BYU football: Flea-flicker set the tone early for Cougars

Published: Saturday, Oct. 10 2015 1:51 p.m. MDT

BYU receiver Luke Ashworth catches a touchdown pass as Colorado State\'s Elijah-Blu Smith defends (Associated Press) BYU receiver Luke Ashworth catches a touchdown pass as Colorado State\'s Elijah-Blu Smith defends (Associated Press)

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — It was BYU's longest play of the year and capped the Cougars' longest drive of the year.

And it happened early in BYU's 49-10 rout of Colorado State on Saturday.

In the first quarter, on the Cougars' second drive, quarterback Jake Heaps handed off to JJ Di Luigi, who flipped the ball back to Heaps, who found wide receiver Luke Ashworth deep. Ashworth cradled the ball and raced untouched into the end zone to complete the 62-yard touchdown pass play that gave the Cougars a 7-0 advantage.

The flea-flicker worked perfectly, just as BYU had practiced it.

Ashworth wasn't surprised, saying that it was successful "because we ran it so many times in practice. Jake always throws a great ball. It was fun."

Heaps credited the Cougars' rushing attack for setting up the flea-flicker.

"It was just our solid run game. The safeties bit hard and we were able to get Luke streaking down the field," he said. "That was a lot of fun. That was all due to our great offensive line, our running backs and the way we were running the football."

The Cougars ran an unsuccessful flea-flicker earlier this season in a loss at Utah State.

"We didn't call it at the right time," Heaps said of the Cougars' first flea-flicker attempt. "I think we set it up well (on Saturday). (Opponents are) really worried about our run game right now. For us to do it at the beginning of the game sent a statement that we were going to be aggressive all the way through the game."

"The flea-flicker is something that, especially early in the game, we were trying to make sure we could capture the momentum and then hold it, and it's gratifying," said BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall.

"I think you have to prepare and execute on a higher level on the road, and I think we did that. So that's another item on the checklist that we can now learn from as the team continues to mature."

e-mail: jeffc@desnews.com

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