BYU football: Cougars seek big improvement on offense during offseason

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Levin Reno, NV
    Dec. 30, 2013 4:07 p.m.

    Riverton Cougar has it right.

    Fun game! Pick the BYU Hall of Fame coach based on his record through 9 seasons!

    Candidate A:
    Bowl Record: 1-4
    Conference championships: 6
    Top 25 finishes: 3
    Record against Utah: 8-1

    Candidate B:
    Bowl Record: 5-2
    Conference championships: 2
    Top 25 finishes: 5
    Record against Utah: 3-6

    Considering Utah's general resurgence, and the fact that BYU hasn't had a conference to win in the last 3 seasons, I'm calling that a wash. I'd like to see what Bronco can do over the next few years.

  • MarkMAN West Columbia, TX
    Dec. 30, 2013 2:21 p.m.

    Washington's speed beat BYU. I think the evidence says quit the opposite. Special teams gave up two touchdowns. So lets see, defense held UofW to 300 yards as compared to their average of 550+ and 17 points may be or was it 10. Not sure speed won here. Lets look at the first touchdown that was replayed over and over with the offensive guy grabbing VN and hanging on like crazy knowing that Bishop was going down if he didn't cheat on the rules. OK once held there was no one else left in the play. Speed did not play a role here. The kick off returns maybe but in reality it wasn't anything more than players out of position. BYU lost plainly because they have not learned to be sharp very sharp in what they do. Nothing more or less. This was true all season, not one game was lost because the other team was bigger, stronger, faster, or better it always came down to absolute mediocre execution. Did you watch how many key passes were just plain dropped or very catchable and dropped. Execution.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 10:40 p.m.

    I'm as frustrated as the next BYU fan with how poorly BYU has played in the beginning and end of the season (except against Texas; what an awesome game!). BYU certainly could have done better than 8-5. However, I do not believe that firing Bronco Mendenhall and Robert Anae is the answer. Mendenhall has done well for BYU, and although he has his weaknesses, I believe in time he will overcome most of them. How long did it take Lavell Edwards to get BYU to their peak? Even after that they had down years; every program does!

    We all know that the biggest issues were on the offense, especially red zone scoring and O-line. However, when Anae was with BYU earlier he had great success with his offenses; only 2010 was really disappointing, and like I said earlier, every program has down years. Now he's back with a new go fast, go hard offense. As mentioned earlier, you can't really expect a new offense to reach full potential in a single season. And has everybody forgotten how bad the offense was the last 2 years? This year was much better, and I'm confident it will improve next year.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 9:20 p.m.

    "We made a jump"

    Hmmm...what was that jump? Seems like we're still dealing with the same issues, poor offensive line play, inability to give the QB time to throw.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Dec. 29, 2013 8:11 p.m.

    This talk of replacing the Head Coach is ridiculous. Bronco may be incapable of taking BYU out of mediocrity to the next level, but he is exactly the type of coach the President of the University and the Board of Directors want. Their goals for this football team are not the same as ours. That is just the way it is. And there just isn't a very big pool of experienced, talented, card-carrying LDS coaches who are willing to take a cut in pay to be a coach at BYU. As Lavelle Edwards said, "It is the most difficult Head Coaching job in the country." You're not going to find too many talented coaches that meet all the qualifications who want that kind of headache.

    This uptempo offense is still new and still evolving. I am willing to ride out one more year with Anae. A question to ponder--Would Nick Saban as HC and Brian Kelly as OC do any better with the talent pool that BYU gets?
    I don't know, but I think for the most part, Bronco does a pretty good job getting the most out of his kids.

  • oddman ,
    Dec. 29, 2013 5:03 p.m.

    "Coug Colby" Amen brother. Couldn't have said it better myself. Love the entire process of seeing men (both coaches and ADs and players) continue to improve, fail, rise again, and continue this process called mortality.

  • CougarColby Fort Benning, GA
    Dec. 29, 2013 3:23 p.m.

    Here goes the fans again...Stop the Go Hard, Go Fast gimmick.... Not at all what everyone said at the beginning of the year when the Cougar Fandom thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread (watch all the fans start backtracking those comments now).

    Fact is, Go Hard, Go Fast is in its first year. Give me ONE offensive player that was recruited to play this offensive system?! Not Taysom, Jamaal, Cody, Adam, Bret, JD, etc. How about all the O-lineman brought in from Juco? Nope. Not a single player was recruited to play this style of offense.

    It is going to take a couple years to get the offensive players needed to play. Even next year, things SHOULD get better as players have the offseason to get into a better conditioned unit. Robert Anae may need to head to Philly to get some better understanding of this system from the Great One as Bronco has down with the Steeler Defense.

    Frustrating season, yes. Room for improvement, obviously. Is winning BYU's (the School, not the team) 1st priority, NOPE. Enjoy the season for what it is, great college football!

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 3:22 p.m.

    Some of the most critical comments here are often coming from Ute fans pretending to be Y fans. Pretty funny stuff.

    Genuine critical Y fans need to remember we had perhaps our toughest schedule ever this year and still finished with a winning season. It was also ranked harder than any the Utes have ever had prior to this year. Even harder than their last year schedule which left the Utes with a losing season and home for the holidays... just like this year.

    As such, the cup truly is more full than empty. Things could truly be worse (as they are for more than 2/3rd's of all the rest of the nation's college football programs.

    After 9 winning seasons and 9 bowl games in a row, some BYU fans seem to be getting somewhat spoiled and not appreciative. enough of a consistently successful program. Could it be better? Of course. Every college team but one can make that claim at the end of each season. But that's no reason to not enjoy what success we do have

  • BlueHusky Mission Viejo, CA
    Dec. 29, 2013 7:56 a.m.

    As I expected, a lot of calls to fire coaches. Like who would we get? Detmer? What is his experience? Steve Young? Andy Reid? Urban Meyer? Saban? How many could recruit at BYU? Urban Meyer had 20+ felons on his Florida State team. Saban gets 7 million per year. Sarkesian jumped to a better payday. None would even consider BYU, and vice versa.

    Mendenhall is probably a perfect coach for BYU. He manages the mission disruption. He recruits good kids who can stay in school. Independence is starting to pay off with more kids from around the country. I'm not sure about the go fast go hard stuff. I'm not much of an option fan. But the BYU offense was much better this year.

    BYU lost this game due to special teams and O-line play. Two big returns and poor punting were the difference in the game. Very uncharacteristic for a Mendenhall team.

    But the real difference was that Washington played their cleanest game of the year. Almost no penalties. They were very motivated. BYU was tough, but they got 'er done. Give some credit to a team that was making a statement.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 7:26 a.m.

    This was a very difficult game to watch. We had three players who got the job done at critical times KVN, Cody Hoffman and Taysom Hill. The rest of the team simply didn't perform as needed.
    Special teams were awful in fact disastrous. Mental errors, penalties cost BYU a winnable game.
    TH,KVN,and CH weren't enough but their excellent play was appreciated.A big question has to be asked why does BYU play so poorly against talented teams like Washington, Wisconsin and Notre Dame and how can that be fixed/

  • blue & white Boise, ID
    Dec. 29, 2013 7:25 a.m.

    Stop the go fast go hard approach we don't have enough depth to sustain that on offence, special teams, and defense. use the tight ends more as receivers. note to Robert A. talk to Andy Boyce about offensive plays. several after game shows he suggests things to do. RA, RU too proud and stubborn?
    take advantage of all the bowl practices. a win against Washington may have placed the cougars in the preseason top 25.

  • Cougar Observer Draper, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 7:15 a.m.

    BYU has hit its ceiling. Change coaches all you want, which Bronco has done, but the results will not be much different without a major influx of more talent. It's not just offense either. BYU's defensive front seven was manhandled by the likes of Wisconsin.

    The thing that adds fuel to the fire for a lot of fans, myself included, is Bronco's asinine comments in the media. We're all tired of hearing how much better things will be next season. Bronco is the epitome of the phrase big hat no cattle.

  • CougarColby Fort Benning, GA
    Dec. 29, 2013 6:46 a.m.


    I agree, I can't believe all of these fans clamoring for Bronco and Anae's job. Give me a break. It is as bad as Utah fans clamoring for Kyle Whitingham's job...seriously?!

    Here are a few reasons Bronco will not be fired:

    He has not and will not lose the locker room. His players love him.

    The AD is on his side.

    The School President too

    The board of trustees love him and if they are happy, he stays.

    There is not another realistic choice to coach BYU. Detmer made it clear he won't coach unless he is the head guy. A head high school football coach (even with all his college and NFL experience can jump to college right away and be successful...nope). Andy Reid...yeah right. Kyle Whittingham...maybe if he was fired, but unlikely. Ken Niumatalolo, possibly but he would need to leave or be fired from Navy. So unless you want Robert Anae as the head coach it won't happen.

    Good luck Cougs, can't wait for next August! BYU is not a national contender, accept it, enjoy each season for what it is!

  • Cougar Alumni Beaver, UT
    Dec. 29, 2013 6:20 a.m.

    ” Mendenhall said. “…….. but it’s not even close to the same team it was from a year ago. I think we all know that.”

    Bronco's right its not the same team, the Offense runs more plays than ever before.

    The problem is that its Quantity not Quality, who cares if you run 3 and out faster than any college team if you can't score.

    Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl lived up to its title, I was so nauseated that I couldn't finish my dinner.

  • oddman ,
    Dec. 29, 2013 6:16 a.m.

    Really fun to see the improvement in individuals like Hill, Falslev, Hoffman, Fua, VanNoy, Ridley and a few others. On the other hand disappointing to watch the sieve we call the O line, and the swiss cheese defensive backfield as they were continually shredded by the runners from every team that had an above average scat back. My wish list includes, a tight end that emerges as dominant, a brick wall O line, and more depth at corner plus the development of a 'killer instinct'. I am more than satisfied with teh coaches except for the 'run into the middle of the line series after series'. Recruiting and staying healthy is a key. Whatever happened to Alesa?

  • CJHR Springville, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 10:13 p.m.

    Haha. BYU fans are out of control. With all the coaching experts in the fan base, I am sure it would not be difficult to find much better coaching. I am also sure most of them have won at least 2 youth league championships..."my plays work in the red zone, what is wrong with Anae?" Has it struck any BYU fans that other programs with better athletes want to win too...every loss does not stem from poor coaching. Be realistic. 8-5 is not bad for a mid major in Provo, Utah...that is not intended to be an insult. Go ahead, fire Bronco and hire who? Oh, that's right, the same people with unrealistic expectations still think we are going to snag Andy Reid. Hahahahahahahaha

  • amagnetick AV, CA
    Dec. 28, 2013 10:03 p.m.

    Yep, if I were in charge of an FBS program, I'd be scouring the comment section of some small newspaper looking for advice on how to run my team... only if I wanted to lose my job. What a crack up, LOL!

  • Coolhead55 North Logan, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 10:01 p.m.

    Right now both BYU and the U of U are mediocre programs. Stop the 'I'm less mediocre then you' fighting. Please. BYU is a very good football program that could compete well in the AAC or ACC in football. Even in those conferences, at current talent level, BYU would rarely win a championship. They do not have the speed or coaching to succeed on a bigger stage. The bottom PAC 12 teams, California and Colorado, likely will have as many 2014 recruits that run sub-4.5 40's as the entire BYU team. I am amazed that BYU would chose a speed type offense instead of one based on power and intelligence given the plethora of RM's. Success for BYU will become all the harder as major changes are made to favor the current BCS schools. Although it is easy to throw stones at the U, at least they are positioning themselves to potentially step out of mediocracy. Failing to achieve greatness but trying vs. insuring success by playing the mediocre makes for a great philosophical discussion. But in sports, isn't striving for excellence what competing is all about? That sadly does not seem to be what Bronco is all about.

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    Dec. 28, 2013 9:52 p.m.

    Red zone ineptitude must be eliminated.
    That's on the OC, 100%.
    OL blocking was weak to decent.
    Throw to backs almost non-existent.
    TE's grossly under utilized.
    Hill did great with his skills, no question; he was the show.
    Need defenders who explode to the ball and wrap-up tackle.

  • Informed Voter South Jordan, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 9:31 p.m.

    Hoffman is very talented indeed. Bronco said his record number of catches says it all....what it says to me is the QBs didn't throw to other receivers much. Just like the kicker setting a field goal record this year. That is because the team could not score TDs when in the red zone all season. I love the team but they have a lot of work to do on offense. Anae's fast tempo sure did not live up to its billing.

  • truth in all its forms henderson, NV
    Dec. 28, 2013 9:22 p.m.

    @The Ghost
    are you kidding me? Bronco is the best coach BYU has ever had! The team needs to rise up and start playing hard for the great coaches that they are blessed to play for!

  • Mkithpen Sandy, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 9:18 p.m.

    Waiting until next year is not an option. Time to stop changing Offensive Coordinators and change things at the top. Anae is not the problem. It's time Bronco did some self reflection and took some personal responsibility. Change happens at the top. Problem
    with BYU football is either the AD or head coach. Time to say good bye to Bronco and let him do full time youth and education week activities. Time to get serious again about BYU athletics or hang it up. Looks my sports entertainment funding is heading to the direction of the PAC 12. Nice stadium, practice facilities, ESPN contract and great student athletes. Wish I could support and enjoy it more.

  • BYUfaninWashSt Everett, WA
    Dec. 28, 2013 9:11 p.m.

    Bronco is optimistic for next year because he knows that with exception of Texas, they play a WAC, MWC schedule in 2014. Easy 10+ win season and coaches / players are all paper tiger heroes again. 2014 schedule is pathetic and designed to ensure a winning season. For years, I had wanted to see BYU in PAC 12 or BIG 12. With existing decision makers and powers that be, I fully realize BYU does not and will not belong in that type of company. That's called Acceptance.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 8:40 p.m.

    Hoffman is one heck of a great player. You've got to hope the next Hoffman is in the pipeline.

  • ESPN Ken Loomis, CA
    Dec. 28, 2013 6:10 p.m.

    @ Kouger - I couldn't agree more. I was sitting in Section 106 in the end zone last night. Hill doesn't seem to be able to get a good pre-snap read and doesn't read coverages well. He holds the ball too long and does not throw when the receiver is open. Then he pulls it down at the first hint of pressure. The eighth grade QB that was sitting next to me would yell "throw it now" at the precise time Hill should have thrown it. If Hill could read the coverages and throw on time, he would have many more completions. Then again, maybe not. His inaccurate throws cost him a lot of completions too.

  • bericjohnson1 Monterey, CA
    Dec. 28, 2013 6:02 p.m.

    It was a poor performance, particularly by the O-line. Hill had absolutely no time to pass the ball. Another point that needs to be discussed is that the Y performed much better at LES than on the road. The road performance has to improve somehow. Next year's slate of more softies on the road gives ample chance for improvement.

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    Dec. 28, 2013 5:52 p.m.

    BYU will be the same as it has been the last 4 years...unless they fire Anae and get a real offensive coach who can mix it up and get our guys to play at another level of intensity. I'm tired of hearing how this is as good as we can get with our talent. Boise, Utah and TCU all went to 2 BCS bowls and won with the same level of talent. We have not risen to that level. Our only quality bowl win in 45 years was in the Cotton Bowl vs. Kansas State 15 years ago.


    We will not get better so long as Bronco is "excited" about where we are now.

  • IQ92 hi, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 5:28 p.m.

    A predominance of slow-twitch muscle players simply cannot be champions in a fast-twitch muscle game. Decade after decade we recruit in the 40-60 range, and yet many expect the Cougs to be in the top 10.

    Whiners, please just learn to realistically enjoy the game, and quit calling for the Coaches heads.

  • BlackDiamond Provo, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 5:17 p.m.

    @ Lone Star
    Same here. I am sick of next year. So next year they'll play for the next year after next year.

  • Kouger Lehi, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 5:12 p.m.

    First: Hill pass the ball. Second: Hill do not run the ball, pass the ball. And stop blaming the line for lack of protection, Hill just takes off right away when the first option/receiver is not open. So let's have a real quarterback next year who can and will pass - not RUN - the ball. Hill can join Brown and Williams as running backs. Period! And if Anae and Bronco cannot make that change, then 2014 will be the same as this year, if not worse.

  • JN Chubbuck, ID
    Dec. 28, 2013 5:09 p.m.

    It was a hard loss against Washington but I am looking forward to next year with a junior quarterback and the guys used to Anae's offense. Bronco is a great head coach and I am glad he is at BYU!

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Dec. 28, 2013 4:44 p.m.

    Bronco: "there are things to work on, but it’s not even close to the same team it was from a year ago. I think we all know that.”
    I beg to differ. The defense was much better last year and the offense this year got a lot of yards but not very many TDs.

    I think Hill's assessment is pretty accurate. Timing has been a real problem for him, and I think it has affected his accuracy.

    The only way I see this offense making a BIG improvement in the offseason is with a coaching change. I am willing to give Anae another year to develop this offense. I am not holding my breath though because they are losing 2 very good receivers (Hoffman and Faslev) and all their best defensive players.

  • Denverite Centennial, CO
    Dec. 28, 2013 4:42 p.m.

    Bronco, being a defensive guy himself, is like John Fox here in Denver: when the chips are down, he trusts his defense more than his offense. We're all hoping Fox has learned his lesson on that after last year, or we'll lose our first playoff game again.

    So since Bronco is that way, keep him running the defense and just put someone in as offensive coordinator with a spark of creativity. Judging by the bowl game, at least half the commenters on here would be better at that than Anae. I know Gifford Nielsen is a 70 now and Sarkisian is at USC, but what are Kozlowski and some of those great receivers of old doing these days ? Heck, if Cody Hoffman is graduating, offer him the job.

  • cdchttrtn meridian, idaho
    Dec. 28, 2013 4:19 p.m.

    Nothing will change until BYU gets an offensive coordinator that knows what he's doing. Worst offense in the country. If they didn't have HILL, to run the ball once in a while they would be in a world of hurt. Also, BYU needs a special teams coach, but on the other hand I'm not to sure they spend much time working on punting the ball inside the 50. BYU needs to take a page out of Utah State book. P.S. It would help if they had an offensive line that could block someone once in awhile.

  • The Ref RIVERTON, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 3:55 p.m.

    The commentary was pretty funny last night. "Washington has no respect for BYU's speed" I rolled over in my bed and laughed in my pillow! That was awesome.

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    Dec. 28, 2013 2:28 p.m.

    The Cougars played good football in the middle of the field and could do nothing once inside the 20 yrd line. The writing is on the wall, this team needs a new coach and a new focus. BYU was out-coached by Washington. Special teams were a big difference and team speed killed the Cougars. Its time to make the hard decision and get this program back on the right track or conitnue to settle for the same type of season we saw this year going forward. There was alot of talk in the stands wanting a new direction.

  • evansrichdm west jordan , UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 2:03 p.m.

    There was notice able improvement this year and against some good teams. The thing that we BYU fan need to remember is that this is still a young team and for them to do has well has they did this season was a step in the right direction, so quiet being all negative and acting like soiled brats. Next year BYU will have a great season and will turn some heads.

    Hill thanks for showing so much grit this season, I can only hope that the other players will follow your example.

  • DaveKnowsWhatsUp Bloomington, IN
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:51 p.m.

    It's called not bringing back an offensive coordinator who bombed out the last time he was here to begin with! Up the middle, up the middle, easily defended pass, punt...who would've guessed my same complaint from a few years ago would resurface again this year?

  • Sambonethegreat Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:47 p.m.

    “I’m optimistic about where we go from here. I’m not discouraged. I’m not worried,” Mendenhall said. “We’re launching from a really good place."

    Really? Plenty of yards, not enough points. BYU would be better off finding a head coach who genuinely wants to win. Bronco doesn't even sound upset about this loss.

  • DEW Cougars Sandy, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:46 p.m.

    Need a change on special team coach and how about getting those O-Lines work hard through out the off season! Taysom Hill will be ready once those guys up front get their homework done. T.H. can't do all the work on his own like he tried on that SF bowl game.

  • The Ghost salem, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:35 p.m.

    Getting rid of Bronco and Anae would be a great start!

  • Dixie Dan Saint George, UT
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:28 p.m.

    Don't change your recruiting methods, get 75% of your players from the Wasatch front and then scatter the rest of your picks from the other 49 states. Works well for Utah so why not the Y?

  • Cougar Blue 1 Henderson , NV
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:16 p.m.

    Please get a new punter as well. That 8 yard bomb yesterday was special.

  • Lone Star Cougar Plano, TX
    Dec. 28, 2013 1:08 p.m.

    Sorry Coach, I am getting mighty tired of waiting until next season.