

Charles Dickens penned the words, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Today, these words ring true for the Brigham Young Cougars. Taysom Hill had an incredible final 30 seconds of the first half against Utah State. At the end of the game, another 30 seconds were the exact opposite.

Riley Returns: Nelson back under center for BYU

Senior quarterback Riley Nelson will be the starting quarterback for the Brigham Young Cougars  on Saturday, October 13, 2012, when the 10th ranked Oregon State Beavers come to Provo for Homecoming. He had missed the last two games with an injured back.

Brigham Young Cougars in the NFL, Week 5: Beck out, Kehl in

In the NFL's fifth week, four former Brigham Young Cougars started for their respective teams, while one didn't get to see the field and another's team had a bye week. One thing that is impressive is that the former Cougars' teams are in playoff contention. As the season is almost a third of the way done, a few of these teams have solidified themselves as legitimate contenders. 

BYU QB Taysom Hill out for season, could miss spring practice

After a weekend of rumors and speculation, Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall confirmed that freshman quarterback Taysom Hill has suffered a knee injury and will miss the rest of the 2012 season.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Opponent Tracker: Week 6 Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

While Brigham Young Cougar fans probably didn’t expect Oregon State or Notre Dame to still be undefeated at this point, they probably didn’t expect their opponents’ overall record to be so far under 0.500 either. Depending on the week, for the rest of the season the BYU opponents are either really good, or really bad.

BYU vs. Utah State Post Game Thoughts and Analysis

The Brigham Young Cougars are on a two game win streak after beating Utah State. Hear what The Editor thought about the game.

BYU vs. Utah State: Mo Moments

The Brigham Young Cougars beat the Utah State Aggies because they scored more points, they were the better team, and they had momentum on their side. Of the six “Mo Moments” in the game, four favored BYU.

BYU vs. Utah State: Five Game Observations

The Old Wagon Wheel gets to stay in Provo for another year and the Beehive Boot returns to the Brigham Young Cougars for the first time since 2009. A few questions that I have been wondering about were also answered, as the Cougars have reached the halfway point of their season.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

BYU defense best in the nation against the run

Going into the weekend, the Brigham Young Cougars were the second best in the nation at defending the run. Now, they are number one.

BYU uses ball control to beat Utah State, 6-3

A football game is 60 minutes long, but the game between the Brigham Young Cougars and the Utah State Aggies was decided by one 30 second segment. In the final 30 seconds of the first half, BYU drove 61 yards for its only score of the game, a 3-yard touchdown pass from Taysom Hill to JD Falslev.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Poll Results: Should Taysom Hill be the starting quarterback the rest of the year?

After watching Brigham Young Cougars freshman quarterback Taysom Hill play against Hawaii, the vast majority of poll respondents (77%) said Hill should be BYU’s starting quarterback the rest of 2012. Just 15% voted “No,” and the remaining 8% of voters were undecided.

Clearly, it is not the popular choice, but I am going to say Hill should not be the Cougars’ starting quarterback.

Brigham Young Cougars’ identity is being challenged, again

The Brigham Young Cougars (3-2) took exception to Washington State head coach Mike Leach saying, “We’re going to look like BYU more than BYU will.” The result was BYU limiting Washington State to 224 yards of total offense. The BYU offense scored 24 points in the first half and had 426 yards of total offense for the game.

For a second time this season, BYU’s identity is being challenged. The local Utah media has been singing the praises of Utah State (4-1) and its quarterback Chuckie Keeton. They have not been shy about crowning the Aggies the best team in the state of Utah and Keeton as the best quarterback. Such labels have long been reserved for BYU.

BYU’s identity isn’t being challenged by the media only. Utah State players and coach aren’t giving the Cougars much respect.

BYU vs. Utah State: Five Things to Watch For

The Old Wagon Wheel is up for grabs, as well as the Beehive Boot. This game is shaping up to be one of the more intriguing match-ups on the Brigham Young Cougars' schedule, and after a big win by BYU, should also answer a lot of questions about the Cougars' consistency.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (Freshmen Running Backs vs. Utah State)

It isn’t often that the Brigham Young Cougars have a freshman as the primary ball carrier. However, when he is a freshman, he usually plays very well against Utah State.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Flashback: BYU forces turnovers to crush Utah State early

Exactly four years ago today, the Brigham Young Cougars travelled to Logan to play Utah State. Coming off back-to-back shutout wins by a combined score of 103-0, BYU was playing its best football of the 2008 season.

Cautiously optimistic about the BYU offense going into Utah State game

Here we are, five games into the season, and, as usual, we have no idea how good this Brigham Young Cougars football team actually is. This is becoming customary at BYU. One game they look so good, while in another game they look awful. Every season proves to be a roller coaster ride, with the fans feeling every twist and turn, every rise and every fall.

BYU-Utah State Rivalry Reborn: Old Wagon Wheel and Beehive Boot up for grabs

Between 1983 and 1992, the Brigham Young Cougars and the Utah State Aggies played 10 times, with BYU coming out on top each year. In 1993, the Aggies got a small piece of revenge by holding off the Cougars 58-56. Then BYU and Utah State faced off 10 more times between 1994 and 2009, with the Cougars once again being the victor in all 10 games. In those 21 games between 1983 and 2009, BYU was 20-1. The rivalry – if you could even call it that anymore – was extremely one sided. It even appeared dead. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Can Taysom Hill be this generation’s Ty Detmer?

Taysom Hill’s career as a quarterback for the Brigham Young Cougars is only five games old, but he has already linked himself with three of the schools legendary quarterbacks. In game one, Hill linked himself with Gary Sheide by throwing a touchdown pass on his first career pass attempt. In game four, Hill linked himself with Steve Young.

Game five was Hill’s first career start. In this game he made his third link with the past. Coaches and fans hope that this link can be added to and become a chain.