I flew in from the east coast on Thursday night to take in the sights at Lavell Edwards Stadium on Friday and I wasn’t disappointed. Here are my 5 take away’s from BYU’s win over Boise State.
1. Taysom Hill is a Quarterback who can run
Notice how I didn’t put that he is a running quarterback? As great as Hill has been with running the football I think BYU is finally getting to the point where they don’t need Hill to run so much. Yes, the fact that he is a great runner gives BYU options and matchup problems for defenses. Hill is starting to show that he can be a quarterback who can run, and not a runner who passes occasionally. I expected BYU to protect Hill from hits this week (as he took a beating last week) and they did. There were fewer designed QB running plays and Hill was composed in the pocket while always looking to pass before he ran when he was under pressure. He passed for over 300 yards for the second week in a row and didn’t throw an interception for the second time this season. I don’t expect much quarterback controversy for the next few years.
2. The Defense Rebounds
After a performance that was below BYU’s current defensive standards last week at Houston I wondered what would happen against another good opponent like Boise State. The defense set the tone for the game early with a big fourth down stop on Boise State’s opening drive and held BSU to 2-5 on 4th down attempts and forced 4 turnovers. The defense did take a few hits with injuries to Daniel Sorensen and Mike Hague who both suffered concussions and had to be helped off the field. Sorensen is arguably the best safety in BYU history and hopefully both will be back on the field against Wisconsin with the bye week to rest.
3. What if?
This is where I am going to speculate the ‘what if…’ scenario. As I watched the two teams play I noticed how Hill and Williams were the driving force of the game. Both of these players were recruited by both BSU and BYU. What if both of them had signed up to play for the BCS busting Bronco’s? If they had, the game on Friday would have turned out a lot different. This is where the BYU recruiting gets a shout out. They got a guy in Hill who could have played at Boise State or replaced Andrew Luck at Stanford. The kid turned down Stanford for BYU. Williams who is not even LDS chose BYU over Boise State and others. BYU has a good thing going for them with their recruiting and deserves credit for bringing in quality players when competing with other highly touted programs.
4. Cody Hoffman-Again
Another week and another new BYU record for Cody Hoffman. With his TD catch on Friday night he passed Austin Collie for first place all time. He needs only 14 yards to pass Collie again for most career receiving yards and that will likely happen on the first or second play from scrimmage against Wisconsin. One of the things that I think puts Hoffman a step above the other great BYU receivers is that he has accomplished these records without great Quarterback play. It wasn’t Ty Detmer, Steve Young, or Max Hall throwing him the ball. Hats off to Cody for a great BYU career.
5. A Boise State loss
Last night BYU accomplished a few impressive feats. First, they beat BSU for the first time in school history. Second, they were the first team from Utah to ever beat Boise State. Third, they were the first team to hand Boise a loss in the month of October since 2001. Take a moment to think about that. Twelve years without losing in October. Not one oops? Not one we weren’t mentally prepared for? Not one we lost our QB so we lost? Boise State may be having a slightly off year but beating a team that has so much success over the past decade by 17 points is impressive. A huge win for BYU.
I made a technical error (clicked the wrong button) while attempting to post my preview for the BYU and BSU game and when I thought I had posted it, I didn’t. Sorry about that. Here were the predictions I made for the game and how it worked out.
- BYU rushes for 250+ yards: BYU didn’t quite get there but they did have 229 rushing yards and only 69 were from Hill. Jamaal Williams had a great game coming back from his hip injury at Houston last week.
- KVN records three sacks: Nope. I was actually a little surprised by the lack of pressure that BYU got on the BSU quarterback. At one point KVN had the quarterback in his arms and didn’t make the play (happened a few times at Houston last week also). Hopefully the bye weeks gets Van Noy back on track.
- BYU 35, BSU 28: When the score was 34 to 20 in the fourth quarter I thought that maybe I would get close if BSU could score another touchdown (not that I was hoping they would). BYU did get the win- make it five in a row!