BYU football: Bronco Mendenhall gets contract extension

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  • Alex 1 Tucson, AZ
    July 16, 2011 6:27 p.m.


    You are a true gentleman. I can't bring myself to criticize Coach Whittingham either.

  • Utah'95 FPO, AE
    July 14, 2011 5:46 a.m.

    Coach Mendenhall has earned the extension. He would be a successfull coach in many places, but is a particularly good fit for BYU.

    To my fellow Ute fans who can't acknowledge that he is a good coach, how do you dismiss multiple 10-win seasons, 4 top-24 finishes, 2 conference titles, and an even record against our Utes in his 6 years at the helm?

    Coach Whittingham's record is 58-20. Coach Mendenhall's is 56-21. Are you suggesting that the difference between a very good coach and a bad one is 1 loss over a six season span?

    I believe that both Utah and BYU are fortunate to have excellent head football coaches. I wish the Cougars and their coach good luck in their future in independence, but hope my Utes beat them in every head-to-head battle.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    July 13, 2011 2:11 p.m.

    I watched the interview with Bronco. When the ESPN interviewer was asking about independence, Bronco could hardly contain his smile. I think he is sincerely excited for the possibilities that it brings.

  • phoenix Gilbert, AZ
    July 13, 2011 1:52 p.m.


    "I bet the aggies beat them next time."

    The last time the Aggies upset BYU, 58-56 in 1993, BYU followed that up with 11 straight wins, including a 34-6 drubbing the following year. Don't be too surprised if BYU steamrolls Utah State this year.

  • Rational Salt Lake City, UT
    July 13, 2011 12:58 p.m.

    Riverton Cougar

    1) @ Rational, if the head coach could micromanage everything then there would only be one coach. The head coach oversees it all. Blaming Bronco for Anae's and Hill's shortcomings is like blaming the restaurant manager when the grill breaks.

    Dude, you are misreading my comment. A head coach who "oversees it all" doesn't micromanage, but does make the big decisions:

    - Punt or go for it
    - Field goal or punt
    - Run out the clock or go for the end zone
    - Pick up the intensity in practice or back off and heal bodies.
    - He also makes overall strategy decisions like ball control or wide open offense. (i.e., if you are playing a faster, more athletic team like Florida State and your line is 50 lbs per man bigger and you have BYU's best RB ever, pound the ball.)

    Don't get me wrong, Bronco is a great coach, but has a tendency, like all of us, to not see and overcome his own weaknesses. His is thinking like an assistant as the head coach.

  • RepresentBlue West Jordan, UT
    July 13, 2011 10:04 a.m.

    "7-6 and lost to utah state even? Come on. I bet the aggies beat them next time."

    Keep dreamin' buddy. The Cougars are gonna exact bloody revenge on the Aggies this year in Provo and it will be back to the usual one win over BYU every 20 years or so.

  • Aggielove Junction city, Oregon
    July 13, 2011 8:04 a.m.

    7-6 and lost to utah state even? Come on. I bet the aggies beat them next time.

  • Bugoff Houston, TX
    July 12, 2011 11:45 p.m.

    Bronco did the same thing Mac Brown did last season when TX lost. He made some coaching changes that needed to be made and moved forward.

    Bronco is doing what is best for BYU. Ute trolls don't like that so they nit pick on Bronco.

    You try saying everything right (with thousands of trolls, bloggers and media to spin whatever you say) and see how you come out.

    Bronco is moving the team forward and that is good enough for me. Could he have some better explanations for some events? Sure.

    Let's see what Whit has to say after losing a few games next year. Utah was all gaga over getting Chow but somehow Brono is bad because he replaced both the OC and the DC.

    Utah's only gripe is that both moves made BYU better.

    Talk is cheap. I will take performance on the field and Bronco performs. If he makes a mistake he fixes it and it does not take him a year to do it.

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    July 12, 2011 11:39 p.m.

    To: SLC BYU Fan | 5:57 p.m. July 12, 2011 Salt Lake City, UT - you may have the best comment about this situation. The scenario sounds spot on. I don't know too many coaches that would turn down a long-term deal like this unless there was a fair amount of concern over the future. Unfortunately, Coach Rose and the basketball program was thrown under the bus on this one. A coaching exodus is not out of the question.

  • cheeseman187 Costa Mesa, CA
    July 12, 2011 9:44 p.m.

    It's the amount of comments on articles like these that prove ESPN made a smart decision in going for viewership.

  • uteBusters Park City, UT
    July 12, 2011 9:18 p.m.

    "BYU fans and their revisionist history."

    have nothing on Utah fans and their revision history...

    see the thousands of whiney posts from Utah fans about 1984.

  • DevilishUte Tempe, AZ
    July 12, 2011 7:16 p.m.

    "I wouldn't argue too much with SDSU > BYU > Utah."

    The results are in and it was Utah>BYU>SDSU. BYU fans and their revisionist history.

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    July 12, 2011 6:04 p.m.

    Long-term contracts are typically given to coaches who win. While BYU has seen some measure of success, this seems a little premature. I want to see wins over Boise State, TCU, Texas, etc... Then I will say a long-term contract is deserved. There is too much uncertainty with going independent and as a fan I want to see what happens on the field before I get too excited.

  • SLC BYU Fan Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2011 5:57 p.m.

    Looking at Bronco and Dave rose, if this independence/WCC gig isnt cutting it by mid-decade and there isnt a Big-12 invitation I see a coaching exodus at BYU. The fact that Bronco would only agree to a 3 year extension over a 10 year offer says something, along with the fact that Dave Rose seriously considered a firm offer from Oklahoma and had another firm offer from Chris Hill up at Utah.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, Utah
    July 12, 2011 4:50 p.m.

    I have a few thoughts.

    1) @ Rational, if the head coach could micromanage everything then there would only be one coach. The coaching staff has a lot of coaches for a reason. The head coach oversees it all. Blaming Bronco for Anae's and Hill's shortcomings is like blaming the restaurant manager when the grill breaks.

    2) Musicians are told that if, during their performance, they make a mistake but recover it extremely well, it is almost as if the mistake wasn't made. The beginning of the season was bad, no one denies that. However, the end was strong. That shows how good of a coach Bronco is to have turned that around. How you finish is more important than how you end.

    3) I agree with both Papa Smurf Ute and Bronco to a point. 8 months ago isn't terribly long ago when you consider that Bronco has been coaching for a number of years, but Papa Smurf's analysis of better team/losing team is pretty accurate. I wouldn't argue too much with SDSU > BYU > Utah. Records don't always tell the story, though (ex. BYU is 2-0 vs Texas all-time but Texas > BYU all-time).

  • RepresentBlue West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:41 p.m.


    Bingo! Bronco has made it clear that he does not plan on staying at BYU until he retires like Lavell did. He has stated that he wants to coach long enough to return BYU to national prominence and I think that he feels that with this current crop of young talent that he has the tools to do that in the next 3 years.

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:40 p.m.

    Muss Man, if your coach said what Bronco said, you would think he was a hero. But since it is Bronco, and the school is BYU, your comment is negative. It figures. But thank you for your comment anyway. Glad you are a fan of BYU (being that you are reviewing a BYU article).

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:36 p.m.

    Striker: Why not be a fan of both Nebraska and BYU? I would, if I lived in Nebraska.

  • CBPapa Cedar Hills, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:31 p.m.

    I love how fired-up people get (from both BYU and Utah) every time Bronco makes a somewhat "controversial" statement. The guy is human (now a supposedly more wealthy human) and we all say and do controversial things. He's just on a public stage so he gets scrutinized WAY more. That scrutiny is still probably worth the paycheck...
    Everyone lighten up...

    Sept 17 Prediction:
    BYU - 34
    Utah - 18

  • sid 6.7 Holladay, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:13 p.m.

    You all know I am a Ute fan but I really do like Bronco. He is an outstanding coach and he has done great things for the TDS. I hope they keep them there as long as they can.

    With that being said, the article had me until "I want to make sure I am worthy to hold the position". Really... Have some self absorbing grandstanding there why don't ya!

    Give me a break, you and the school went short term to see where you end up in the national picture as an independent. Bronco has three years to amass a top 10 team or he is out. The ducks are in a row and Bronco needs to knock them down. Plain and simple.

    And stop using the word "Worthy" like being a coach at BYU is some spiritual calling. God could care less what BYU's football record is.


  • JP Skillet SLC, UT
    July 12, 2011 4:09 p.m.

    Bronco is amazing and the best coach in the history of sports in the state of Utah. I can't believe I am so fortunate to witness this tradition and we WILL be back to the NC! I have touted 1984 FOREVER but now it's a reality.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    July 12, 2011 4:01 p.m.

    I wonder if this shorter contract has anything to do with the interview that was done with his wife Holly (when she was plugging the Cowboy Ball). In that interview, she indicated that she and her husband did not plan on him coaching football until he was older (like Lavell and others). Not saying this is so --- just wondering aloud.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    July 12, 2011 3:27 p.m.

    Come on, someone has to know the detail$ of his contract. . . . Let's hear it. Someone please spill the beans. . .

    The two-headed monster last year was a bad decision. Firing Hill was the right decision. Getting rid of Anae was the right decision. The "I'm not sure the better team won" public statement was lame, even though I agree with it. The Jury is still out on Doman as OC. He has to prove himself this year. So despite some mistakes, Bronco showed promise in correcting those mistakes and he has proven to be a good and disciplined representative of BYU. He deserves the new contract.

    Bronco does have the occasional embarrassing sound byte, but the one we definitely need to keep the mic from is Heaps. I am sure he is a great kid and a great talent but I cringe every time he opens his mouth.

  • Papa Smurf UTE Herriman, UT
    July 12, 2011 3:10 p.m.


    It didnt end Whits career because Kyle after the UNLV game for the rest of that season, and the 2008 season went 21-1 after that loss. Bronco in just the remainder of the season last year after that loss to Utah St lost 2 games out of there next 7. Kyle only lost 1 out of 22, & his schedule was tougher than what the Y's was those last 7 games. Also since that UNLV loss, Kyle has gone 41-7. We will have to wait & see what happens over the next 3 years with the Y and Bronco if they lose more than 5 games, which I presume that they will. They could start this next year 0-3, and that would only allow for Bronco to lose 2 more games over a 33 game time frame to keep up with Whit after a bad loss to a bad team. They do have a ton of cupcakes on their schedule though. So getting to 10 wins shouldn't be too hard playing Idaho, Idaho St, UNM, etc. next year.

  • Laser Iowa City, IA
    July 12, 2011 3:08 p.m.

    Three years is not enough...But we will take it!!!! The longer he coaches the greater the pool of former players the U can pull from to fill their coaching spots.

  • RepresentBlue West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 3:00 p.m.

    "Bronco should be given the job for life."

    Dude, put down the blue kool-aid and back away from the green jell-o. He has not been called to the Quorum of the Twelve just yet. That is the only job in the church that should come with a lifetime guaranteed contract. Bronco has done a pretty good job so far, but he needs to take the program to the next level if this whole independence thing is going to work.

  • RepresentBlue West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 2:37 p.m.

    I am going to agree with Papa Smurf Ute. I am a die hard BYU fan, and I like Bronco but he does have a tendency to put his foot in his mouth and this was one of those times. It is just plain loser talk to say things like that. The scoreboard is the only thing that matters, and last year it said 17-16 in favor of the Utes. They won because individual players for the Utes made big plays in the 4th quarter, while individual players for the Cougars did not. Thats all there is to be said about that game. Bronco should at least wait until after he has avenged that loss to say stuff like that. Even better would be to just acknowlege that they lost and say they are looking forward to playing the Utes this year in Provo.

    As far as the 3 year contract extension goes, I am not buying his "I want to earn it" statement either. He did not take the 10 year deal because he does not know if he wants to be the head coach for that long. He has already made statements like that in the past.

  • Rational Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2011 2:29 p.m.

    Honestly, I'm a Cougar fan, but Bronco just rubs me wrong.

    He lets his assistants take the fall for HIS mistakes.

    The HEAD coach chooses when to go for a field goal or run out the clock, yet he let Anae take the heat for that.

    He has to fire his DC to get the defense to step up its intensity? He is the HEAD coach. Wasn't he the one who'd lost the hearts and minds of his players?

    Who made the call on the two-headed fiasco? If it wasn't, it should've been Bronco. I'm pretty sure he did, because the upper-classman had "earned it." Not by being better, but through seniority.

    He once said, "I really don't know or understand our offense." WHAT? You think LaVell would EVER have said that? No. Because he's the head coach. He would, and did, consult on and approve last second plays. (Like against TX A&M many years ago.)

    And that "I'm not sure the better team won." What a weenie thing to say. Truly. W-e-e-n-i-e. Try and be as gracious as Eric Weddle was after Beck-to-Harline.

  • owlmaster2 Kaysville, UT
    July 12, 2011 2:23 p.m.

    Congratulations Bronco. Like a lot of people on here I hope you stay in Provo forever. I hate to see anyone lose their job.

    And by the way hedgehog..... your killin' me smalls!!!!! Lol

    Go Utes!!!!

  • Devin American Fork, UT
    July 12, 2011 2:05 p.m.

    Oh come on papa smurf ute, he was talking about LAST season, no it wouldn't be like ron mcbride coming back and saying that, that was 11 years ago. There will be know could-have-beens this season though...see you in september. translation for this article: bronco got a little raise.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 12, 2011 1:56 p.m.

    Bronco is best for BYU. I don't see BYU getting any better coach (for the Y) than Bronco. I think Bronco can make more $$ as a defensive coordinator in the NFL and I suspect that is what he is leaving on the horizon or perhaps a head coaching job at Oregon State - where he played.

  • Cougar Claws Lindon, UT
    July 12, 2011 1:52 p.m.

    Yeah! Coach M. Forever!!!

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    July 12, 2011 1:50 p.m.

    Excellent, 3 more years of good but not good enough.

  • mkSdd3 Ogden, UT
    July 12, 2011 1:39 p.m.

    After Bronco recognized how bad the season was last year he did what he needed to do to right the ship. That is all that could be asked of a coach, and he did it better than most would have.

    Bronco should be given the job for life. He has already demonstrated that he will not let the program suffer from mediocrity. He gives his best and demands the best from the team.

  • BYUalum South Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 1:32 p.m.

    We love BYU and for everything that it is. I truly believe you have to go to school there to understand that statement. Other comments to the contrary are trivia and meaningless.

    Bronco Mendenhall--a great man, a great coach, a man of integrity. A perfect fit for BYU football coach. Same for Dave Rose coach of the BYU basketball team.

    Go Cougars!

  • DevilishUte Tempe, AZ
    July 12, 2011 1:25 p.m.

    31-16 and it wasn't that close on ESPN. Only a late TD when the game was already over made it look moderately respectable.

  • guitarboy South Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 1:22 p.m.

    teleste writes: Just what BYU needs! A coach that has insulted his own fans' intelligence and. Just. Can't. Win. The. Important. Games. Against. Utah. And. Tcu. To. Save. His. Own. Life.

    Johnson72 writes: I feel sorry for byu fans

    Utah gets to play on ESPN. On September 17. It was already interesting to see Utah fans delirious elation of joy when Utah beat BYU by 1 point at RES, a BYU team with one of the worst records in 35 years guided by an 18 year old quarterback. It only took some Utah fans 24 hours to begin proclaiming how vastly superior their team is to BYUs. You can't make that stuff up, it was hilarious. It will be even more interesting to see how the vocal Utah fans react after the upcoming September 17 game against BYU in Provo. That appears to be Utahs only ESPN game this coming season. I wonder if, when the game is over, Utah will wish it had not been on EPSN at all.

    If Broncos value is not already apparent to those with attention deficit, it will become apparent come Sept 17.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    July 12, 2011 12:58 p.m.

    "Only in a land of unicorns and rainbows can a coach lose 6 games (including Utah State) and get an extension"

    At least BYU is willing to continue to play Utah State. U dropped them from the schedule because U knew your BB team would continue to lose if you played them.

    Losing to USU once every 17 years is probably acceptable. The next loss will be in 2028. And Utah State was a lot better football team than the UNLV team that rolled over U in 2007 and somehow that didn't end Whit's career.

  • dustman Nampa, ID
    July 12, 2011 12:55 p.m.

    He wanted a shorter contract so that he could take a better job later. If it was only about deserving to be the coach at BYU then he would not have added "as long as I feel it's where i'm supposed to be."

    Still, I like coach mendenhall.

  • morganh Orem, Utah
    July 12, 2011 12:46 p.m.

    Bronco is a great Coach and he deserves the contract extension. The team was headed in the wrong direction when he decided to fire Coach Hill and coach the defense. It paid off because B.Y.U. turned things around. Bronco has said that he isn't planning on being a football coach his whole life, and I am sure that when the day comes that he decides not to coach here B.Y.U. will still be in good hands which his successor.

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    July 12, 2011 12:46 p.m.

    "Only in a land of unicorns and rainbows can a coach lose 6 games (including Utah State) and get an extension."


    This does not bode well for whittingham going forward.

    @Johnson72: You will feel sorry for utah fans Sept 17. Not to mention Sept 10 v. USC, who will crush utah. You should start to pray for a "W" against Montana State - the following two games will not be so cup cakie.

    It will be 4 win 8 losses year for utah. Mark it down.

  • Ragnar Danneskjold Bountiful, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:43 p.m.

    I thought he had said in the past that he didn't really want to be coaching for a long time. Surprised to see him say that he will stay as long as they will have him.
    He was the right coach for BYU at the time. Time will tell if he is the guy to take them to the next level.

  • Papa Smurf UTE Herriman, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:32 p.m.

    Bronco is a classy guy, but his monotone style of speaking and his coach speak stuff gets annoying. I could imagine him at Oregon St or any other school that gets better recruits. With what he does with my LDS brethren, just imagine what he could do with some real players, with real speed. Also, his comment today about the better team not winning the rivalry game last year was pathetic. It was 8 months ago. Get over it. Did you say the better team did not win the San Diego St game? No you didnt, and SDSU was the better team last year. Record and stats prove that. BYU won because of a blown call, & the Utes won because of a blown call. Stuff happens. In 2000 the Y benefitted from a blown fumble call, & replay had not been approved. Things happen in the course of a game. That comment by Bronco today would be like Mcbride coming out saying that the better team did not win in 2000 in Lavells last game.

  • Snack PAC Olympus Cove, Utah
    July 12, 2011 12:28 p.m.

    hedgy and his gaggle never fail to disappoint with their inane, jealous comments; I wonder if they even realize how lightly regarded their comments are by most BYU bloggers.

  • Jonathan Eddy Payson, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:27 p.m.

    Pay no attention to the anti's. They are like flies at a picnic; a minor distraction from a little pest but they never really detract from good company, good conversation, good food or good fun.

  • williary Kearns, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:27 p.m.

    Can't stand the guy, he's one of the most arrogant and obnoxious people I've ever heard speak, but he's done a very good job at BYU. He's incredibily gifted at getting kids and fans to drink the kook aid. Clearly his style is working right now. Even if he was the 3rd/4th choice.

  • Go Big Blue!!! Bountiful, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:26 p.m.

    I can see how you would think that a school with 5 national championships is less exciting to follow than a team that lost 6 games last season.

  • RepresentBlue West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:24 p.m.

    "Only in a land of unicorns and rainbows can a coach lose 6 games (including Utah State) and get an extension."

    It helps too when that coach has 4 consecutive seasons of 10+ wins.

  • Starfarer Mesa, AZ
    July 12, 2011 12:17 p.m.

    Muss Man

    Funny that in a world where people think they deserve more than they do, you find someone who has always been self-abased on every level as just plain silly.

    I think that says more about you than it does about Bronco.

  • One Nil to the Arsenal! Gilbert, AZ
    July 12, 2011 12:13 p.m.

    Hedge.....2nd funniest thing I have read all week.

    That deserves a Ducky LOL!!

  • Johnson72 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:11 p.m.

    I feel sorry for byu fans

  • teleste Provo, UT
    July 12, 2011 12:10 p.m.

    Just what BYU needs! A coach that has insulted his own fans' intelligence AND. JUST. CAN'T. WIN. THE. IMPORTANT. GAMES. AGAINST. UTAH. AND. TCU. TO. SAVE. HIS. OWN. LIFE.

    "...not necessarily a great fan, in terms of education and understanding the broader scheme of things, but if you're just to look out and say, where are the mistakes, the level of criticism usually matches the level of education and the fans, the people it comes from."

    (Couldn't the fans have reason to criticize or be mad? Oh no, they must just be stupid!)

    It's hard to cheer that kinda thing on.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 12, 2011 11:58 a.m.

    interesting that Bronco turned down the longer term deal. Obviously he has something else on the horizon.

  • Starfarer Mesa, AZ
    July 12, 2011 11:57 a.m.



    Do you know anything about coaching, contract negotiations, or NCAA football?

    Is Bronco the first to have a 7-6 season and still get a contract extension? I can bet you he's not.

    Is he the first coach to have to rebuild a team? I think not.

    Is he worthy of a contract extension? Well, since he got one, I guess he is

    Maybe your grandma's basement is land of unicorns and rainbows.

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 12, 2011 11:55 a.m.

    Fantastic attitude Coach mendenhall has. He will continue to be exactly what BYU needs to succeed.

    Excellent comment. Integrity above all else.

    It is a matter of class, integrity and honor. See what Mr Webster has to say about them.

  • ER in EUR Belgrade, Serbia
    July 12, 2011 11:54 a.m.

    Oh Hedgie, I almost thought I was going to read the comments section on a BYU article and not find a shallow and little comment by you. Whew, there you are. Do you have a job?

  • Muss Man Draper, UT
    July 12, 2011 11:44 a.m.

    I'm not here to hate on Bronco. I think he's a fantastic coach and an admirable person.

    I wonder, though, if BYU fans have come to question his occasional rhetoric and mind games, e.g., turning down a longer contract because "there's a lot on the line...I want to be worthy of the position I have." Followed by "I want to stay here as long as I'm wanted."

    This sort of conspicuous self-abasement is just plain silly (though many BYU faithful are bound to eat it up).

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    July 12, 2011 11:31 a.m.

    Only in a land of unicorns and rainbows can a coach lose 6 games (including Utah State) and get an extension.

  • Zoniezoobie Mesa, AZ
    July 12, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    Integrity above price.

  • Striker Omaha, NE
    July 12, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    So glad BYU has Bronco. He's a class act guy that seeks only the best young men in the country. No coach is better for BYU than him. He is making BYU football exciting! Being a Cougar fan is so awesome right now! Friends in Nebraska want me to change my allegiance, but Nebraska doesn't have near the excitement of BYU. Keep up the good work coach.

  • IDC Boise, ID
    July 12, 2011 11:23 a.m.

    Glad to hear Bronco is on board for at least 3 more years. I expect some growing pains with the new coaches but I think they are going to be great. Go Cougs!

  • guitarboy South Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2011 11:20 a.m.

    That's a pretty compelling attitude from coach Mendenhall. I'm sure the critics will have something petty and disingenuous to say about it. But when the school wants to sign you up for a long period, and he preferred a shorter period, in order to put pressure on himself to continue to deserve the position, even though he says he wants to coach at BYU as long as they will have him...pretty hard to find something to criticize Mendenhall with. No, the short article doesn't give all the facts. But the facts it does give, are compelling.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    July 12, 2011 11:17 a.m.

    If Bronco takes us to the promised land, he'll be well positioned to reap an even sweeter contract after this one expires.

    He's the perfect coach for BYU. I can't imagine him anywhere else.