“The tough part of our schedule is the first half of the season,”
Mathews said. “We need to start fast. We don’t have time to start
slow.”Well said and very true, before the season begins every
team has hope!Go Cougars!
The weather did not impact the game in Charlottesville last year, because it
rained on BOTH teams; not just cougars. Furthermore, wet weather games tend to
favor "running" teams. For the Virginia game, Hill completed 32.5% of
his passes, completed only 34.6% vs. Texas. But there wasn't any rain the
following week at Home vs. Utah. And how did Hill do? He completed
37.5% of his passes.It wasn't the weather.
I'm not convinced that the coaching staff does a good job of preparing the
team to play early in the season. All you have to do is look some of the early
games in recent seasons. 2011 was probably the worst - an ugly win
against a bad Ole Miss, a bad loss at Texas, and who can forget the 54-10 beat
down against Utah. 2012 - an ugly loss to Utah where BYU refused to kick a
tying field goal. A ridiculous 6-7 loss at BSU. 2013 - BYU manages to
pull defeat from the jaws of victory at Virginia and, of course, another loss to
Utah.This is why it drives me nuts when Mendenhall refuses to use all of
the bowl game practices in December. Those practices could better prepare the
team for these early games.
A week before, go to bed two hours earlier to make for the jet lag and become
acclimated for hot and humid weather. And Pleeeeze have some passion and please
no excuses that we hear every year.
Our schedule is so tough, we must go fast, go hard.
Here's where the game was lost:“That first game, with a
new offense, we were kind of timid,” remembered running back Jamaal
Williams. “We didn’t want to do anything extreme.”Case in point, iirc I think it was in the 3rd quarter and BYU drove to the UVA
32 yd line in a close game and on 4th down elected to punt instead of either
going for it or kicking a 49 yd FG in a game where points where few and far
between.The punt sailed into the end zone giving UVA the ball on the
20 (resulting in a 12 yd net gain) and on the very first play that series UVA
completed a pass for 14 yds (something like that) and basically negated that
punt altogether.Not sure what the odds would've been for
Sorenson to make that 49 yder but he hit 21-26 and was 3-4 from that range last
year so chances are pretty good he makes it. The problem lies in how
coaches approach the season and big games. They're too conservative and
play not to lose. It costs the team.
@navel lint"Furthermore, wet weather games tend to favor
"running" teams."If the team is a power, between the
tackles, straight ahead running team they will be less affected by the rain but
I don't think torrential downpours favor either running or passing teams.
If you've ever played football in the rain on a muddy field and
tried to cut or change direction there's nothing favorable about that, you
end up on your backside. This limits an option offense team and makes them
easier to defend.
It would be interesting to see the caliber of the early season opponents versus
the latter ones. I think it's less a preparation issue and more the teams
are just tougher. Generally the early season games are non-conference (or Power
5 conference) games, whereas the latter games are mop-up against the likes of
Idaho. Unfortunately the reality is the team just isn't as competitive
against the bigger conference teams and the record has mostly been padded with
wins against weak competition during the latter part of the season.
It would be awesome if Coach Anae's focus was "score lots of
points" instead of "go fast, go hard." That's great, but it
doesn't mean anything if the O doesn't score.
Naval Vet stumbled onto something true in his futile efforts…The Utes and
Virginia both beat BYU and they both were about equals in the world of college
football while BYU vastly improved as the season wore on. Virginia and the
Utes both savored that upset vs the Cougs and point to it proudly as one of
their few meaningful wins. They both have a LOT in common. We all agree.
To do this coaches must be prepared and have the team well prepared. This has
not happened in many years.
Navel Vet..You also have to consider that BYU comes a arid, dry state and
anyone who has gone from Utah to the South (or Virginia) during the late
summer/early fall will tell you that the humidity is unbearable.While Virginia players are use to it, BYU players were cramping up a lot that
@ Confused:If "unbearable humidity" helps Virginia, how come
they only won TWO game last year??
@yabuts: This helps Virginia against BYU because BYU is not used to that
level of humidity. Virginia didn't have a humidity advantage in their other
games because all of their other opponents are also from humid climates (FL, PA,
VA, NC and MD). Just like the altitude in Provo is an advantage for BYU when
they play teams from lower elevations but is not an advantage against high
elevation teams like Utah.
@ dutgutGolly, if its not one thing its another. I sure hope that
they do not schedule anymore games where it is hot or that there is any chance
Blah blah blah again.The UVA game was in a monsoon; the offensive
scheme was dumbed down, and a bad call (the pass) and execution (through the
fingers) cost the Cougars an ugly win. Instead they had an ugly loss. I
didn't see the Utah game, but it was also winnable and was an ugly loss.The losses at Wisconsin and Notre Dame were "good" losses where
BYU could not beat two very good teams. I don't think many teams beat
Wisconsin at home last year. And while ND was not great last year, they're
also pretty good at home.So, like Utah, BYU had a couple of ugly
losses and a couple of "good" losses. But sadly, Utah had a few more
good losses.So pot, quit calling the kettle black.As for
BYU fans ... We just have to win. Winning solves the problems. Schedule
doesn't matter if we run the table. Utah, BSU, Hawaii, and TCU all proved
that statement true.
@never break .500BYU did not "vastly improve as the season wore
on." BYU stayed the same - their schedule just got a lot easier as the
season wore on.I expect this time next year you'll be back here
saying the same thing: BYU struggled early in the year (when they played decent
teams) but "vastly improved" later in the year (when they played
cupcakes). You're wrong about it now, you'll be wrong about it then.
@Naval Vet"The weather did not impact the game in
Charlottesville last year, because it rained on BOTH teams; not just
cougars."I agree. The weather did not make BYU lose. Virginia
also ran a lot though, so the rain was neither an advantage nor a disadvantage
in my opinion.But I will tell you what was a disadvantage in the
Virginia game.-Cody Hoffman was suspended-We were in our first
game with a new offenseLet's look at BYU's recent history
of their first game in a new offense:-2005 vs. Boston College: 3
points-2011 @ Ole Miss: 14 , but 7 from KVN, so the offense only had 7.-2013 @ Virginia: 16Let's look at BYU's second year in
those offenses:-2006 @ Arizona: 16 (13 improvement)-2012 vs.
Washington State: 30 (technically 16 improvement, but basically 23)I
know this is a fairly small sample size and BYU may have played easier defenses
in their 2nd year of an offense, so this is not an exact science.But
history would suggest somewhere between a 13-23 point improvement, meaning BYU
would score 29-39 points.Let's meet in the middle and say 34.
yabuts....If you had paid attention to what Naval Vet said "the
weather did not affect BYU", then you know why I mentioned the humidity.Your right, they should just win, but sometimes there are things that
can contribute to the loss....Bring on the Pickle juice.
@yabuts"If "unbearable humidity" helps Virginia, how
come they only won TWO game last year??"Because the humidity is
only unbearable to teams who aren't used to it, like BYU. I flew out to the
Virginia game and the humidity was absolutely awful to deal with (I had never
been out east before). I couldn't even imagine running around in those
conditions.The rest of Virginia's schedule was against teams
from out east who are used to that humidity, with the exception of Oregon, who
is out west. But they are also in a fairly humid place.So that
explains why Virginia didn't beat other teams from the humidity. It's
not any kind of advantage in any of their other games. BYU and (to a lesser
extent) Oregon were Virginia's only opponents who aren't used to humid
climates.But as I said in a previous comment, I think Hoffman's
suspension and our new offense had much more to do with our struggles in
IMO the biggest reason we lost to Virginia was the play of Hill, he wasn't
very good that game and it took him several games to start passing with any
accuracy. He ran extremely well against Texas and continued to run well the
whole year but his passing progressed slowly and was alot of the reason BYU
struggled against ND, Wisconson and Washington. I think getting his passing game
up to another level has been the focus of this off season and the reason I have
hope for a much better result.
Naval Vet - I, too, hate blaming losses on anything - especially weather.
However, since you were willing to concede the weather issues in the VA game and
highlighted the bad completion stats of the new QB (Hill) from that game AND the
TX game, I have to call you on how you illustrated your point. Remember this: "Inclement weather forces delay at BYU vs Texas game".
Yes, in fact a bizarre string of back-to-back games with miserable delays.
Almost two hours. That said, I'd chalk it up more to a new starting QB with
a new offense.
There are definitely a few things more predictable than the weather when it
comes to BYU games. And one of them is the negativity and cynicism of a few
anti-BYU Ute fans... Naval Vet, Brave Sir Robin and yabuts in this case (kudos
to Chris B and Uteology for holding back lately). No matter what the
game or situation, there is always a select group of anti-BYU Ute fans who will
be critical in their on-line comments. Almost as predictable as the sun rising.
This time, one of them has even gone beyond being critical of past games and is
being critical of a season that hasn't even started yet. Wow... there are
certain people who must simply not like the color blue.Speaking of
predictions, I'm predicting that the pieces are now all in place for an
exceptionally good season. No new coaches or offensive schemes to adjust to this
time. All the critical skill position players are back and healthy. It
will be interesting to see what kind of negative slant the fore-mentioned
critics come up with after this exceptionally good season. Watch, read and
Great being a Cougar Fan !! This year is going to be one of those Great Cougar
years that we can talk about for years. This team is loaded and to the little
people in red that have not done their due diligence will throw out their
uneducated comments. The defense is lock down and the offence is loaded at all
the key spots ! Everything hinges on the O-Line. Great to be a cougar fan like
the past 40 years has been ! There is no comparison in programs utes!!