Mid year report card on BYU football

"The BYU passing game is an utter mess
There are a lot of problems with the Cougars’ passing attack right now. Firstly, Taysom Hill is bad passer. I’m done with all the excuses, let’s call a spade a spade. He’s a bad passer. He struggles to find a rhythm, he’s slow making reads, he’s inaccurate and he’s unbelievably streaky.
At the half against the Rockets Hill completed 3-11 passes for 97 yards. One of those was a 75-yard touchdown pass to Jonah Trinnaman. Take that away and Hill was 2-10 for 22 yards.
Okay, we all on the same page now? Good.
Now the other stuff.
The offensive line really struggles to sustain blocks, all the way around. Some get beat with bull rushes, other times its speed. Regardless of who lines up across from them, they just can’t create a pocket with any consistency.
On top of that, the receivers can’t get open against man coverage. Even against below average athletes they can’t separate. I don’t know how much of that is on the receivers vs Ben Cahoon, but regardless, 70 percent of the time they can’t get open.
When they do get open, Hill can’t get them the ball.
At this point, this offense is so one dimensional that it’s borderline painful to watch. "

The writer goes on to say, “How we going to feel about the year after 3 straight losses in the next 3 weeks”?
@ MS, MST at home, @ BSU.

I think BYU gets the Miss ST game here but we will still be wondering what things would be like if Tanner was the signal caller.

First, you can’t take away the 76 yard pass, it was a thing of beauty that gave us 7 points. Also, in the 2nd half, he threw 8 for 10 and some pinpoint beautiful passes.
As for the blocking, was good enough for Williams to run for 284 yards and 55 points. So, I have to completely disagree with your analysis of the offense.
The defense is where there needs to be change. Especially pass defense and tackling.

At this point in the season, I don’t see Tanner getting a shot unless Taysom gets hurt. Sitaki made a point of complimenting Taysom on his play. He gave Taysom credit for making nice adjustments at the line that helped the offense. I agree with you that Tanner is the better passer but the coaches feel Taysom is settling in and progressing each game. I don’t see anyone giving BYU much hope against MSU. Utah State gave BSU about all they could handle for much of their game although Boise is currently leading by 21-10. BYU could have a chance against BSU. One of the things that hurt the BYU defense last night was the number of injuries to key players. I don’t know how quickly we’ll get back Butch Pau’u Travis Tuiloma, and Troy Warner but our defense is better with all those guys suiting up. If our defense plays tough, Taysom may be able to get the job done. Credit Taysom for taking care of the ball yesterday–no interceptions.


I agree with you. If our defense can learn to tackle effectively and they can unlearn the unsafe targeting tackles that are no longer legal, we may be able to win a few more games. The fact that even after two of our players were removed for targeting in a prior game and it is still happening makes me wonder if the coaches are not making corrections between games or the players are not listening to them. There needs to be some changes in our defense ASAP.

Indiana beat MSU. We can win that game too.
Second half Taysom was 8-10. Pretty good complement to Williams. Taysom didn’t run until the 6 minute mark of the 3rd quarter.
The challenge now is our defense and if they can improve.

Yes, stat picking can be misleading. Taysom had a very bad first half except for that one pass. He had a great 2nd half (8/10 151 0/0). Those are outstanding numbers and he hit a number of nice passes in that half. That is the Taysom that I hope we start seeing more of in the remaining games.

Those who say he can’t pass simply don’t want to admit he threw some beautiful passes. Except for a poor 2nd Quarter, he ran a great offense. The 1st quarter was also very good. He didn’t need to pass much as Williams was so good and we scored 21 points.
I guess putting up 55 points isn’t enough for some.

Detmer basically required Hill to just manage the game. The run game was mostly featured and it really wasn’t until the end that Detmer relied on Hill’s arm. What will happen if Detmer has to rely on Hill’s arm the whole game? That’s the real test. But, credit Hill for doing a fine job of managing the game…no interceptions, making good adjustments at the line, going 8 for 10 in the second half. Let’s just hope we can rely on our running game to carry the offense going forward. By the way, Hill says his foot aches after games. We’ve seen that he still isn’t back to where he was so maybe the Toledo game showed us about what he is capable of doing for now.

that’s the entire point, Glenn. Before the season started, I have hoped that when Hill said he was coming back we would see a guy that had worked on his weaknesses during all that “free time”. I was hoping that BYU would show the world that we are P5 worthy and that the big 12 are fools to consider anybody else. Instead we got out of the national conversation in a real hurry. We got a “rusty” Hill, who could not make a throw as if his life depended on it for about the 1st 4 games. Now he is hitting some throws and winning games but it is all too late and we have little to hope for moving forward. Such is the nature of being Independent.

These teams on our so called “tough schedule” are not helping at all…

Now with MSU in sight, they are sitting at 2-2 having lost to lowly Indiana and their national appeal has evaporated like the Salton Sea. Everyone on our schedule is stinking it up royally except BSU and their patsy schedule.

Having to travel to play quality P5 teams, against bias referees is getting old. We need to land in a conference fast or we will continue to feel this way in October for years to come.

Your rants are getting old. We lost by a total of 7 points in those 3 losses. I put the reason square on the backs of the coaches decisions not to kick extra points and to not run a hurry up offense for this year. We could have easily been 5-0 and your rants would easily be laughable.
Hill was 61% completions going into the game. His problem was the interception decisions on a couple of them. The other others were because of terrible efforts by the receivers.
His foot will be sore for a year or more. The nature of foot injuries.
The key to this game will be defense and if we can stop the pass. Also, MSU’s defense team speed is better than Toledo. Don’t expect Williams to run away from their defense.

Nobody should be surprised at a 2-3 record. Disappointing yes but not terribly surprising. I was hoping they would be at least 3-2 at this point and would have been thrilled at 4-1. If they can go anywhere from 7-5 to 9-3 and a bowl win it will have been a successful season. Six and six will be disappointing but not surprising and no cause for panic.

The good news is that every single remaining game is winnable. There doesn’t appear to be a game left where any team is any better than several of the ones BYU has already played. BYU has played good teams every week. All games have been very competitive and the record could be anywhere from 0-5 to 4-1. UCLA wasn’t as much in doubt as the score would indicate. When you are down 17-7 and score with 37 seconds left the odds are still really long on winning. You have to recover an onside kick, which more often than not isn’t done, and then go up to 60 yards in about 30 seconds and the odds of that aren’t good either. The Utah, West Virginia games are the ones that could have easily been won.

There will always be negativity on boards like this. Everybody has their opinions. Hill is inconsistent as a passer but I think as the season goes on he will continue to get better. The idea that he had tons of time to work on his weaknesses is non-sense. It is fortunate he healed well enough to be playing as well as he is lisfranc injuries are often career ending injuries.

Sitaki had closed practices during Fall camp so we didn’t really get to weigh-in on the QB battle. My personal opinion is that Taysom won based on his history at BYU, his leadership, and his loyalty to the program. The only way they would have gone with Tanner was if Taysom was not fully recovered. I would like to see Tanner play in this new offense if nothing else, just to see if he is as good as I remembered. But, the coaches made their decision and committed to Hill. At this point, he seems to be progressing and I just don’t see a way they would make a QB change unless Hill got hurt. Hill has a huge test this week with MSU. Their strength is their ability to stop the run. Detmer is going to have to feature Taysom’s arm this week. Is he ready for the pressure and the challenge? I hope he can just play heady and protect the ball. We shouldn’t have to score more than 28 pts to win since the MSU offense is struggling right now. Let’s hope the defense shows up this week!

If you who watched the Mish-Wisc game this past week, be prepared to see more of the same in our game against MSU.
When MSU shuts down our run (and they will), BYU will have to take to the air and we will see of Hill can make throws. This week we will be seeing 4 and 5 star athletes vs; the 2 and 3 star athletes we saw against Toledo. Hill torched them, he was a step faster, Williams, 2 steps faster and our receivers could get open and find space. We will see on Sat. if they can create space against faster athletes. I do not believe that we can.

I am not worried about our defense so much. That Woodside kid is an NFL talent and for him to throw over 5 hundred yards and 5 TDs on a pretty good BYU defense shows it. In the end, BYU’s conditioning won the day. To say that BYU’s offense has rounded the corner because we scored 55 points is naive, in my eyes all we did was play an below average defense. Our defense matches up fairly well with MSU’s offense so I see this game as who ever can get to 20 points wins.

Lost in all our discussions is the fact that BYU cannot create space in scoring and that all of our wins have been last second field goals. Not something to crow about. As Reed points out, Hill is improving, and he certainly gave us all something to smile about in the Toledo game but now we are back to facing 3 teams in a row with P5 talent and better than average defenses.

Yes, the Woodside kid was amazing. I am hoping that Tanner can be that good in the next year or two. Our game with MSU will be tough. The throwing windows will be small. I hope Detmer can get Taysom to just protect the ball and be patient. I said 28 pts but you are probably right that 20pts will be enough. Johnny Linehan will be key in field position battle. Will we fare better than we did against Utah and UCLA? I hope so. I am not expecting an explosive offense against this defense but I am hoping our recent success will give our guys enough confidence to put up a few more points than they would have a few games ago.

Agreed about his time to throw the ball better. He had to wait until he was to the point of actually able to play at a high level to practice properly throwing the ball. Skills are specific to the task and this means throwing the ball with a good foot is necessary to practicing properly.
My opinion on UCLA and the other losses is simply the offense should have been a more hurry up from the beginning.

MSU is not the same team as Michigan University. So, why the look at The Michigan-Wisconsin game? MSU played Indiana. I know it must be confusing to some :wink:
55 points was impressive. Toledo has played well this year. We were lucky and our defense not good at all.

Great post Fish. If we struggle to beat a MAC team what will we do against Michigan State and others?

Well, well, I am with you GH.

BYU needs more than rushing to beat Michigan State. I watched the Wisconsin-MSU game and Wisconsin beat them with great defense and taking advantage of offensive opportunities.

He always writes contradictions in his post. So, not a great post.