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Former BYU quarterback Jake Heaps using 2012 season to improve

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  • Pipes Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 3:09 p.m.

    It appears being compelled to be humble is working for Heaps. Too bad he needed to be compelled.

  • BYU_Aggie LOGAN, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 3:32 p.m.

    What? Sitting a year out using your redshirt is actually helping him? Maturing? Working on his mental game? Crazy ideas I tell you.

    I honestly hope he lives up to his potential. I was sad to see him transfer, but it was pretty apparent that the coaching staff at BYU wasn't helping his progression.

  • matt4226 Holladay, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 3:42 p.m.

    What is the idea behind requiring student athletes to sit out a year when they transfer between FBS schools? Is it to prevent 'good' players from transferring to 'better' teams? In the case of Jake Heaps it was a mutual decision for him to leave the program. It would be nice for student athletes in his situation to have a process where they can request to have this waived when both the original school and the athlete are in agreement of the departure. I know they already do this in situations where a school is placed on probation.

  • rafinsure Elk Grove/U.S.A., 00
    Nov. 12, 2012 3:44 p.m.

    I think humility was a problem for Heaps. However, I think he would have done better at BYU with an experienced offensive coordinator. Coach Doman should not have started him as a true freshman to begin with. He did not have the maturity level yet to succeed. I'm surprised Ross Apo didn't pack his bags as well. Apo could have been NFL quality as well with another coaching staff and more opportunities to catch the ball. I think its obvious with Riley Nelson's horrific senior year (since he can't throw the ball), Taysom Hill's unnecessary injury, and Tom Holmoe's comment about a shake up on the offensive staff at the end of the season, there were obstacles outside of Heap's control. He was a missed opportunity. My guess is that Coach Doman will be fired when the season is over.

  • Still Blue after all these years Kaysville, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 3:57 p.m.

    How Heaps performs next year will be as telling for Brandon Doman as for Jake Heaps. The question is can Doman coach (and improve) a pocket passer. And what does that say about future recruits if Doman is long-term.

  • From Ted's Head Orem, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 4:17 p.m.

    We know Heaps can throw the ball...but can he stand in and take the required hits? I still have an image of him cringing as he was expecting to get hit, against the Utes, I think. The impression I got was not a fear of pain, but the possibility of an injury that would derail his fated NFL career. Sure, I expect the kicker to cringe a bit...but a 5 star recruit? Maybe married life has quickening his manning up.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 5:03 p.m.

    I hope he does improve.

    For those who think BYU threw him away, he had many, many opportunities to prove himself. I watched him in person against Texas over-throw wide open receivers several times. And his slow snap count resulted in more 5-yard false start penalties than any 5 year time period in the history of BYU football. He had a great game against UTEP in the New Mexico Bowl, but that seems to be where his abilities ended, unfortunately. I won't rehash his performance in Provo against Utah, although given a special team that actually blocked so as to hit a field goal, Jake did enough to bring a victory against Utah in SLC. It just didn't happen.

    So the best to you, Jake, in the future. Learn from your past and you'll be better for it.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 12, 2012 5:12 p.m.

    If Kansas can block for him next year, he'll have a great season. With a 1-9 record the bar is set pretty low. It won't be hard to exceed the performance of this year at the QB position. I will be looking to see how well he does.
    In retrospect, his first year should have been a developmental year and I think he would have done a lot better last year. But as I have said before, you can't teach heart and toughness.

  • CT98 Saint George, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 5:24 p.m.

    I wish the best of luck to Jake. He certainly struggled while at BYU and I was on the 'Bench Heaps' bandwagon but I admire how he handled the situation at BYU and hope that he finds success in Kansas. Can't wait to watch both Jake and Josh Quezada next year. Should be interesting.

  • Samwise Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 5:51 p.m.

    In all sincerity, I wish Heaps success at Kansas. I think both he and the coaching staff deserve some of the blame for how things turned out at BYU. I am glad redshirting for a year seems like it is having a positive effect on him. I still wish things had worked out at BYU though. Oh well. We have Taysom Hill now, who I think will be better next year anyway if he can improve his passing game.

  • DaveKnowsWhatsUp Bloomington, IN
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:08 p.m.

    wow, a quote from Heaps that was all about him and how he thinks he's getting better...didn't see that one coming.

  • BYU DUDE Provo, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:17 p.m.

    Bronco and Brandon blew it ,

  • ApacheNaiche PINETOP, AZ
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:43 p.m.

    Blame Bush.

  • sg newhall, CA
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:46 p.m.

    Jake Heaps will NEVER be the type of 5 star QB he was projected to be. He just doesn't have what it takes on a consistent basis and he will never be an NFL QB. I hope he's learning how to be a QB coach or offensive coordinator for a high school team in the future.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:47 p.m.

    yawn...

  • StGtoSLC SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:51 p.m.

    I'm glad the KU experience is treating him better than being the golden son of Provo, and I wish him more success in his future, but I think those of you wanting to watch him play in some games next year may be disappointed. Yes, KU's record is awful (to say the least), but since replacing Crist (an even more heralded HS recruit than Heaps), Cummings has playing pretty efficiently, nearly beating Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas Tech, plus he is much quicker and more mobile than Heaps, which is a must for teams with bad offensive lines. My guess is at some point of the season, Heaps will get his shot, but as has been shown this year, nothing is promised.

    toosmart, I find it hard to blame false starts on the QB, regardless of what tempo you think their snap count should be, when the OL spend 20 hours a week practicing with him, they should be used to it by then. Plus, I'm pretty sure they had more false starts in the game at Utah this year than all of last season combined, and Heaps had nothing to do with that.

  • Oregonian Sherwood, OR
    Nov. 12, 2012 6:57 p.m.

    After Jake transferred, I asked a friend of mine, who currently plays BYU football,if he was upset that he left the program. He said, "Good riddance". He mentioned he was arrogant, didn't work, and felt entitled. Granted, that's only one data point. For my part, I wish him only the best at Kansas.

  • Floyd Johnson Broken Arrow, OK
    Nov. 12, 2012 7:32 p.m.

    Heaps lacked the mind set to compete in college football in 2010 and 2011. I was lukewarm on him the first time I saw him play, and I never became a fan. I have replayed some Heaps games over the last few months, and I become less impressed with more review. The coaches do assume blame for his failure, their error was having him on the field at all. He needed a red shirt year to learn the game. He was immobile, lacked the ability read defenses, was incapable of responding to a breakdown and was terrified of injury. His last play in 2011 should have been his open field slide with 6:10 remaining in the 3rd quarter of the Texas game.

    I wish him the best in his future endeavors. I think a red shirt year will provide him a much needed opportunity to learn.

  • BYUfaninWashSt Everett, WA
    Nov. 12, 2012 8:20 p.m.

    Go Jake! Hope you can prove to everyone what many already know about BYU's coaching staff.

  • JMT Springville, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 8:32 p.m.

    I'll never forget the image. I don't remember the game, BYU won a close one near the end. As it was over and players were running about the field Jake Heaps went up to Riley Nelson and rubber the top of his head, messing up his hair much as a grandpa would mess up a little 5-year old grandsons hair. An 18-year old doing this to a 23-year was just odd. Spoke of his maturity.

    Maturity is a big issue. I hope he has grown. As for Coach Doman. He was a run first, throw second attitude quarterback. He coaches this way. Reminds me of Gary Crowton, always running these designed quarterback runs and getting them clipped at a pretty consistent rate.

    Throw first, scramble as you needed. If you want a ball run intentionally, give it to the running back. That is what they are built for.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Nov. 12, 2012 8:36 p.m.

    BYUfaninWashSt
    Everett, WA
    "Go Jake! Hope you can prove to everyone what many already know about BYU's coaching staff."

    Yes, like how the coaches caused him to under-throw, over-throw and flame-throw balls that weren't caught. Or how the coaches told him "don't you dare try to tackle that defender with your interception. You are MUCH too valuable to us as a future NFL qb to risk anything like that."

  • NevadaCoug Overton, NV
    Nov. 12, 2012 9:30 p.m.

    "I'm surprised Ross Apo didn't pack his bags as well. Apo could have been NFL quality as well with another coaching staff and more opportunities to catch the ball."

    Did you watch the game on Saturday? Apo had some opportunities to catch more balls in that one game alone, but dropped pass that hit him right in the hands. Now, I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and think maybe he wasn't handling the cold all that well; but NFL quality receivers need to be able to catch balls in those circumstances.

    Heaps chose to do exactly what the BYU coaching staff wanted him to do this year: redshirt. He just chose to do it an another university. I, too, wish him the best; but like many, I'm skeptical he'll do more than have a couple of good years to end his football career. The NFL is not in his future; but then again, he could surprise us.

  • Fibonacci Centerville, UT
    Nov. 12, 2012 9:34 p.m.

    So tell me why Jake Heaps felt like he needed to leave? To me it's interesting that Jake feels he can use this time to improve his game and learn some things. He can do that at KSU but not at BYU? Had he stayed, matured, and learned at BYU he would have likely got a lot of playing time this year as soon has Nelson went down. And if he was improving and maturing as he suggests, he would have had a terrific opportunity excel. After a couple of games Nelson will graduate and we'll pin our hopes on sophomore T. Hill instead of a more experienced upperclassman. I think Jake Heaps blew it by leaving. He revealed that his ego just couldn't the fact that he had much room to improve.

  • BYUfaninWashSt Everett, WA
    Nov. 12, 2012 9:37 p.m.

    Y Grad / Y Dad
    Richland, WA

    Jake may or may not light things up in Kansas. However, he'll at least play worthy competition each week ... and he can hope to receive support with competent play calling and encouragement from team-mates his own age. Hard to be 17 or 18 and lead a team of 30 yr old returned wanna-be's.

  • EdGrady Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 12, 2012 10:30 p.m.

    Heaps on his worst day is better than "ole gritty" Riley Nelson on his best day. Heaps was entitled? I'd say that honor belongs to the current qb who single-handedly lost the BSU game.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Nov. 12, 2012 11:12 p.m.

    BYUfaninWashSt
    Everett, WA

    Couple of points:

    1) every team that beats you is worthy competition.
    2) hard to tell if the play calling was competent when the passes keep hitting the grass.
    3) hard to lead the 30 year old wannabe's when they're in the weight room and your on the golf course.

    I wanted Jake to be successful as much as the next loyal cougar fan. I over-looked the sports bar press conference, I withheld judgement when he decided to forgo his mission, I worried when he became the starter as a freshman, but I thought he was on a good trajectory after the bowl game.

    Between then and the next season, he suffered a crisis in confidence, or maybe the whole team suffered a confidence crisis in him. Whatever the case, he made Riley look real good at the time. Whatever.

    Maybe he would have done better with a different OC, with a dedicated QB coach. But he WAS doing pretty well as a freshman and stunk it up as a sophomore. And the coaches didn't change.

    Just sayin'.

  • Whoa Nellie American Fork, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 12:34 a.m.

    Problem for Jake was he got married way too soon. When his bride couldn't take the heat in the stands she needed to transfer. Jake had to go along to get along.

  • Tokyo_Expat Tokyo, Japan
    Nov. 13, 2012 5:38 a.m.

    The coaches did change. Robert Anae was let go and Brandon Doman was promoted to OC. While Heaps isn't blameless in how things played out, I believe it's becoming more and more apparent that the biggest problem was coaching. Red zone play calling was horrible (still is). No pass protection or run game to speak of. A coaching staff so taken with Nelson that they forgave him of any mistake, even when it cost games (see TCU for reference). A September schedule tougher than any in BYU history, and then Nelson plays against teams with a combined win percentage of 35%. Anyway, we'll see how Heaps does next season. Should be telling.

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    Nov. 13, 2012 6:09 a.m.

    You people who think you've got Heaps all figured out really nauseate me. I hope your kids never have to go through the spotlight this young man has and have thousands of people making the same judgements of your son or daughter with limited information.

    I wish Jake well and hope he succeeds. Shame on those of you who judge. Most hypocritical for LDS.

  • TheNun Granstville, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 8:53 a.m.

    "Jake is very, very frustrated," Kansas coach Charlie Weis told KUSports.com. "He's frustrated that he can't help."

    He can't help if he's in the game, or on the sidelines, so I guess Jake will continue to be frustrated, as KU is a very bad team. Specifically, the o-line. If people think Jake cringed last year while trying to pass with byu's offensive line, wait until they see him try to drop back in Lawrence.

  • TheNun Granstville, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 9:01 a.m.

    Eastcoast,

    Wait a minute, I thought hypocrisy was a prerequisite for admission into the cougar club. You're saying it isn't?

  • BYUHOCKEY American Fork, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 9:48 a.m.

    to all the naysayers...Heaps is amazing. Time will show he was BYU's future that was mishandled and misappropriated. He may have had humility issues as Bronco implies (entitlement feelings) however BYU had and still has no offensive line protection and no truly seasoned OC to bring the lad along. Bronco appears to choose the starting QB rather than the QB coach and OC. Heaps will succeed in Kansas under seasoned veteran coaches. That does not mean they will win the Big 12 any time soon though. I believe Heaps would have won back the starting job this year had he stayed. Bronco has said he would rather play a less talented player who tries harder than a talented player who does not. So the question is what does "trying harder" mean to Bronco. if the players know what that quality is then fine otherwise the mind games need to stop. the interesting thing is that once again under Bronco's watch defensive players are the problem. Bronco was the DC under Crowton and the defensive players cost Crowton his job. I would like to see Bronco move to DC only and hire a new head coach who is OC.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 13, 2012 9:59 a.m.

    Lighten up, Eastcoast, criticism goes with the territory of being a QB at BYU (or any school for that matter). You think Heaps is the only one to be subject to criticism? Nelson this year has been castigated more than Heaps ever was (much of it deserved). And it seems to me you have posted a lot of critical comments yourself.

    All of us fans want to see BYU Football get better. And we all (you included) think we have some ideas on how that should happen. Right or wrong, that is all part of being a fan.

    The fans do have some influence on the program. Unhappy fans mean less revenue. And these comment boards are one way fans can express pleasure or displeasure in the program. But you are probably right that we could all benefit from being less judgmental.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    Nov. 13, 2012 11:04 a.m.

    eastcoastcoug

    You need to study a little harder in Sunday School. The scriptures talk about not judging "unrighteously", the scriptures don't admonish not to judge at all, and frankly, I don't see how "righteous" or "unrighteous" judgement is even applicable to football, unless throwing an incomplete pass is considered a sin.

  • SlopJ30 St Louis, MO
    Nov. 13, 2012 11:13 a.m.

    I'm not rooting against Heaps, but to those who blame the Y coaches for his failure, did you ever watch the guy play? For every nice throw, he missed two others. For every decisive, strong throw, he waited a half-second too long or lobbed a half-hearted duck. For ever time he had a nice run to salvage some yards, he . . wait, that never happened. Look, I get that not everyone could or should try to be Steve Young or Michael Vick out there, but Heaps always looked like he'd rather run out of the back of his own end zone than try to pick up a few yards on a scramble. And the few times I did see him actually "run" with the ball, I thought maybe my DVR had slown down the game. To call him "plodding" is too kind. "Contact averse" and "plodding" are not going to cut it in D1 football, let alone the NFL. Heaps in the NFL . . that's hilarious.

  • Wayne Rout El Paso, TX
    Nov. 13, 2012 12:28 p.m.

    Folks, do you recall the New Mexico bowl? Do you remember who was the Player of the Game? Who was the offensive coordinator for that game? Flash forward a few months. New Offensive Coordinator. The first play of the season told the story and the snap sailed over Jake's head. High snaps seemed to plague him the second season and naturally it was all his fault. When Riley came in, surprise, no more high snaps. I feel sorry for Jake and I feel sorry for BYU. We could have been a top 5 team with Jake and a real Offensive Coordinator.

  • jarka-rus Layton, Utah
    Nov. 13, 2012 12:52 p.m.

    Kansas, QB U. Yep

  • utahcountyute Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 1:11 p.m.

    All this finger pointing and hypocrisy talk is cracking me up. Please keep it coming.

  • bballjunkie Pleasant Grove, UT
    Nov. 13, 2012 1:13 p.m.

    When Heaps tears it up and ends up in the NFL, I can't wait to hear all the Y fans who wanted him gone. Oh how is having Riley working out for us? Good call!

  • Lightening Lad Austin , TX
    Nov. 13, 2012 1:17 p.m.

    I think the situation is clearer than when Jake left? Just how difficult his situation really was at BYU. There is perhaps such a fondness for Riley Nelson that Brono and Doman are blinded as to his abilities, expecting more efficacy that he is able to give. Many point to the disasterous game with Utah which got the Cougars buried in their own self distructive mistakes, yet the worst performance by any BYU QB in history was the Pick 6, 4 INT, 2 fumbles lost, 5 for 12 completions at Boise State. Nelson remained the starter after giving away three games this season throwing 10 INTs vs the opposing QB's having had NONE, it's hard to win under those circumstances. Jake placed himself in a situation that promises to be a difficult at Kansas. The Kansas QB averages 12 passes a game with 6 completions and 50 passing yards a game. That's the Charlie Weiss offense and he has found a freshman QB to lead the run offense. Will it be Crawford the running QB from Texas or the passing QB from Washigton via BYU? Weiss is known for driving QB's crazy, maybe Jakes wishes he stayed.

  • SlopJ30 St Louis, MO
    Nov. 13, 2012 2:28 p.m.

    bballjukie says: "When Heaps tears it up and ends up in the NFL, I can't wait to hear all the Y fans who wanted him gone. Oh how is having Riley working out for us? Good call!"

    You really see that happening, do you? OK, then. If you're right, I'd be a little irritated he couldn't have played at an NFL prospect level for the Y, but I honestly hope it happens for him. I'd follow him and root for him.

    I also hope Riley Stephenson wins the Heisman, that I get a 50% raise after January performance evaluations, and that Eva Longoria shows up on my doorstep tonight with a hot pizza wearing naught but a Jimmer jersey and a smile.

    About Riley, is a mediocre Riley any worse than a mediocre Heaps? I say no. They each have completely unique downsides. Give me Hill and let him grow into the role, but then that didn't work out so well. I'm already on to next year.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 13, 2012 2:33 p.m.

    @Wayne Rout
    Wayne, you proved to be mostly right about Nelson--he is just not very good.
    He is tough and gritty and can scramble pretty well and rates high on character, but as a passer and a decision maker, he just doesn't cut it.

    However, I will NOT concede that Heaps was the Messiah as you proclaim. I will admit the coaches probably failed him a bit and he probably looked good in practice, but in a live game with real contact, he played scared, rushed his passes and misread defenses against the better teams. In game situations he really wasn't any more accurate than what Nelson has been. That bears out in his stats.

    Now maybe with some maturity he'll be much better. I hope he does. I just didn't see it at BYU except for a couple of good games against some weak teams. I was on the Heaps bandwagon big time when he first came. I wanted him to start from the get-go. But over time I realized my enthusiasm for him was misplaced.

  • Cougar Passion Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 14, 2012 1:56 p.m.

    Hmmm. . . Eva Longoria. . . wait, what was the topic?

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    Nov. 14, 2012 4:03 p.m.

    Says a lot about BYU's current year when the DN runs a feature on a transferred player. He left, move on, look forward.

  • BleedCougarBlue Enid, OK
    Nov. 14, 2012 6:37 p.m.

    Jake Heaps: we should have worked harder to keep him. Riley Nelson has grit, which I admire, but he tries too hard, forces the ball too often. Heaps had his confidence rattled but I bet he could have worked through that. Tough to do if you're being told "You'll start. No you won't. You'll start. No you won't."

    We should have stuck with Heaps. He'd be a junior now, then after his senior year the QB that transferred from Stanford (?) that stupidly got hurt at the very end of the game about a month ago would be a junior and ready to lead the guns.

    Go Cougars!!!!!!

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Nov. 15, 2012 7:32 a.m.

    Many of us were big Heaps fans and many of us understood that Heaps getting married over the summer would take him away from practice and affect his playing and necessitate some adjustments. But many of us can't understand why he bailed out so quickly. The talent and the coaching were already there and we would have endured substantially enough until Heaps got his mindset back. The only choice he gave us was to say good bye and wish him luck. He built his own nest and I'm sure he's definitely having 2nd thoughts. If there is such a thing as a Football Savior then Charley Weiss definitely has to be very fervently praying that he has found him in Heaps. The last time we saw a possible college football Mmessiah it was Jake Locker that Steve Sarkeisian inherited. Unfortunately Locker was the only positive on that team. I'm afraid that Heaps is in for a similar very bumpy road at Kansas for the rest of his career. as well.

  • gbo Draper, UT
    Nov. 16, 2012 6:51 p.m.

    Good luck Jake. Wish you were still at BYU.