BYU experiencing midseason identity crisis after blowout loss to Utah State

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  • CountryCoug Parker, CO
    Oct. 10, 2018 8:09 p.m.

    The coaches jobs are on the line. I think they now realize major changes are needed. The more they continue to play Tanner the worse it is going to get. They must realize this? Teams have figured out that they can stack the line on defense because Tanner can't beat them. Only a QB change is going to help some and why not replace a few folks along the OL? Worth a try at this point .

    They need to move some more safety's to LB. They all looked a step slow the past few games. Awful line surge. Kaufusi is decent but his leverage is not good at times.

  • london_josh Lincoln, CA
    Oct. 10, 2018 4:04 p.m.


    I have no power to censor another person's thoughts. They may make arguments, if it's a bad argument I might call them out on it.

    The job function of an AD is to earn money for the school - because that's the final objective of college sports - through various means, with the biggest coming in form of donations and sponsorship support that don't register, they need to earn money.

    They are business leaders. They hear the HC and can dismiss his opinions and dismiss the HC at their pleasure.

    There is a huge amount of people who think that sports is a popularity contest - the truth is that it's business and not sports.

    BYU is a big brand today. say they went into the top 10 for a few years in a row - can you imagine how many "fans" BYU would have? Not necessarily lasting fans, but a church of 16M members would have a massive amount bandwagon onto the winning cougars. Consider that with a still huge fanbase, great TV coverage (compared to G5 teams) and a large stadium and tradition.

    I'm open to other people's thoughts - I just think they should be logical and pertain to the matter at hand - football is business for these schools!

  • zipadeedoodah Lehi, UT
    Oct. 9, 2018 12:08 p.m.

    Yes here is the identity:

    Mangum = Losses

  • imdocrob1 Salem, OR
    Oct. 9, 2018 10:32 a.m.

    I still believe that BYU is a national brand but due more to the Mormon church than anything they are putting on the field for the past several years. I feel that the only way I would ever want us going back to a conference is if we were guaranteed the ability to broadcast every game on BYUtv if it is not nationally televised. I never want to go back to the days where i had to search for the game on tv/radio. I think like Josh said, a few good years of winning will change things but the problem is "how do we get those few good years of winning"? This team looks worse every game they play and against competition that isn't as strong. Not sure what the answers are but I sure would like to see a coach who holds his players responsible. Not sure I believe they are, I mean how can you leave a guy 15 yards wide open at the goaline....too many mistakes everywhere and I don't think any accountability for it. I mean why not sit Mangum down for a series or two after his shameful pick 6 and fumble....teach him there are consequences for mismanaging the game.

  • NightOwlAmerica SALEM, OR
    Oct. 9, 2018 12:14 a.m.

    london_josh - Lincoln, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 10:07 p.m.


    "At it's peak BYU was a huge brand, BYU is still a massive brand. In the MWC the only band close to BYU is Boise - BYU and Utah are interesting in terms of value due to PAC affiliation and recent history before PAC affiliation but BYU still has more fans than Utah.

    If you can't understand value proposition maybe you shouldn't be commenting. "

    And there is where you lost the argument. Telling someone what the can or can't say here.

  • london_josh Lincoln, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 10:07 p.m.

    "No conference will take us. We are done and not appealing to any P5, G5 or whatever."

    This isn't about choosing the prom king.

    It's based on money.

    At it's peak BYU was a huge brand, BYU is still a massive brand. In the MWC the only band close to BYU is Boise - BYU and Utah are interesting in terms of value due to PAC affiliation and recent history before PAC affiliation but BYU still has more fans than Utah.

    I'd argue that a lot of BYU fans are fair weather fans which sort of bothers me - but there are a lot of them and if you give BYU a few winning seasons with the backing of the church that owns it the band-wagon fan-base is absolutely massive.

    If you can't understand value proposition maybe you shouldn't be commenting.

    I don't like the idea of going back to a conference, I don't think cord cutting makes BYU less appealing, if anything BYUtv makes it more appealing - but if BYU went to the MWC I would predict that acceptance would come before anybody could mount any opposition to the plan, it would be done inside of a week under NDA and be announced because it's not about popularity, this is a pure money move for any reasonable AD.

    Any G5 would sign BYU on the spot.

  • london_josh Lincoln, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 9:03 p.m.


    I was at the game with my kids. Good news is that I have 8 year old twins and a 7 year old and they are young enough that they thought that it was a close game and we lost because of bad calls - that's a lot better than the reality!

    I'm still a BYU fan, I'll always be one, and I stayed until the final play of that horrible game.

    I might change my mind by the end of the season. I knew USU was good but didn't think they'd win because outside of BYU they weren't really tested. Maybe it's that USU is really good this year.

    Hawaii may or may not be the same result depending on the QB situation there.

    It's a bit of a mess right now - positives is that no matter what we're better than last year. Last year we could only beat bad teams, it's hard to fathom finished as bad as last year at this point in time. It's progress!

    As for how to progress forward, I agree about the issues but I'm not sure that a conference will solve it. Recruits want TV time more than titles in the MWC - look at the early MWC days, if I didn't have family tickets I'd listen to BYU games on the radio 1 mile away from the stadium growing up. I still see benefits to being indy.

    best to you!

  • No Conference Will Take Us Seattle, WA
    Oct. 8, 2018 7:39 p.m.

    SameJersey - Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 10:03 a.m.

    BYU needs a conference in order to rebuild their identity. The bigger question that nobody is talking about is CAN BYU find a conference? Can BYU go back to the MWC? Or, have they burnt those bridges? Have they waited too long?

    It seems to me an uphill battle and the MWC may have already moved on.
    -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
    Nope, yes and yes.

    We can't find a conference.
    We can't go back to the MWC.
    The MWC moved on years ago.

    No conference will take us. We are done and not appealing to any P5, G5 or whatever.

  • SameJersey Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 7:32 p.m.

    I agree with Doc Rob.

    Josh, I hear what you are saying, and please don't take this the wrong way.

    Doc Rob is right. You have to be able to recruit the talent. You cannot do that without a conference now. Nobody wants to play for an independent, let alone one that can't win.

    The ship is literally sinking and it is going to be harder than you think to right it. Gone are the days when BYU could recruit by being BYU. And, in today's world of live-streaming and cord cutting, they are not overly excited about ESPN either -- especially when those contracts are likely to expire.

    They DO care about getting game time, playing good teams, and winning games in good conferences. They DO care about conference titles and individual accolades.

    You are living in an era when BYU was the ONLY game in the area. Even for LDS kids, that era has long passed.

    BYU football is, at best, 5th now in just the northern intermountain area for recruiting.

    Even LDS kids will likely prefer (1) Utah, (2) Utah State, (3) Colorado, and maybe even Boise State and Air Force. And, that is not including SDSU, Fresno, or any other PAC 12 team in the West.

    Find a conference or fade fast into irrelevancy.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Oct. 8, 2018 7:26 p.m.


    “We Utes really don't wanna, or be obligated to play BYU in any sport ever again. You people need to move on.”

    Oh, the irony!! Did you really write “you people need to move on,” with a straight face? LOL!!

    Most of us have moved on, why can’t you?

  • imdocrob1 Salem, OR
    Oct. 8, 2018 4:09 p.m.

    Thanks Mike all is going well and I hope the same for you. I agree the ship seems to be sinking and no one is paying attention from the Captain on down. It gets harder and harder to keep watching what they are throwing on the field and court anymore. If it weren't for BYU volleyball I don't know where we would be.

  • Real Ute Dallas, TX
    Oct. 8, 2018 4:03 p.m.

    @ Doc Rob,

    I agree with your points sir. BYU just doesn't have any players.........the way it is. I hope all is well in your life my friend.

  • Brian Muir North Salt Lake, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 3:47 p.m.

    USU did a phenomenal job at the fundamentals and the game plan. I expected them to be a tough opponent based on how well they did against Michigan State. We did not play to our capacity and made too many mental and fundamental mistakes. I have confidence in our players and the coaches to get us back on track. Let's stay Independent. We would win more in the Mountain West Conference but we wouldn't be a better team and wouldn't reach our potential. Looking forward to Hawaii game. Go Cougars!

  • imdocrob1 Salem, OR
    Oct. 8, 2018 3:41 p.m.

    Generally Josh I agree with you whole heartedly but did you not watch the game Friday? Once again our QB showed very little talent at all, our defense has more holes that a sieve and our O line only plays on odd numbered games lol. I do believe after last years horrific offense and what I am seeing on the field now, yeah the sky is falling and no one is paying attention to it. We played against two teams early in the year that weren't ready for a BYU running attach at it burnt them. I can't tell you how many times when I was at the Washington game and on friday night how many plays Washington and USU played with only one safety back and 8 or 9 guys in the box. They know Tanner will never burn them deep and for that matter anything over the LB's heads would be amazing. I feel that Tanner has never lived up to the potential he was suppose to have coming out of HS. I feel we need someone like Taysom who can spread out the D with his ability to run. Hodge or Wilson both have that ability. Mangum couldn't scramble his way out of a wet paper sac. He has had his 7 years to prove himself and all we have to show for it is the bottom 1/3 in the nation on offense again this is BYU

  • wahului Stockton, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 3:16 p.m.

    I remember watching a BYU vs USU game years ago in which BYU dropped 13 scoring passes, and USU ran and passed all over BYU, much like this game. The next day, Jaime Hill was fired, and Bronco took over the defensive co-ordinator duties. THE DEFENSE immediately got unmistakably better, mostly by blitzing, flying insanely to the ball, and tackling with COURAGE. The most aggravating thing I saw in Friday’s game on the part of BYU’s defense was the chicken approach to tackling…trying to avoid impact and instead attempting to grab and drag the runner down. Very little hit hard and wrap up. Looked cowardly, worked worse. Every player persisting in this should be benched. I believe Ed Lamb would do a much better job as DC, much as Bronco did in the previously cited instance. The steady deterioration of what should be a stout defensive unit is painful to watch, including the near absolute absence of blitz packages, QB hurries, sacks etc. Here, more than anywhere else, a coaching upgrade is needed NOW, since it’s too late to get it before now

  • london_josh Lincoln, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 1:32 p.m.

    I still prefer independence.

    The PAC would be better, but it will never happen.

    Some aspects of the MWC would be great, but overall I think BYU is far better off as an indy team.

    If BYU joined the MWC in the mountain division we'd play Boise and USU like we do each year. We'd also play New Mexico, CO State, AF and Wyoming - that's not a super enticing group on a consistent basis. We'd be back to playing 2 or 3 P5 teams and waiting for a chance at a bowl game.

    As things are now, if BYU beats either Boise or Utah then it goes down as a great year. We won 4 games last year, we've got one more win to tie last years ugly record.

    losses to Washington are explainable and USU is rolling, Cal isn't bad either but that's the loss that got away from BYU.

    End of the day, despite the loss it's not so bad. USU is having a Cinderella year so far - great for them but I don't know why some fans think that the sky is falling.

    USU normally isn't this good, nor is Hawaii, but some years your competition just plays up - good for fans of the sport, bad for those who's ego is tied to winning every game.

  • Real Ute Dallas, TX
    Oct. 8, 2018 1:26 p.m.


    We Utes really don't wanna, or be obligated to play BYU in any sport ever again. You people need to move on.

  • Real Ute Dallas, TX
    Oct. 8, 2018 1:23 p.m.

    I truly think that Utah needs to play BYU twice a decade at Utah is all, ZERO negotiation, take it or leave it. Schedule Utah State 2 for 1 each decade, then scatter in SUU, Weber State at Utah whenever..... then schedule A and B games around the country.......we really gotta go back to our roots as U Utah State in football and Y hoops every so often.

  • New to Utah Provo, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 1:18 p.m.

    The most imperative thing that must happen is returning to the MWC. Holmoe needs to do that or be let go. Stubbornness is many times the wrong solution. Independence was a utterly and complete failure admit it and move on. BYU had no gas in its tank after Cal and Washington games.

  • Real Ute Dallas, TX
    Oct. 8, 2018 1:12 p.m.


    I so hope that you don't prognosticate "BYU greatness" ever again. BYU doesn't compete in football or basketball in the 21st century. How could they possibly EVER? The Y cannot attract talent to attend that school.

  • BleedCougarBlue Enid, OK
    Oct. 8, 2018 11:46 a.m.

    Terribly disappointing game. USU's QB looked awesome: fast release, with zip on the ball and accurate, too. I love Mangum's courage and class, but it doesn't appear that he has the "it" factor now, although in his defense, it's hard to tell because we drop too many balls.


  • Real Ute Dallas, TX
    Oct. 8, 2018 11:18 a.m.

    The bottom line is that BYU is a top-notch volleyball school is all. They do some extra-nifty ballroom dancing as well. BYU is specifically designed to achieve dedicated LDS members is ALL! They won't change that goal ever.

    Now, does that "goal" by BYU's owners equate into producing decent football and basketball programs? No!!!.....we have witnessed the carnage and nothing will change ever again. BYU is in the greatest conference, the WCC, that they could possibly realistically hope for.

    Those are the "cards" folks.

  • SameJersey Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 10:03 a.m.

    Of course they are having an identity crisis. They used to be a major player in the MWC a decade ago, but decided to leave for "independence." What exactly is independence these days other than cutting off your nose to spite your face?

    The Utah State Aggies also used to be a national powerhouse in the 60s and 70s. Then, they too decided not to join the then fledgling Western Athletic Conference (WAC) with BYU and Utah hoping that "independence" would be a better route until the Big 10 or Big 12 picked them up. Sound familiar? That didn't work well and, in the end, the Aggies paid for it in spades over the next 20 plus years of abject humiliation.

    Everyone is watching in horror as BYU is basically committing the same mistake (i.e., suicide). And, no, ESPN is not going to save BYU this go around. In the era of live video streaming and cord cutting, ESPN can barely save itself.

    BYU needs a conference in order to rebuild their identity. The bigger question that nobody is talking about is CAN BYU find a conference? Can BYU go back to the MWC? Or, have they burnt those bridges? Have they waited too long?

    It seems to me an uphill battle and the MWC may have already moved on.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 8, 2018 9:44 a.m.

    Identity crisis?

    Utah identifies BYU as a cupcake for nearly a decade now.

    Utah State is just beginning to identify BYU as a cupcake.

    It's no fun beating up on Sitake, can you guys match Bronco's salary and bring him back?

    Make BYU Great Again! Bring back Bronco!

  • DSattheU Ogden, UT
    Oct. 8, 2018 7:55 a.m.

    What identity crisis? In the now infamous words: "They were who we thought they were!"

  • BlueHusky Mission Viejo, CA
    Oct. 8, 2018 6:45 a.m.

    Getting advice from a Utah fan. Nice.

    The bloom is off the rose. For the 2nd year in a row, BYU has no offense. Huge line, no running. Why? No big play running back left? Squally can't run on two sprained ankles. Sit him down. Let Hodge run. There has to be a kid who can run. BYU has never been a run team, but 50 yards a game? OK in the glory days of the West Coast Offense and Hall of Fame Quarterbacks. Not OK today.

    Start Wilson. Find a running back. Hodge? Get the defense up. They know they have to pitch a shutout every game because the offense can't produce. And for BYU's sake, start Wilson. If he fails, start someone else. Nothing to lose: find the guys who can do the job.

    Definition of insanity: Continue to do the things that are failing.

    Otherwise: adios, Kilani. Nice guys finish last: put the hammer down or you'll be out.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Oct. 8, 2018 12:50 a.m.

    Same old stuff... It has been decades since BYU's Revenue Programs have been in such bad shape and the sad part is that it seems like the BOTs and the Administration simply don't care. They talk like they do but their inaction shouts differently.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Oct. 8, 2018 12:49 a.m.

    BYU's Revenue Athletic Programs are in trouble. The kind of performance that we are demonstrating through our "Exposure goal" is weak at best and most likely negative.

    Our problems begin at the top with our AD and our AD Department. Holmoe simply needs to go and I have been saying this for the past 3 years. The man carries no clout in his AD peer groups and more importantly, with the BOTs itself. If he had any clout we would be in a P5 Conference today and we would have high end coaches in both FB and BB... we have neither... and it's obvious through our performance on the field and on the court. It starts with weak recruiting and culminates with weaker coaching.

    We need solid journey-level coaching and all we get are first-timers. Sitake is not a head coach... he was decent as a DC but has little to no experience as an OC and our last 2 OCs have been rookies.

    And Dave Rose ? He's either lazy (i.e. recruiting) or tired and holding out for retirement.

    We need to switch them all out or be prepared to live with this type of performance and success year in and year out.

  • TexasCougar San Antonio, TX
    Oct. 7, 2018 11:32 p.m.

    In the article, Sitake is quoted as saying "We talked about it in the locker room. We’re not playing BYU football,” The problem is, Sitake doesn't know what BYU football is. Compare us with Washington State (Leach) and Texas Tech (Kinsbury). They both are doing quite well and they both are staying true to their football identy-Passing Teams. We need to get back to our tradition and put the ball downfield, either with the quarterback we have, or one who can fling it downfield.

  • New to Utah Provo, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 7:00 p.m.

    Utah State was the better team in all aspects of the game. Game plan, tackling, coverage, filling the gap, risk taking. BYU needs to shake things up but returning to Mountain West Conference. It was an awful experiment, cut the losses now.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    Oct. 7, 2018 6:11 p.m.

    I really don’t think there is a vast difference in players between USU and BYU. No more than 1or 2 players from each team will make it in the NFL. There IS a big difference in talent between Wisconsin (who overlooked BYU) and BYU.

    This far into the season, BYU has become extremely predictable on both offense and defense, and smart coaches like USU’s will continue to exploit that. BYU coaches need to expand their repertoire, and learn to adjust to what their opponent gives you.

    I think BYU can be successful with their current talent level (although I think they can do better at QB; I’m still scratching my head as to why Hoge was removed from the QB competition) but their coaches have to show more imagination and be more effective in their game management.

    Coaches want to right this ship? Start by looking in the mirror.

  • hi-ya Murray, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 5:30 p.m.

    The BYU Players are not experiencing an Identity crisis. They the "players" are doing exactly what they have been taught. First Three scores by Utah State are a result of "Bad" Coaching (Offense & Defense) on BYU's part. First USU TD was a result of BYU's "not having" a medium to long pass game. The Guy was waiting right at Tanner's feet. Utah State all throughout the game crowded the box to stop the run game and short pass game... as a result TD... Then, Short play passes for loss. Runs stopped. Then Personal fouls due to frustration and fumbles... not stopping easily stoppable pass plays at the goal line and over the top... to tight ends... (Thats BYU's play from a week or so ago) and you have 21 zip... From there you can say the game was over.... Last year... I was amazed that they ONLY let go the offensive coordinator. Frankly, I felt the problem with the program was from the top down. I felt Detmer was made a scape goat. But here is the kicker... I believe BYU has good players... as proven by the many players picked up after the draft and kept when Utah who had "so called" good players drafted then let go before the season. Tanner is not the blame!!!

  • Shorty541 Eagle Point, OR
    Oct. 7, 2018 3:39 p.m.

    They simply do not look very athletic!

  • Deanvrtc Vancouver, WA
    Oct. 7, 2018 3:36 p.m.

    Sorry Kalani,
    We have heard all of this..."we did not execute" way too many times. This problem is coaching and no leadership. You have protected Magnum at the expense of the entire team. It may cost you and others their job. True football knowledgeable and rational people... can see this so plainly. Magnum is NOT a leader... who has the trust of his teammates. He can't run, or pass farther that 15 yards accurately. He dumps to his outlet and gets happy feet when the pressure is on. There is no excuse for a senior to make the freshman mistakes he is making repeatedly. Cougar nation would cut you some slack if you were making changes to correct the ship. don't seem to have the courage to do the obvious.
    Enough already... play the freshman and let him develop.

  • at long last. . . Kirksville , MO
    Oct. 7, 2018 3:22 p.m.

    Ir is still a fundamental lack of talent. Independence is the cause. Holmoe is the reason.

  • Old Doc Thatcher, AZ
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:46 p.m.

    Maybe it wasn't Ty Detmer's fault.

  • EL TAB Orem, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:45 p.m.

    "We need to work on our tackling" You have been tackling since high school or sooner!
    How long does it take before you learn?! It is not rocket science!

  • CougarCat Tucson, AZ
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:43 p.m.

    BYU beats AZ. Cal takes down BYU. AZ strangles Cal. What's going on here?

  • CougarCat Tucson, AZ
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:41 p.m.

    Cougar lines, both o and d, were beaten on Friday. Offensive line kept getting outfoxed by blitzing 'backers and penetrating secondary. Grimes & assistants need to fix this. Defensive line had no sacks (of course) and no one I recognize as d-lineman had more than 3 tackles. Aggie running backs had play after play where Cougar 'backers and safeties bounced off after first hits. This isn't the team that took down AZ and Wisconsin.

    Must've had at least half a dozen dropped passes. How many times does Blaine Fowler have to say "and that's a ball that has to be caught." ?

    Silver linings -
    It was good to see Wilson come in and move the team in for a score in 2 - 3 minutes. Of course that was in garbage time (as the late great Laker announcer Chick Hearn used to say). Not sure if Wilson's the answer for all these woes. But the offense just seems to sputter and flounder with the current starters.

    It was also good to see young Shumway snag 5 passes. I take back most of the bad things I was thinking about wideouts like him.

  • ArizonaUte SLC, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:09 p.m.

    @Maximus Meridius - Salt Lake City, UT

    When was the last time you saw TH, Sitake, Tuiaki et. al. out on the field? Throwing, catching, tackling, kicking, etc?

    And why exclude Grimes? His offense is currently ranked #125 in total offense and now #118 in scoring offense.

    @Common sense conservative - Herriman, UT

    Beating Wisc. may have been the worst thing that happened. The media jumped on that like white on rice. Harmon proclaimed it to be "the biggest win in program history". He still sites BYU as being "previously ranked #20", etc.

    But it was so early, you don't know much about either team. Take it as a good win and move forward.

    There are things to fix and they can get some of it righted. But they need to progress offensively. Teams have figured them out. There formation disguises and their, basically, 6 plays are on full display. And teams are ready for them.

    And Wilson isn't going to be the answer. Better to stick with Mangum this season.

  • Whoisthisreally slc, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 12:08 p.m.

    BYU's best qb is the 4th string running back. (Hoge)
    He has a strong arm, accurate short and deep.
    He is a great runner, a threat that BYU's up tempo offense could DEFFINATELY use. Think of a new wrinkle to the Jet Sweep.
    He makes good reads and decisions. Seems like a natural for Grimes up tempo offense.

    Grimes why can't you see this?

    Why has BYU struggled to get Bushman (Play Maker) involved. He is quick especially on the slants. Great hands. Find a way - Especially in the up tempo offense?

    Do these players not show up in practice? What is holding you back Grimes?

  • Pipes Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 11:31 a.m.

    What is BYU’s football identity? We as fans used to know what it was. There was a time when we knew that if we had the ball, we had a chance to score and win. Now, we just hope that the QB doesn’t throw the ball to the other team. This year has proven to be a repeat of last year. Not a fan of Sitake’s accomplishments thus far.

  • Idaho forever South Jordan, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 10:04 a.m.

    Mediocrity is just what it is..........

  • Common sense conservative Herriman, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 9:32 a.m.

    "Uhhh..we'll have to watch the film and evaluate where we're at.." this is the same broken record we heard after every listless performance in 2017. Ok so watch the film. Figure something out.. that's great. But then you need to actually DO something about it. Instead we go out the next week and have the same lifeless results, and coach repeats the mantra yet again "we'll have to watch the film and figure this out"....
    At this point it appears Wisconsin just completely overlooked us. And that is probably the worst thing that could have happened for our program.

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 8:18 a.m.

    Wilson needs a chance. He passes better and moved the ball.

  • blue & white Boise, ID
    Oct. 7, 2018 8:10 a.m.

    Coach said “We’re not playing our style of football and utilizing our strengths. We have an extra day to really evaluate all of it from top to bottom and get this thing right so we can start on Monday and get a game plan and get ready for the Hawaii game.” We should also look at a longer view of top to bottom strategy as well. As a very long time Y fan I wonder how much the GPA requirements affect recruiting. The U of U has 2.4 GPA minimum. The Y is north of 3.0. I wonder what the USU GPA is? Besides GPA criteria the Y has the most strict honor code which should not be altered to lower standards. I read a story about when Lou Holtz took the head coaching job at a struggling Notre Dame he told the president of ND he must have the GPA requirements lowered for student athletes to recruit better athletes. ND did lower the academic requirements and they were a successful football team. I wonder what the GPA requirements were when Lavell coached. It is very disturbing to think high GPA requirements only pertain to those who can live the honor code. There are good worthy student athletes available with a lower GPA. Consider lowering the GPA for athletes only not the whole school.

  • Maximus Meridius Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 8:05 a.m.

    Feel bad for the Coug players. They deserve better than this half baked effort from Holmoe, Sitake, and Tuiaki. Really sad. The problems aren't with the players guys.

  • LDSAZ Casa Grande, AZ
    Oct. 7, 2018 7:50 a.m.

    "BYU experiencing midseason identity crisis after blowout loss to Utah State"

    Again with the midseason crisis. It seems that every year they seem pretty good at times, but every year they get worse as the season progresses. I wonder if the great teams in college football have a better way to handle both games and practices between games. BYU doesn't get better once the season starts, and that's a problem.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    Oct. 7, 2018 7:22 a.m.


    "It was a big mistake letting Coach Mendenhall go."

    Letting him go? You guys chased him out of town!

    "It’s time to bring in a real coach. I’ll take coach Anderson from the U."

    You'll "take him"? And why would he ever consider managing that train wreck?

  • CougarForever Holladay, Utah
    Oct. 7, 2018 3:16 a.m.

    Too much euphoria after the win over Wisconsin and maybe too much despair after this loss. USU was dramatically better than expected.

    Mangum is not playing as poorly overall as many think (although I acknowledge that he made two costly errors). The demands that Wilson replace him are premature.

    I agree that getting back into the MWC would be a blessing, even if we sacrifice some revenue.

    Hawaii's FBS-leading QB is hurt and Hawaii barely got by Wyoming so I predict a win next week (and a resultant calming down of all the calls for wholesale change in coaches, starting QB, etc). Northern Illinois beat Ball State but it was not an impressive performance -- we should beat them here in a few weeks. Boise State looked horrible against San Diego State. I thought our game at Boise was virtually an assured loss but now I am not so sure. UMass just keeps losing -- another team we should beat. New Mexico State has no defense -- a guaranteed win. Utah looked surprisingly good against Stanford today so we will have to see how they do in subsequent games.

    An 8-4 finish still seems within reasonable reach. Let's not ignore the Arizona and Wisconsin wins as we lament the USU loss.

  • Gruncle Ralph Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 2:44 a.m.

    It was a big mistake letting Coach Mendenhall go.

    News flash! BYU didn't let Bronco go, Bronco left on his own accord. He always said right from the beginning that he figured he'd coach about 10 years at BYU. Well, he ended up coaching 11 years. It was the right time for him to move on and he found a nice gig in Virginia. Wish him the best but it was time for a change.

  • Gruncle Ralph Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 2:38 a.m.

    The best 3 minutes of the game was when Zach Wilson got a chance to play. He showed confidence and Poise and a spark of leadership that has been missing from the quarterback position for the past two years.

    Ben Criddle of ESPN 960 said that coaches are dictating to Tanner where he's supposed to throw on every play they call. If coaches don't trust Tanner to figure that out on his own why are they having him start and play the majority of snaps?

    I couldn't help but notice that Zach didn't under throw his receivers on every pass like Tanner does. I think we're ready for a change and that change should happen now

  • water rocket Magna, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 1:16 a.m.

    BYU was out coached, pure and simple.

  • ArizonaUte SLC, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 12:47 a.m.

    Actually, this is EXACTLY who BYU is.

    Beating Wisconsin was a fluke. They looked past BYU. They destroyed BYU in Provo the yr. prior, and BYU lost to Cal the week prior to the Wisc. game. And Wisconsin will show that they aren't great this yr. anyway. They struggled with New Mexico the week prior to playing BYU.

    BYU had, before this weekend, the #125 ranked total offense, #115 ranked scoring offense. That IS "who BYU is".

    14 of the points in the last two games were gifted to BYU with respectively :41 seconds left v. UW (otherwise it was a shut-out) and 1:15 left v. USU.

    BYU has scored 30 points (their high score this season) in ONLY one game and that was against FCS opponent McNeese State in Provo.

    BYU lost to Cal, who just lost to Arizona. Cal will be the #5 team in the PAC12 North. BYU had 4, 1st downs v. Cal in the second half of that game. All 4 came on BYU's last drive of the game. BYU is NOT good offensively.

    The BYU that showed up v. USU? That "is who BYU is". Even if it's not who you want to be.

  • Cougar Claws Lindon, UT
    Oct. 7, 2018 12:18 a.m.

    Okay, so, here is kind of the sad, confusing part about the outcome of this game.

    I watched all 4 quarters of the game from start to finish, like usual. No matter how one sided the game is either way, I watch all 4 quarters about 98 percent of the time.

    Tanner Mangum was actually one of the bright spots on the team last night. The defense didn't show up, and the run game was non-existent against the 100th ranked run defense in college football.


    I know Squally was hurt, but why didn't Katoa get help? Where were the other RBs? Why didn't they get some of the touches? Why didn't Riley Burt play some? Or even Spencer Hadley? He's looked good the few carries he's had. Burt has looked less than great, not sure why.

    Tanner Mangum made some bad mistakes and he's not stellar by any stretch, but he has some good strengths, believe it or not. He actually has some escapability, he has arm strength, his completion percentage is around 60 percent (good, not great), and about 80 percent of the time he makes good decisions and takes care of the football. Zach Wilson wouldn't have won us the game last night. Sorry, guys.

  • logical Meridian, ID
    Oct. 6, 2018 11:50 p.m.

    Sorry but I didn't watch or pay attention to the game. The only surprise was how big the difference was and that BYU got that many points. What's the problem? What's not the problem!

  • Rockarolla West Jordan, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 11:18 p.m.

    What the Heck just happened? I will agree that USU has a great team this year. They have been dominate. BYU is looking like just another poser. What happened to the team that beat Wisconsin. I thought that the Coogs just plain gave up last night. Mistake after mistake.
    Poor offensive play, even worse on defense, and the kicking game is a joke.
    Twice the Cougars have signed High School All American place kickers. One from Bingham High School and another from Wasatch High school. So far neither kicker had been able to live up to the Hype. This year is turning into a bigger joke that last year. May be time to start the coaching search. Maybe it would be a great idea to find an OC with some experience. Grimes is a line coach! What the heck is he doing running our offense? The Defense has been a joke the last 2 seeks. How long does the AD wait to make major changes?

  • DaveWY Afton, WY
    Oct. 6, 2018 9:34 p.m.

    For this diehard BYU fan, it was painful to watch. There some good moments, including seeing Wilson have some success. Congratulations to Utah State for playing an excellent game. The good news for the Cougars, this came on a weekend where there is plenty of other news dominating our attention.
    Time to move forward.

  • OC Fan Orange County, CA
    Oct. 6, 2018 9:21 p.m.

    How did this team beat the Badgers?

    Based on what we're seeing on the field, one can only imagine the disarray in the locker room, the coaches offices, and on the practice field.

    I'm a diehard who usually watches until the bitter end even when a loss looks likely, but I turned off the TV after the first half.

  • UtahBlueDevil Alpine, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 9:17 p.m.

    " I wonder if BYU can look at the academic requirements and find ways to help land great athletes. "

    That is not the problem recruiting good athletes. Notre Dame, Duke, Stanford, Vanderbilt, and many more have limitations on who they can recruit. The problem is not the academic issues - watching the Stanford Utah game right now, Stanford has either 6 or 8 kids from Utah playing for them... kids who choose to go out of state to play. They did not pick the Y, and it wasn't because BYU has higher academic standards than Stanford.

    I think the problem is exactly as the quote says.... "this is not who we are". Problem is it is exactly who the Y is right now. If I recall, BYUs last recuiting class was rated 70-somrthing in the nation.

    Players want to play for championships - if not national, at least conference. Players who care about winning aren't picking BYU. Eventually BYU will finalize what is most important. Independence or competitiveness. But they can't have both. I'm ok with either.

    I'll be a cougar fan regardless.

  • SameJersey Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 9:03 p.m.

    When is BYU going to realize that independency is a VERY short road to complete irrelevancy in college football?

    Look, this isn't a hate piece. It is a question of general concern. Independence has failed BYU. The Aggies were so much more athletic last night. No great recruits are going to want to play for a very mediocre independent team.

    Honestly, it isn't Sitake's fault -- nor is it Tanner Mangum's or Ty Detmer's. Ultimately, the Cougars have to start looking to the top of their athletic department and at their AD's office. I can understand why the Cougars wanted to try independency for maybe a couple of years. But the fact remains that no P5 conference is biting. Moreover, no P5 WILL bite now with the way the Cougars have played the last two seasons.

    Independency has worn out its welcome. It is time to go back to the Mountain West or find really ANY G5 conference to land in. At this point, BYU will not be able to beat the following in recruiting:

    1) Utah
    2) Colorado
    3) Utah State
    4) Boise State

    Honestly, BYU would be LUCKY to beat Air Force in recruiting.

    Holmoe has to go and BYU needs to get into a conference ASAP.

  • Strider303 American Fork, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 8:39 p.m.

    Don't know what's wrong but I sense it's broken and a pep talk won't cure it.

    Sometimes a situation is a manifestation of a problem somewhere else in the system.

    I don't think there should be any more talk of league this or that until the ship is sailing correctly. Right now it appears that things are adrift and somewhat rudderless.

  • MrDave2 Kapolei, HI
    Oct. 6, 2018 8:34 p.m.

    I believe we have seen enough. It’s time we start over. It’s time for Holmoe and Sitake to leave. It was a big mistake letting Coach Mendenhall go.
    It’s time to bring in a real coach. I’ll take coach Anderson from the U.

    The time has come the time is now. Mr. Holmoe will you please go now?!! Take Sitake with you.

  • CougarFeedback St. George, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 8:12 p.m.

    Kalani to do list:
    1. Rest the team. They are worn out from the Washington and USU games.
    2. Get more involved during the game as head coach like during the Arizona game. I am not Lavell Edwards, and I need to show more passion during the game.
    3. Don't let Jeff call any more passes on 4th and 1.
    4. Call a timeout on every 4th and 1 to motivate the offensive line and fullback to open a hole for any healthy running back.
    5. Tanner is looking shell shocked like last year. Time for Zach Wilson to play. He is a better passer. He has a better touch on his passes which is better for the receivers. He instills confidence in the rest of the team. He has no fear and is not afraid to improvise to make plays.
    6. Southam needs more practice and the backup kicker needs a chance.
    7. The defense needs more blitz packages.
    8. Be ready for UH because they will be ready for us.

  • CougarCat Tucson, AZ
    Oct. 6, 2018 8:07 p.m.

    I just finished watching the replay on BYUTV....or as much of it as I could stand.

    Some of the Ute fans describe the Cougs as the 3rd best team in Utah, which may or may not be true (we'll find out in Nov.) But the Aggies get my vote as the best in Utah. They went through the Cougs' D like a can opener through a tin can's lid.

    I read in the box score how Wilson got to play, and finally, to throw some passes in the 4th qtr. That's a good thing. For 3 quarters last night the Cougars had just about completely reverted to their punchless offense of 2017. Maybe I'll go back and watch the rest of the 4th qtr to see how he did.

  • fmalad Malad, ID
    Oct. 6, 2018 7:56 p.m.

    Last night we found out who the best team in the state is. Go aggies. It looks like another great in-state recruiting year for USU. BYU program is a perfect example of what happens when you aren't in a league. What are you playing for? Another trip to the vegas bowl!

  • CowboySky Green River, WY
    Oct. 6, 2018 7:35 p.m.

    Problems the Cougs can't seem to correct:
    1) No pass rush. In fact, it is awful. Good QBs will continue to blister Cougs. At least some blitzing needed.
    2) With Squally hobbled, weak running game...won't cut it
    3) Zone pass defense won't work when QBs gave 3-4 seconds to pass

    Hawaii, Boise State, Northern Illinois will kill Cougs with their excellent passing games.

    Cougs will win only 3 more games. Coach is on hot seat for sure.

  • steve24/7 Sandy, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 7:00 p.m.

    Identity crisis? Wouldn't we have to have an identity first in order to have an identity crisis?

  • cougar engineer Alpine, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 6:48 p.m.

    Mangum can't give what he does not have! However hard he works, he just does not have the skill to make up for his mistakes. He alternates occasional fire with horrendous mistakes that just takes the heart out of the team. They don't have the self discipline to recover from his mistakes.

  • opinion 47 SOUTH JORDAN, UT
    Oct. 6, 2018 5:57 p.m.

    Dear Coach Sitake,

    BYU Football is headed in the right direction. I wonder if BYU can look at the academic requirements and find ways to help land great athletes. Please be sure to thank Tanner for his efforts and replace him immediately with Wilson, who is the future of the program. Tanner has had his time, and it's time to usher in a new era at BYU.

    BYU Fan