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Mendenhalls getting used to the rugged, enjoyable ride

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  • SoCaLMtnCougar Blue Jay, CA
    May 18, 2011 5:16 a.m.

    Thanks for sharing the family attitude that the Mendenhalls bring to Cougar football. Perhaps the greatest influence that Cougar players can receive from their coach is how to set priorities in what is most important: FAMILY. What a great example Holly is setting. Nice to see that Patty Edwards positive influence on players is continuing. And, bravo for the commitment to the foundation.

  • Laser Iowa City, IA
    May 18, 2011 8:04 a.m.

    Great article. The Mendenhall's are a great family. I also love the Thursday Hero program. Nice job Holly for pushing the Cowboy Ball through. I hope it becomes annual.

  • T-spoon West Jordan, UT
    May 18, 2011 8:43 a.m.

    Gotta love coach Mendenhall!

  • broost Bountiful, UT
    May 18, 2011 9:11 a.m.

    What a classy lady...it's great to hear about the women who support our local coaches.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    May 18, 2011 9:30 a.m.

    It's nice to get to hear from Holly. I hope she feels the love and support Cougar fans have for her as well. Her job is a tough one too.

  • Hondo Springville, UT
    May 18, 2011 9:40 a.m.

    What a fantastic woman! She'd never mix it up with Ute fans. I hear she's also behind Bronco's offseason preparation regimen.

    As I reported a few weeks ago, I read on bleacherreport that Bronco is wearing Shape-Ups this offseason to prepare for the rigors of the season. He hopes that this move will allow him to patrol the sidelines more effectively. He has also changed his dietary habits to include more veggies and to exclude tapioca pudding, his favorite. I think he still goes to the creamery regularly, though.

  • So. Cal Reader Escondido, CA
    May 18, 2011 9:50 a.m.

    One of my all-time favorite DN articles! Thank you, Jeff. The saying goes "for every good man, there's a better wife" and this article certainly supports that. I'm a BIG Bronco fan. He's not perfect; the program's not perfect. But when you take a step back and look at the depth that Bronco has re-shaped the BYU Football Program, how can you not be impressed. Thank you for bringing us into the Mendenhall family, if even for the brief glimpses you provided. Individually and as a family, they seem to have their priorities straight.

  • just-a-fan Bountiful, UT
    May 18, 2011 10:18 a.m.

    Great article about a great family. I had the chance to meet Bronco one day with my son. It was my son's birthday and Bronco was so kind. As they say behind every great man is a GREAT woman. Thanks Holly!

  • Golfhack20 West Jordan, Ut
    May 18, 2011 10:38 a.m.

    Football in the big scheme of things is so small. The coolest thing to me is the love the players have for the 3 Mendenhall boys, What a cool thing. Yes their father is busy and has a hard profession but they truly do find the good in all things and that is what life is about. No matter what team your root for. Go Utes and Cougars at the end of the day we truly are on the same team!!!

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    May 18, 2011 10:44 a.m.

    Nothing like a coach who thinks winning is #5! A lot of 7-6's in the future with a coach and university who aren't willing to make the necessary changes to be among the top.

  • BYU Deek Spanish Fork, UT
    May 18, 2011 11:07 a.m.

    Chris B,

    As life has taught all of us, those 7-6 seasons will happen occasionally. But when you realize that there are things more important than football it really helps you not stress so much about the 7-6 seasons. It helps you understand that hard work and dedication can make those seasons part of the past. Plus, I see a lot of 7-6 seasons and trips to Las Vegas in the future for the Utes, and football is what, 1st on your priority list? Here's wishing you the best. oh, and PS. Don't alienate family and friends over football, its not worth it. Why don't you go tell your boss that your job isn't as important as football and see how that sits with him. Here's to Bronco! He's really got a great head on his shoulders, and a better wife pushing him to be better!

  • Veritas Aequitas Fruit Heights, UT
    May 18, 2011 11:13 a.m.

    Chris B | 10:44 a.m. May 18, 2011
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Nothing like a coach who thinks winning is #5!
    ===

    Chris, Urban Meyer stopped in Utah for two years, and is now out of coaching and spending time with his kids.

    I have no problem with Bronco's priorities.

    I sat in the box next to his family for the TCU game two years back. His kids spent the game in the hallway playing soccer. I thought that was cool.

    If you don't like it, change the channel babe.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    May 18, 2011 12:30 p.m.

    Chris B.,

    In October of 2010, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, in his talk "Of Things that Matter Most," listed the priorities that one whould have in their life. "First, our relationship with God is most sacred and vital....Our second key relationship is with our families....The third key relationship we have is with our fellowman....The fourth key relationship is with ourselves."

    Football does and should come after those. I bet Bro. Kyle Whittingham heard this talk too.

    I sincerely hope the people in your life come before your job in your list of priorities. Regardless, I don't think many Cougar fans are complaining that Coach Mendenhall has his priorities straight.

  • steve84088 Orem, UT
    May 18, 2011 1:06 p.m.

    BYU fans, don't worry about Chris, her mommy will never kick her out of the basement.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    May 18, 2011 1:14 p.m.

    Simply stating the obvious, that byu will never be a national power(see BCS games, BCS wins, BCS conference). Sorry if you dont like it. It's the truth.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    May 18, 2011 1:17 p.m.

    I really hope that Chris B is influenced by the power of this message. There are very few fans who are more die hard football fanatics than me, but this article helps keep it all in proper perspective. BYU football is all about football, but they are also about so much more.

  • itsajelly Walla Walla, WA
    May 18, 2011 1:33 p.m.

    I can't figure out how Chris has so much time to comment on these articles. Who is dusting the typewriters at DI when you are not there?

  • Ravenal Somewhere in, Utah
    May 18, 2011 1:48 p.m.

    Chris B | 1:14 p.m. May 18, 2011
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Simply stating the obvious, that byu will never be a national power(see BCS games, BCS wins, BCS conference). Sorry if you dont like it. It's the truth. --------------

    Should we "mark it down" Chris?

  • Hondo Springville, UT
    May 18, 2011 1:51 p.m.

    Who really cares what Chris B writes? Why are half the posts, this included, about Chris B. Let's talk about Bronco's wife. If BYU goes on to the 12-1 record I predict(12th win is a BCS win), it will be because Bronco's wife influenced Bronco, who in turn, influenced the team.

    She is pushing his offseason regimen of wearing Shape-Ups and eating more veggies and less tapioca pudding. The results of these two changes will lead to better team management and confidence.

    12-1, here we come!

  • Ted H. Midvale, UT
    May 18, 2011 2:14 p.m.

    Hondo,

    Unfortuantely, Chris(and you) are simply proving Max right one comment at a time. You are no more a BYU fan than Chris B is the president of the United States.

    But again - I'm happy all things BYU get you upset.

    Were you more upset about BYU's recent 30+ win season a sweet 16 run or Coach Rose's gracious decline(amongst several others) of the Ute coaching offer?

  • Ken Sandy, UT
    May 18, 2011 2:16 p.m.

    @hondo: There will be a team in Utah that will go 12-1, but it won't be the kids in blue. ESPN and Sports Illustrated are already Utah to win their division and play Oregon for a trip to the Rose Bowl.

    Oh its's good to be a Utah fan. BCS 3 2011. It's coming. Are U ready?

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 18, 2011 2:33 p.m.

    Bronco and his wife always bring up being booed. I don't like the booing myself, but Bronco has been way too sensitive about this issue. Fans are booing decisions they don't agree with, it's not a personal attack on the coach, never has been. And while Coach Edwards and many other coaches seemed to truly enjoy their fans, the Mendenhall's appear to have this apprehensive-dislike-even-disdain relationship with BYU fans. It's pretty weird actually.

    Doesn't change the fact that we love Bronco and think he's a fantastic football coach. But fans need to realize, Bronco doesn't care for BYU fans. He finds them annoying, he insults them, and is easily offended by them, and would rather not have to deal with them at all if he could avoid it. Yes, they grit their teeth and do the minimum public glad-handing they are forced to do, but it's forced and you can tell. The relationship between fans and the Mendenhall's definitely appears to be a one-sided affair.

    OK fine. Just do your thing and win Bronco. And be more thick-skinned, will-ya?

  • Flame of the West The OC, CA
    May 18, 2011 2:48 p.m.

    Honda - I totally agree and I suggest we all cut Chris B a little slack here...I have read other posts of his/hers on other DNews articles stating reasonable things about various topics while claiming to be non-LDS. Y'all need to lighten up a bit...it's just rivalry smack talk and we all rise to the Chris B bait. It's actually quite a boring, broken record: Chris B posts, 12 dozen replies, blah blah blah...please stop it before I go insane.

  • The Jimmer Salt Lake City, UT
    May 18, 2011 4:12 p.m.

    Great article, great family.

  • Hondo Springville, UT
    May 18, 2011 4:14 p.m.

    @Ted H.

    Most of the people on these boards have a sense of humor. I am sorry that you don't and that you can't laugh at yourself or funny posts by others. I am more of a BYU fan than you will ever be because I can laugh at my own fan base while maintaining my stance that BYU runs one of the most successful, respected sports programs in college sports.

    I'm not sure what you mean by "you are simply proving Max right one post at a time." Is that your attempt at humor because if it is, it simply falls flat on its face.

    Bronco is a fearless leader who won't back down. Sure, he was 7-6 last year but by this time next year we will all be standing around in the creamery reminiscing on the 12-1 (win 12 is a BCS win) season we witnessed. Bronco will credit his WIFE, the players, the Shape-Ups and his willingness to put the tapioca pudding snack packs in his rearview mirror.

  • man of few words Salt Lake City, UT
    May 18, 2011 4:15 p.m.

    I agree with KMoku. It does seem like the Mendenhalls do not like the fans and most of the media. But I sincerely think the Coach loves his players. You can see it when he interacts with them. I just wish he would realize that his fans love his players too and also with them the best instead of acting like they are waiting to attack them!

  • In Stitches Provo, Utah
    May 18, 2011 4:21 p.m.

    Chris B.

    "Simply stating the obvious, that byu will never be a national power(see BCS games, BCS wins, BCS conference). Sorry if you dont like it. It's the truth."

    Ummm.... read Fresno Girl's post again. YOU'RE coach is ALSO LDS and probably has heard and read this same talk and just may have HIS priorities set the same as Bronco's. Does that mean a lot of 7-6 seasons for U? Sorry if you don't like it. It's the truth.

  • So. Cal Reader Escondido, CA
    May 18, 2011 4:49 p.m.

    Oh, Ken. You DO have a sense of humor. I can't wait to see your's & ESPN's prediction go down in flames. Please explain how your Utes intend on doing this with an OC who is long past "spinning his magic." What have his offenses done since he left USC? Oh, and yes, I am a Trojan and can't wait for 9/10 @ the Coliseum! Nice "introduction" to "The" Conf!!

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    May 18, 2011 5:20 p.m.

    Um, for the record, how many times has the coach with messed up priorities beaten the team to the north with all the BCS mojo?

    And to the whiny posters saying the Mendenhalls really don't like BYU fans, I think you are not focused enough here. They don't like bad fan behavior, especially from fans who should know better. What, you think it's okay to express your displeasure at Bronco, but he can't comment on you?

    Tell you what, you print up 500 shirts that say "Bronco doesn't like me" and I'll print up 50,000 shirts that say "Bronco likes me!"

    Bet I sell out before you do. Time to grow up.

  • PGVikingDad Pleasant Grove, UT
    May 18, 2011 5:32 p.m.

    People, please stop responding to Chris B, aka "hedgehog". The dude's a troll who makes outrageous statements on every single BYU article for no other reason than to watch us boil. He has previously gone by "Kylie" and "WeeWilly" and several other handles. He keeps it up until someone calls him out, then he changes his name and starts over. End it now.

  • man of few words Salt Lake City, UT
    May 18, 2011 6:07 p.m.

    Y Grad / Y Dad
    Um, for the record, I am a Ute fan. But I still call them as I see them. I do not require you to agree with me.

    I've read articles where he talks about avoiding people at church before the Utah game because they might talk football with him. SILLY!

    I've seen him before games and after games completely ignore his fans. The players will smile, wave, shake hands, give autographs, but he acts like his fans bother him.

    I went to the BYU/New Mexico game last season with my brother (who IS a BIG BYU fan). It was the Senior's last home game so there was a ceremony to honor them afterwards. He was wonderful with his team and even cried a bit. Then the crowd began chanting "Beat Utah." His entire demeanor changed. He frankly looked ticked and annoyed and he stomped directly to the locker room not to be seen again. My brother insisted on waiting by the locker door in hopes of meeting him. Nope. The players coming out were completely friendly though.

    Mix that in with annoyed comments he has made in the press....

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    May 18, 2011 6:13 p.m.

    I don't know if it is human nature to complain more than to praise or if those who are negative just tend to talk louder and more than those who are positive. But it does seem to happen that we hear far more criticisms in our society than compliments, as a whole. I imagine it must be the same for the Head Football Coach.

    I bet that could grow wearisome and discouraging. Just my thought on the matter. I don't think the coach dislikes us, I think he gets tired of the arm chair QBing. I would.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    May 18, 2011 10:28 p.m.

    man of few words,

    Thanks, you cite a few circumstances, personally observed, perhaps subject to your personal bias, and pronounce that Bronco doesn't like his fans.

    Think what you want. I disagree with you. It's a free world. I'm just not interested in somebody trying to unfavorably shape public perception about Coach Mendenhall.

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 18, 2011 11:35 p.m.

    Just so we're clear: LOVE BRONCO. Have from the beginning. Was SO glad he was hired. He was the right guy. IMHO best coach in the country, period.

    To those who don't have a chance to really be around Bronco:

    Had a chance to observe him for a while now. Bronco has issues with fans. Period.

    He has had to endure the same crap from fans that just about every other coach endures... certainly nothing more than coach Edwards had to endure (actually I would claim Edwards had it worse). But for whatever reason (INSERT THEORY HERE: ________) Bronco disdains BYU fans.

    Look, Bronco's a good guy and likes people in general, especially on a one-on-one basis. He also knows fans are important, he's not stupid. But Bronco doesn't just dislike a few idiotic vocal fans. His issues are far deeper, wider, and more bitter than that. And general disdain-borderline-hate is a fair description. Not making it up. Don't know why. Just telling you, it's strange to watch, but it's real.

  • BluCoug Provo, UT
    May 19, 2011 12:47 a.m.

    @ Ken

    Sorry Ken, but you, ESPN and Sports Illustrated are living in fantasyland. The utes will fall hard in their first year in the PAC. A trend utes will have to get use to.

    BYU will take utah to the woodshed in September.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    May 19, 2011 8:26 a.m.

    I'm just saying that two anonymous witnesses are making a broad character assessment ("But for whatever reason (INSERT THEORY HERE: ________) Bronco disdains BYU fans") that is easily and publicly seen, yet we only hear about it here from two people. I dispute the conclusion firmly.

    If you wanted to say the same thing about Max Hall and Utah fans, the observation would go unchallenged and we could debate the inserted theory. You can claim that, for whatever reason, Bobby Knight has a problem with his temper.

    I neither dispute nor affirm your observations, but I hotly contest your conclusion.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, Utah
    May 19, 2011 8:47 a.m.

    I'm not sure Bronco necessarily hates BYU fans in general, although he is not too fond of them (especially when they disagree with his actions). I remember last season at the homecoming devotional that BYU held in place of the weekly Tuesday devotional. This was the week that we played SDSU, and the record at the time was 1-4 with having just lost to USU. It didn't help knowing that SDSU was good this year.

    However, when Bronco spoke at the forum, he was greeted with thundrous applause during his speech (this is thousands of people we are talking about, not a couple hundred), and it was clear that despite the gloomy circumstances, BYU fully supported Bronco. He was pleased about that, and I don't think it's in his character to despise a fanbase that treats him like that.

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 19, 2011 10:03 a.m.

    The one public appearance Bronco loves doing is devotionals. He says he loves them and it's true. He appreciates the people there, the spirit there, and the purpose.

    To Y Grad / Y Dad: It's pointless to argue with you. Fine have your opinion from 700 miles away. If you were around Bronco, you would know.

    This is not an attack on him. I'm not trying to shape negative public opinion about him. For those who are around him or pay attention enough, you would see a brilliant coach who is a likable guy, loves his players, and generally disdains fans. Most fans aren't too put off buy this. There's too much to like about Bronco otherwise.

    So no whining here, it's a simple observation. I'm more amused by it than anything. I'm certainly not upset with Bronco. I feel bad for him though.

    So hand-wave this away all you want to from the desert dunes of Richland... turn off the lights and pretend the elephant in the room doesn't exist. Repeat in your mind, "Bronco is perfect and loves us!" 100 times... Won't matter.

  • Katiebugg Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2011 10:09 a.m.

    Here's a question ... reporters always say the Bronco is "a very private person." What does that mean?!

    Is he standoffish?

    Is he shy?

    What are they trying to say? Will somebody (who has actually met and talked with the man) please explain this?

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    May 19, 2011 10:38 a.m.

    Katiebugg

    Good question. I've always wondered that too. Anybody know?

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 19, 2011 10:48 a.m.

    Not a psychologist / psychiatrist, so this is pure speculation. I really am guessing here.

    I would say while Bronco is confident (extremely confident) about some things, he has some serious insecurities (dont we all?).

    Its funny to say, but I actually think hes a painfully shy person, and much prefers keeping to himself or to close company. I think hes really grown into this person you see now that seemingly talks comfortably to large audiences and handles himself well. But if you watch him up close it's not hard to tell how ill-at-ease he is.

    Do you remember how painful his coachs show on KSL with Tom Kirkland was? It was an absolute nightmare! They had to completely revamp that show, and pretty much take most of the coach interaction and interview out of the show. Except for one part: Bronco loves talking about the Xs and Os of the game. In fact, the biggest hit of his new coachs show is the segment where he simply talks about the mechanics of football . . . its easy to see he loves this and is completely in his element here.

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 19, 2011 11:02 a.m.

    As long as I'm speculating, I'll go further...

    I think a lot of fans have -- mostly innocently, but some not -- bent Bronco's ear about how to do things with the program and it's highly offended him. I think fan interaction has traumatized him somehow. He brings up the booing a lot. You would have to think it goes way beyond that though, and it almost certainly does.

    I have to say, I've been around sports a lot and never seen a coach so gun-shy/fan-shy. Not even close.

    Bronco is VERY private. He plays things VERY close to the vest. He doesn't open up at all. He's not warm, cuddly, personable, etc... on purpose it seems.

    So let me back-up. Bronco is GREAT one-on-one. Loves individuals. So very kind. He loves his devotionals. His idea actually. He's very generous to others outside the context of football. But put on his coach's hat and make it known "fans" are about? Terror!!!!!!

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, Utah
    May 19, 2011 11:22 a.m.

    Sometimes I get the feeling that BYU purposefully leaks out some information about what they might be doing (i.e. going independent, firing coaches, etc.) just to listen in to the comments to get a feel for what people think. Then they make their decision after unofficial viewpoints from the fans. I doubt that is true, but the scenario seems to make sense. Did anybody else get that feeling?

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    May 19, 2011 11:34 a.m.

    Regarding the Elephant in the Room, when more people in the room start to point at it, I'll take a look.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    May 19, 2011 1:11 p.m.

    KMoku

    I agree with you in that he has always struck me as kind of shy person. I also thought that's what they meant by "very private."

    I also agree with: "So let me back-up. Bronco is GREAT one-on-one. Loves individuals. So very kind. He loves his devotionals. His idea actually. He's very generous to others outside the context of football." It does seem like he is uncomfortable in certain contexts though which I interpret as shyness.

    I hope he knows that we fans really appreciate him, his family, players and coaches.

  • Osgrath Provo, UT
    May 19, 2011 4:14 p.m.

    Since when has being a coach become a fan popularity contest. Sure Lavell Edwards was universally beloved, even by Utah fans, as was (and is) Ron McBride - their personalities lead to that. Was Woody Hayes lovable? Bear Bryant? Urban Meyer? I don't know a lot of people who played under Meyer, but those whom I know that did have a lot of respect for his knowledge of the game and a lot of disdain for his way of interacting with people. Yet somehow the Ute fans were sorry to see him go because he won.

    Bronco has been winning, too. I don't care if he has all the cuddliness of a favorite uncle as long as the players are loyal to him and play hard, and as long as he can recruit good players, and as long as he knows the x's and o's and can coach well. In his personal life he can be a total hermit and I don't care. It's his life!

    A discussion of the public persona of Bronco Mendenhall is absurd.

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 19, 2011 4:54 p.m.

    Just like the article I suppose...

  • man of few words Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2011 4:55 p.m.

    KMoku and fresnogirl,

    I think I have been wrong about your coach. Thinking back on it, I think you may be right about his just being shy. I've seen him blush and look uncomfortable on a number of occasions. That certainly could explain the behavior I mentioned before.

    Sorry Coach for misjudging you.

    As for Osgrath: calm down, Dude. It is a public forum for opinions and nobody (not even this Ute) is bagging on your coach.

  • KMoku SLC, UT
    May 19, 2011 5:13 p.m.

    man of few words: nice sarcasm... you pegged that one... back to the original point of Bronco's disdain for fans, it's true. I believe your example, I've seen many examples just like it. Heard him basically tell fans they are idiots. Snub groups of fans many times. So yeah, it goes way beyond shyness, he's bitter about something.

  • CougarOnTheProwl Murray, UT
    May 19, 2011 9:15 p.m.

    Good Read...Nice to get Holly's prospective on what its like to be the wife of a football coach, she sounds like a real classy lady. Both Her and Bronco are and should be greatly appreciated for what they do and have done for BYU football and in the community.