Comments about ‘BYU football: Riley Nelson and his high-five mentality made this game different’

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Published: Friday, Oct. 28 2011 11:00 p.m. MDT

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flynn is the coolest
Salt Lake City, UT

This is one thing that BYU fans can smile about- even in a loss. I was laughing out loud. Riley really has heart. If only our team could start saying "no" to turnovers and sloppy snaps/punts.

Provo, UT

That high five was hilarious! It was good to see the team fight till the end of the game. . . something that probably would not have happened without Riley in as QB. Even though he made a lot of mistakes tonight, it's hard not to like him because he's a fighter.

Provo, UT

Are you serious Brandon Gurney,

Did we watch the same Game. 3 turnovers and one more that was called back on a penalty, Riley Nelson is a great kid, but he is handicapped by his lack of an arm and a passing Game. Every time Riley Nelson runs the Ball is because he can"t execute the offense. BYU has wasted 4 games where we could of been developed Jake Heaps. Brandon Doman will be a Great Offensive Coordinator some day but it is not today.

Now BYU plays the sisters of the poor for two weeks and the hype about how much we have improved drum will beat. Bronco Don"t go down with the Riley Nelson ship, it just might cost you your Job.

Idaho Falls, ID

I love Riley, too.
But despite his heart and all his accomplishments, his mistakes are a recurring theme. He has got to learn when to eat the football. If he had that basic concept down, we probably would have won this football game.

i hope Bronco is not saying he is satisfied with his team's performance. There were a lot of mistakes on both sides of the ball. There were plenty of coaching errors, too, which affected the outcome of the game.

MN Ute

I know as a Ute, I'm gonna get trashed for posting on your guys' article, but just hear me out k?
Nelson played a decent game, not a great one, but one that showed he has good character and can stay in the game mentally even after serious problems. In the U-BYU game (I use this since it's the only other BYU game I watched, not because I'm trying to rub it in) Heaps seemed to give up in the second half even though he was doing great in the first. So, of the two, I'd take Nelson for the rest of this year since he's shown he can win and, more importantly, stay in the tough games mentally. As for next year, I'd either go with Nelson or just go all out and start Mangum, since the dude is incredible with a football and proved it by being named the Elite 11 MVP. You all mentioned Nelson doesn't give BYU the arm and makes mistakes. Well, Mnagum fixes that and gives the offense a boost.
There, having said my piece, let the criticism begin!

Ivins, UT

BYU Dude...

Heaps runs from the opposition and cowers in the face of combat. It makes the game uninteresting as a result and contributes to losses. Sure he has an arm, but unlike Riley, he has no heart. It is Mendenhall who must make the call and show some disdain for lack luster performance and using poor judgment. He is too much of a father figure. Look at the coaching styles of the two coaches. TCU shows discipline. Mendenhall needs to don a new sweat shirt when games start to fall apart. Any suggestions folks?

Alexandria, VA

I like Nelson - I like his leadership. But, he just can't pass the ball, and that's kind of important. The passes he did complete were mostly comebacks and not by design. All defenses will have to do is play under in coverage and stop covering WRs after 35 yards since all his passes are underthrown.

Bronco - I'm glad you love your team. Good. But what they need is some good, ole fashion tough lovin. That's what you're getting from the fans, but I don't think you have the skin for it.


I'm also a Ute and will let all you Cougars decide who is to be hanged but that Nelson kid has guts and heart. I seriously thought he was going down for the count on any number of tackles but he was generally the first to pop up from the pile to get on with the game. Tough kid and genuine competitor.

Y Grad / Y Dad
Richland, WA

Total body of work, Riley Nelson had a good game. When he was great, he was fabulous. When he pushed too far, he made costly mistakes. But he was constantly pushing. I like that.

Over all, I liked our defense. Yes, I said it. Don't handicap them with having to defend such poor field position, and they woulda looked dang good.

Special teams? Over all? Killed us.

Mental preparation? Call it what you like, but against Utah and TCU, we were just plain wound too tight.

Before the game, some predicted if we lose TCU, we lose Hawaii too. I'm not so sure. I agree that Riley has the grit to see this team through.

Syracuse, UT

Riley taught and reminded me last night what the college football game is all about. It is about getting out there and playing with guts and having fun. If you win it is wonderful, if you lose you know that you gave it your all and you had fun doing it. Some of us just take this game a little too seriously and need to back off a little.

Howard S.
Taylorsville, UT

Celebrating the meaningless is the essence of BYU football.

Whether its stomping Idaho State or scoring a meaningless late-game touchdown against TCU, BYU always celebrates like they've won the Super Bowl.

Celebrating the meaningless is simply what BYU does.

Idaho Falls, ID

I am more concerned about Riley's decision-making than I am about his arm, which is more accurate than Heaps'. And I think the poor decisions are a lack of adequate coaching.

But despite Nelson's shortcomings, what he brings to the game is many fold better than what Heaps brings. It is not even close. Playing Nelson is probably the single best decision the coaches made this year, albeit a little too late. Their jobs may (or may not) be in jeopardy, but it won't be because of the call to start Nelson.

Will Nelson be one of BYU greats? The potential is there if he learns to play smarter. He has the "right stuff" that make champions. Could Heaps become a great QB? Not a chance. You can't "develop" heart and toughness (right stuff).

Fort Worth, Texas

"But unlike recent years, the Cougars fought back, and a big reason why was the grit and determination of quarterback Riley Nelson."

Unlike recent years BYU wasn't facing a top 5 TCU defense.

Another moral victory? Yes, it seems so. At least PAC-12 teams are giving BYU fans something to cheer about.

Fort Worth, Texas

Y Grad / Y Dad | 7:55 a.m. Oct. 29, 2011
Total body of work, Riley Nelson had a good game.


Total body of work, who has Riley beat?

Can you share with us the "good" teams BYU has beat over the last 23 games? Total body of work over the last two years, BYU is abysmal.


I can't believe this article or many of the comments here. I have been a devout BYU fan for nearly 50 years and I have never watched a more aggravating QB than Nelson. Yes, he has grit and determination, and that's fun. But the kid has absolutely no "sense" and plays with a reckless arrogance that puts EVERY game at risk. He personally turned a San Jose State game that should have been a three touchdown victory into a battle. He made the Oregon State game closer than it should have been. And his mistakes last night gave away a game that the Cougars should have won and would have been a notable win.

Everyone seems so focused on Nelson's helmet flying off or his high-fiving referees that they seem blind to the fact that this kid is a high-risk player on every snap of the ball. I have no confidence in him.

Nelson is NOT the answer!!! I'm ready for James Lark - maybe he has the heart that Heaps lacks and at least a little bit of sense, which Nelson has none of.


I have to say even though I was upset with all the dumb mistakes, this is the best team BYU has put on the field in the last 4 years against TCU. Riley Nelson is one tough dude. I felt Riley gave his everything in this game and therefore I am okay with the mistakes he made. I feel that is what we get with Nelson. At least he doesn't lose heart and give up. I hate it when I see players give up...Heaps.


The sad thing is that this is a better team than the one TCU put on the field last night and the dumb mistakes lost the game.

There are QBs that have both heart and sense. I tend to believe that James Lark may be one of them.

Enough with idolizing Riley Nelson as a "tough dude". Brandon Ogletree and Kyle Van Noy are both "tough dudes" but I'd never play them at QB either. QB has to be both tough and smart and have an arm. Unfortunately, Riley only qualifies in one of those areas.


I can't believe the love Nelson is getting! He had an absolutely horrible game and the last few games we would have won with anybody at QB. Running because you can't execute works against high school competition but not against half decent teams. He just doesn't think and that's what scares me- the pick in the end zone was just tossed up for grabs off his back foot and the lateral was just inexcusable. Heaps was being blasted by all of you for playing better than Riley did last night and you praise Riley for his performance. Are you being hypnotized by his flowing locks or are you not watching the games? We can't afford to waste the last few games of the season against bad teams by not having Heaps playing and developing for coming years. Bench Nelson now before it's too late.

Lehi, UT

Riley Nelson sure doesn't play very smart football. It's apparent to me that he thinks his arm is a lot better than the rubber arm that it really is.


Riley may be a competitor, but every one of his passes seemed destined for a pick-6. I did not see one accurately thrown ball the entire game. BYU obviously has enough overall talent to beat the Idaho States regardless of who is behind center, but will not beat any legitimate opponent with a qb who can't throw the ball. Heaps lacks confidence and Riley lacks an arm--time to give Lark a shot. When something's not working--fix it.

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