Blue roundup: BYU football ranked No. 29 in Sporting News poll

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 3 2011 3:59 p.m. MDT

Sporting News has offered its predictions on BYU's inaugural season as an independent.

The Cougars are ranked No. 29 in the publication's Top 50 countdown, ahead of No. 30 Florida and No. 31 Houston.

"The Cougars leave the Mountain West Conference and will join Notre Dame, Army and Navy in the independent ranks this year," writes Al Lesar. "They will enter this new territory with a tough schedule that includes road tests at Ole Miss, Texas, Oregon State and against TCU at Cowboys Stadium. They better be ready for a buzzsaw."

Sporting News' Roger Kuznia projects BYU to finish with a 9-3 record.

"Our confidence level in this pick: Strong. If ever there were a time to make the jump to independent, this looks like a good year," Kuznia writes. "BYU is catching Ole Miss, Texas and Oregon State coming off down seasons, and though Utah has moved to the Pac-12, the Utes are no stranger to BYU, and the Cougars are certainly not intimidated by their in-state rival."

Both LaVell Edwards Stadium and the Marriott Center have received a makeover this summer. Watch this video of those changes, including a new stretch Y logo on the Marriott Center floor.

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