Dick Harmon: James Lark's loyalty to BYU pays off with 2 scores in mop-up duty

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  • Cougar Passion Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 12, 2012 1:38 p.m.

    I will not be surprised in the least if football for James Lark continues after BYU. There are far worse avenues in life than to find a job as a competent backup--with the ability to shine when the starter goes down--for several years in the NFL.

  • LVIS Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 11, 2012 9:17 a.m.

    Heaps could have learned a lot from Lark. The differences in attitude and approach to the game are night and day.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Sept. 10, 2012 10:12 p.m.

    Wow, he has been around awhile. Talk about being patient. I bet he'll get a chance to start before the season ends and does some great things. It seems destined!

  • Proud Ute ,
    Sept. 10, 2012 6:24 p.m.

    Glad to see Lark get his chance to play and it sounds like he did well.
    I do wonder who did the headline for this story; His "Loyalty is rewarded with two scores in MOP UP Duty"?
    Really.... Mop up duty? I just think he deserves more respect than that.

  • jbkhbrmz Saint George, UT
    Sept. 10, 2012 4:31 p.m.

    Nelson is a great leader and a great competitor, but I firmly believe that Jame's Lark is the better quarterback and is also a great leader and competitor.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Sept. 10, 2012 2:50 p.m.


    More importantly, mission presidents know that their missionaries will hear things sooner or later, and where possible, they like to control the circumstances and the environment. Better for a missionary to hear potentially distracting news at a zone conference under the president's watchful eye than in an investigators' or members' home.

    Besides this, a mission president grows to love these young men like sons. He would want to make sure this information was communicated the least painful way possible with the greatest support.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    Sept. 10, 2012 2:07 p.m.


    Anybody who believes or claims that missionaries are "lost in the work" 24-7 are simply naive or are just throwing out hyperbole. Missionaries have plenty of time to think about "other things" besides missionary work when they're not actively teaching or otherwise engaged in missionary work. It's not at all unusual for missionaries to get news of important events happening back home from family, friends, and sometimes, mission presidents.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    Sept. 10, 2012 1:15 p.m.

    Great story and a great example to all kids, play hard and play as a part of the team.

    It's a shame that the LES PA Announcer kept announcing that Hill was the QB on plays rather than the correct Lark. Even though the guy's voice was pleasant he messed up on the PA too many times to count.

    Good for you Lark, keep up the hard work!

  • EMBO23 Riverton, UT
    Sept. 10, 2012 9:13 a.m.

    "Lark was just a couple of months in the field at a zone conference when his mission president took him aside and told him BYU signed his huge high school rival, Riley Nelson."

    Gee, thanks for being a buzz-kill, President...so much for being lost in the work.

  • sky2k1 Provo, UT
    Sept. 10, 2012 12:57 a.m.

    I have to be honest, I hated Lark in high school. To be fair I played (well sat the bench my soph and jr year, his jr and sr year) for his cross town rival. I wanted him to go to the U so I could keep cheering against him, but I'm glad we have him now. He is a great player who has gone through so much in life. Any smaller of a man would have either transferred or never got along with Riley. I may have disliked him in high school but anytime a St. George guy (Lark, Foote, Stephenson, Hine, Henderson...hopefully I didn't miss anyone) does well for BYU or is on the team, I'm always cheering for him. Good luck the rest of the year Lark, hope to see more of you on the field...although I do love my some Riley.

  • Donny Orem, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 8:35 p.m.

    Nelson is "tha man"! But Lark has the size (6'5") and the arm to be drafted by the NFL. Give him some more playing time!!

  • Tiberias Orem, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 7:35 p.m.

    I'm so happy for James, and for BYU fans. He is a steady and efficient passer who has endured a huge brush-off!

  • Blue Rampage Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 6:32 p.m.

    Before the season ends we will be seeing a lot more of James Lark.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Sept. 9, 2012 6:07 p.m.

    You know, I missed most of the game, was out with the young men, so I sped through the first half last night on dvr before I had to call it a night. I just plain don't think Wayne watched the same game. I don't think he has since Utah State last year.

    Riley is never going to be Luck or any of the top five qbs in the land. But I agree with the previous sentiment: the best BYU football team has Nelson as its qb. If he goes down, the team won't skip a beat because James too has earned the respect of his teammates.

    Next up, Utah. Time to see. I hope you've all enjoyed the chris b free zone, I expect it won't last much longer. And I have no reason to expect (s)he will be able to keep quiet for a whole year.

  • wer South Jordan, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 4:23 p.m.

    Great to read about such a fine team player! I hope the best for him now and in the future.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Sept. 9, 2012 3:29 p.m.

    Obviously a great person, Lark.
    I thought he did surprisingly well in the 2nd half. But I wouldn't say he is a stronger or better passer than Nelson. And certainly not a better leader. He under threw his receivers on at least 3 occasions.

    I know Nelson won't play in the NFL, but I think most fans and coaches would agree with me on this--Nelson is the right guy for the job right now.

    I know Wayne Rout can't accept that and is incapable of evaluating Nelson in an objective manner.
    What is it, Wayne? Does he owe you money or something?

  • Ironhide Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 12:55 p.m.

    Lark is the man. He has a really good arm and plays the game well. Like the article said, he's got way more going for him than just football. I like that he and Riley are such good friends. He could have chosen to take all these outcomes so much differently, in a bad way. But he didn't. In a world that screams selfishness and defames character, Lark is doing a lot of things right.

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 10:04 a.m.

    I don't think BYU would lose anything if Nelson went down and Lark was #1. Especially with Hill available for wildcat plays. It remains to be seen what Lark could do against Utah, BSU or Notre Dame but he sure looked good yesterday.

  • 79Ute Orange County, CA
    Sept. 9, 2012 9:32 a.m.

    We could use him...

  • majmajor Layton, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 8:49 a.m.

    Lark can throw better than Nelson, and Lark has shown he is effective teammate, but Nelson has shown that he if the best leader on the team. The team as a whole performs better with Nelson. The other players come out with a purpose and they believe they can win with Nelson. Nelson has shown that he will dig in the trenches with everyone else, and the other players respond well to him.

    I think that I would rather have a QB that is a proven leader, and can make the whole team better. That is what a leader and QB should do.

  • atlcoug Atlanta, GA
    Sept. 9, 2012 8:45 a.m.

    I agree with Wayne Rout. I know we only saw Lark for 27 plays, but he really looked sharp - much better than Nelson has looked this year. We may be somewhat like the Utes. Wynn did not look good. When he was injured, Hays came in and looked better, and the Ute offense improved. I hope Nelson proves me wrong and comes on strong next Saturday and leads the Cougars to a win against the Utes. Nelson's leadership is wonderful, but we will need more than that against stronger defensive teams. Of course, some better line play would be good too. Our running game so far has not been good.

  • Deserthiker SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 8:21 a.m.

    I also really enjoyed seeing James get a moment in the sun. He's earned it with hard work, and a team-first spirit. There is much more in life after football and James is well prepared. He may end up playing backup his entire career but he has earned a spot on my personal list of great BYU QB's. Welcome to my hall of fame James Lark. I wish you the very best through the rest of this season, your college years, and your life!

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 7:40 a.m.

    good for you.

  • DC Alexandria, VA
    Sept. 9, 2012 7:31 a.m.

    Wayne, I'm not so sure about that. Taysom did a great job when he was out there too.

  • AZ Blue & Red Gilbert, AZ
    Sept. 9, 2012 7:25 a.m.

    Lark Reminds me of Royce Bybee behind Jim M. Also a little of Steve Young behind Joe Montana. We know what Steve did. I am sure that Royce would have done as well as Jim M and I am also sure that Lark would have done well if he had the chance.

    Lark is a Hero of mine that should be honored as not only a great player but more importanly a better team mate and person.

    James my hat off to you and thanks for your example and dedication to BYU

  • Chumpley South Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 9, 2012 7:19 a.m.

    I was also excited to watch James play his passes were pin point accurate. He had good command of the field hopefully, he will get some more snaps during the season. Good Job James!

  • midwestfan Spanish Fork, UT
    Sept. 9, 2012 5:55 a.m.

    Thanks Harmon, for recognizing an unsung hero. One of the marks of a great athletic team is to have talented humble people on the bench; athletes who give their all in practice to challenge the starter and make him/her better, and then sit the bench during games without grumbling or complaining about their lack of playing time. Lark knows he could easily be the starter here, and at most other places. Yet he accepts the coaches decisions. He'll go far in life.

  • My2cWorth Huntersville, NC
    Sept. 9, 2012 5:50 a.m.

    James Lark is the kind of football athlete/hero that every young boy should admire. He knows what is important in life and has overcome great trials to become the amazing person that he is. He plays the game of life better than any other Cougar. Not that I want to see Riley need a backup but I'd love to see more James Lark in action on the field.

  • dallas realist rockwall, texas
    Sept. 9, 2012 3:09 a.m.

    knowing james for years and playing beside him in high school, this does not surprise me at all. he is a classy guy. he could have transfered to utah or another school after his mission, but the guy is loyal. good luck birdman!!

  • 1Infidel APO, AE
    Sept. 9, 2012 1:19 a.m.

    Will hope that during the WAC games we get to see more, and watch Lark enjoy himself doing that for which he has been training.

  • Wayne Rout El Paso, TX
    Sept. 8, 2012 10:57 p.m.

    Seeing James on the field should help some of the fans remember or understand what a quarterback is suppose to be able to do with a football. He was clearly the most effective quarterback in the game. I have no idea why he is not the starting quarterback. I wish he could field some punts so he could start.