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Thursday, February 28, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Punts 69 yards or longer)

While few people like to see the punter trot onto the field, almost everyone likes seeing a punter unleash a booming kick that covers a really long distance. For the Brigham Young Cougars, those really, really long punts have come more often against one opponent.

BYU player interviewed by 16 different NFL teams

Brigham Young Cougars Ezekiel Ansah and Braden Brown were the only BYU players invited to last week's NFL Draft Combine, but they aren't the only Cougars getting a lot of attention from the NFL. BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL recently spoke with Braden Hansen and learned that he is receiving interest from half of the teams in the National Football League.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Flashback: Power Punting

One of the biggest losses from 2012 for the Brigham Young Cougars is punter Riley Stephenson. His powerful (45.4 yards per punt) and precise punts (30 inside the 20-yard line) were game changers for BYU. The same problem faced the Cougs 30 years ago.

Comprehensive NFL Combine recap for BYU's Ezekiel Ansah

Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Ezekiel Ansah was put under the microscope and sent through a gauntlet of rigorous testing at the NFL's annual Draft Combine in Indianapolis this past week. The native of Ghana, Africa took a "don't think, just have fun" attitude as if he was chilling on the African Savannah. Ansah tested well and receiving glowing reviews from all the experts.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Sneak Peek at BYU Football 2013

The Brigham Young Cougars will start spring football practices next week. This is the first real preparation for the 2013 season. While kickoff is still six months away, here is a sneak peek at how the 2013 Cougars will look.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Brigham Young Cougars make late addition to 2013 recruiting class

Nearly three weeks after National Letter of Intent day, the Brigham Young Cougars completed their 2013 signing class with the addition of Tomasi Laulile. Laulile is a 6-foot-3, 265 pound defensive end from Westlake High School in Westlake Village, California.

BYU's Braden Brown runs the 40 faster than the projected no. 1 overall pick

While everyone is closely watching Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Ezekiel Ansah at the NFL Draft Combine, there is another BYU player in Indianapolis who is standing out, especially when compared head-to-head with Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Is it time for Bronson Kaufusi to quit basketball?

The Brigham Young Cougars are scheduled to start spring football practices in roughly one week. The BYU basketball team will still be playing in the West Coast Conference tournament, and could play even longer if the Cougar cagers earn an invitation to the NIT or NCAA tournament. That creates a small dilemma for BYU football and basketball player Bronson Kaufusi.

Kaufusi's role with the football team is clearly bigger than his role with the basketball team. Should he leave the BYU basketball team early (March 4) to participate in spring football practices?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (The year after a Top 10 defense)

The phenomenal play of the Brigham Young Cougars defense in 2012 helped keep the season interesting despite the struggles on offense. Can the BYU defense follow up this stellar season with an excellent 2013?

2012 was a volatile season for former BYU players in the NFL

Six former Brigham Young Cougars started the 2012 season on active NFL rosters. When the regular season concluded, 11 former BYU players had been active at some point during the season, but only nine were active the final week of the season. That is just the beginning of how volatile this NFL season was for former Cougars.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Flashback: The other Van Noy

Kyle Van Noy has become a star for the Brigham Young Cougars the last two years. He has built a legacy that will last for a very long time. However, he is not the first Van Noy to wear BYU blue.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Without doubt the Brigham Young Cougars offensive line will be better in 2013

The Brigham Young Cougars offensive line had its share of struggles in 2012. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall and offensive coordinator Robert Anae felt the o-line needed to be an area of emphasis in recruiting, and during January--a time that BYU, typically, doesn't make major recruiting headlines--they crossed the country trying to find offensive line talent.

On National Letter of Intent Day, BYU signed, an astounding, eight offensive line prospects. Half of these prospects came from the junior college ranks, which is a sure sign the Cougars coaches don't want to wait to see improvement up front. Will this emphasis on offensive linemen in this recruiting class payoff?

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Brigham Young Cougars hire Guy Holliday and Jason Beck to completely revamp offensive coaching staff

Late Friday evening, the Brigham Young Cougars announced that Guy Holliday and Jason Beck were hired as assistant football coaches. With the hire of these two highly qualified coaches, BYU has completely revamped its offensive coaching staff that was put into place just two years ago.

Friday, February 15, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Opponents with 11 wins)

Much is made in college football about strength of schedule. It can be measured in many different ways. One way that would have favored the Brigham Young Cougars in 2012 is to look at the number of different opponents who won 11 games.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Flashback: Really long touchdown runs

Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Taysom Hill electrified the crowd last year with a 68-yard touchdown run against Hawaii. It was the longest run in school history by a quarterback. Looking at past seasons, Hill or running back Jamaal Williams may have an even longer run in 2013.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tim McTyer--Much more than a football player

Former Brigham Young Cougars cornerback Tim McTyer entered the spotlight a week ago when his son needed a new place to play football in college. Many BYU fans still remember how good the senior McTyer was in Cougar blue, but that was all the way back in 1996. Following his playing days in Provo, McTyer was fortunate enough to have a four-year NFL career. For the past 10 years, he has coached football on the high school and Youth football levels. That is only half of the story.

In an interview with him, BLUE COUGAR FOOTBALL learned that McTyer has pursued professional interests other than football.

Monday, February 11, 2013

The ideal candidate to coach wide receivers for BYU

Brigham Young Cougars offensive coordinator Robert Anae is busy sifting through resumes to fill two assistant coaching positions. One of those assistants will coach the wide receivers. Imagine what Anae's reaction would be if he found a resume with the following:

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Brigham Young Cougars' 2013 schedule gets high marks from fans

The Brigham Young Cougars athletic administration had hyped the 2013 football schedule for many, many months. The more hype the greater the odds of a letdown. When BYU Athletic Director Tom Holmoe unveiled the football schedule almost two weeks ago, the big question became how do the fans feel about it?

Friday, February 8, 2013

BYU Football: Did you know? (Junior College Cornerbacks)

On Wednesday, Brigham Young Cougars head coach Bronco Mendenhall announced that two junior college cornerbacks had signed letters of intent to play football. Mining the JC ranks for cornerbacks is a formula that has been successful for BYU during Mendenhall's tenure.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Despite decommitments, BYU's 2013 recruiting class has plenty to be excited about

The Brigham Young Cougars had a wild finish to recruiting for 2013. Negative stories about players changing their commitment from BYU to another school gave the impression that this recruiting class would be a disaster for the Cougars. Despite the multiple defections, the class of 2013 has plenty of quality players to be excited about.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Flashback: BYU's 2003 recruiting class

Today is National Letter of Intent day for college football. The Brigham Young Cougars will welcome in the latest group of high school players. Ten years ago, BYU signed a recruiting class under similar circumstances to today.

Monday, February 4, 2013

BYU in NFL, Super Bowl--Pitta catches key TD in Ravens' win

Former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta is a Super Bowl champion. The Baltimore Ravens tight end helped his team to a 34-31 win over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Dennis Pitta set to add his name to BYU Super Bowl lore

In less than 24 hours, former Brigham Young Cougars tight end Dennis Pitta will represent BYU in Super Bowl XLVII as a member of the Baltimore Ravens. Pitta is the latest in a long line of Cougars who have competed on football's biggest stage.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Not a problem that Mendenhall and Anae are taking their time to finalize the BYU coaching staff

During the 2012 football season it was very evident that the Brigham Young Cougars needed to make some changes to the coaching staff. Those changes started to be made shortly after BYU beat San Diego State in the Poinsettia Bowl. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall brought in Robert Anae to be the offensive coordinator. It became evident that the entire offensive coaching staff would be revamped.

The hiring of Garett Tujague and Mark Atuaia as assistant coaches was announced about 10 days after Anae came on board. Another two-plus weeks have passed without a single additional hire being announced. For a myriad of reasons, this could be cause for alarm.

New twist in the BYU 2013 recruiting saga: Tim McTyer wants his son to be a Cougar

The Brigham Young Cougars 2013 recruiting class can be described in one word: saga. Recruiting had been uneventful in January the last few years. Virtually all recruits had committed early and stayed true to that commitment. This year has been the exact opposite. Multiple commits have decommitted and committed to other schools. Some have decommitted only to recommit later. One even decommitted and recommitted only to decommit again. BYU coaches have racked up a lot of frequent flier miles this month making several visits to recruits both new and old.

Guess what, it isn't over yet. With six days left until the February 6 date when high school seniors can sign their national letter of intent a new twist developed in the BYU recruiting. The son of former BYU legend Tim McTyer (cornerback, 1995-96) had Cal pull its scholarship offer. Torry McTyer is now looking for a new place to play, and BYU is high on his list.