Is Magic going to happen for BYU in 2015, or is the schedule too rough, meaning BYU will suffer through mediocrity again? Over the summer I went team by team and did “too early previews.” Now I’ll take that information and give my game by game predictions.
BYU at NEBRASKA
There will be an adjustment period for Nebraska with Mike Riley. They will not have success right away. As long as BYU plays their game, they can take advantage. BYU wins 42-27 in Taysom Hill’s triumphant return to the field.
BYU vs BOISE STATE
The 23rd ranked Broncos come down to Provo looking to build off of last season. They are replacing last year’s starting quarterback. They play former Boise head coach Chris Petersen in week one.
Assuming BYU is with a healthy Taysom Hill, even without Jamaal Williams they should take advantage of Boise State’s lack of experience at QB and RB. I also see Bronco making this a statement game with the defense. They won’t be embarrassed like last year. Cougars win a close one at home 28-24.
BYU at UCLA
I would love for the Cougars to go into the Rose Bowl and just clobber the Bruins, but this UCLA team is probably going to start the season ranked 12th or 13th or in that neighborhood. If BYU can take advantage of the inexperience at quarterback and hold the running game at bay I could see them winning this one. UCLA was known to play to the level of their opponent last year and lost to teams they shouldn’t have lost to.
All that said, I’m predicting BYU to lose 34-31 right now. But I could also see them pulling out a close victory as well. Last year UCLA dropped a game to Utah and barely beat Texas; it is very possible for the Cougars to pull off the upset. If BYU wins this game, they will have a monster season.
BYU at MICHIGAN
This is a hard game to predict because you don’t know how much of an immediate effect Harbaugh will have. We will know more when the season starts. Michigan opens the season against Utah. You can read Patrick’s preview here. I predict BYU coming out with a victory, 35-21.
BYU vs UCONN
I see this one going a lot like last year’s contest. BYU is its own worst enemy in this one, but gets it done and cruises to an easy home win 42-10.
BYU vs ECU
Taysom Hill an co. running against a good running defensive is a good match up to watch, but I think that Taysom’s ability to pass the ball is more than proficient enough to gain a lot of yards. It will be a good match-up with strengths against weaknesses. ECUs ability to throw the ball vs BYUs secondary means that ECU will be able to score. In the end the BYU offense will be too much for the Pirates. BYU wins an exciting home shootout 51-48.
BYU vs CINNCINATTI
This game is in Provo, but is the biggest home challenge (match-up wise) the Cougars will face in 2015. Looking at style of play it looks to be another shoot out. I see Taysom being healthy and building off of past performances, and in the end he will be too much for the Bearcats. BYU wins 54-48 in an entertaining fashion.
BYU vs WAGNER
C’mon! BYU Wins and Tanner Mangum gets lots of practice throws.
BYU at SJSU
San Jose State is excited about the future. After a good year in 2012 I thought this program took a turn for the better. Last year proved they are still not quite there. If this recruiting class pans out they will be good in the future.
That is the future though, and this year I picture a lot of the same frustrations as last year. SJSUs major weaknesses play right into BYUs strengths. I don’t see an upset here. Taysom Hill will run over the Spartans and be pulled from the game by the fourth quarter. BYU wins 48-7.
BYU vs/ at MISSOURI
According to Phil Steele’s power poll Missouri is ranked number 31, one spot behind Boise St. BYU is number 44. So they should lose right? This is going to be a very good game. We will watch Taysom Hill and rest of the Cougars fight hard, but come up short, because this game is as neutral as when the BYU basketball team plays at the ESA. BYU has a fighting chance, but BYU will lose this one 41-38
BYU vs FRESNO STATE
Fresno State is still trying to replace Derek Carr from two years ago at quarterback. They may find the replacement or have more QB concerns this year. Either way BYU is the more talented team and will win this game 52-14.
BYU at UTAH STATE
Let’s face it: last years was not pretty. USU looked more then ready for the Cougars, but right before Taysom went down I thought that he would lead the Cougars back. I think the second half of that game BYU was in shock and was completely deflated.
The key match-up here is BYUs offense vs the USU defense. Will USU’s linebackers be able to chase Taysom Hill around for a full game? Will Taysom be able to be himself and make explosive plays? I feel like Taysom Hill gets his revenge in this game. Taysom has this one circled and wants to show everyone that he will play the whole season and end it with a great game against the Aggies. This preview is way too early and things will definitely change between now and then, but BYU wins a close one 35-31.
Going through this schedule game by game I realized that BYU plays a lot of these teams at the right time. There are a lot of things that could break BYU’s way. This also got me very excited for football to start. I know we as Cougar fans seem to always be waiting for “our year” and this could be it.
I have the Cougars going 10-2 losing to UCLA and Missouri. I could see them winning either or both of those games as well. I could also see them dropping the Boise State game or even Utah State.
Taysom Hill’s legacy hinges on this season. Will he be a case of “if only he didn’t get hurt” or will we be talking about Taysom’s senior season for years to come? We will have to wait and see. All I know is that I’m ready for some FOOTBALL, are you? GO COUGARS