Dick Harmon: BYU offensive coordinator Anae takes a symbolic, philosophical approach to 2013 season

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  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    July 2, 2013 11:47 p.m.

    @Y Grad / Y Dad

    Okay here we go...

    You’ve stated your belief that desire supersedes "horses"... let's say talent.

    You conclude that a less talented Utah beat Alabama based solely on desire.

    I've never said Utah had superior overall talent than Alabama... what Utah did have was desire combined with "sufficient" talent to beat Alabama.

    With the same desire and "insufficient" talent... Utah would have lost.

    There are infinite levels and combinations of both desire and talent… and every team is different.

    BYU has typically been a team higher on desire than talent.

    That explains why BYU consistently has success against MWC/WAC level competition and less success against BCS or ranked competition.

    The point is that BYU’s higher level of desire isn’t sufficient to overcome “insufficient” talent when it comes to playing BCS or ranked teams with typically greater talent.

    BYU's overall talent today isn't any better than it has been at any time in Bronco's tenure... so it seems unreasonable to believe that Anae’s “new” brand of desire is going to produce greater success than BYU typically has against BCS or ranked competition.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    July 2, 2013 6:24 a.m.

    Howard, now you aren't playing fair. You called me out, and I gave an answer that I honestly believe. You, in turn, totally dodged my fair and honest questions for you.

    The answers for both of us are very similar. Yes, BYU has made a habit of beating teams they are supposed to, and losing to teams they are supposed to. This with "choir boys" and "old men." Some say desire can only take you so far, but I disagree, and cite Utah/Bama as a prime example. Superior desire and coaching that day trumped physical superiority. And don't even try to pretend that suddenly, on that day, Utah's "horses" were superior to Alabama's.

    Utah has had some success (not recent) beating teams they were supposed to lose to, then turning around and losing to teams they were supposed to beat. Evidence Colorado.

    Your athletes are supposedly superior to BYU's this year - we shall see. Beck to Harline, superior athletes or greater desire? Max to Collie? Max to George?

    Your turn to answer. Forget the schtick, and pretend we're two good friends that cheer for opposing teams.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    July 1, 2013 8:02 p.m.

    @Y Grad / Y Dad

    So you believe BYU has a losing record to BCS/Utah/ranked teams due to lack of horses and not due to desire...

    I agree... Bronco's record shows that he loses to teams with superior talent.

    And even BYUs supposed greater level of desire isn't enough to elevate the Cougs to a winning record against superior horses.

    The question now is... how will Anae's brand of desire lift the Cougars to success against teams with better talent when such desire has failed in the past?

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    July 1, 2013 7:15 p.m.

    Howard S. Taylorsville, UK
    @Y Grad / Y Dad

    "How about responding with an answer?"

    Oh, i thought it was already fairly well established: man to man, across the board. Your recruits have soooo many more stars, and you place so many more players in the NFL. Its desire that keeps us close at all.

    Truth or dare, Howard, your turn. When the worst road team in the history of football came into your house and spanked your Utes, when there was so much to win for, was it lack of desire, or lack of horses?

    When Boise spanked you're collective backsides, was it lack of desire, or lack of horses?

    I asked you before, the last time byu beat utah (remember that?), I believe Utah had like six or seven players drafted, while BYU only had free agents. was it lack of desire, or lack of horses?

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    July 1, 2013 3:03 p.m.

    @Y Grad / Y Dad

    How about responding with an answer?

    Oh... and yes Whit has a winning record against BCS teams.

  • The Solution Las Cruces, NM
    July 1, 2013 2:12 p.m.

    Here's the truth: BYU and Utah are very close to same caliber of team, only Utah has seen greater success in the last decade. They have performed better when it matters.

    Sugar Bowl Utah dominating Alabama was inspiring. 2008 was also one of the under-rated peak years of MWC. BYU beat UCLA with a 54-0 shutout! TCU lost one game to a strong Oklahoma team with Heisman winning QB, and the other to Utah. I underestimated Utah when we played them because they pulled out a couple of really lucky wins. But they were awesome against Alabama. The Tide were working a comeback, but honestly, I don't believe that they didn't prepare their best just because they were only playing in the second best bowl game. I do believe they weren't ready for Utah, but Utah can do that to teams.

    IMHO Utah deserverd a shot against Florida, and had a good chance of winning.

    Now, Utah will eventually do well in the PAC. But likewise... BYU will also be successful, and one day Bronco will meet his goals.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    July 1, 2013 1:35 p.m.

    Howard S.
    Taylorsville, UT

    "As we consider the relative value of desire vs. "horses"....

    When BYU loses to BCS teams at the rate of 56%...

    And when BYU loses to Utah at the rate of 70% over the last decade...

    Is it due to lack of desire or "horses"... Or both?"

    Since this is close to a relatively honest question, fairly asked, I'll try to respond in kind.

    Is Utah's rate of success against BCS teams any better? Who has the better horses and greater desire?

    And when Utah loses to teams like Colorado, and in a previous life, UNLV... Who has the better horses and greater desire?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 1, 2013 1:13 p.m.

    @Reno Cougs Fan 68

    I never claimed BYU never won a championship, I said it was more backing into one then actually deserving.

    "With the way the [BCS] system is now, there's no question we wouldn't have been No. 1. We probably would have gone to a better bowl, and that would have been great, but there would have been four teams higher than us in the polls." -- Robbie Bosco

    They weren't ranked number one after beating Utah (6-5-1), they were ranked number one because #1 Nebraska and #2 South Carolina both lost. Huge difference.

  • Reno Cougs Fan 68 Reno, NV
    July 1, 2013 12:43 p.m.


    So are you now willing to admit that BYU did really win a National Championship in 1984, because they had 15 players drafted into the NFL that year!!! By the way, just to add a little injury to insult, BYU was first voted number 1 after beating the Utes that year!!! Ouch!!! Thanks for playing!!!

    Go Cougs!!!
    Go Utes!!!

  • Reno Cougs Fan 68 Reno, NV
    July 1, 2013 12:20 p.m.

    Howard S,

    I am sorry but I must call you on the carpet about your comment about Alabama and Utah!!! If you took those same two teams and had them play ten times, bama would win at least eight without breaking a sweat!!! Utah caught lightning in a bottle once and good for them but what have they done recently!!! Utah has had two weak gimme schedules without having to play Oregon or Stanford!!! Now you play the big boys!!! Good luck, you are gonna need it!!!

    Go Cougs!!!
    Go Utes!!!

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    July 1, 2013 9:40 a.m.

    As we consider the relative value of desire vs. "horses"....

    When BYU loses to BCS teams at the rate of 56%...

    And when BYU loses to Utah at the rate of 70% over the last decade...

    Is it due to lack of desire or "horses"... Or both?

  • 2BCSWINS West of I15, UT
    July 1, 2013 9:11 a.m.

    @Confused...2- Because of #1, the team did not prepare for Utah like they did Florida. They gave half effort, while KW pushed his players to play beyond themselves...

    So you are telling me you watched both Bama and Utah practice and prepare for this game right?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 1, 2013 7:54 a.m.


    3- Utah had a "Couple" of horses... the rest was Ok players who latter became good NFL players...

    sorry to bush you bubble, but the Bama game was as much about them taking Utah lightly as Utah played above their level of competence.



    Utah's defense dominated and offense executed a great game plan against Bama. That team, if I recall correctly, had TEN players that contributed that were drafted into the NFL.

    I think BYU has ONE player drafted in the last 3 years and that on potential, raw talent, who Dave Rose recruited.

    If you define 10 as "couple of horses" then what is one "horse"?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 1, 2013 7:05 a.m.


    You mean the same mediocre New Mexico (1-11) team that BYU's best team since 1996 ONLY beat because New Mexico missed TWO game winning field goals? Or the 2008 Quest team that needed a penalty and missed extra point to win Washington (0-12)?

    Is so, then let downs happen during a long season but championship caliber teams find a ways to win, without relying miracles.

    Oklahoma also didn't have their future starting NFL QB in the 2nd half, which I think made a pretty big difference.

    "BYU will be more talented at QB and O line this year."

    Yet Utah keeps putting OL in the NFL. Wilson has a better arm, Hill better dual threat. The question is which coordinator has a better scheme, Dennis Erickson or Anae, suited for their QB. Neither QB has proven anything.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    June 30, 2013 10:08 p.m.

    Does ALL Utah fans have Revisionist lenses on?

    Here is the FACTS about Utah beating "Bama"..

    1- Bama thought they got shafted by drawing Utah. They thought Utah was Beneath them.... If you don't believe me, go read the comments by coach Saban....

    2- Because of #1, the team did not prepare for Utah like they did Florida. They gave half effort, while KW pushed his players to play beyond themselves...

    3- Utah had a "Couple" of horses... the rest was Ok players who latter became good NFL players...

    sorry to bush you bubble, but the Bama game was as much about them taking Utah lightly as Utah played above their level of competence.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 30, 2013 9:53 p.m.

    Salt Lake City, Utah

    Many highly regarded people in the Polynesian community have no experience to coach d-1 running backs... Atuaia is one of those.

    You are correct to recognize that Hill has proven nothing.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    June 30, 2013 8:54 p.m.

    Actually, Howie, Duckhunter is precisely on point. The only ones talking "Heisman" are the trolls with their strawman arguments. Cite one post by a real BYU fan that touts Hill or Nelson or even Heaps as a likely Heisman candidate. Although Hill looks promising, no true BYU fan is touting him as one of the Greats until he proves himself. I think he has the potential to be just that.

    Yeah the RB coach has limited experience (not no experience), but he is very highly regarded in the Polynesian community. What's your point. Why are you so worried?

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 30, 2013 7:27 p.m.


    While you certainly would like to distract from Mr. hedgehog's point... the fact remains that Taysom Hill has proven nothing.

    It's also true that Hill will be handing off to RBs that are coached by a coach that has nevner coached before.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    June 30, 2013 5:26 p.m.


    No one claimed Nelson was a Heisman possibility, just lying about something doesn't make it true. That said BYU actually has a heisman trophy winner and MULTIPLE Heisman finalists. MULTIPLE.

    utah has never had a player even remotely worthy of Heisman consideration let alone an actual finalist for the award.


  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    June 30, 2013 4:31 p.m.

    I love how you Utah county lemmings have worked yourselves up over the "next" Heisman trophy winning QB..LOL.

    Has there ever been an offseason where byU hasn't had several players hyped as Heisman quality?...total self absorbed delusion.

    Last year it was tim Tebow -esque Riley Nelson as an under the radar Heisman choice. LOL

    Tayson has proven NOTHING.

  • Billy Budd Saint George, UT
    June 30, 2013 3:31 p.m.

    I watched a replay of the AZ/OK St. game yesterday. The AZ defense was AWOL as it was most of the season. However the AZ offense was unstoppable. The AZ opener was no indication of what happened during the OK St. game or the rest of the year. The offense only laid two eggs last season, once against Oregon as well as UCLA. Taysom appears to have more size and speed than last years AZ QB senior QB. Taysom stays healthy and rises to meet expectations, BYU is in for an amazing season.

  • 3grandslams Iowa City, IA
    June 30, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    The article keeps inferring that BYU doesn't have talent. Fans are excited with the talent BYU is bringing back, coupled with Anae's new offense and proven O mind, it will be a good fall. BYU will make some noise for sure.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    June 30, 2013 9:54 a.m.

    Lets compare "horses" shall we?
    Jamal Williams > York
    Cody Hoffman > Dres Anderson or Scott
    Taysom Hill = Travis Wison (though Hill is the better athlete)
    BYU O-line < Utah O-line
    BYU D-line = Utah D-line
    BYU linebackers >>> Utah (utes LB play is atrocious)
    BYU secondary = Utah secondary (only because Utah lost most of theirs, we'll see this one could change)

    Bottom line: I don't see Utah's so-called advantage in horses. That's why BYU has 2 All Americans while Utah can't even produce All Conference. Y Dads point was completely lost on you. I remember Utah in 2008 very well. You had a QB that built his career on desire because he lacked natural ability. Utah beat Alabama because they wanted it more...to think your "horses" were even comparable or had much to do with it is just crazy. They were probably more athletic and more talented at every single position than Utah. That's what made it remarkable and a pleasure to watch...I've never cheered so loud for the utes. Watching Saban throw his tantrums was priceless. Utah had more heart and desire.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    June 30, 2013 9:33 a.m.


    Oh the irony! You claim that BYU's speaks of "desire" because they don't have the "horses" and make fun of that "desire", saying it won't beat Utah's "horses". The irony is that records and polls have shown that last year the Cougars were a much better team than the Utes (in other words, better "horses"). The Utes won because they had more desire. Would you look at that, it looks like desire CAN beat horses.

    BYU has horses. How much more than Utah does, we'll see in the final polls.

  • oddman ,
    June 30, 2013 8:57 a.m.

    I find it interesting that beating a pathetic team like BYU is all the Utah fans seem to continually tout as their credentials of superiority. Surely attaining a victory over such a lower tier, inferior opponent cannot really feel that good. Seems to me that says a lot about the mighty, super athletic. incredibly fast Utes of today. Good luck boys. Let's see if cream really does rise to the top, of the PAC 12, that is.

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    June 30, 2013 8:52 a.m.

    It only takes a couple of superior players on a team's offense to rule the field, as long as you're using an offensive wrinkle that gives you some advantage.
    BYU proved this in the 70's and early 80's.
    Taysom Hill has presence, moxie and skills.
    He'll make Anae look like a genius.
    Good times ahead for 3 years.
    And, good luck to the U in finding their stride in the PAC - they've got a good organization that just needs to get over the hill in their current surroundings.

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    June 30, 2013 7:02 a.m.

    It clearly takes three things to win - talent, desire and coaching (strategy). Alabama was clearly more talented, but Utah had enough talent, more desire (probably because Alabama didn't think they had anything to worry about) and a better game plan. Don't forget, Utah barely beat a mediocre New Mexico team that same year.

    Whether U like to admit it or not, BYU and Utah have had comparable talent the last four years, and probably will again this year. Three of those four have come down to the final play. Even the blowout two years ago was close in the first half, until BYU gave up (lost their desire) in the 2nd half.

    BYU was not as talented as Oklahoma four years ago, but they won because they had more desire and a better game plan.

    BYU will be more talented at QB and O line this year. I expect the other positions to be comparable talent to last year. Hopefully Anae will bring better strategy than we've had the last two years. I'm predicting 8-4 this year, but 9 or 10 wins is possible with desire and the right game plan.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    June 30, 2013 12:03 a.m.

    Howard S.
    Taylorsville, UT

    U do NOT have the horses to match up with Bama, otherwise, U wouldn't be floating at the bottom of the PAC while Bama is winning national championships. I know, I know, different years, but U haven't EVER had the horses that Bama has.

    Your arrogance has slid you out on thin ice brother. Or ignorance. You choose.

  • SportsFan Orem, UT
    June 30, 2013 12:00 a.m.


    "But we're good enough to beat your Cougars..."

    It's laughable that the ONLY significant achievements the Utes have had since joining the PAC are a couple of wins over their supposedly "irrelevant", Independent rivals.

    It's going to be a sad day in Uteville when Utah loses to BYU in a couple of months and the kids on the hill are forced to pretend that beating another 10-loss Colorado team is the new measure of success on the hill.

  • BlueHusky Mission Viejo, CA
    June 29, 2013 11:27 p.m.

    Gotta admit, I like what I'm hearing, but seeing is believing. OTOH, Howie and his friends come over here to talk smak while their team can't beat the dregs of the PAC12. They criticize BYU's bowl arrangements, while their team played in no bowl last year.

    So how about waiting until Utah actually beats someone, say, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, USC, someone other than Colorado before you talk about the great Utah athletes. And I'm waiting to see Utah beat Washington ... still waiting ... crickets ...

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 29, 2013 11:11 p.m.

    @Y Grad / Y Dad

    I understand that you'd choose desire over horses because that's all you've got.

    Utah beat Alabama because they had the horses to back up the desire.

    The fact is that it's not either / or... most big boy teams have both... and if you only have desire you're going to get beat.

    As for Utah... If you're hoping for a lack of desire... I predict you'll be sorely disappointed.

  • Black&Blue St George, Utah
    June 29, 2013 10:06 p.m.

    Yay, Hedgie's back!!!

    How great is it that our obsessive little brothers have to constantly come onto BYU articles to feel special and important. It must be so hard being the punching bag of the PAC. And we know, 3/4 8/11 and PAC-12 membership, but it doesnt make it any less pathetic that you spend so much of your time commenting on articles about a team you don't like. The least you could do is bring valuable exchange to these boards. But I guess that is expecting way too much isn't it?

    Anyway, I have always liked Anae. The last time he was in Provo was his first job as an OC, and he had multiple top 25 offenses in that time. After spending two years learning the Spread/no huddle from one of the masters of the game, It will be very interesting to see what the new Anae offense looks like. Running the hurry-up will improve production and put more points on the board. The O-line will receive a huge overhaul, and that will be the deciding factor for the offenses success.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    June 29, 2013 9:35 p.m.

    Howard S.
    Taylorsville, UT

    Remind me not to throw you a compliment again, totally wasted.

    The point is not about BYU athleticism. 'Bama posseses athleticism that Utah can only dream about... but desire won the day.

    Refresh my memory (because it HAS been a long time), the last time BYU beat Utah, was that not the Ute team that had six players drafted, while BYU only produced free agents?

    I LIKE both, but if I have to choose, I'll pick desire over stallions. And since, as you so graciously pointed out, the big boys have studs BYU can't even dream about, we'd better have desire.

    Come to think of it, that may be why Utah has made a habit of losing to teams they should beat. To much athleticism, not enough desire.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 29, 2013 9:31 p.m.


    But we're good enough to beat your Cougars...

  • mussingaround Palo Alto, CA
    June 29, 2013 9:13 p.m.


    All that athleticism and experience, and U still haven't been able to beat a single conference opponent with a winning record!

    Since joining the PAC, the Utes are all talk, but no walk. You're not even good enough to beat the only WAC team on your schedule to qualify for a bowl.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 29, 2013 7:18 p.m.

    @ YGrad / Y Dad


    When Utah bear Alabama they did it not only with desire... but with athleticism and experience that BYU simply does not have.

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    June 29, 2013 6:35 p.m.

    Howard, no matter who thinks of what, or in your case, doesn't, someone wants it more. That greater desire may be present at game day, it can also be present through thousands of hours of preparation. Someone wants it more. When someone is out, say for example, smoking weed, someone else is wanting it more.

    When greater ability meets greater desire, something has to give. 'Bama learned that lesson from Utah. Here's hoping BYU can teach that lesson to Utah.

  • BYU sports on TV in Missouri Lebanon, MO
    June 29, 2013 6:28 p.m.

    For the last few years it seemed that offensively the team really didnt' get much better as the season progressed. I am sure that injuries and switching quarterbacks around didn't really help much but all teams have injuries and play different quarterbacks. I like the focus that BYU has this year. Can't wait for players to get on the field.

  • ArgoFY Salt Lake City, Utah
    June 29, 2013 6:19 p.m.

    Good offensive line play isn't created out of a vacuum. Exhibit A: Utah's O-line last year. It takes a lot of in-game reps to build the cohesion necessary to have a good line, and thus, a good offense. Byu simply won't have that this season. Combined that fact with the upgrade in schedule, and we might be seeing 'Anae run out of Provo: The Sequel', as the newest summer/fall blockbuster.

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    June 29, 2013 5:21 p.m.

    looks like they're buidling on the carrot and apples strategy of last year.

    good job..good effort!

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 29, 2013 4:49 p.m.

    "... whip rump..."


    Please stop Dick... you're embarrassing yourself.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    June 29, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    I'll admit, I am one of the fans who wanted Anae out last time around. I thought he was too predictable in his play calling and he was too conservative in the closing minutes of the Utah game (infamous blocked field goal attempt). But now I am starting to like this guy. I am willing to see what he can do. I agree with him 100% that it all begins with the offensive line.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    June 29, 2013 4:46 p.m.

    "... better conditioned athletes..."

    Now there is some out of the box thinking right there...

    Who would have ever thought of conditioning as a competitive advantage?

    I'm sure none of those big boy teams on BYUs schedule this year has given a second thought to conditioning this summer....

    I'm changing my prediction to undefeated for the Cougars this year...

    June 29, 2013 4:34 p.m.

    Go for it, 'no grass stains on the quarterback"? That would be extremely impressive the first year of a new offense. But I have to agree it is good to have high goals!

    Go Cougars!