BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL is home to the most comprehensive season review for BYU football. It will include four parts. There is a possibility of a bonus, fifth part
Season awards are part 3.
Part 1: Was 2011 a success?
Part 2: Position Grades.
Nominees: Cody Hoffman, Riley Nelson, Kyle Van Noy
Winner: Cody Hoffman
61 receptions, 943 yards, 10 TD; 36 kickoff returns, 879 yards, 1 TD
Sixth most All-Purpose yards in BYU history. Very influential in two phases of the game.
Runner up: Kyle Van Noy
Offensive Player of the Year
Nominees: Ross Apo, Cody Hoffman, Riley Nelson
Winner: Riley Nelson
116-202 (57.4%), 1717 yards, 19 TD, 7 Int., 152.9 Pass Eff.
88 rush, 392 yards, 4.5 ave., 1 TD
Runner up: Cody Hoffman
Defensive Player of the Year
Nominees: Preston Hadley, Brandon Ogletree, Kyle Van Noy
Winner: Kyle Van Noy
68 tackles, 15 TFL, 7 sacks, 3 int., 3 pass breakups, 10 QB hurries, 1 fumble recovery, 3 forced fumbles, 1 blocked punt, 1 TD
Runner Up: Preston Hadley
Play of the Year
Kyle Van Noy’s 3-yard fumble return for a touchdown against Ole Miss
Cody Hoffman’s 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown against UCF
Riley Nelson’s 13-yard TD pass to Marcus Mathews against Utah State
Riley Nelson’s 17-yard TD pass to Cody Hoffman with Matt Reynolds on the assist against Tulsa
Winner: Riley Nelson’s 13-yard TD pass to Marcus Mathews against Utah State
This play won the game and won Nelson the starting quarterback job. It came with just 11 seconds left in the game, and has style points since Mathews wasn’t the intended receiver.
Runner Up: Kyle Van Noy’s 3-yard fumble return for a touchdown against Ole Miss
Newcomer of the Year
Nominees: Ross Apo, Preston Hadley, Uona Kaveinga
Winner: Preston Hadley
51 tackles, 2.5 TFL, 1 sack, 14 pass breakups, 1 QB hurry
Runner up: Ross Apo
Nominees: JD Falslev, Riley Nelson, Travis Uale
Winner: JD Falslev
31 rec., 330 yards, 2 TD
22 punt ret., 220 yards, 10.0 ave., 1 TD
Runner up: Riley Nelson
Excellent kickoff coverage
Six touchdown drives of 90 yards or longer
Eight games limiting opponents to less than 100 yards rushing
Winner: Excellent kickoff coverage
Never have I seen a cover team get down the field as fast and make as many big stops short of the 20 yard line.
Runner up: Six touchdown drives of 90 yards or longer
Seven turnovers against Utah
Special teams blunders against TCU
Tight ends can’t stay healthy
Winner: Seven turnovers against Utah
The absolute rock bottom point of the season.
Runner up: Special teams blunders against TCU
Best Defensive Series
Drive 8 vs. Ole Miss (8 plays, -9 yards, 4:39)—Kyle Van Noy forces and recovers a fumble that he returns for the game winning touchdown.
Drive 7 vs. Hawaii (4 plays, 6 yards, 1:37)—Joe Sampson returns a fumble 26-yards for a touchdown to give BYU a 24-13 lead and control of the game.
Drive 14 vs. Tulsa (6 plays, 22 yards, 3:47)—Drive starts at the 1-yard line. The defense forces Tulsa to punt twice, which gave the ball back to the BYU offense in perfect position to win the game.
Winner: Drive 8 vs. Ole Miss (8 plays, -9 yards, 4:39)
Kyle Van Noy’s signature play to get BYU second win in school history in SEC country. This play propelled Van Noy onto a memorable season.
Runner up: Drive 14 vs. Tulsa (6 plays, 22 yards, 3:47)
Best Offensive Series
Drive 4 vs. Texas (12 plays, 97 yards, 5:04)—This touchdown drive gave BYU a stunning 13-0 lead with 11:41 to play in the second quarter.
Last Drive vs. Utah State (9 plays, 96 yards, 2:25)—A 40-yard bomb to McKay Jacobson helped set up a 13-yard touchdown pass that was deflected to Marcus Mathews with 11 seconds to play.
Last Drive vs. Tulsa (12 plays, 48 yards, 4:07)—Riley Nelson runs for a first down on 4th and 9. Later he uses a fake spike to throw game winning TD with 11 seconds to play.
Winner: Last Drive vs. Utah State (9 plays, 96 yards, 2:25)
This drive gave Riley Nelson the starting quarterback job and saved the season. Not to mention the pressure of driving the length of the field in two and a half minutes.
Runner up: Last Drive vs. Tulsa (12 plays, 48 yards, 4:07)
Nominees: Michael Alisa, JD Falslev, Marcus Mathews
Winner: Michael Alisa
85 rush, 455 yards, 5.4 ave., 3 TD
How does he end up the team’s second leading rusher? He was fresh off a mission and desperate to see the field at linebacker, so he changed positions expecting to be a fullback.
Runner up: Marcus Mathews
Nominees: McKay Jacobson, Joshua Quezada, Justin Sorensen
Winner: Joshua Quezada
86 rush, 298 yards, 3.5 ave., 1 TD
Unless you count a touchdown in garbage time against FCS weakling Idaho State, the guy who was supposed to be the next great BYU back had zero highlights this year.
Runner up: McKay Jacobson
The Editor appreciates all feedback. He can be reached via email at email@example.com