With BYU fans wringing their hands after the crushing loss to Virginia, there was a collective angst among the Cougar faithful leading to the Texas game. The worry did not abate as game time approached, when a deja vu thunderstorm hit Provo on cue.
In the midst of the chaos and rain came three soothing voices: BYUtv analysts Alema Harrington, Brian Logan and David Nixon. Not only did they give excellent perspectives about the game and BYU's chances, but they gave a "bold prediction" about the game as is their custom prior to each BYU game.
The predictions seemed pretty bold to me, but since I am an optimistic sort, they gave me some encouragement as the Cougars faced the daunting task of dealing with the nationally ranked Texas Longhorns. Nixon predicted that the BYU defense would hold the Texas running backs to less than 100 yards collectively, not counting the yards the QB might have. Harrington said he expected the Cougars to sack the Longhorn QB three times, a goal that might be attainable. Logan had the biggest bombshell. He held up four fingers and said the Cougars would score four touchdowns. By then I was really liking this boldness.
As the game unfolded, and the Cougars attained a historic dominance in rushing yards as they trounced the Longhorns, I harkened back to the optimistic predictions and felt reassured there were those close to the BYU program who had a better perspective than the hand-wringing fans. Is it because each of those ex-players have been in the crucible of competition and have dealt with hope, disappointment and fulfillment, and are not swayed by the whims and panic moments of the rank-and-file fans? They seem to be more rational and analytical than prone to knee-jerk and hasty reaction.
For the record, our threesome revealed the results of their predictions in the post-game show. Sure enough, the BYU defense held the Texas running backs to 98 yards, the Cougars sacked the Texas QB four times and Logan's prediction of four BYU touchdowns was on the money, and in fact was matched by four Justin Sorensen field goals. The 550 yards rushing and Taysom Hill's personal rushing totals were magnificent representations of a great team victory, and one of the most memorable games in BYU history. I, for one, will continue to be attuned closely to the predictions and analysis from BYU broadcast teams. What a night to remember!
Ken Driggs of Mesa, Ariz., is a BYU graduate and served as Cosmo in the '60s. Contact him at [email protected].