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Men's Football Blog

BYU and Mississippi State tied after first quarter

Oct 14, 2016 - Posted by Sydney Jorgensen at 9:50 pm | Permalink

BYU and Mississippi State finished the first quarter tied 7-7 Saturday night in Provo.

Mississippi State scored the first touchdown of the night off a 44-yard pass from Nick Fitzgerald to Keith Mixon with 9:13 remaining on the clock.

BYU converted on the fourth down for the fifth time this year and this time, for a touchdown. Quarterback Taysom Hill capped off an eight-minute, 15-play scoring drive with a 1-yard touchdown caught by Hunter Marshall with 48 seconds left. Rhett Almond followed up with a successful PAT.

Hill led the team with 27 rushing yards while Jamaal Williams had 19. He is 44 yards away from becoming BYU’s career rushing leader.

Francis Bernard led the defense with four of the Cougars’ 12 tackles.

Jamaal Williams becomes BYU's career rushing leader

Oct 14, 2016 - Posted by Sydney Jorgensen at 7:03 pm | Updated: October 17, 2016 6:42 pm | Permalink

PROVO, Utah - BYU running back Jamaal Williams reached 3,468 yards in a double overtime game against Mississippi State Friday night, giving him the school record for career rushing yards.

The crowd honored him with a standing ovation and a special banner draped across the student section after a nine-yard run to set up BYU's first touchdown in overtime. The Cougars scored again in double overtime and stopped the Bulldogs on fourth down to seal the win.

Williams passed Harvey Unga for the most in BYU history. He finished the night with 26 carries and 76 yards against a stout Mississippi State run defense. 

Williams is having a banner year as a senior in 2016, with 942 rushing yards this season. He is No. 2 nationally in rushing yards.

The 6-foot-2, 220-pounder came to BYU as a 17-year old freshman in 2012 and broke every true freshman rushing record at BYU with 166 carries, 775 yards and 12 touchdowns. During his sophomore campaign he burst onto the national scene after being named a Doak Walker watch list honoree and finished the year with 1,233 yards and seven touchdowns on 217 carries.

His junior season was injury riddled but Williams still amassed 518 yards and four touchdowns in just seven games.

After missing the 2015 season, Williams returned in 2016 with the rushing record in his sights and already has four games of 160 rushing yards or more. He set another school record with 286 rushing yards in a single game against Toledo, breaking the old mark of 272 yards by Eldon Fortie that stood for over 50 years. He also scored five touchdowns in the game, tying another school record.

He has 14 career games of at least 100 rushing yards, one shy of the school record.

With five regular-season games remaining and a possible bowl game, Williams can top several other records at BYU including the single-season rushing mark set by Luke Staley in 2001 with 1,582 yards.

Traffic advisory for Friday's BYU football game

Oct 14, 2016 - Posted by at 5:16 pm | Updated: October 14, 2016 5:18 pm | Permalink

Advisory: Provo/Orem Transportation Improvement Project (TRIP) Update

Construction activities continue along University Parkway in Orem and Provo and 700 North in Provo. Motorists attending BYU Homecoming activities including the football game on Friday night are advised of the following travel impacts.

University Parkway, Provo/Orem

  • For those planning to attend the BYU home football game on Friday, Oct. 14, please take note that no on-street parking will be allowed along University Parkway on the diagonal in Provo. Crews will not be working during the game but construction barrels will remain in place. With increased traffic and construction in the area, please plan for extra travel time when traveling to the stadium. Alternate parking will be available at Plum Tree Plaza on the northeast side away from restaurants.
  • With increased traffic and construction in the area, public transit is a great option. The fastest route to the game will be via UTA shuttles from Frontrunner stations. Information about UTA’s BYU football discount pass is available at…/Get-a-Discounted-Pass-to-BYU-Football. Drivers are also advised that 700 North in Provo will be closed for utility work between 300 East and 500 East, with traffic detoured to 800 North and 600 North. 

700 North, Provo

  • The intersection of 700 East/700 North in Provo is expected to open by Friday, Oct. 14, at 4 p.m. for BYU’s homecoming weekend activities and then utility work will resume Monday, Oct. 17, through the rest of the week. To facilitate the work, the west leg of the intersection will be closed to all traffic, and north and southbound traffic through the intersection will be reduced to one lane from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Alternating one-way traffic will be directed by flaggers. Motorists should expect delays and are advised to use alternate routes when travel is time-sensitive.
  • The intersection of 700 North/400 East will be closed to all traffic beginning Friday, Oct. 14 and 700 N. will be closed to through traffic between 300 East and 500 East for about two weeks. Westbound traffic is detoured to 800 North and eastbound traffic is detoured to 600 North. Pedestrian access is maintained at intersections. To maintain public safety, pedestrians and bicyclists are asked to stay out of the roadway work zone and remain on the sidewalk and walkways at intersections.

Viewing Options: BYU vs. Mississippi State

Oct 14, 2016 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 11:33 am | Permalink

BYU will face off against Mississippi State at LaVell Edwards Stadium in a Homecoming matchup tonight at 8:15 p.m. MDT.

The game will be televised live nationally on ESPN. It will also be streamed online on or with the WatchESPN app.

Additionally, live television coverage on BYUtv will begin at 7 p.m. MDT with the one-hour pregame show, Countdown to Kickoff. Live postgame coverage on BYUtv will follow after the game.

Radio coverage of the game can be heard on the Cougar IMG Sports Network with the Voice of the Cougars Greg Wrubell. The broadcast begins with the pregame show at 7 p.m. MDT on KSL 1160 AM and 102.7 FM. It can also be found online at

Visit the gameday page for additional information on the matchup against Mississippi State.

Getting to Know: Andrew Eide and Phillip Amone

Oct 12, 2016 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 12:53 pm | Updated: October 12, 2016 1:29 pm | Permalink

Andrew Eide
Senior offensive lineman

I’m a graduate student in the master of public administration program. I was a psych major. I wanted to go into the human resources field and be able to work with businesses and PA programs. I had already done a semester of it at my old school before I transferred here and it opened up new possibilities in the finance world that I didn’t know existed for that kind of emphasis, and that’s why I wanted to be in this program.

Three things you did in the offseason
Lift weights, shoot guns and watch Netflix.

Favorite show on Netflix
Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy and Peaky Blinders

Favorite football memory
Last fall with Southern Utah, we won the Big Sky Conference championship. In high school I didn’t have much playoff experience because we only went to playoffs twice and won one game, so this was my first time winning a lot of games. Winning the Big Sky Conference championship has been my favorite memory so far, but I’m sure I’ll make more this year.

One thing people don’t know about you
I speak three languages: English, Portuguese and Spanish

Favorite sport
Basketball and mixed martial arts.

Phillip Amone
Sophomore linebacker

Why did you decide to come to BYU?
On my visit, it was just a great feeling. I had been to a couple different schools, and it was just a different feeling here; I knew I needed to come.

How long have you been playing football?
I have been playing since I was about 10 years old.

What is a favorite football memory from before college?
Probably when my high school team played in the state championship game. We didn’t win, but it was a great experience.

Do you have any pregame rituals?
I always listen to my music. I really just try and focus, replay the plays that I think I am going to be in, and try to imagine myself on the field at that time before the game actually starts.

What is your favorite part of game day?
Probably running out on to the field. Just feeling the energy that the crowd has.

What is your favorite sport besides football?
Basketball. I love volleyball too, but I think basketball. I played basketball and baseball in high school, too.

What is something that few people know about you?
I danced the fire knife. I did a lot of Polynesian dance when I was younger. I am a drummer as well. I used to have a garage band when I was younger and that was something really fun that we used to do. I don’t have a drum set out here, but every once in a while I’ll get to play a little bit.

What do you like to be doing when you are not playing football?
I am from Florida so I love the beach, hanging out with family, and enjoying good company.

What was the highlight of your offseason?
I just got married, so that was it.

What is your favorite thing about BYU besides football?
The brotherhood. We really get close and build relationships that would be difficult in other places. I am closest with Butch (Pau’u) and I just love the other linebackers.

If you could go the Olympics for any sport, what would it be?
If I could go for track, that means I’d be really fast, so that would be awesome. To be able to go and compete there and being considered the fastest in the world has to be one of the greatest things.

Williams, Empey receive weekly honors after win at Michigan State

Oct 11, 2016 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 12:29 pm | Updated: October 11, 2016 1:31 pm | Permalink

For the third-consecutive week, Jamaal Williams was named the Madness Independent Offensive Player of the Week after his performance at Michigan State on Saturday.

In the win over the Spartans, Williams rushed for 163 yards, which is his 14th-career 100-yard game and sixth with 150 or more. He reached the end zone twice, which is his third game with two or more touchdowns this year.

Army linebacker Andrew King was named the Madness Independent Defensive Player of the Week. The National Offensive and Defensive Player of the Week were Washington quarterback Jake Browning and Alabama Cornerback Minkah Fitzpatrick.

Additionally, for the second week in a row, Mike Empey was named the national offensive line coach of the week by The Cougars’ offensive line has received a lot of attention after three straight games of 200 or more rushing yards.

BYU will play Mississippi State on Friday in the Homecoming game at LaVell Edwards Stadium at 8:15 p.m. MDT.

Getting to Know: Adam Pulsipher and Tanner Balderree

Oct 05, 2016 - Posted by Kimberlie Haner at 10:17 am | Updated: October 5, 2016 10:22 am | Permalink

Adam Pulsipher
Sophomore linebacker

How did you spend your offseason?
We trained in the morning and I worked at Pelion, a venture capital up in Salt Lake. I started working for one of their portfolio companies, which is a drone company, and that was a blast.

What has been your favorite football memory?
The Nebraska game last year. That was the first game of my career and being on the opening kickoff in front of 95,000 fans in red and the way we ended was just unreal.

Other than the NFL, what would be your dream job?
After football, I want to work as a management consultant for Bain, BCG or MacKenzie and then go from there.

Thoughts on the new coaching staff?
They’re awesome. I love all the new staff. They just bring a great family atmosphere and you can tell they care. Great schemes. Football is football but you definitely feel that they are sincere and care for you.

If you’re not playing football, what are you doing?
I love sports so if I’m not playing sports, I’m watching sports. If I’m not playing football, I’m playing basketball with my wife Makenzi, who plays for BYU. We’ll go shoot or watch sports.

If you could play any Olympic sport, what would it be?
I watched rowing during the Olympics and I thought it was awesome.

What is the most embarrassing song on your iPod?
Mr. Mom, a country song by Lone Star. I love country.

Tanner Balderree
Junior tight end

How did you spend your offseason?
We just had a family reunion in Colorado so that was fun. We spent a week in Lake Powell. I went to a Real Salt Lake game with my wife.

What has been your favorite football memory?
It has to be the Nebraska game. I was in awe. It was the first time I had ever traveled for a game. That was the coolest, biggest stadium all season and they had the loudest and nicest fans. They were high-fiving us and telling us “good job” after the game and the way it ended. I will never forget that.

Outside the NFL, what is your dream job?
Eventually I want to get in to physical therapy. That’s what I’m working towards after I graduate and go to grad school.

What is the most embarrassing song on your iPod?
'Love Yourself' by Justin Bieber. I don’t advertise it, but I really do like that song.

What is something that people don’t know about you?
They don’t know I have two “r’s” and two “e’s” in my last name. People never spell it right. Thankfully they always get it right on my jersey. But really, I lived in England as a kid when I was five and six years old and I’ve toured France. I’ve been to most of the countries around there. Then I served my mission in England as well. So it was a full circle kind of thing. My dad worked for Ford and he was one of the lead designers. He got transferred to the London division to teach everyone how to design cars. Living there helped with my mission because I wasn’t as nervous.

BYU defeats Toledo in high-scoring nail-biter

Oct 01, 2016 - Posted by Caitlan Wrubell at 12:21 am | Permalink

BYU defeated Toledo by a score of 55-53 on Friday night in Provo.

Kicker Rhett Almond scored a field goal with two seconds remaining in the game to propel the Cougars to a two-point victory over the Rockets. Almond was 7 for 7 on PATs and 2 for 2 on field goals.

Squally Canada recorded his first touchdown as a BYU Cougar and gave his team a four-point lead over the Rockets, and Kai Nacua logged an interception for the Cougars that led to a Williams touchdown.

Jamaal Williams broke the BYU single-game record for rushing yards with 286 yards. He finished the game with five touchdowns. Tanner Balderree led the Cougars in receiving with three receptions for 62 yards.

The Cougars finished the game with 538 total yards of offense. 

BYU trails Toledo at end of third quarter

Sep 30, 2016 - Posted by Caitlan Wrubell at 11:12 pm | Permalink

The Cougars find themselves trailing the Rockets after the third quarter, 38-35.

Jamaal Williams logged two more touchdowns for the Cougars, one on a 48-yard rush and the second on a 62-yard rush. He totals 214 yards, only one yard short of his career-high of 215 yards at Nevada in 2013.  

Toledo’s two touchdowns both came off of passes from Logan Woodside to Jon’Vea Johnson. The Rockets’ field goal was scored by Jameson Vest. 

BYU and Toledo tied after one half

Sep 30, 2016 - Posted by Caitlan Wrubell at 10:10 pm | Permalink

The score is all tied up 21-21 at the end of the first half.

Linebackers Francis Bernard and Harvey Langi lead the Cougars with six total tackles each and Bernard has one sack. Linebacker Tomasi Laulile blocked a Toledo field goal attempt in the final minute of the half.

Punter Jonny Linehan kicked for a total of 220 yards and is averaging nearly 44 yards per punt.

Hill is 3 for 11 with 97 yards and one touchdown. Williams logged 92 rushing yards on 13 attempts and two touchdowns.