Dick Harmon: Big brother says BYU sophomore Taysom Hill is the real deal
Jordan knows speed. As a Pac-10 defensive player, he studied it every week. He broke down films of Reggie Bush, saw what he did with his speed. So when he sat inside LaVell Edwards Stadium during the Texas game — and watched every other game during Hill's collegiate career — it hit him: The kid is not just quick. He is very, very fast.
“If he didn’t get to the dinner table before me, he didn’t eat. So he had to be fast,” joked the brother.
“College is the exclamation point on Taysom’s speed. Doing what he does against Division I talent shows just how fast he is. For me, I didn’t realize this until he got to BYU.”
Hill ranks among the nation’s top seven football players in total offense. It's a pool that includes 238 schools and 26,325 athletes. He’s rushed for 1,014 yards while losing 173, mostly on sacks. He averages 5.92 yards per carry and has scored eight touchdowns with his legs. As a passer, he has posted 2,019 yards and 12 touchdowns through seven games.
But as telling as his statistics are, Hill has emerged as a packhorse for the Cougars. Against Houston, he lifted the team on his back, overcame mistakes and willed BYU to a win with four touchdown passes. He was responsible in that game for a pass or run 68 percent of the time.
Against Boise State, his polish as a passer surfaced early and late with three touchdown tosses and a run for a fourth.
At midnight after the Texas game, most all the Hill family was dining at Chili’s and hadn’t seen one another in a long time. Near the end of the night, a few adults recognized Taysom and sheepishly intruded on the Hill table, saying a nephew was a huge fan and would love to have a picture with him. Taysom posed with those adults, patiently taking his time. He asked their names and how they were doing and didn’t rush anything. He was genuinely friendly — not fake, not putout.
The family waited it out. Jordan was extremely proud, not only of the eye-popping performance of his brother against Texas, but the entire package that stood before him as a man.
“This is what’s fun for me,” said the older brother. “He is excelling at this level, but he hasn’t lost sight of who he is.”
Dick Harmon, Deseret News sports columnist, can be found on Twitter as Harmonwrites and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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