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Fast start propels BYU past UConn, 35-10

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  • Y Ask Y Provo, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 5:05 p.m.

    Here are some facts to put things in perspective:

    UConn is a cupcake team from the AAC, one of the weaker Conferences in college football. Last year UConn won only 3 games - they ONLY beat teams in their own conference - and they lost 9. On average, they got beat by 10 points.

    Even I could have looked good against UConn! Y-Ask-Y for Heisman! Woot! Woot!

    We can't tell much from this game. It didn't test us. Despite the so-called "convincing" victory, we played a very sloppy game and let a cupcake team run up around 350 yds total offense.

    If we were good, we would have shut out UConn, kept them to under 150 yds total offense, and scored at least 50 points on them.

    Let's save the celebrating and gloating until we've actually done something.

  • NeilT Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 9:21 p.m.

    Po many penalties. Good teams take advantage of penalties. Penalties may haunt BYU in the future. Go Aggies.

  • IQ92 hi, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 4:12 p.m.

    I've never seen anything quite like the performance of umpire, Greg Brenner, from (I think) the Big East. Do teams scout umpire/referee or crew tendencies?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 30, 2014 1:15 p.m.

    @poyman

    . The most ridiculous... The officiating... way too many flags and many for questionable calls (i.e. Interference on the sideline, Celebration on Fua for pretending he was fishing after a sack, Pass Interference on an uncatchable ball, etc.). Seems like Lead Official had a chip on his shoulder.

    -----------

    Really, you don't think that the most ridiculous was when Hill was still running the "Go Fast, Go Hard, Go Long" offense with 5:41 left in the game and up 18 points against UConn's reserve defense?

    Most teams at that point will run out the clock instead of letting their Heisman candidate inflate his numbers with a 88 yard drive (62 passing 4/4 and 26 yard rushing) in 91 seconds.

    That being said, I don't blame BYU for keeping Hill in the game because prior to that drive Hill was 7/12 (58%) on the last three drives and BYU was scoreless in the 2nd half.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 30, 2014 12:46 p.m.

    @Brio

    @ Uteology:

    I'm fairly certain we will have to wait until Sunday to hear what Chuckie says about who the best qb in the state is. One thing seems quite obvious... No one is making an argument for any Ute quarterbacks.

    -----------------

    No we don't, the best QB in the state is Keeton as the #5 NFL prospect. Who will have the better year? That's still TBD.

    While Hill looked impressive, same numbers at the end of last season against similar talent, his numbers were inflated by the meaningless final drive against UConn's reserves (62 yards passing, 26 yards rushing).

    The best numbers so far were by Wilson. But then again, Wilson's stats came against talent that is on par with UConn's reserves, worthless to argue about at this point.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 10:46 a.m.

    I liked what I saw from Bronson Kaufusi as an edge rusher but this wasn't him dominating an elite offensive line. I think the move though was a good one for him.

    I also liked Jordan Preator a lot in the 2nd half. He was a blanket late on his side of the field and played really tight coverage on Davis and Fox and knocked down several passes. We don't EVER see that tight of coverage in BYU's defensive scheme. It was a joy to see. I thought Davis did okay but he looked a little tired in the 2nd half and wasn't as sharp as he was early on.

    ILB play was kind of spotty, I thought Zac Stout did really well considering it was his first start ever and his first game in a couple of years but what was going on with Pikula? Leuta-Douyere did a nice job stepping up for him. As usual the defense did a lot of bending but not breaking and defended the goal line well. I would just like to see a little tougher D between the 20's.

  • StocksOnTheRocks Lehi, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 9:39 a.m.

    Mendenhall Magic, Great way to come out of the Gate!!

  • AggieFan4Ever Logan, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 9:14 a.m.

    Hill looked good despite playing a weak team, but I draw the line at jumping the gun and saying this early that Hill is the best QB in the state. Keeton hasn't even played yet, for crying out loud! Besides, any half-decent QB can put up numbers like that against a high school team that has zero pass rush. The dirt lousy defensive performance by UCONN makes it hard to tell if Hill has actually improved his accuracy or if the defense just made it too easy. I've been saying all along that he should improve, and I think we'll all be able to tell a little better after a few more games. Here's hoping for a good season for all three teams and 3-0 for week 1...

  • Pavalova Surfers Paradise, AU
    Aug. 30, 2014 8:26 a.m.

    How can a program go through 12 months of camps and not come away with a decent kicking game? My goodness, you have to be able to get the ball into the end zone on kickoffs and we came up 10 yds short each time and the one FG attempt was pathetic.

    This will hurt the team at the most inopportune time. The refs were a tale of two halves, but there were a lot of valid penalties with stupidity. There were also several flags thrown with no penalty in sight. Next week will be really tough.

  • LadyMoon Crestucky, FL
    Aug. 30, 2014 5:37 a.m.

    Good result. Lethargic-like second half caued even the rookie to breath life into UCONN's comeback hopes. The bonehead decision of the game, among too many thoughtless Cougar mistakes, and perhaps the worst coaching decision of all time has to be Coach Mendenhall's misguided refusal to take the out of bounds kickoff at their 35 and have them rekick. Rediculous! Of course they botched it: Bad return. Fifteen yard penalty and all while up by 21. It was cause to consider UCONN still had hope. Another, more capable opponent just may have swung the momentum!. We don't need the worry that the coach might make a decision from left field! Not if you expect national respect and with wins...national title consideration.

  • utahby6 SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 4:43 a.m.

    Congrtas to the Cougars on a fun season opener. Scheduling UCONN was smart. Why not just enjoy the win instead of worrying so much about how the kids played without a number of starters. Here is what the UCONN news people are saying: BYU was the biggest "name" team to play a home opener at Rentschler since Indiana of the Big Ten came here in 2003. The Cougars brought almost a century of football tradition and history to the East Coast -- along with several thousand fans -- to play the Huskies.

  • Herbert Gravy Salinas, CA
    Aug. 30, 2014 1:26 a.m.

    What was Alani Fua thinking? Or was he? And, wasn't he pulled for Michael Alisa. Perhaps Alisa should get the start next week! And, yes, there was NO reason to "expose" the deep passing game tonight although the TD pass to Mathews might fit that category.

  • Herbert Gravy Salinas, CA
    Aug. 30, 2014 1:20 a.m.

    TA(y)wesome Hill!

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Aug. 30, 2014 12:59 a.m.

    Only 200 words and a lot of observations:

    . Game balls to Hill, Juergins, Mathews and the Offensive Line;
    . Solid Defensive Line Work and some good plays by Kaufusi, Alisa, Bills and Stout (3 of them LBs).
    . Low points in the game... BYU's kicking game... Why is it that Mendenhall and his staff don't but more emphasis on recruiting Place Kickers??? We seem to have a terrible time getting Kids that can kick the ball long and a horrible time getting someone who can kick the ball straight... When was the last time we had someone who could kick the ball out of the end zone or someone who was automatic inside of 30 to 35 yards... They need to conduct tryouts with the student body if need be...
    . Worst Decision of the game? Requesting a re-kick instead of taking the ball on the 35YL after the UConn OB kickoff.
    . The most ridiculous... The officiating... way too many flags and many for questionable calls (i.e. Interference on the sideline, Celebration on Fua for pretending he was fishing after a sack, Pass Interference on an uncatchable ball, etc.). Seems like Lead Official had a chip on his shoulder.

  • Brio Alpine, UT
    Aug. 30, 2014 12:44 a.m.

    @ flatlander:

    Math doesn't appear to be your strong point. BYU scored 7 points in the 2nd half to UConn's 3 points. As such, BYU was not outscored in either half.

    @ Uteology:

    I'm fairly certain we will have to wait until Sunday to hear what Chuckie says about who the best qb in the state is. One thing seems quite obvious... No one is making an argument for any Ute quarterbacks.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 30, 2014 12:36 a.m.

    Tom in CA
    Vallejo, CA

    The kicking game will cost the Cougars at least 2 wins this season.

    ------------

    In a THREE game schedule that's horrible.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 30, 2014 12:34 a.m.

    Wiscougarfan
    River Falls, WI

    QB rating for Hill: 177.14
    Completion percentage: 77.77%
    Yards per completion: 8.55 yards

    Yes, it was against UCONN--a team that has been to a BCS bowl more recently than Utah but like Utah currently isn't very good--but those are still better numbers than against the pancake opponents of last season.

    -------------

    Unlike UConn, Utah doesn't have a problem beating BYU home or away.

    Those numbers for Hill are similar to 2013:

    Houston: 162, 66%, 9.4 yards/attempt
    Boise: 160, 70%, 9.03 yards/attempt
    GTech: 159, 66%, 10.1 yards/attempt

    Granted those aren't cupcakes but he still has to prove he can put up those numbers against a team like Texas.

    I will give him this, he looked much better than last year at this time. But like you said he never went deep, I think his longest pass was 20 yards (not including yards after catch).

  • UCONN Storrs, CT
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:55 p.m.

    Sloppy game by both teams. The Huskies played as poorly in the first half as they did the first 3/4 of last season. If they'd played as clean in the first half as they did in the second, this may have been a decent game. Several of the freshmen made some good plays, which gives some hope for the future of the team. Fortunately, I think BYU is either the second or third toughest game we'll have this year (behind UCF at home and possibly ECU on the road), so there is optimism for a few more wins this year than last year, but definitely a lot of things to clean up.

    To my friends back in Utah: you got introduced tonight to Geremy Davis, a GREAT receiver. Watch for even bigger games from him later on this year, and hopefully on Sundays for a lot of years down the road.

    Good luck the rest of this year.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:50 p.m.

    Next week may bring the same first-game jitters to those who did not play tonight. So, mark me down as officially worried about next week. We needs lots of improvement very quickly. But I did see some new plays this year. I hope they work against Texas.

  • CO Ute PARKER, CO
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:37 p.m.

    BYU took care of business tonight, nothing more and nothing less. Any win is good but wait until next week before awarding the Heisman trophy. Your team dominated a team that isn't expected to be very good which is all you can expect in an opening game. Why not leave it at that?

    Was curious if Hill played the whole game ... according to the box score he was the only QB to throw a pass. Interesting decision by Bronco not to give the backup some time.

    Best comment I saw posted was UConn has been to a BCS bowl game more recently than Utah. Absolutely true statement and even though they lost by 4 TDS they have one more BCS appearance than BYU. Some posters just can't avoid opening a door.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:18 p.m.

    Some good things and bad things to take from this game. Good things...Taysom Hill is much improved in his pocket presence, his progressions and his overall comfort and command of the offense. I was pleasantly surprised at the depth and ability of BYUs receivers even without their most dynamic receiver, Blackmon. The running game could have been better and the O-line didn't do a great job opening lanes but I also noticed that there were cutbacks and openings to be exploited but our straight ahead runners didn't do a good job exploiting them like Jamal Williams does...he makes people miss and has a stronger burst that was missed tonight. I thought considering our corners were 2nd string guys they played about as well as can be expected, except Skye PoVey at safety is still making too many mistakes and has never impressed me as a good player.

    Offensive and defensive lines have to get better, special teams have to get better, and mental toughness (no stupid drive continuing PF penalties). These are all fixable and hopefully with all our starters back BYU will play at a higher level against UT.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:19 p.m.

    idablu
    Idaho Falls, ID

    "Taysom Hill was the best punter in the state his senior year in High School. He also had the best field goal accuracy and he could routinely send kick offs into the end zone. I have watched him do all these things. HE IS the best punter and kicker on this BYU football team, no doubt. The coaches would be smart to utilize ALL his talents."

    Yes, but that would drive poor Wayne over the edge.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:10 p.m.

    @ taylormade1

    BYU won comfortably, but UCONN is terrible. What part of my comment do you disagree with?

  • The Moose Southern, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 11:01 p.m.

    I wish all the smack talk would just go away. Cheer for your team. This game was like last nights game. Easy opener to work out the kinks against someone other than yourself. It wasn't too many years ago Utah, BYU and USU were on the road opening weekend against really good teams with real traditions in the hopes to get a paycheck and an upset. Things have changed.

  • wahului Stockton, CA
    Aug. 29, 2014 10:28 p.m.

    I too am glad for the win, and equally glad the game was against UConn instead of Texas. Typical first game stuff you might say...but if it's typical, why not just avoid it? The most glaring deficiency I saw was the worst display of kicking the ball off that I've ever seen from a BYU kicker. If our kickers are that weak, Bronco needs to go get one of the players from the women's soccer team and suit her up!! Kicking off like that against Texas is like spotting them 14 points. Bring back Owen Pochman!!

  • idaho cougar fan Twin Falls, ID
    Aug. 29, 2014 10:25 p.m.

    1st game is always a learning experience and feeling out process. Clean up the penalties and we will be fine. The defense will be just fine once we get our starting db's back. At the start of fall camp I gave BYU about a 25% of beating Texas. I will move that up to about 40% chance now. We will see how good Texas is tomorrow. Go Cougs.

  • Wiscougarfan River Falls, WI
    Aug. 29, 2014 10:06 p.m.

    QB rating for Hill: 177.14
    Completion percentage: 77.77%
    Yards per completion: 8.55 yards

    Yes, it was against UCONN--a team that has been to a BCS bowl more recently than Utah but like Utah currently isn't very good--but those are still better numbers than against the pancake opponents of last season. I'd say the season looks promising, clean up penalties and tonight would have been 49-3.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Aug. 29, 2014 10:04 p.m.

    Taysom Hill was the best punter in the state his senior year in High School. He also had the best field goal accuracy and he could routinely send kick offs into the end zone. I have watched him do all these things. HE IS the best punter and kicker on this BYU football team, no doubt. The coaches would be smart to utilize ALL his talents.

  • Wiscougarfan River Falls, WI
    Aug. 29, 2014 10:01 p.m.

    Go Fast, Go Hard, Go long?... one long ball per game is probably not enough targets to put defenses on their heels.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:50 p.m.

    The Idaho boy (Hill) was awesome.
    Special teams were very bad. Weak kickers, weak punter, and poor coverage. This could really make a difference at Texas.
    O-line looked much improved except in rushing. Lots of receiving weapons.
    Defense looked really average.
    It seems that the costly unsportsmanlike penalties went unpunished by the coaches. Lack of discipline leads to undisciplined play. BYU should have won 56-7

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:46 p.m.

    @Tom
    Exactly right!

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:37 p.m.

    The kicking game will cost the Cougars at least 2 wins this season. BYU will be forced to go for 4th and long because no confidence in the PK.

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:37 p.m.

    @old

    I totally agree, my son was predicting the calls by Anae. it was frustrating to watch such a talented group of players handcuffed by Anae. He has zero understanding of behavioral reaction and he continual plays to the defense strengths rather than his offenses strengths! Very frustrating to watch. Never once saw the "go long" that he advertised! Very disappointed on both sides of the ball. No LB play and very poor offensive play calling.

  • Captain L Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:21 p.m.

    Hill for Heisman is not a far fetched dream if he keeps playing like he did tonight, I really liked how Hill played.
    I am hoping that the reason we didn't see many long passes was that they didn't need to and they are keeping the deep passing (go deep) plays for next week.
    Lots of mistakes to fix, should be a good season though. Better start than we have seen in recent years. Go Cougars.

  • moderateinmagna MAGNA, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:17 p.m.

    flatlander
    Omaha, NE tell me exactly how 3 points is more than 7 points,BYU scored 7 points in the 2nd half uconn scored 3 it was 28 -7 at halftime so how did they out score BYU in the 2nd half

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:15 p.m.

    Great game, but we need a kicker.

  • Captain L Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:11 p.m.

    For a first game it was OK, not great but just OK, one thing I was pleased with was how Hill played , I was worried he would look to run way to much and he didn't, he was calm , cool and collected and I liked his accuracy. Not bad to have 308 yds passing and 97 yds rushing, I think he was 28 for 36 passing and that is a good percentage. Next week will be a big time test and I'm not sure what to expect, I expect Texas's defense to be much tougher than UConn and that means we will have to execute much better/cleaner, if we do a win is very much a possibility. Defensively we were tough when we needed to be and again next week will be a much tougher test, after next week we'll know alot more about our D. and the whole team for that matter. For a first game it was pretty good. I hope all the suspensions are over and we can be at full strength. Go Cougars.

  • Old But Not Stupid Moorpark, CA
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:11 p.m.

    Things I learned today:
    1. UConn (on the road) is much, much better and much tougher than Idaho State (at home). So BYU's lousy performance still outshines the Utes.

    2. No. 1 won't help settle the "Utes are better than the Cougars" argument.

    3. The intelligent, mature, and experienced defensive players--i.e., Fua (twice) and Leavitt (once)--made very stupid and juvenile "plays" in the second half that triggered automatic first downs for UConn and wiped out or cancelled outstanding effort by others.

    4. Coach Anae should be known as Go Short Anae.

    5. Poor ball security by "experienced" backs was surprising.

    6. Prognosticators may want to adjust 10-2 or 9-3 downward if these things can't get cleaned up.

    I'm not sure how much the coaches learned about their team.

    Go Bruins!

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:05 p.m.

    @ Uteoegy

    I hope Keeton has an amazing game and I will definitely be rooting for USU! With that said, I still believe Hill is the best QB in the Wonderful andFabulous State of Utah. Go Aggies!

  • taylormade1 Springville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 9:01 p.m.

    2ff,
    You have to be kidding aren't you ? That was a dominating performance and yes the Y can clean up some things . You do realize that the Y was playing without 6 starters don't you. Please come here with some football knowledge .

  • NevadaCoug Overton, NV
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:55 p.m.

    There are definitely some huge concerns. Too often a UConn RB was able to sit in a huge hole between the secondary and the line and just wait for an easy dump off. It was either a horrible defensive plan, or there were way too many defensive breakdowns.

    Fua is supposed to be a defensive leader. Then he pulls that garbage in the second half and gifts a first down to a team they had just stopped. They have to play smarter, especially the players who are supposed to be leaders.

    Finally, Mendenhall having UConn rekick instead of taking the ball on the 35? Yeah, that was a mistake. Even without the hold on the return, they didn't make it to the 35.

    Happy for the win, but there is a lot to fix defensively.

    Positives? How many receivers caught a pass tonight? A ton. That's what successful BYU teams have done in the past: distribute the ball to multiple guys. That is very encouraging.

  • Uncle Rico Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:53 p.m.

    We can tell nothing about how good Utah or BYU are after the first games.
    Both opponents were very poor.
    Utah and BYU have plenty they can improve on. Week 1 to week 2 is the biggest 1 week improvement of the season.
    We should know a lot more after next week.

  • Pipes Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:34 p.m.

    BYU wins by 25 and as a fan I'm still disappointed in a very poor outing. Too many stupid mental mistakes by the players and the coaches! Has me worried about next week.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:29 p.m.

    Sanefan
    Wellsville, UT

    If there was any questions about who is the BEST College QB in the State of Utah, the question was answered tonight...his name is Hill!

    -----------

    Against UConn? Keeton at Tennessee might have something to say about that tomorrow.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:28 p.m.

    Fans are going to be a lot happier with this game than Bronco will be. Lots of penalties and out scored in the second half.

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:20 p.m.

    If there was any questions about who is the BEST College QB in the State of Utah, the question was answered tonight...his name is Hill!

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 8:18 p.m.

    Interesting to me, neither BYU nor Utah had any impressive LB play. I believe the LB's are the key to a great defense, and for two former defensive coordinators, I am way surprised by the poor LB play. To BYU's credit, they are playing without Williams and their first tam CB's. But still! Both teams won, but their are still lots of questions for both teams.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    Aug. 29, 2014 7:51 p.m.

    Good thing we are playing UCONN

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 7:42 p.m.

    @ Surf is Up

    Beating Idaho St. is not impressive.

    Beating UCONN is not impressive.

    Taysom Hill looks better. BYU's secondary does not. BYU's special teams continues its long tradition of being awful. It's probably first game jitters, but both teams are playing undisciplined football. That can be easily fixed though

  • Surf is Up Miami, FL
    Aug. 29, 2014 7:07 p.m.

    I realize that travelling to the east coast, across two time zones to play a game isn't as impressive as and trouncing Idaho State at home, in a small stadium but, with exception of the dozens of penalties I like what I see.

  • phantomblade Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 29, 2014 6:59 p.m.

    Great start for BYU. Taysom is on fire 3 TD passing 1 TD running. 80% completion rate.

  • Christine B. Hedgefog Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 6:58 p.m.

    The only legitimate knock on Taysom before tonight was his passing ability. Looks like he's on his way to ending that conversation tonight. Solidly in contention with Chuckie Keeton for best QB in the state. Nobody else is even in the conversation, including all 6 scholarship QBs from last night's home team.

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 6:34 p.m.

    Refs are having a great game!

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 6:27 p.m.

    Taysom for Heisman.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 5:20 p.m.

    This thing is already over.

  • starthillnotnelson Kamas/United States, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 5:19 p.m.

    Well.....those TDs were easy.

  • Tyrannosaurus Rex Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2014 4:43 p.m.

    Lets hope that BYU can represent the state of Utah tonight. I certainly hope that it isn't an embarrassment like last year in this first game. I would assume that they are more prepared this year than last year, although I am not sure that they are going to be as good as teams of the past several years.
    Here's to winning like Utah won last night!