BYU football: Cougar comeback bid falls just short in loss to San Jose State

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  • 54-10 Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 20, 2012 11:13 a.m.

    What happened to all the hype? This was supposed to be a "team for the ages" that busted the BCS and raised the bar for all future generations.

    Riley was going to compete for the Heisman and an undefeated season was probable.


    Nov. 19, 2012 10:28 p.m.


    It's all been said before--in fact by most fans all year! We need 5 changes: (1)A quarterback who can consistently throw accurate long as well as short passes and not just a gutsy scrambler the coach likes because of his stamina; (2) an offensive line that can blow holes in the defensive line for our running backs and protect the quarterback on pass plays;(3) a reliable field goal kicker that can win the close games;(4) less predictable play calling on crucial downs; and (5) a passiing defense that consistently plays to win the whole game--not like they did in the first half of this game and in the Oregon State game.

    I thinkany team in the country would take that including Oregon and Alabama-I ask you don't you think that every team in America is trying to do all this stuff not just byu

  • dustman Nampa, ID
    Nov. 19, 2012 4:29 p.m.

    is Lark that bad that he doesn't even get a down?

  • Warren Kay Holladay, UT
    Nov. 19, 2012 2:27 p.m.

    Riley = you are tough. You have grit. Hang in there bro! Regroup and come out strong for the next two games!

  • truebluecougar Orem, Utah
    Nov. 19, 2012 10:25 a.m.

    Glad the Nelson era is about over.

    Recommendations to Holmoe & Bronco:

    New offensive line coach is desperately needed. OLine played poorly even when healthy. Coaching, Coaching, Coaching!

    New offensive coordinator - Ty Detmer, want the job? My choice. Need imagination. How good would Detmer have been with Jamal Williams in the backfield? Ty, you daughters will be close by if you come to BYU to get us out of this offensive mess. Hill will be back. Please come an mentor him into the BYU QB mold. I'll contribute to you compensation package.

    Bronco - Play healthy QBs, not those with grit only. Sad to say that grit lost us at least 4 games this year

    Doman - because a quarterback like Riley and Hill can ran, they are quarterbacks and not running backs. Let Jamal d the running and have your quarterback hand off or throw the ball. Hill has that ability, Riley doesn't.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Nov. 19, 2012 9:26 a.m.


    All of the BYU fans are too busy busting on Utah to support the Cougs. Sad, but true!

  • duck Saint George, UT
    Nov. 19, 2012 9:18 a.m.

    It's all been said before--in fact by most fans all year! We need 5 changes: (1)A quarterback who can consistently throw accurate long as well as short passes and not just a gutsy scrambler the coach likes because of his stamina; (2) an offensive line that can blow holes in the defensive line for our running backs and protect the quarterback on pass plays;(3) a reliable field goal kicker that can win the close games;(4) less predictable play calling on crucial downs; and (5) a passiing defense that consistently plays to win the whole game--not like they did in the first half of this game and in the Oregon State game.

    I love what Bronco has done in building team spirit and an excellent rushing defense, but the team needs a more experienced offensive coach who can keep the other team off guard and put points on the board more consistently.

    Nov. 19, 2012 9:14 a.m.

    This game was a sad state of affairs. Riley just can't win against good teams. Two interceptions and a fumble plus unimaginative play calling lost this game. I can't understand why the coaching staff left Riley in the game. The poor kid couldn't even get up off the ground after being hit. It was obvious that Nelson was hurt. His passes went too high, too far to the right or behind receivers all together. The best receiver on the field was the turf. I will be glad when this season is over and Riley is gone. I hope some of the coaches go with him.

    Nov. 19, 2012 9:11 a.m.


    Best post of the whole weekend!!! I am as big a Ute fan as you get and I'm having a ball reading all these posts from Y fans. You would think that you guys are 0-11, byu is doing exactlly what they set out to do. Winning more than they lose, going to a bowl game (you will never go to a big bowl game until you belong to a big conference), and the missionary work continues.

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    Nov. 19, 2012 8:52 a.m.

    Riley, it's just a game. You're a great young man. Someday you will be signing a lot of people's pay checks and be a fine husband/father, church leader, and community leader...all of which are way more important than any level. Pay no heed to all the insults and negativity. All will be well with you!!!

  • BigCougFan Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 19, 2012 7:17 a.m.

    I will be glad when the Riley era is over. Any fool could have seen that Riley was playing hurt and should have been taken out of the game. And it doesn't take a rocket scientist to realise that Riley's poor decisions were costing us the game. Please Bronco, end the romance with Riley and give Lark the reps in practice so he can move the ball next week. Put Riley on the sidelines where he belongs with his broken back.

  • ET Bass Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 19, 2012 2:55 a.m.

    For years there was talk about moving to a bigger, better conference. We and Utah faced the dilemma of being the big fish in the little pond or the little fish in the big pond. Now that we have passed from the Mwc to greener pastures, it would seem that Utah and tcu are in way over their heads and that BYU is stuck in neutral with independence. None of the three have any serious prospects of breaking back into the top tier of college football.

    It's all about money, right. But, There would have been no bcs appearances by Utah or tcu if they had been in their current conferences. Same thing happened to asu and Arizona when they left the WAC.

    We can only wonder what a Mwc with Utah, tcu, BYU, BSU, Air Force and San Diego state would accomplish under the new bowl plan. I think each would have had a better prospect of success. Provided the two Utah schools sack their rookie OC's and stop playing games at quarterback.

  • Real Bass Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 19, 2012 2:35 a.m.

    I agree with the masses that Riley shouldn't play next week, but forget lark, a senior. Lets see what munis can do. At least he will be back next year.

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:42 p.m.

    It is more clear now that our AD needs to completely change the coaching staff and turn this wreck around. I am taking nothing away from SJSU as they played a good game. It is time that BYU take a long, hard look at their football program and move in a different direction. This entire independent experiment was for money only. It was not about putting a quality program on the field weekly. If your motivation is money, then simply say it and move on. There is no "exposure" playing SJSU on the late game on ESPNU. In fact, the stadium was not even full.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:39 p.m.

    Sammy, do you honestly BYU would have fared any better than Utah has in the PAC-12 up to this point?

    And don't forget that PAC-12 teams don't lose to SJSU. The Spartans are 35-117-2 all-time against the PAC-12 and have won only 2 out of their past 20 attempts. Both of which were against Stanford in 2000 and 2006. As you know, Stanford was terrible before 2009. Even more importantly, PAC-12 schools don't play at SJSU. Only 13 of the 154 games SJSU has played against the PAC have been at home. Lastly, not a single PAC-12 member has a losing record against the mighty Spartans. Your boys clearly don't belong.

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:38 p.m.

    Riley Nelson was a living "heart attack" on every single play of this game. I feel for the Cougar Defense who did an outstanding job all year notwithstanding the Oregon State game.

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:35 p.m.

    I never thought I would be this disgusted in the BYU Football Cougars. Nice job of losing to every team that mattered in 2012.

  • Mildred in Fillmore Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:26 p.m.

    I agree with Mr Harmon. If Riley and Cody hadn't been injured, we would have won - by a lot.

  • Wayne Rout El Paso, TX
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:24 p.m.

    Dave22...I have been watching BYU football since 1963. I have never seen a worse quarterback than Riley Nelson. It is not his fault...he is just not capable of playing the positon. He has played about 4 seasons. I can't think of a game he has won at BYU or USU over even an average opponent. I don't think he would make the team on an average D1 program let alone one that w

  • 54-10 Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:22 p.m.

    Gotta love the weeping of the Duck, SammyG and Jacker. It's going to get a lot worse next year for the Cougs since it appears they will be playing a half way decent schedule with the same "lack of talent".

    Be prepared.

  • CA. reader Rocklin, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:22 p.m.

    I try to be a loyal fan, but when a player is unable to perform because of an injury, or lack of production, for example Jake Heaps, shouldn't the coaching staff step up and replace that player? You gotta love Riley's toughness, desire and leadership but I think James Lark could have played well enough to get us a win.

    The play-calling seems to be lacking in imagination. What to happened to BYU throwing a pass on fourth and one? We try to jam our 180 lb. running back through a tough defense, not once but twice. What's really sad is that we have been in every game but one so I think the talent is there.

  • WACPaddingOurSchedule pocatello, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:51 p.m.

    Springville, UT
    Ah, come on BYU fans, suck it up. You're better than these Ute fans piling on this story. Lamenting over this game / season will not accomplish a thing. We're heading to a bowl game. Not much of one but what do we expect with what the team had to work with?

    Just remember it could all be worse, we could be bitter and jealous Ute fans whose team has gone absolutely no where in their conference and looks to be that way for some time

    Heck the Utes might even suffer the humiliation of losing to the Buffs again. Ouch.


    It is worse.
    BYU is now 6-10 all time against San Jose St.
    Get over it.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:33 p.m.

    Why did the refs make byu loose again?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:17 p.m.


    Except for TCU, Utah owned the MWC since 2008:

    20-3 with only loses to TCU (2009 and 2010) and BYU 2009

    I know it hurts but the fact is Utah and TCU were more than ready to move up in competition.

    Both are struggling but I think both will be able to compete after a few years of recruiting.

    Nov. 18, 2012 9:00 p.m.

    I went to the South Carolina vs Wofford football game yesterday. USC has young back that my son calls "NFL Caliber" in Mike Davis. He got a chance to play yesterday and had a few impressive runs. On his 3rd carry he broke some tackles and was down near the goal line when he fumbled the ball. He didn't play another snap the rest of the game. A few games ago their starter had a rough game. The Head Ball Coach sat him in the 2nd half. The next game he was back in there. The HBC said that sometimes a little time on the bench is good for the players. It was obvious for all those watching last night that Riley was not getting the job done, hurt or not. The coaches have got to see that and do what it takes to give your team the best chance to win.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:56 p.m.

    Ah, come on BYU fans, suck it up. You're better than these Ute fans piling on this story. Lamenting over this game / season will not accomplish a thing. We're heading to a bowl game. Not much of one but what do we expect with what the team had to work with?

    This is absolutely pathetic to come on to these boards and see so much personal angst over the team, Riley and this season. Riley will be gone soon enough and while we know the lack of performance has been a huge lightning rod of criticism it does not deserve the negative comments that are being thrown out. When Riley does well he does some pretty good things, and when he doesn't it's no surprise.

    Just remember it could all be worse, we could be bitter and jealous Ute fans whose team has gone absolutely no where in their conference and looks to be that way for some time

    Heck the Utes might even suffer the humiliation of losing to the Buffs again. Ouch.

    Cheer up Cougar fans. Much to be thankful for and basketball season has started!

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:45 p.m.

    The U may have a losing record but losing to Arizona is light years away from losing to lowly San Jose. Maybe the Y should down grade it's schedule to say maybe... Snow and Dixie? I suspect they could then be the big fish in the little pond again. Right now they don't even have a pond. At least the U is in a real conference.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:39 p.m.

    Interesting enough you NEVER heard comments like this UNTIL Doman took over as coordinator with his new Crowton style offense or run and boot. Robert Anae brought BYU back to respectability on offense after Crowton destroyed the team. Everyone knew that Doman was not ready to be an offensive coordinator and everyone new little Reily wasn't close to being a starting QB either but here we are with both. Heaps was doing GREAT under Anae and finished his first year with a bowl win looking great... and then Doman ruined him. I actually don't think Bronco is the problem - BYU won't get a better head coach than Bronco - it is Doman. The guy is out of his league and BYU better do something soon.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:29 p.m.

    this is like losing to a high school team. BYU football is a joke...a bad joke. San Jose in all likelihood has the worst defense in division one football year in and year out.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:10 p.m.


    Weber coaches the OL not Reynolds. During Lavell's years Reynolds coached the running backs. His sons play OL so maybe that's where you went awry.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:07 p.m.

    @ gdog3finally

    Interesting that you are fixated on BYU's schedule and lack of quality wins when they at least beat USU, which Utah did not. And Utah still has not beaten Colorado, either, so I'd be careful about throwing rocks when living in a glass house. Utah will take at least 3 and maybe 4 seasons to accumulate 10 Pac12 Conference wins. They already have a modest 6 wins in two years, two of them coming courtesy of Washington State, who Utah barely defeated last year. True, BYU has had a bad year, but Utah is pathetic. Like Arizona, I expect they will go decades and never play in the Rose Bowl. If you enjoy playing a tougher schedule, win or lose, you should be very happy because that's what the Utes are doing---playing a tougher schedule and LOSING! I'd have thought that the competition in the MWC was more than they could handle, seeing their record from the years they were in that conference. But we see it's all about money. Good luck next Saturday in Boulder---you're going to need it.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:06 p.m.


    I don't think the Cougar faithful expected Utah State and San Jose State to be difficult games, especially the latter. But the two programs have two excellent coaches and are on the rise. Utah has a much tougher schedule granted but the Utes wanted this so it's time to step up. Otherwise be careful what you wish for...

  • rafinsure Elk Grove/U.S.A., 00
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:29 p.m.

    I was at the game last night and was sitting 18 rows up on the 48 yard line. BYU's defense was asleep during the first half allowing 20 points, but finally woke up during the second half and allowed zero points. The offense were allowed ample opportunities to score in the Spartsn's red zone, but couldn't score due to Riley Nelson's inability to throw a football. Furthermore, he kept on losing his cool every time things didn't go well and Doman kept on running on the field between plays telling him to calm down. Also, the BYU team as a whole displayed no sense of urgency on the sideline. They sat around chatted, laughed, and kicked it on the benches. Whatever happened to the days when players were expected to stand up with their helmets on during the whole game and ready to plat whether they were starters or not (which the Spartan team on the sideline did last night)? The team's lackluster performance last night and its lack of urgency made my stomach turn. I miss the Cougars of old when they played with heart.

  • jarka-rus Layton, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 6:13 p.m.

    This is the sorry state of BYu football until they get rid of Bronco! I am no longer a fan of this weak team.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    Nov. 18, 2012 6:07 p.m.

    To Dave 22: yes, Colonel George Custer. He played like he was better than the rest of the team and put them at risk.

  • dave22 SOUTH SALT LAKE, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 5:43 p.m.

    Everyone needs to lay of Riley and stop blaming him.. He has more guts and heart than the other 60 players combined... He should go down as one of the best 5 quarterbacks in BYU history...

    Have you ever seen such a great leader?

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 5:09 p.m.

    I suppose I'm just one more guy pouring it on Riley, Doman, and Bronco but the sad fact is they deserve it. Nelson was once again bad, just plain bad. Turnover after turnover, in the RED ZONE no less, is a recipe for losing. He will forever be remembered as the qb that snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

    Doman, really? Terrible play calling. Terrible scheme. Terrible job. Embarrassingly bad. Just plain awful.

    Bronco you have allowed your infatuaiton with a bad, bad, college qb to ruin a season that could have been a good one. Nelson is bad and you are worse. I truly believe that you take some joy in the losses because you despise the fans so much that seeing us suffer brings you joy.

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 5:03 p.m.

    BYU deserves all they get for grabbing Nelson after his mission from USU. He has now lost more games than won and he was such the hero after they ran a real QB out of town. I love it.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    Nov. 18, 2012 4:23 p.m.

    Would like some help from couger fans. Did Lark do something in his career to put him in the dog house, is there some reason he hasn't transferred or is he not very good. It just doesn't seem that a coach would use willing to pile up losses with an injured QB if he had someone who could at least hand off. Is that Broncos call or Domans call?

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 3:58 p.m.

    BYU's game next week means little. It's an easy win anyway. Still, they will have a bowl game. I don't know if the match up will bring any excitement, but it might. Utah's game against Colorado means little as well, and after that, the season is done.

    Yet remember, all BYU has to do is have a record of 2-6 in the 8 tough games they play each year in independence because what's left is 4 patsies to even the record at 6-6 and go bowling.

    Yes Utah is not going bowling, but they only had one patsy in Northern Colorado. Now Washington State was weak but BYU also played them (both won). As for Cougar games that were penciled in wins, Weber State, Hawaii, Idaho, and New Mexico State. Big difference there.

    The PAC 12 is not the SEC or BIG 12 but it beats BYU's schedule despite the tougher opponents BYU played. Again I say that because of built in wins that send BYU bowling. Look at BYU's wins. Who did they beat? Washington State, Weber State, Hawaii, USU, Georgia Tech, and Idaho. Any marquee wins? Best win: USU (9th inning homerun 6-3 game).

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 3:57 p.m.


    "...the 2nd most pathetic team in the country...2nd only to the utes..."

    Hmmmm. Just wondering, how does that work? I seem to remember Utah beating BYU, and on BYU's own field as well. Can you say delusional?

  • nunya sacramento, ca
    Nov. 18, 2012 3:49 p.m.

    new head coach is needed and bronco should be d-cord and new o-line and offense coord needed as well. the 2nd most pathetic team in the country...2nd only to the utes but that isn't anything to really brag about.

  • indycrimson Franklin, IN
    Nov. 18, 2012 3:14 p.m.

    There You Go Again!

    I'm grateful for them also...

  • Sense Ogden, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 3:00 p.m.

    I can't fault Nelson for his toughness and determination. He was obviously very injured in this game and it once again effected his performance. He just kept coming back for another beating. I wish the coaches had enough courage to pull him out for his own safety and for the good of the team. The decision to allow him to keep playing is on the coaches--not Nelson.

  • rhappahannock Washington, DC
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:58 p.m.

    It is pointless to play an injured QB, no matter how gritty he is. When looking over Bronco's tenure, this is clearly his worst coaching job. Bronco and Doman need to own up to it. Lark hasn't shown much, but I hope he is starting next Saturday. At least give Nelson an extra week to rest if you are requiring him to play no matter what.

    The real mistake came starting Nelson against Utah. If Lark stunk it up in the 1st half, let Nelson come in the 2nd. You still had a healthy Taysom Hill to run option and split the time with Lark. Nelson got further battered in that game, making him even worse for Bosie State. Last year, Utah was the lowest rated team we lost to, and we were the highest ranked victory for the Utes. This year, we are once again the Utes best win, and they are once again the lowest rated team we lost to. Really bad strategy and coaching.

  • LindonMan Lindon, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:43 p.m.

    Riley Nelson Style: Heeeeyyyyyy a turnover! A-a-again yeah, A-a-again yeah!

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:15 p.m.

    I'm grateful for Tom, Bronco, Brandon, and Riley.

  • Locke Rexburg, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:03 p.m.

    BYU is one player away from having an awesome team. Guess which one.

  • LifeLibertyHappiness Draper, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 1:10 p.m.

    At least the Nelson era is coming to an end. It's shocking how poorly he throws the ball. It's not fair to the rest of the team to have a QB that can't do the job. The offense has been brutal all year long because it's in the hands of an incompetent OC and QB. The O-line has also been bad. It's such a shame to have Cody Hoffman, Ross Apo, Friel, Matthews as excellent targets to throw to and have no one who can throw the ball.

    It's too bad but consistent. BYU can beat the Idaho States of world, be competitive with mediocre teams, and lose consistently to good teams. Next year with a great schedule, BYU will likely not be bowl eligible. What a waste of a great defense, something Bronco has done a great job with.

  • Troy06 OREM, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:49 p.m.

    Desert hiker, Riley and the coaches said he was completely healthy going into this game. He said he was healthy a few weeks ago. Other posters on these boards said his back Likely healed quickly from small stress line fractures. Please stop blaming Riley's incompetence on injuries. He is simply not a good QB. That of course doesn't mean he will fail in his professional career, but he failed in this endeavor. Excuses should not be made. Man up and move on.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:47 p.m.


    Perhaps Anae did these things in which he is accused but was this known to the casual BYU fan, probably not. They just wanted him gone because they didn't like the offense and they want some return to the glory days which in the ways college football is constituted won't exactly happen.

    I am actually a Bronco Mendenhall fan because again too many of the fans are nut cases and don't realize just how good a coach he has been--his record would be envious for most programs and considering the challenges the Y has, he has done well IMO. If Anae was indeed disloyal then perhaps it was the correct call. But understand all staffs have coaches with egos, defensive coaches often fight with offensive coaches and visa versa. Position coaches are territorial. Some head coaches even encourage some of this as it makes these coaches fight hard for their players and side of the ball. But there are always dangers in these approaches. Bronco sees himself as a defensive minded coach first as does Whittingham. And sometimes who they hire and how they relate and work with offensive coaches is problematic.

  • moderateinmagna MAGNA, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:34 p.m.

    Well chris as i recall you also predicted that Utah would beat Arizona by a score o4 42 -7 but i knew that as soon as you predicted a ute win that they were doomed,so you actually have no room to talk about a byu loss on a byu rhread,just stick to what yuou do best predicting wins for your UTES kenjoy watching them get beat after your predictions.

  • Deserthiker SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:24 p.m.

    I started this season a big Riley fan. Still am. But my support is tempered by sad realism now. Riley has never been the same since his back injury. Injuries such as Riley sustained just don't heal in a week or two. With continued pounding and game abuse, my guess is he's playing in a lot of pain. A painful back makes every movement hurt and completely changes throwing muscle dynamics. It shows. Consistently inaccurate and zipless passes and step-slower running have diminished his effectiveness and hurt the team. I too was ready to see Lark get a chance in this game. We came so close so many times this season- Oh what might have been! A young, injury riddled O-line, a hurt QB who can't throw, too many mental mistakes (how many false starts?),a bright but inexperienced OC- all add up to a poor offensive year. Shame it matched up with a year of such great defensive prowess. We can only learn and try to improve going forward. Go Cougars!- but Oh! What might have been!

  • Troy06 OREM, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:23 p.m.

    Eagle - Anae was fired because he undercut Bronco behind his back to the players and coaches. Brandon just plain stinks at his job. Too bad he's working 80-100 hours a week and still not performing. He'll enjoy his new office job where he only works 40 hours/week.

    I wouldn't want Anae or Doman back on the staff!

  • Amorphous Saint George, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:06 p.m.

    I think it is extremely unfair to grade Riley on skill when what he lacks is health. He will never have it as long as he plays for a coaching staff with a vendetta against Lark combined with the lack of leadership, guts or whatever they need to have RIley sit down and get well.
    None of us will ever know how it feels to try and play that position, under that kind of pressure, with a well body, let alone a broken and beaten one.
    Shame on the coaches!

  • 5 Orem, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:41 a.m.

    Bronco describes his playing career as "over achieving". As a coach He seems to relate best to the samee typ of players. There is always room for those type of players, but you also need some super stars, especially at the skill positions. Maybe overachieving super stars? Bronco needs to grow to the point where he can relate to, recruit, and motivate the blue chip athletes, and thereby create a team culture of acceptance and support of those types of players. As it is now it is easier for overachivers to make the team and play than it is for the blue chip players to do the same.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:17 a.m.

    It's funny that outside the delusional BYU bubble that Bronco Mendenhall is a very respected head coach.

    As far as the running game goes. BYU should have actually RUN THE BALL MORE! Jamaal Williams is the franchise and he needs the rock. If the Y would have committed more to the running game they would have wore down the Spartan defense more. I would agree with some of the fans that Lark deserves a chance to play more and why not against New Mexico State as the bowl game is secured and no conference title is needed. Then maybe Nelson can get healthy.

    And I have to ask BYU fans this as well...they were all over Anae and wanted him gone. If you have complaints be careful what you ask for. Anae is at AZ helping that offense become one of the most prolific in the country.

    If Y fans were more supportive, less whiny perhaps this would actually help matters...

  • AZJazzFan Gold Canyon, az
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:07 a.m.

    I wonder what this great mystery is behind this endless loyalty to a player who is not getting the job done, who cannot make basic throws. Behind him are highly talented and HEALTHY players who also have grit and determination. Most fans are saying the same things and I agree. One new point: playing a guy with an injured back is very questionable, putting his health in jeopardy--long term. I cannot imagine playing football with a back injury. EVEN if he was playing well, with a back injury he should not be on the field. I have never been more dissapointed in a coaching staff, they should know better and I hope they turn it around. Not a single creative offensive play was called. Despite it all I will see them in Las Cruces.

  • Wildcat O-town, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:07 a.m.

    San Jose State is a good team! The top three teams in the WAC are probably in the 20-30 rankings. I thought BYU's defense would do better, but Fales showed some BYU vulnerabilities with the pass defense. Really, if San Jose State didn't go away from the pass attack as much in the second half, I think they would have iced the game sooner. I really thought BYU would be able to sack Fales since USU did 13 times.

    With Rutgers leaving the Big East and Connecticut looking like the ACC will pick them up, I am not sure Boise State and San Diego State will leave the MWC. That would be a good conference. Maybe they should try and get UTEP and LA Tech away from the C-USA for 14: Boise State, San Diego State, Fresno State, Nevada, San Jose State, Utah State, LA Tech, would be a great top half!

    Meanwhile New Mexico State and Idaho join BYU in independence next year--let that one soak in a while. BYU better beg the Big 12 before Florida State and Clemson join, prepare an apology to the MWC, or enjoy being marooned (independence) forever. Good Luck!

  • WACPaddingOurSchedule pocatello, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 11:02 a.m.

    Bleed Crimson
    Sandy, Utah
    BYU is now 6-10 all time against San Jose State! LoL.

    The Spartans OWN you!




  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:58 a.m.

    Look on the bright side, after all your only 13 points away from being 10-1 and a top 10 team in the hunt for a national title.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:56 a.m.

    The Spartans haven't done this well in a quarter of century. I was amazed at the offense in the first half. They made some great defensive plays too. I know people here seem to be really down on Riley, but give the guy his due. He played his heart out for you.

  • estreetshuffle Window Rock, AZ
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:48 a.m.

    Think its time to reduce funding to the program because it seems that the program is indifferent to the fans. We fans provide a lot of the funding for the program; now is the time to reduce funding so we don;t have to pay for silly black uniforms. I've provided a lot of money to this program. It is overkill to keep someone playing with pain, expecially, back. It is time to get away from this Franklin Covey thinking and the word "execute" every week and the silly excuses. In the real world of work, if one is not performing he/she will be replaced. If a company asset is not making money, it will be replaced. Instead of paying to the silver cougar club, just pay the regular cougar club fee. To the choir, money speaks. In the movie Rudy there is saying No excuses get the job done; we are not doing it.

  • The A Game Sandy, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:34 a.m.

    Riley is a good kid, but in the long run I'm glad he left us for BYU. You can keep him. Good luck the rest of the season.

  • Robert Rexburg, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:33 a.m.

    Riley, take yourself out!

    You cannot tell me Riley is the most accurate thrower on a campus of 30,000.

  • DH48 West Jordan, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:25 a.m.

    Chalk up another loss for Riley Nelson. The good news is that we only have two games left in the Nelson era. The sad news is that I don't know if the people who put him there have learned anything. BYU has a totally ineffective offense unless they are playing against really bad defenses. This games was ours to win and we chose not to.

    This is sad to watch.

  • jasonlivy Orem, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:18 a.m.

    Does Riley have grit and determination? Yes, but so does 60+ other players on the team! Do they matter? I loved watching the defense in the second half! They had SJSU number. Although the first half was atrocious all the way around (except for the first drive), the second half was a redemption of sorts for the defense.

    However I felt bad for the 'D' as well. They had to have known that once the offense (ie. Riley) got hold of the ball, all of their efforts were for naught. To stay motivated each series says a lot for the team.

    After this game, I wish BYU wasn't bowl eligible. I don't know if I want to watch another game with Riley as the QB. It's embarrassing!

  • cdchttrtn meridian, idaho
    Nov. 18, 2012 10:12 a.m.

    Everything about BYU's offense is terrible. Poor play calling from the OC. Just a poor, poor offense from the very start of the season. All you had to do was look at San Jose and see what an offense should look like and all the other teams that BYU has played. How can you run a play to the right side time and time again. Is this the only running play BYU has. The offense is to sterile. Besides the OC should be up in the press box, not on the side line. On the other hand I"m not sure it would make any difference. I've lost interest in BYU anyway, unless they make some major changes.

  • morganh Orem, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:58 a.m.

    Even after this disappointing loss I still bleed "Cougar Blue". We had injuries on our offensive line that took a toll, and we had a mediocre QB who became a bigger liability when he played hurt. Down years will happen, and you look forward to a better next year.

  • Dunedain PROVO, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:57 a.m.

    After seeing the pathetic seasons that both BYU and Utah have had I just can't help but wonder what it could have been. I have to believe that BYU, Utah, TCU, and Boise State league has the inside track to a BCS bowl each year from the None-AQ in the current format and in the new format they are miles ahead of any other conferences to get a spot in one of those bowls. Maybe on a magical year one of those teams makes it into the playoff. I wish everyone would have just stayed put... Oh well. Sorry about the bad year utes. BYU is going bowling but after our loss to SJSU last night it doesn't feel like we deserve to be.

  • MapleDon Springville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:54 a.m.

    BYU's offense is inconsistent, frustrating, and anemic. And they think they're entitled to a major conference? They're not proving it on the field.

  • Bleed Crimson Sandy, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:37 a.m.

    BYU is now 6-10 all time against San Jose State! LoL.

    The Spartans OWN you!

  • bribri86 Phoenix, AZ
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:30 a.m.

    Two more games of Nelson to stomach through. This has been painful and you can see it in all of the receivers eyes. They are not happy having a quarterback that can't throw the ball. Always behind, low, or nowhere near the receiver. Terrible. How can Bronco look at the other players in the eye knowing his decision to play Nelson have them this season.

  • Sambonethegreat LOGAN, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:13 a.m.

    Fales is what a real passing QB looks like.

  • Juice Box Eureka, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 9:06 a.m.

    This isn't the year for football in the state of Utah, with the exception of Utah St.

    Both BYU and Utah need changes.

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:51 a.m.

    Bronco has lost it.
    1- Exactly how bad does a QB have to play before Bronco will bench him? This season the lack of a QB has cost BYU games at Utah, BSU, Notre Dame, and SJSU. Riley is the worst QB to ever consistently start for BYU.
    2- When the opposing QB has all the time in the world to throw due to a 3 on 5 or 6 blocker rush, how long to you not bring pressure? After 3 TD's apparently.

    BYU is a pathetic 6-5, will be 7-5 before the bowl and 7-6 after. A team with a defense and offense under any other QB (take Hays from Utah, Lark from BYU) and it should be 10-3 at worst. BAD coaching.

  • Dennis Harwich, MA
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:49 a.m.

    One of the consistent traits of a BYU football team. Giving up when everything is not as they would like it. We all look forward to watching this happen again next year.

  • Pipes Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:46 a.m.

    Once again, the "Turnover Kid" snatches away the victory. 3 turnovers. 2 fumbles lost and 1 interception. Impotent and unimaginative offense doomed us. The coaches should have taken the "Turnover Kid" out when he proved himself once again ineffectual. Our other quarterbacks must be extremely bad if the coaches felt that Nelson gave us the best shot to win. At full strength, his arm is mediocre at best. In obvious pain, he is nothing but a liability.

  • History Nut Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:41 a.m.

    Thanks, Dick, for giving SJSU the credit that team deserves. SJSU came to play and BYU didn't show up until the second half. SJSU's defense also deserves a lot of credit. On the BYU side, the decision to stick with Nelson was nuts. Brandon Doman needs to work on his resume. Mendenhall will make a fine NFL defensive coordinator somewhere.

  • The Dixie Kid Saint George, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:21 a.m.

    Bronco did an excellent job adjusting his defense in the second half. He is not to blame. This one once again, is Riley's fault. He just makes too many mistakes and way too many bad throws. I am so done with Riley.

  • AttilaTheHun Nephi, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:19 a.m.

    Why do I keep waking up at 4AM to watch these games live? I think Bronco has hit his Peter Principle limit as head coach. Turn it over to someone else. Stay on and be DC (where he's awesome) but it is time to ditch the OC-experement-gone-wrong with Brandon Doman, and overall it all. BYU needs to call Andy Reid in Philly and offer him WHATEVER HE WANTS to come fix this.

  • Max Charlotte, NC
    Nov. 18, 2012 8:07 a.m.

    WOW! Did I call this one a couple of weeks ago. San Jose is a good team (that almost beat Stanford early in the season -- the same Stanford that beat Oregon last night) and BYU, having little on the line simply didn't want it as badly as SJSU. While I believe that the best team always wins (the winner is by definition the best team) I doubt BYU was as prepared for this game as they should have been.

  • Waylon77 Logan, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:46 a.m.

    Note to Mendenhall, if your quarterback is in too much pain to high five a team mate after a good play you might want to consider taking him out of the game, he probably isn't playing at 100%, and might just be more of a liability than a help to your team. Its good for a coach to show loyalty to his players, but in this case Bronco is loyal to Nelson to a fault, and it cost them a chance at winning that game.

  • Go Big Blue!!! Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:43 a.m.

    Wasn't that the same team USU beat by 22 at San Jose last month? Just checking.

  • XelaDave Salem, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:35 a.m.

    Perhaps the headline should be- Last week BYU wins the 3A championship, this week it falls short in the 5A- next week the 4A is up for grads- go Cougs

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:26 a.m.

    So BYU plays at WAC level. How the mighty have fallen....

  • Manny Saint George, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:19 a.m.

    Wow! Beat by San Jose St. What to do now?

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:12 a.m.

    As you may recall, I mentioned that SJSU would play with more emotion than the Y, and chalk up a win--but no, you Cougars wanted to deride me for making such a comment. I told you that I was a disinterested third party, and could call this one more rationally than Cougars. Look, don't hate me because I'm right. Learn from this, and listen to me in the future. Your life will have far less disappointment if you do. Oh--and you really, really need a QB. Not a running back that throws the ball.

  • Pujols4mvp Lehi, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:04 a.m.

    "Amazing what a passer can do."

    Amen. I will not be sad to see Mr. Nelson go. I appreciate his heart and courage, but it's a far cry from the glory days of throwing down field.

    Perhaps it's time for Bronco and BYU to part company. Recent results do not warrant any long-term hope.

  • thebigsamoan Richmond, VA
    Nov. 18, 2012 7:02 a.m.

    Will we even be bowl eligible this year? I thought for sure we were good enough to beat San Jose State judging from the beat down they received at the hands of the Aggies earlier. So what happened, Bronc? Are we even going to be competitive next year if Ansah and Van Noy are gone? Aaagh, I'm feeling nauseous at the thought, though I'm still holding out hope that with some luck, things will turn for the better somehow.

    And, I never thought I would say this but I'm also anxious for this Riley Nelson era to end. It's been a bittersweet season with him to say the least. If only his arm match his guts and courage!

    Go Cougars!

  • Boomer Chicago, IL
    Nov. 18, 2012 6:45 a.m.

    Oh man, that one had to hurt. Independence! I miss u guys ever since u left the MWC. Let's see: lost to Utah again, went .500 against Mwc, no chance at championship after another early season loss, and can avoid a .500 record in the WAC by thrashing NMSU next week. I'd love to see you back in the Mwc. You are a great school with a great following. ( I am a lobo fan. And yes, we are so far behind in football right now we are sporting billy Kilmer helmets. But watch out for us in hoops. Just too bad we can't look forward to great byu/unm games at the pit and Marriott center. Happy thanksgiving my friends.

  • Pa. Reader Harrisburg, PA
    Nov. 18, 2012 6:08 a.m.

    What a mess.

    Tom Holmoe has two choices:

    1. Make real changes to restore BYU as a real scoring threat and powerhouse.
    (At a minimum that means a qualified offensive coordinator!)

    2. Stop scheduling teams from dominant conferences like the WAC late in the season.
    There's always the Big Sky!

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    Nov. 18, 2012 6:02 a.m.

    BYU is a pathetic program. No spunk, no discipline, no athleticism, no clue. This coaching staff seems to have no idea how to put together a winning season. How can we be playing our worst football of the year in NOVEMBER??

    Like many, I am not a fan of Bronco or Doman. But how about Reynolds who has coached our O-line for decades and still can't open a hole for Jamaal or protect the QB.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Nov. 18, 2012 4:44 a.m.

    I think BYU fans will have a little more understanding of how hard it is for a team like Notre Dame to put competitive teams on the field. No doubt BYU will go through the same gyrations trying to build a team that can consistently beat big program teams.

    What we have also seen recently playedout is this is the year of any team can beat any other team on a given saturday.

  • indycrimson Franklin, IN
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:46 a.m.

    Whoa Nelly!!!

  • Donny Orem, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 2:01 a.m.

    Riley's QB play is going to cost a coach his job at the end of the season.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Nov. 18, 2012 1:05 a.m.

    Not a fan of BYU but feel bad for Nelson. he is not the right guy for QB but his toughness and grit just isn't enough to win. he looks so beat up and dejected and the end of each loss.

  • Hatch Sandy, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 1:04 a.m.

    Lark Carma

  • manaen1 Buena Park, CA
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:53 a.m.

    Has anyone heard who are the leading candidates to be BYU's offensive coordinator next year?
    Or is that being kept under wraps until after the bowl game?

  • TexasCougar San Antonio, TX
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:46 a.m.

    Two more games and the Riley Nelson era will be over. Hopefully Brandon Doman will also head for the showers.

  • golsen7 Bonneville, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:34 a.m.

    The long pass game with Riley cannot stretch the defense to help the run game. the play calling stinks. I think they believed the hype that the offense was getting better against a weak team last week.

  • blue & white Boise, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:31 a.m.

    Nelson shouldn't be playing. coaches blew it when he played hurt against Utah and BSU. we would have been shut out by BSU if Nelson kept playing. Nelson should have been yanked at half time tonight and let Lark play. Let Lark start against NMS and finish the season as a starter. Again Nelson missed wide open recievers tonight. Sometimes the coaches can't see the forrest because the trees are in the way. it takes a player to get hurt to see the ability of the backups which shouldn't be. the best players should play and we don't know what Lark can do even after 6 years! He has been patiently waiting give him a chance in a game situation! IF Nelson was at USU he would not be starting. Frustrated.

  • I Bleed Blue Las Vegas, NV
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:25 a.m.

    Riley plays A LOT like Tim Tebow. He throws a bad ball but he has a lot of heart. The sad thing is a lot of heart doesn't win a lot of ball games. With his back as bad as it was at the end of the game they knew he couldn't run. His limited options at that point became a liability. Wish Bronco could have seen it but no.

  • sunshiner, ut
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:16 a.m.

    It's official- Riley Nelson has personally been responsible for losing more games than he has won for BYU. Can't understand the bromance Bronco and Doman have with him. James Lark deserved better than to be sidelined for him. Where has the BYU passing game gone? We don't even look like BYU anymore. Holmoe better insist on some changes in the program or be prepared to watch the whole thing go down in flames. Bronco is a great DC, not a head coach because he doesn't have any clue how to help the offense nor does he spend any time thinking about it.

  • BYUfaninWashSt Everett, WA
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:14 a.m.

    After another unworthy outing and loss ... people will blame Riley and call for new offensive coordinator. Problem is, Bronco has already fired an offensive coordinator, not to mention defensive coordinator. As they say, insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome. We need someone at the top, a head coach, that has a better vision for BYU football, and who can deliver it. Empty and broken promises for offensive passing greatness of old don't cut it, year after year after year.

  • wer South Jordan, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:13 a.m.

    Bronco isn't going anywhere!

    As much as I admire the grit of a particular player, and the loyalty shown him by the brain trust at BYU, it's time for more loyalty to be shown to the other 60+ players to put in a QB that can give the team a legitimate chance to win. A player that won't contribute points to the other team with their untimely play.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:10 a.m.

    After seeing a couple years of this, why am I not surprised. No O-line, no field goal kicking, no pass defense the first half, offensive turnovers and 4th and out plays by one certain QB who gets to play even when only performing at 65%, etc. We need some CHANGES in our coaching staff and we need to get a few more wins under our belt. Our schedule is our team? Are our coaches? I heard therer was friction in the coaching ranks and it that's true it explains an awful lot about this year. Mr Holmoe, please straighten it out asap.

    (I did like the on-side kick but hated the 4th-and-outs when we only needed a few yards and couldn't pick them up.)

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:10 a.m.

    Riley has grit and determination, but he lacks smarts and skills. I cannot wait for the Riley Neson era to end.

    Please let Lark start against NMSU, so I only have to endure one more Riley Nelson game in the Poinsetta.

  • golsen7 Bonneville, ID
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:06 a.m.

    The coaches should have to answer for how long they have stayed with the Riley.

    Nov. 18, 2012 12:05 a.m.

    As a BYU fan I still love my Cougars and appreciate their best efforts.

    I think it is clear that, in spite of being beaten by BYU, USU is the best football team in Utah this year. Go Aggies!

  • BYUfaninWashSt Everett, WA
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:03 a.m.

    It is absolute poetic justice that a spunky little Spartan team from the WAC with a good passing game outplays & defeats an over-sized, unimaginative running team from Independence & ESPN world. BYU used to be a spunky & imaginative little passing team from the WAC, just like SJSU.

  • Dukester VANCOUVER, WA
    Nov. 18, 2012 12:03 a.m.

    Bronco, Oh Bronco! Where art thou when needed. Perhaps heading to the minor leagues.