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Thursday, January 31, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Dennis Pitta vs. Austin Collie)

When former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta takes the field for the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XLVII, he will be the first former BYU player to play in the Super Bowl at one of the skill positions since wide receiver Austin Collie played in Super Bowl XLIV for the Indianapolis Colts. Interestingly, the former Cougar teammates could end up with the same postseason receiving stats during their respective Super Bowl runs.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Flashback: Strong Start to the Season

The Brigham Young Cougars don't have a long history of starting the football season by stringing together a lot of wins. Twenty years ago, that wasn't the case. BYU came out strong, and it was crucial to the overall outcome of the season.

BYU and Nevada agree to a 3-game series

When the Brigham Young Cougars released their 2013 schedule this week, it was the first time the school made public that it would play the Nevada Wolf Pack in Reno on November 30, 2013. As it turns out, next year won't be the only time the two schools meet. The 2013 game is just one in a three game series contracted between the two schools.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Game-by-game analysis of BYU's 2013 football schedule

The Brigham Young Cougars have announced their 2013 football schedule. Next season's schedule was officially released on the BYU sports program True Blue last night. This schedule has long been promised to be the best in school history. The finished product is very impressive.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Ezekiel Ansah named Most Outstanding Player for South team in Senior Bowl

On Saturday, NFL scouts, offensive tackle Ricky Wagner, and the rest of the nation learned what Brigham Young Cougars fans have known for awhile: Ezekiel Ansah is a monstah. From the South's first defensive series of the game, Ansah made an impact. He continued to play well all game long and earned the Most Outstanding Player honors for the South team.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Ezekiel Ansah expected to be drafted in the mid-first round

Ever since he became a starter in game five of the 2012 season, Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Ezekiel Ansah has been climbing up the NFL draft boards. By the end of the season, Ansah had almost assured himself a spot in the first round. With the evaluation process now in full force, the question has become just how high Ansah can rise in the NFL Draft.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Most Receiving Yards in a Game)

In honor of former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta reaching the Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens, this week and next week's "Did you know?" feature will focus on him.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Utah has a new star: BYU's Ezekiel Ansah may go No. 1 overall in NFL Draft

Shortly after the 2012 NFL Draft concluded, University of Utah defensive lineman Star Lotulelei was projected as the first overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. Fast forward nine months, and there is now talk that another player from the Beehive State might be the first player taken in the NFL Draft April 25. That player is Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Ezekiel Ansah.

Flashback: The Steve and Gordon Show

The last two football seasons, the Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Cody Hoffman has put on a show catching passes from quarterback Riley Nelson (and anyone else who has been under center). Thirty years ago, BYU had another offensive duo who put on a show worthy of a full blown article in Sports Illustrated.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Former BYU linebacker Uona Kaveinga has strong showing in NFLPA Colleigate Bowl

The Brigham Young Cougars had one representative in the 2013 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, which was played last Saturday, January 19, in Carson, California: middle linebacker Uona Kaveinga. The Hawthorne, California native was one of the leading tacklers in the game. He showed good athleticism and strength as he battled for the American team.

Monday, January 21, 2013

BYU in NFL, Playoffs--AFC Championship Game: Pitta to play in his first Super Bowl

Former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta will play in the first Super Bowl of his career in two weeks after making three first down and one touchdown reception to help the Baltimore Ravens upend the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The BYU offense's best game in 2012

A week ago, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL looked at which game in 2012 was the best for the Brigham Young Cougars defense. Now, we take a look at the BYU offense in 2012. Which game was the BYU offense's best game?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (200 wins)

Brigham Young Cougars basketball coach Dave Rose has generated some buzz by being one win away from his 200th career victory. He is approaching that milestone in a very short span (199 wins in 259 games). This got me thinking about BYU's football coach who won 200 games.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

DuPaix, Cahoon are casualties three and four in BYU coaching carousel

Brigham Young Cougars play-by-play analyst Greg Wrubell for KSL Radio has reported that running backs coach/recruiting coordinator Joe DuPaix and wide receivers coach Ben Cahoon have been let go. They join Lance Reynolds and Mark Weber among the ranks of coaches who will not return for 2013.

Monday, January 14, 2013

BYU in NFL, Playoffs--Divisional Round: Pitta makes pivotal plays

Former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta represented on Saturday as he made some key catches that led to the Baltimore Ravens knocking off the number one seeded Denver Broncos. 

Dallas Reynolds Interview

Note: This interview was conducted in the middle of December, but with the Poinsettia Bowl, the holidays, and the 2012 season review I have been unable to complete the write up until now. Therefore, questions about Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid and BYU assistant coach Lance Reynolds, his father, were answered in the context of their status one month ago. 

Amdist the Philadelphia Eagles worst season in 14 years, former Brigham Young Cougars offensive lineman Dallas Reynolds got his first playing experience in the NFL. Near the end of the season, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL had the privilege of asking Reynolds a few questions about his experience this season.

Friday, January 11, 2013

The BYU defense's best game in 2012

The Brigham Young Cougars defense was the strength of the 2012 football team. Week after week, they did all they could to keep games close and give BYU a chance to win. Now that the season is officially over, we can reflect on each game and pick one as the best defensive performance.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Cody Hoffman's Touchdown Receptions)

Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Cody Hoffman has 28 career touchdown receptions in just three seasons of play. That ranks third all-time at BYU. However, he is only the second player to have his touchdown receptions so widely distributed.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Flashback: The beginning of something beautiful

It is still early January. The new hope from the new year has many of us optimistic that this is the beginning of something beautiful. Forty years ago, the Brigham Young Cougars football program had that same feeling, and they were right. The year 1973 was the beginning of something beautiful.

Football Opponent Tracker: Bowl Results for BYU's 2012 Opponents

Six Brigham Young Cougars 2012 opponents besides BYU’s bowl opponent San Diego State played in a bowl game. It started with Utah State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on the first day of bowls and ended with Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship game. These six teams finished with a 4-2 record. Only one lost convincingly.

BYU Football 2012 Season Review, Part 4: Milestones, Highlights, Records

The Brigham Young Cougars' 2012 football season might have felt disappointing at 8-5, but there were many memorable moments that deserve recognition. Below is a list of milestones, highlights, and other accomplishments or events that made 2012 special. When it is known, it has been noted in parenthesis when the last time such a milestone happened. If it has never happened before, "school record" or "first" is noted in parenthesis.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

BYU fans should embrace the return of Anae as offensive coordinator

The decision by Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall to bring back Robert Anae as offensive coordinator has been called a strange move and a step backwards by some. It is definitely unconventional, but BYU fans should embrace this rehire rather than push back against it. After all, being unconventional is just part of what makes BYU BYU.

Monday, January 7, 2013

BYU in NFL, Playoffs--Wild card: Dennis Pitta is the last man standing

Only two of the NFL teams that reached the playoffs had former Brigham Young Cougars on the roster. They both played in the Wild card round of the playoffs this weekend. One team won. The other lost. 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Bronson Kaufusi: Good football player, average basketball player?

In early November 2012, Brigham Young Cougars football player Bronson Kaufusi openly talked about joining the BYU basketball team after the football season ended. By the end of December, Kaufusi was officially a Cougar cager. During his freshman season in 2012, it was evident that Kaufusi was a good, and one day could be great, football player. Can the same be said about Kaufusi as a basketball player?

BYU Football 2012 Season Review, Part 3: Awards

Awards is part 3 of a four part review of the Brigham Young Cougars' 2012 football season. Part 1 was a general recap of the season, and can be found by clicking here. Part 2 was grading the offense, defense, special teams, as well as the position groups within each, and the coaches. It can be found by clicking here. Part 4--Highlights and Milestones will be either later today or Monday, January 7. 

No analysis of a football season can be complete without giving out awards to the players who stood out. BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL has selected its Team MVP, Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year, and many more. Each award has three nominees. To help keep things interesting, and to spread the wealth, once one player has one award he will be ineligible for another individual award.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Longest Bowl Win Streak in the Nation)

The Brigham Young Cougars extended its longest bowl win streak in school history to four by beating the San Diego State Aztecs in the Poinsettia Bowl, 23-6. Thanks to some help by other schools, that four game win streak in bowl games is on the verge of being much more than just a school record.

BYU Football 2012 Season Review, Part 2: Position Grades

This is part 2 of a four part review of the Brigham Young Cougars’ 2012 football season. Part 1 was a general recap of the season, and can be found by clicking here. Part 3--Season Awards will be posted Friday, January 4. Part 4—Highlights and Milestones will be either Friday, January 4 or Monday, January 7.

Today, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL will give a grade to each position group and use them to give overall grades for the offense, defense, and special teams. The coaching staff will be graded as well.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Flashback: The Sound of Silence

Note: With the conclusion of the Brigham Young Cougars' football season and the calendar changing into a new year, the weekly flashback will change back to its offseason format. For the next eight months, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL will continue to tell the BYU football story by looking back on great stories, memorable moments, and important events from the BYU football seasons 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, etc. years ago.

Listen closely. What do you hear? That's right. NOTHING!!! Football is over. No more pads cracking, whistles blowing, or players huffing and puffing. Another season is in the books for BYU. It is going to be a long eight months.

Rewind a few years, and even during September, October, and November this same football silence pervaded the BYU campus.

BYU Football 2012 Season Review, Part 1: A noble experiment gone wrong

This is part 1 of a four part review of the Brigham Young Cougars’ 2012 football season. Part one is a general recap of the highs, lows, and other key storylines of the season. Part 2—Position Grades will be Thursday, January 3. Part 3—Season Awards will be Friday, January 4. Part 4—Highlights and Milestones will be either Friday, January 4 or Monday the 7th.

The stage was set for the 2012 edition of BYU football in December 2011. Blue chip quarterback Jake Heaps announced he would transfer shortly after the regular season ended. That meant Riley Nelson would be the undisputed leader of the offense. At the end of December, Nelson led BYU to a last second bowl win. While he delivered in the clutch, it was clear that Nelson had a lot of work to do if he was going to compensate for his lack of size and arm strength.