An overwhelming amount of voters, 89% to be exact, voted “Yes” Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Kyle Van Noy will have more sacks in the 2012 season than he had in 2011. “No” came in second place with 7% of the votes, and just 3% voted for Van Noy to have an equal amount of sacks. Just 1% was undecided.
I will say “Yes” Van Noy will have more than seven sacks this season.
The seven sacks Van Noy registered in 2011 were the most by any BYU linebacker since Bronco Mendenhall became defensive coordinator in 2003. Only defensive end Jan Jorgensen has had more sacks than Van Noy during this same period of time (14 sacks in 2007). Although seven is a lot of sacks in the BYU scheme, Van Noy has proven he is more than your normal BYU defender.
It also bodes well for him that three times, the leading linebackers have increased their sack total the following year.
2011: Kyle Van Noy—7
2010: Jordan Pendleton, Kyle Van Noy—2
2009: Coleby Clawson—5
2008: Coleby Clawson—4
2007: David Nixon—4
2006: Cameron Jensen—4
2005: Justin Luettgerodt—4.5
2004: Brady Poppinga—6
2003: Brady Poppinga—5
Opposing offensive coordinators are sure to scheme to stop Van Noy. He is clearly the most disruptive player on the BYU defense, and the opposition must account for him. Mendenhall, however, is a terrific defensive coordinator and has repeatedly designed well-disguised schemes that opponents, even with weeks and months to prepare, aren’t ready for.
A few other factors in Van Noy’s favor are that he should play more downs this season than last. Outside linebackers Jordan Pendleton, Jadon Wagner, and Jameson Frazier are gone. Not only should Van Noy start every game, but he should play almost every down.
Van Noy will probably be the team’s primary pass rushing linebacker. Last year, when Pendleton was healthy Van Noy was asked to drop into pass coverage while Pendleton would rush the passer. Van Noy had a majority of his sacks (4) in the six games that Pendleton did not play (he also made all three of his interceptions in the seven games Pendleton did play).
UCF: 1 sack
Idaho: 1 sack
Tulsa: 2 sacks
Thank you to everyone who voted. Don’t forget to vote in this week’s poll: “Which BYU road game do you most want to attend?”