Davison Cheney: Next time I watch BYU football on ESPN, I'm turning the sound off

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  • cal Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 11:23 p.m.

    Either way, I am looking forward to what commentators say about both ND and BYU at Notre Dame

  • Darkbull Pleasant Grove, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 3:33 p.m.

    Yes, hypersensitive would be correct. I'm a former BYU athlete, love BYU athletics, season ticket holder for football, basketball, spent 12 hours trying to get access to BYU games one time when I was in Iraq (I'd ride a camel through Baghdad, literally, to watch a game).

    That said, I didn't feel like there was significant bias from the ESPN commentators. In the past, Rod Gilmore has had a lot of good things to say about BYU. Unfortunately, BYU was dominated at the line of scrimmage by a superior O- and D- line. Our offensive in particular was again exposed for their lack of... ability to protect the quarterback. Fact is, BYU played well, Wisconsin played well, and Wisconsin is the better team this year, at this time. Complaining about the commentators pointing this out is just sour grapes... and I'm not alone. Did you see the tweets from former Coug football players B. Ogletree and J. Harline (see KSL article on tweets from game). They were underimpressed with BYU too.

  • BYU9293 Clinton, UT
    Nov. 15, 2013 10:11 a.m.

    Personally, I thought they were giving byu a compliment in saying teams did not want to come to provo. It was nothing against byu or provo, but that for a team to play there, they might really lose and many top teams don't want that. You see the non-conference schedules of many so-called top teams and they schedule games they feel sure they can win. Any team coming to Provo is not sure to win. So I felt the announcers were saying that those teams don't want to travel to Provo and lose, but will play BYU at their own home because of a much more likely chance to win.

  • evansrichdm west jordan , UT
    Nov. 15, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    i am trilled when there is a BYU game on ESPN, but with the remarks made, well give it time. BYU is going to be the next ND ind football program. I think things are going well for BYU and that with time the recuiting will improve. I am totally trilled at the teams we are currently playing and will be playing and only see it getting better as BYU plays better teams and gets even better players. BYU is making a good name for itself, just give it more time.

    An BYU being in a BCS conf. I dont see it happening withe the LDS church views on gay marriage.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 11:23 p.m.

    @ Cougsndawgs

    Hit the nail right on the head.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 8:50 p.m.

    This whole thing is stupid. I watched the game and listened to the announcers for ESPN and certainly felt like they leaned more for Wisconsin, but I have to assume that's because Wisconsin was WINNING the game and was ranked, and could very easily be undefeated, and had/has a slim shot at a BCS bowl berth, while BYU doesn't. I'm an avid BYU fan but Greg Wrubell drives me crazy with his Pollyanna BYU homerism.

    BYU fans...we lost, and didn't play well, stop with the persecution complex, it's embarrassing and frankly as a cougar fan I get sick of it.

  • cal Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 5:25 p.m.

    Greg Wrubell doesn’t talk badly about other teams and other programs. He doesn’t laugh when the other teams play breakes up. He cheers for BYU. Anybody know why? Anyone? BECAUSE HE IS THE VOICE OF THE COUGARS! He is hired by KSL to call the games and supply commentary for BYU. ESPN is supposed to be somewhat neutral, and they weren't.

    And to Mike: Have you never heard any other announcer paid to call for a specific team cheer loudly for that team? Pleeease.

  • ute4ever West Jordan, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 4:52 p.m.

    The teams that have national respect don't have to clamor about getting dissed by their own TV partner about not getting national respect. byU fans have long thought of themselves as a national brand but this just proves the opposite. byU is not a national brand, just a brand that has an audience (church membership) that is spread out nationally. If the network that supposedly loves byU doesn't give you respect, maybe....just maybe....you haven't earned that respect. Somehow byU seems to beat the patsies on their schedule (Idaho State's of the world), lose to the solid teams of the world (Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin), and end up with a winning record and the fans believe that, because of that winning record, they should be respected. Sorry folks, but you don't get respect for a 9-3 seasons with losses to Utah and Virginia and you DEFINITELY don't get BCS consideration......that went out the door after the 1st week.

  • Hondo Sacramento, CA
    Nov. 14, 2013 4:36 p.m.

    This article conflicts with everything I've read about BYU on this blog.

    I thought every commentator at ESPN loved BYU, that everyone bowed down to BYU and wished that BYU would grace them with their presence. Furthermore, I thought that BYU was a "national," check that "international" brand. That's what ducky, kenny g, my 2 dads, messin' with Tex, Potatos, etc. say. Yet one of your own seems to think that the big bad commentators were picking on him (and BYU).

    Then I remembered when ESPN called BYU's head coach Roscoe. And I laughed!

  • cougarsare1 Las Vegas, NV
    Nov. 14, 2013 4:23 p.m.

    Um...probably a little overreaction. I only didn't listen to Wrubell because of the work required to sync up the TV with the KSL broadcast.

    I never got the sense they were overly "dissing" my team. Ignorant at times, perhaps, but what else is new? Why were they saying that teams don't want to go to Provo? Because they don't want to risk getting beat. And they have no reason to risk it, since BYU isn't in their (or any) conference. It's not false. I never heard them suggest it was because Provo was a crappy place.

    Finally, to "Who am I sir?" (presumably a Utah Man), the ESPN guys mentioned more than once during the Wisconsin game, "It's now a two-possession game." Or it's "a three-possession game." Wrubell is clearly the only sports announcer who does that. Just keep your radio tuned to KALL 700, then you won't have to be offended by Greg.

  • LoveTheKittens Central, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 4:08 p.m.

    So much for that 'National Brand'. I guess it really is just members of the church who live out of Utah.

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 3:42 p.m.


    Yeah, that is what we like so much about you eUt fans - you like to whine about who you perceive to be "bYu" whiners. Saying it like it is, is not whining. I did not mind as much as some of the BYU fans about the ESPN broadcasters, but they really need to get a clue and do some homework about both teams and not report hearsay.

  • Mike Orem, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 3:38 p.m.

    You are one of those people, Davison, who is simply a shill for BYU. What about the obvious bias and embarrassment Greg Wrubell is? What about his loud screaming tirades when BYU scores? You call that impartiality?

    Without ESPN, BYU wouldn't be where they are now or stay where are today nationally. Stop biting the hand that feeds the team you root for.

    It also doesn't mean all ESPN commentators are like that. I've listened to plenty of them who don't say those things.

    If you don't like the particular commentator, just put the game on mute and listen to Greg Wrubell if you must.

    Give those of us who like listening to ESPN the ability to do so without lashing out.

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 3:19 p.m.

    @ Chad S:

    I love it!

  • ute4ever West Jordan, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 2:29 p.m.

    Why do you Cougars have such a persecution complex? They talked about Wisconsin because Wisconsin is ranked, was dominating the game, and won the game comfortably. I thought that ESPN was you "partner" anyways, so why are you bagging on them?

    It isn't a byU game unless there is some extreme whining that follows. The referees sucked. The other team didn't win, we lost. Now we can add that byU was dissed by the broadcasters.

    The reason Wisconsin still had a shot at the BCS game is because they are in a BCS conference. The reason byU doesn't is because they are independent and already have 2 losses. Keep dreaming Cougars, but you don't get in with a loss, much less 2 losses.

    Please stop whining. It is really unattractive.

  • CougarSunDevil Phoenix, AZ
    Nov. 14, 2013 1:01 p.m.

    I feel burdened by my vast intelligence.

  • Common Sense Czar Sandy, UT
    Nov. 14, 2013 7:20 a.m.

    Time to get over the Nauvoo Complex. Not everyone is out to get you. Outsiders will never understand the Church or their mission....that's why they're outsiders. Enjoy the game....enjoy the exposure that ESPN gives...that's why you went independent remember?

  • MiP Iowa City, IA
    Nov. 13, 2013 9:14 p.m.

    The Y persecution complex is alive and well, apparently.

    I like listening to national broadcasts in games where I as a fan am biased towards one team. It gives me the chance to see how the team I cheer for is viewed by the broadcasters. Generally, it's a good perspective to have, even if what they say is negative.

    My father-in-law, not so much. He always turns down the TV to listen to his homer Y/Jazz commentators. That way, he'll never hear anything bad discussed about his teams. That's his choice as a fan, and it works for him. But in the end, it doesn't surprise me at all that the Y fans I know are generally the ones that feel this way, more so than any other fan base I am acquainted with.

    If you don't hear the "bad side" of your team, it doesn't exist, right?

  • fender Washington, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 8:04 p.m.

    This whole thing is like the hometown beauty queen, who goes to Hollywood thinking she's something special and that producers are going to be lining up around the block to feature her in their films. To paraphrase Dylan, "Ain't it hard when you discover that (your football team) really isn't where it's at after (it) took from you everything (it) could steal?" Always hard to find out not everybody is as invested as you or thinks you're special and that somebody else, maybe a bunch of somebodies, is prettier and more talented. Look at Johnny Football. Heisman Trophy winner last year and putting up better numbers against the best competition in the country this year, but all ESPN talks about now is Jameis Winston. Just sayin'.

  • Striker Omaha, NE
    Nov. 13, 2013 7:14 p.m.

    Remember the Vegas Bowl, I think it was BYU vs. Oregon, and they started talking about UNLV basketball?? I was so mad I wrote to ESPN and I don't remember any other diversions like that since. When BYU is crushing a media darling, I feel they are pretty good to give BYU the credit. When they are getting killed, they put down BYU. ESPN is irritatingly annoying at times, we have to remember they helping BYU get the exposure they need. Remember when they killed Texas? How many Texas fans are there? They were praising BYU much of that game and no doubt making Texas fans cringe. I was fortunate to attend the Wisconsin game so I didn't hear the announcers. When I watch a game on ESPN, I usually mute on put on KBYU, even if it is behind. I get so tired of hearing about how great Alabama and Oregon are and things unrelated to the game, and Greg's comments and reactions are priceless at times.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Nov. 13, 2013 5:58 p.m.

    @Mike in Sandy
    Man, knock off that huge chip on your shoulders. Your back would feel much better. It sounds like you tune in to BYU games to root for the opposing team, and thus don't like the "homer" announcing of Wrubrell.
    Well, he is paid to be a "homer" announcer. And the person who someday replaces him will be a "homer" announcer. You're just going to have to deal with it if you are going to follow BYU sports.

    I too, weary of the "older player" comments, like it is an advantage. If here was indeed an advantage all the big name schools would be having their players take 2 yrs off to "mature " without any conditioning. It is a total farce of an argument.

  • Utahute72 Tooele, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 5:50 p.m.


  • TheOfficalCall Spanish Fork, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 5:43 p.m.

    @Chad S

    I was going to make a procedural step by step, but Chad S, kind of nailed it.

    The fact the guys on Saturday was identifying one of BYU's assistants as Bronco got me. They Bronco and the Assistant were both wearing a hat, So who could mistake that. Unlike Gary Anderson and his visor, who else wears a visor these day but the ladies on the LPGA.

  • PP Eagle Mountain, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 5:03 p.m.

    The thing that bothered me the most is on of the two brought up how "old" BYU players were 3 or 4 times. His partner did not buy into it but talk about pathetic.

  • RSLfanalways West Valley, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 4:43 p.m.

    I think the announcers were correct about the problems with BYU being indepndent. Has recruiting ever changed nope. I would also say that BYU has just as much attention as they had in the MWC. I understand that the MWC had a terrible TV deal, but now it has ESPN, CBS Sports and at times Root which is not great.

  • cal Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 4:26 p.m.

    nhatch82: "We looked bad that's all there is to say about that. I hope the author is not asked to write another article for the des news. its makes them look amateurish."

    This makes you look "amateurish". Cheney makes me laugh by saying in print what many people are saying to themselves.

  • Mtn Tracker Ephraim, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 4:22 p.m.

    Right on Davidson, They started out that way during the texas game as well. The first thing you hear them say at any ESPN game is, "most of these boys aren't boys at all. They're full grown men and who are married and have kids. They served a 2 year church mission." I can't help but laugh. Sure a lot of them have. I looked up a couple teams in the sec. All can say woop-t-doo. Most key position players are red shirts. One year of hard thumping practice goes a lot farther than 2 years of no practice. However; I would still rather hear them rip BYU on ESPN than have to switch satellites and pay extra to see it on the mtn2.

  • nhatch82 Eagle Mountain, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 4:05 p.m.

    I don't know what this guys is talking about. I thought the espn commentators were on with most of the things they talked about. I would be down a BYU to after watching that performance. we looked like wyoming out there. Espn didn't hurt our reputation our play did. Yes they missed a few points but believe me ANYTHING is better than listening to wrubell.

    "I agree with this article! ESPN doesn't do its homework, nor does it pay much respect to, well, anyone they don't like. I would rather listen to KSL any day."

    I don't know that I would classify ESPN as not liking BYU. They pay us millions of dollars every year to play our games on national TV. We looked bad that's all there is to say about that. I hope the author is not asked to write another article for the des news. its makes them look amateurish.

  • cal Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 3:47 p.m.

    I agree with this article! ESPN doesn't do its homework, nor does it pay much respect to, well, anyone they don't like. I would rather listen to KSL any day.

  • Chad S Lorton, VA
    Nov. 13, 2013 3:05 p.m.

    Ever since the invention of the DVR I haven't listened to a TV broadcast of a BYU game (bball or football). Step 1: press mute, Step 2: Press pause, Step 3: Turn on KSL (KSL.com, or a plethora of iPad/tablet apps), Step 4: Wait for kickoff/tipoff and press play when the audio catches up. Step 5: Enjoy partial, biased, and totally homer commentary by Greg, Marc, and Nate. Step 7 is to never listen to TV commentary ever again.

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:59 p.m.

    Maybe the announcers were tough on BYU but if the Cougs would just SHOW UP for a big game once in a while they would EARN some respect. You don't hear ESPN announcers putting down Boise St (at least not until this season). When we start winning games we will get the respect we crave. It works that way in business and it works that way in sports. BYU has got to step it up. I really don't understand why we didn't bring our A game to Wisconsin last week. I was a lot more down on the team than the announcers were. We stink and I'm sick of it!!

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:57 p.m.

    To each his own.

    I could tolerate Greg Wrubell if he truly got excited when it was appropriate and not on every play.

    This plus the classic - I was headed to a Utah game and listed the a BYU game in process. In the third quarter BYU scored and Wrubell said "It's now a three possession game". This is something said near the end of every basketball game but the third quarter of a football game? It's not like the other team isn't going to get the ball three more time from the middle of the third quarter! Classic!

  • ClarkeinAK Anchorage, AK
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:49 p.m.

    Amen!!! The announcers were horribly biased. I spent most of the game on twitter to ESPN College Game Day and other ESPN outlets with examples of how bad they were. On national televised games, the announcers should be partial but these guys definitely weren't.

    Early in the game, when the score was close, they spent three minutes talking about how Wisconsin with their two losses could be BCS bowl eligible if they won out. Never once did they bother to mention that BYU, with the same amount of loses, and a tougher schedule (rated by experts, not me), could do the same. They interviewed the Wisconsin coach at halftime but didn't get Bronco's view on the game (which was fine by me...not a big fan of his).

    I can't wait to hear how bad they'll be when we play Notre Dame...NBC was always called the NDBC because of thier bias...

  • my3cents Nashville, TN
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:45 p.m.

    What irritates me is that the commentators always get to the point in games where they'd rather talk about the SEC or the race for the national title. Even when games are close and exciting the games seem to get in the way of what they are truly interested in. In all fairness they do this to almost every team, but it is very frustrating. Apparently they don't want to do as much homework about the teams on the field. They need to realize I turn in to see BYU, not speculation about who will win the next big SEC match-up.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:38 p.m.

    That's why Wrubell does local broadcasts and the real professionals work for large networks.

  • The Solution Dayton, OH
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:35 p.m.

    I felt the same way and I love the way Greg Wrubell and Mark Lyon call games. ESPN needs to at least know who the Head Coach is and is not when they attempt to show him on screen. Was not fun to listen to them at all.

  • souptwins Lindon, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:22 p.m.

    Daved66--- You make some valid points but throw credibility out when you jump on the "power conference" bandwagon. Yes, being in a big boy conference improves those things to some degree but it is hardly the sole determining factor in having a winning record or doing well on the national stage. Every conference has it's doormats and all the patches to prove it won't help them win games. BYU has beat some pretty decent teams from "power conferences" this year. They just got beat by a great team who controlled the line of scrimmage. No reason to be passive aggressive about it. I also have noticed that while the game announcers praised the BBall team for beating Stanford, the game got zip coverage on ESPN.com. That seemed a bit strange too.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:17 p.m.

    ESPN broadcasts have more reality and accuracy in calling 3 plays than you'll get from Greg "Homer" Wrubell in a season.

  • Northwest Coug Pasco, WA
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:13 p.m.

    I totally agree.

    Since I'm too far away to get KSL during the day, I've tried to sync the Internet feed with Dish Network. Unfortunately, there is only about 10-12 seconds of lag time so Dish Network keeps going back "live TV."

    My problem isn't the bias against BYU, it's just that they are clueless. Names pronounced wrong, bad information on the LDS church, etc.

    But hey, we get every game on TV. Gotta love it!!

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:06 p.m.

    I would rather listen to the broadcast in Swahili, or Aramaic than have to suffer through the painful homerism of Greg Wrubell.

  • Hondo Sacramento, CA
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:04 p.m.

    This article conflicts with everything I know about BYU. I thought ESPN loved BYU, that everyone bowed down to BYU and wished that BYU would grace them with their presence. And that BYU was a "national," check that "international" brand. That's what ducky, kenny g, my 2 dads, messin' with Tex, Potatos, etc. say. Yet one of your own seems to think that the big bad commentators were picking on him (and BYU).

    Then I remembered when ESPN called BYU's head coach Roscoe. And I laughed!

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Nov. 13, 2013 2:02 p.m.

    I only saw bits, but the discussion about Taysom Hill and Stanford and how he ended up at BYU told me all I needed to know: the announcers were given talking points, and someone didn't get them right.

    Yeah, that and hyper-sensitivity for my men in blue. That's why I like Bryant Gumbo almost as much as Barry Switzer and Bo Schembechler.

    With no apologies for mis-spelling.

  • Daved6 Sandy, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 1:57 p.m.

    I don't know what you're pouting about. I watched the game too and the announcers were right for the most part. BYU got outplayed and outclassed in that game. One reason being--Wisconsin is in a power conference BYU is not. Thus Wisconsin has a deep recruiting base and BYU is not so deep. And it's true, BYU might be about where they have been in recruiting if they stayed in the MWC but if they were able to move on to a big old power conference things might be quite different for BYU.

    The worst part of it was, BYU did not play well. There were glimpses of the games against UVA and Utah. I think if they played well the game would have been much closer. But they choked.

  • Shaden Lincoln, NE
    Nov. 13, 2013 1:43 p.m.

    Loved the article. I often feel that way watching the Cougars in FB or BB, as well as the Utah Jazz at times. Thanks for articulating your points in such an entertaining way.

  • baddog Cedar Rapids, IA
    Nov. 13, 2013 1:41 p.m.

    Naw. He was right on. The announcers were displaying a bias. I thought I was the only one who picked up on that.

    But, if ya gotta bad mouth a team to make your perceived audience happy, then it might mean you're not giving enough credit where credit was due.

    By the way, my son attended the game and sat behind the BYU bench on row one. He played 4 years of college ball himself. His perception: the Cougars didn't appear emotionally high for the game. Maybe workmanlike, but against the Big Ten, ya gotta bring your A game evry time.

  • Church member North Salt Lake, UT
    Nov. 13, 2013 1:14 p.m.

    Wow...are you maybe a little hypersensitive? Maybe they (the announcers) were speaking a little bit of truth and you and your wife couldn't handle it.