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Friday, August 10, 2012

Friday Mailbag: Bronco Mendenhall silencing his critics, Reaction to team scrimmage, and the Stadium Size of BYU’s 2012 Opponents

Welcome to the Friday Mailbag where once a week I answer your questions and respond to your comments about Brigham Young Cougars football. As a quick reminder, there are three ways to submit a question: 

1. Email: bluecougarfootball@gmail.com
2. Twitter: @BlueCougarFball and use #BCFmailbag
3. Leave a comment at the end of a
BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL article.

On to the mailbag.

I have been a Bronco [Mendenhall] critic for some time, but I have to admit he is starting to win me over again. The number of drastic changes that he has made from a year ago makes it really hard to doubt he is fully invested and he cares just as much as anyone else.

The “new look” of BYU football is refreshing and invigorating. It was hard to tell during the off season what was happening behind the scenes. All we got from Mendenhall was the standard rhetoric. This first week of camp has made it obvious that the coaches and players understand the magnitude of the challenge to make independence work, and they are willing to make wholesale changes to make it happen.

Many of these changes would not be possible if the Cougars were not independent. The money from the ESPN contract far surpasses anything the Mountain West Conference was ever going to pay. We are starting to see the fruits of independence. It could be possible that BYU and Mendenhall have wanted to implement these changes for several years, but lacked the financial resources.

Of course, none of these changes we have seen so far will appease any critic for long if BYU doesn’t win some of the key games on the schedule.

*****

It would have been nice to see the starters play in the scrimmage, but it was still enjoyable seeing the future of BYU is in pretty good hands. Jamaal Williams, Tereen Houk, Taysom Hill, Manoa Pikula, and Craig Bills are all going to be names to watch.

Agreed. The younger players already appear to have taken a big step, or two, forward since the spring. The offensive efficiency was much better. Since January we have been hearing about the 29 seniors on this team, but I think we will find a nice blend of seniority and underclassmen playing on the field. By year’s end, we might be pleasantly surprised to see the cupboard isn’t as bare as we thought it would be in 2013.

*****

The running backs were animals in the scrimmage. They are setting the tone for this year. Love their tenacity. I hope it lasts all year long. The depth will be needed, especially on those back-to-back road trips.

Thus far, the running backs have been the most impressive group. They all seem eager to show they can get the job done. I am looking forward to seeing what they do this year. It was hard to tell during the first few days of camp in helmets only how good they really were. With full pads and full contact, the numbers from the scrimmage were good. The backs combined for 22 carries, 132 yards, and 1 touchdown.

That is a good point about the back-to-back road trips. It will be interesting to see if someone like Adam Hine, Jamaal Williams, or David Foote gets a lot more carries against Boise State because, due to the short turnaround following Utah, their bodies are less beat up.

*****

I thought this post would be about how large BYU's 2012 Opponents' Stadiums are. But this info is interesting too.

Yeah, the “Did you know?” posts can be both a little random, and, possibly, a little misleading. Sometimes fitting something concise into the title that clearly describes what will be discussed is hard. Anyways, here are the capacities of the 12 teams BYU will play this season. An asterisk denotes home games, which means BYU will not be playing in those stadiums.

*Washington State: 35,117
*Weber State: 17,000
Utah: 45,017
Boise State: 33,500
*
Hawaii: 50,000
*Utah State: 25,513
*Oregon State: 45,674
Notre Dame: 80,795
Georgia Tech: 55,000
*Idaho: 16,000
San Jose State: 30,456
New Mexico State: 30,343

The Editor appreciates all feedback. He can be reached via email at bluecougarfootball@gmail.com

3 comments:

  1. Man those are some fairly small stadiums that these guys play in-save ND. Its no wonder the WAC schedule is going away--- if Independance is about the pub that won't work in the bottom feeder WAC stadiums. It seems strange in a way that BYU is doing a 2-1 with Utah State but not with San Jose or New Mexico. Utah State is much more worthy of a home and home-- just sayin.

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  2. Utah State series is always an enormous GIFT by BYU to the Aggies and for what. USU hates BYU. I'm NOT from Utah and would prefer the Aggies grow up some before BYU does them any more scheduling favors. They need BYU. Football isn't about redistributing the wealth. The Logan School is just not capable of giving BYU a decent gate and BYU could be scheduling a seventh home game in their place.

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    1. Did you not see/hear last year's USU game? It was a great challenge and the team has really made some strides. It is a much better match up than Oregon St, Weber St, New Mexico St, and Idaho. Isn't Utah starting off with Northern Colorado? At least we are not playing a team that weak.

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