Men's Football Blog

Nacua named Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week

Sep 16, 2015 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 8:39 am | Updated: September 22, 2015 12:47 pm | Permalink

OKLAHOMA CITY – Junior defensive back Kai Nacua was named the Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week for week two after recording three interceptions, including a game-sealing pick-six to help lead BYU past No. 20 Boise State, 35-24.

With his three interceptions, Nacua tied the BYU record for most interceptions in a single game. One interception prevented a touchdown for the Broncos and another was the 50-yard pick-six that sealed the Cougar win.

Nacua recorded five tackles in BYU’s win against Boise State to go along with his 76 return yards from his interceptions, which is the second most for a BYU player in a game since 2000.

Nacua earns Madness National Defensive Player of the Week

Sep 14, 2015 - Posted by McKay Perry at 11:51 am | Updated: September 14, 2015 11:52 am | Permalink

PROVO, Utah– Junior defensive back Kai Nacua was named the National and Independent Defensive Player of the Week by College Sports Madness for his performance in the 35-24 BYU win over Boise State.

Nacua tied the BYU record for most interceptions in a single game with three as he sealed the home-opening win with an interception return for a touchdown in the final minute of the victory over the Broncos. His three picks reached the mark set most recently in 2000 by Tyson Smith against Wyoming.

In addition to his five tackles and three interceptions, Nacua recorded 76 interception return yards for the second most for a BYU player in a game since 2000. Only defensive statistics since 2000 are officially recognized by the NCAA. 

BYU wins nail biter against No. 20 Boise State, 35-24

Sep 12, 2015 - Posted by Joe Moxon at 11:47 pm | Updated: September 12, 2015 11:49 pm | Permalink

A well-placed punt early in the fourth quarter put Boise State on its own two-yard line before Kai Nacua picked off a pass for the second time of the night. After a touchdown pass was called back due to an offensive pass interference, Algernon Brown rushed twice for 21 yards, advancing the ball to the 1-yard line.

After a Boise State personal foul on one play and a defensive pass interference on the next, it was first down and inches for Tanner Mangum to rush for a touchdown, bringing the score to 24-21, Broncos still leading.

Following a 29-yard drive, the Cougars were in a fourth-and-seven situation with 45 seconds on the clock when Tanner Mangum launched a high 36-yard touchdown pass to Mitchell Juergens, giving BYU the first lead since the opening drive of the game, 28-24.

Nacua made his third interception of the night, tying a BYU record and returning the pick for a touchdown bringing the final score to 35-24, BYU over Boise State.

Broncos up 24-14 after the third quarter

Sep 12, 2015 - Posted by Joe Moxon at 10:54 pm | Permalink

After being shaken up early in the series, Boise State’s Jeremy McNichols scored the first points of the second half with a 3-yard run up the middle after an 11-play, 59-yard drive, giving the Broncos a two-score lead.

A 70-yard bomb to Devon Blackmon flipped the field position for the Cougars, and a 21-yard rushing touchdown from Adam Hine put BYU back on the board, tailing Boise State 17-14 with 4:32 to go in the quarter.

Boise State returned fire when McNichols caught another touchdown pass on a 6-play, 86-yard drive, bringing the Broncos to a 24-14 lead with 2:03 to go at the end of the quarter.

Boise State leads BYU 10-7 after the first half

Sep 12, 2015 - Posted by Joe Moxon at 9:56 pm | Permalink

On the first series of the quarter, Broncos corner back Dante Deayan picked off a pass up the middle, deep in Cougar territory, but an illegal block during the return moved the Broncos back to the 38-yard line. After a loss on a run, a sack by Harvey Langi and an incomplete pass, the Broncos were forced to punt.

After a back-and-forth field position battle, the Broncos scored the only points of the quarter on a 31-yard field goal on the last play of the half. 

Cougars and Broncos tied 7-7 at the end of the first quarter

Sep 12, 2015 - Posted by Joe Moxon at 9:09 pm | Updated: September 12, 2015 9:16 pm | Permalink

After a sack and an incomplete pass in the first two plays of the game, freshman quarterback Tanner Mangum launched an 84-yard touchdown pass to Mitchell Juergens for the first score of the game.

Boise State failed to answer with its own series, going three and out with a 41-yard punt and giving the Cougars great field position to start their second drive on their own 45-yard line. Another long bomb from Mangum, this time intended for Nick Kurtz, resulted in an interception.

The Broncos’ first successful drive for points included a combination of passes and quarterback keepers, culminating in a pair of runs from Jeremy McNichols.

After a 69-yard Boise State completion, Kai Nacua intercepted a second long pass on the Cougars’ 1-yard line. 

Viewing options for Boise State vs. BYU

Sep 12, 2015 - Posted by McKay Perry at 1:22 pm | Updated: September 12, 2015 1:57 pm | Permalink

ESPN2 will broadcast Saturday's BYU vs. Boise State game, with kickoff sheduled for 8:21 p.m. MDT. A live video stream is also available on WatchESPN.

For live radio coverage with Greg Wrubell, tune in to the Cougar IMG Sports Network, KSL 1160 AM or 102.7 FM, and the BYU Cougars app. Coverage begins at 6 p.m. MDT.

BYUtv will broadcast its Countdown to Kickoff show starting at 7 p.m. MDT. The postgame show is broadcast until 30 minutes after the game. The shows can be streamed live at BYUtv will also rebroadcast the game starting at 12:30 a.m. MDT on Sunday.

Follow @BYUCougars on Twitter and the BYU Football Facebook page for updates and photos during the game. Join the conversation using #BOISEvsBYU. 

Getting to Know: Nick Kurtz and Tanner Mangum

Sep 11, 2015 - Posted by McKay Perry at 12:53 pm | Updated: September 14, 2015 2:44 pm | Permalink

Nick Kurtz

Redshirt Junior
Wide Receiver

Major: Business

Stadiums looking forward to playing in: LaVell Edwards Stadium

Other sports you enjoy: Basketball, attempts to play golf

Favorite pro athlete: LeBron James

Favorite actor: Will Smith

Walk-up music like in baseball: Miami Heat Intro with Lebron James

Favorite food: Machaca burrito

Three things you did in the offseason: Worked out, slept and played golf

Who do you look up to?: Other professional athletes in any sport or those who are ahead of me because I know they’ve been through a lot to get there

Nicknames from the team: Nicky, Kurtzy

Pre-game rituals: Listen to slow jams- Boys 2 Men

Favorite football memory: Second junior college game–scored three touchdowns after having to take a year off after high school

Tanner Mangum


Major: Business Marketing

Stadiums looking forward to playing in: Big House and LaVell Edwards Stadium

One thing people don’t know about you: Played the cello (5 years) and did choir in high school

Other sports you enjoy: Basketball, baseball, tennis, golf, volleyball and skiing

Favorite pro athlete: Tom Brady

Favorite movie: Ocean's 11, 12 and 13

Favorite actor: Mark Wahlberg in Italian Job and Invincible

Walk-up song like in baseball: Polaroid by Imagine Dragons 

Favorite food: Grilled salmon with fettuccini alfredo 

Three things you did in the offseason: Watched a lot of film, played golf and spent time with family

Who do you look up to?: Oldest brother Parker- has been role model and I've followed in his footsteps. First year of my flag football was Parker’s senior year of high school and he was the star quarterback so I wanted to be quarterback too. Since then, I've followed in his footsteps.

Nicknames from the team:  “Mangum” with a Spanish accent from Mitch Mathews (both went to Spanish speaking missions)

Pre-game rituals: Listens to soothing, calming music like Jack Johnson or Coldplay–something mellow to keep calm 

Favorite football memory: Being able to suit up in Cougar blue and play in the spring game before my mission. Scored a touchdown in LaVell Edwards Stadium during the game.

Other things: Enjoys speaking Spanish

BYU’s Tanner Mangum to be Featured on ESPN SportsCenter Tonight

Sep 08, 2015 - Posted by at 3:36 pm | Updated: September 8, 2015 3:55 pm | Permalink
BYU quarterback Tanner Mangum will be featured on Tuesday night’s editions of ESPN SportsCenter as the “SC Campus Hero” for Week 1 of the college football season.
ESPN reporter Jeannine Edwards traveled to BYU's campus to take a look at a day in the life of Mangum just days removed from his “Hail Mary” pass to wide reciever Mitch Mathews to beat Nebraska. The freshman is celebrating his 22nd birthday today. He and Mathews share their perspective on BYU's winning play.
The feature will debut in the 6 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter and re-air in other editions of the program throughout the evening.