Men's Football Blog

BYU and Boise State to play Thursday, Sept. 20 on ESPN

May 03, 2012 - Posted by Brett Pyne at 6:57 pm | Updated: May 3, 2012 7:01 pm | Permalink

BYU’s 2012 football schedule has changed.

The BYU vs. Boise State game in Boise, Idaho, originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 22, will now be played on Thursday, Sept. 20. The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN. The kick time for the game will be announced at a later date.

The television announcement for the game reflects the Mountain West’s new agreement with CBS Sports Network intended to increase national exposure for MW programs. In the release of its football national television schedule on Thursday, the league announced that CBS Sports Network, the Conference's rights holder, will sub-license some games to NBC Sports Network and ESPN.

The Cougars will play the Broncos in one of four Mountain West home games featured on either ESPN or ESPN2 in 2012.

Putnam Invited to Green Bay Minicamp

May 01, 2012 - Posted by Brett Pyne at 3:59 pm | Updated: May 1, 2012 4:02 pm | Permalink

The Green Bay Packers have invited former BYU defensive lineman Matt Putnam to their minicamp starting May 11. Putnam has not signed a free agent contract with the team but will go to the three-day minicamp seeking the chance to join the Packers’ preseason camp this summer.

The 6-foot-6, 298-pound native of Brigham City, Utah, recorded 70 tackles, including 11 tackles-for-loss and five sacks, while helping BYU achieve a 38-14 record from 2008-2011, including three bowl victories. BYU's defense ranked No. 24 (2010) and No. 13 (2011) in the nation the past two seasons. Utilizing his large frame, Putnam added one interception and 13 pass breakups as a defensive end for the Cougars. 

The most recent collective bargaining agreement increased the number of NFL offseason roster spots by 10, allowing teams to expand their preseason camp rosters to 90.

Putnam was a two-time all-state honoree and Region 4 Defensive Most Valuable Player out of Box Elder High School prior to his college career at BYU.

BYU's McKay Jacobson Becomes Fourth Cougar to Ink NFL Free Agent Deal

Apr 29, 2012 - Posted by Brett Pyne at 6:09 pm | Permalink

BYU wide receiver McKay Jacobson signed as a free agent with the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. Four BYU football players from the 2011 team have signed free-agent contracts with NFL teams since the league’s annual draft concluded Saturday night. 

A 5-foot-11, 193-pound wide receiver, Jacobson was a four-year standout for the Cougars while making 113 catches for 1,836 yards and nine touchdowns. The Southlake, Texas, native averaged 16.2 yards per catch while also averaging 18.6 yards as a kick returner and 13.7 yards as a punt returner during his BYU career. 

Saturday night, offensive tackle Matt Reynolds signed with the Carolina Panthers, while fellow offensive linemanTerence Brown inked a deal with the Miami Dolphins and defensive lineman Hebron Fangupo signed with the Houston Texans.

A 6-foot-5, 305-pound offensive tackle, Reynolds is a two-time team captain who started all 52 games of his BYU career. As a senior, the Provo, Utah, native was an Outland Trophy Watch List honoree, Lombardi Award Candidate and Lowe’s Senior Class Award Nominee, ESPN.com All-Bowl Team and was invited to the East-West Shrine Game. He was named to the FBS All-Independent Team, Yahoo! Sports All-Independent Team and Phil Steele All-Independent First Team.

A 6-foot-4, 305-pound center/guard, Brown was a four-year letterwinner and three-year starter for the Cougars playing both guard and center. The Summerville, S.C., native was on the Rimington Trophy Watch List as a senior while helping BYU to a 10-3 season and No. 25 final national ranking. The Cougars won bowl games each of Brown’s three years as a starter.

A 6-foot-1, 323-pound defensive lineman, Fangupo became a force on the BYU defensive unit that finished the 2011 season ranked No. 13 in total defense. From Santa Ana, Calif., Fangupo was named to the Phil Steele All-Independent Second Team and was an FBS All-Independent team honorable mention. A transfer from USC, Fangupo totaled 26 tackles with six tackles for loss, three quarterback hurries and two pass breakups in his one season at BYU.

Having signed as free agents, the players will take part in the upcoming team mini-camps and also participate in summer camps, looking to make their respective team's final roster. Additional signings could still be announced.

Game Date Announced for 2012 Poinsettia Bowl

Apr 11, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 12:59 pm | Updated: April 11, 2012 1:08 pm | Permalink

For Cougar fans planning ahead for the 2012 bowl season, here is a release from the folks at the Poinsettia Bowl, detailing game dates and kickoff times:

San Diego Bowl Game Association officials announced today the 2012 kickoff dates and times for the local bowl games - the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl and Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl.
 
Bowl season gets underway in San Diego on Thursday, December 20th at 5 p.m. PT with the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl.  The 8th annual contest will match a team from the Mountain West against a bowl-eligible Brigham Young University.
 
One week later the 35th annual Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl will kick off at 6:45 p.m. PT on Thursday, December 27th.  Teams from the Pac-12 and Big 12 will square off for the 14th consecutive year.
 
Both games will be played at Qualcomm Stadium and be televised nationally on ESPN.
 
“We look forward to bringing thousands of football fans to town yet again and filling hotel rooms during San Diego’s two slowest tourism weeks of the year,” said John Wertz, president of the 2012 non-profit bowl games association.  “We are proud of the considerable benefit we provide our community year after year.”
 
The mission of the two bowl games is to generate tourism, exposure, economic benefit and civic pride for San Diego and its citizens by producing the nation’s most exciting bowl games and festivals of events.
 
For more information, visit www.BridgepointEducationHolidayBowl.com and www.PoinsettiaBowl.com

Pro Day 2012

Mar 29, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 3:03 pm | Updated: March 29, 2012 3:54 pm | Permalink

PROVO, Utah (Mar. 29, 2012) - Ten former Cougars worked out and showcased their skills for NFL scouts at BYU's annual Pro Day on Thursday afternoon.

Offensive linemen Matt Reynolds and Terence Brown, defensive linemen Hebron Fangupo and Matt Putnam, defensive backs Corby Eason and Travis Uale, linebackers Jordan Pendleton and Jameson Frazier, wide receiver McKay Jacobson and running back JJ Di Luigi lifted, jumped, ran and went through multiple drills for over 15 NFL scouts.

Friends, family and former teammates looked on as the 10 former Cougar standouts, along with other selected athletes participating, went to the weight room to be measured and tested in the vertical jump and the bench press. Following work in the weight room, the athletes moved over to the Indoor Practice Facility to run the 40-yard dash and participate in various drills.

After the 40 times were recorded and shuttle drills completed, players broke up into position groups to catch passes and demonstrate technique at their respective positions. Some of the passes were thrown by former BYU quarterback Max Hall.

The 2012 NFL Draft will take place on Apr. 26-28 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

Recap of Fangupo, Reynolds at the NFL Scouting Combine

Feb 29, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 12:47 pm | Permalink

BYU had two players invited to the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine which wrapped up this week, defensive lineman Hebron Fangupo and offensive lineman Matt Reynolds.

Over 300 participants worked out for scouts and coaches in preparation for the 2012 NFL Draft in hopes to improve their draft stock and impress different teams. Players were also measured, timed and tested in various aspects of the game.

Fangupo measured in at an official 6-foot-1 and 323 pounds. Listed as a defensive tackle, draft evaluators mentioned Fangupo lacked some athleticism and footwork but marveled at his strength, going on to say "his strength is evident, as it looks like he is able to occupy two blockers with absolute ease at times. Strength is his whole game and will define his value and effectiveness at the next level."

The California native put up impressive numbers in the 225-pound bench press with 36 reps, second among all defensive lineman  and third overall. He had a verticlal jump of 31.5'', good for seventh among all the defensive tackles. Fangupo turned in a 40-yard dash time of 5.18 seconds, broad jump of 8'3'', 20-yard shuttle time of 4.62 seconds and 3-cone drill time of 7.94 seconds.

Reynolds only participated in two drills at the combine, the 40-yard dash and the bench press and will show off more skills at Pro Day coming up soon. He measured in at 6-foot-5 and 302 pounds and was praised for his run blocking skills by evaluators. Combine experts said this about Reynolds, "shows power when run-blocking and is able to snap off the line of scrimmage into his man quickly and leg drive sufficiently to keep his man occupied. He has decent athletic ability but is able to get up field nicely and position on linebackers."

A four-year starter at BYU, Reynolds ran the 40 in a time of 5.37 seconds and put up 25 reps on the bench. His 40 time puts him at 26th among offensive lineman and 24th in the bench press. Reynolds overall grade of 64.0 ranks him at No. 24 among 54 offensive lineman participating at the combine.

Several of BYU's graduating seniors will showcase their talents for NFL scouts and experts at BYU's Pro Day coming up in March.

 

No Stars, No Problem

Feb 21, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 4:58 pm | Updated: February 22, 2012 10:53 am | Permalink

Inspired by SI.com's recent article on "two-star" players that are making noise in college football, we'll take a look at BYU's history with two-star or fewer athletes.

The article gave the nod to Riley Nelson and Cody Hoffman as two of the best two-star players heading into 2012. These are some other Cougar greats over the last 10 years who were two stars or fewer and ended up being better than their star-rating led on.

Max Hall
Hall led BYU to a 32-7 record, becoming BYU's winningest quarterback of all time. Hall transferred from Arizona State and racked up three consecutive 3,500-yard seasons, finishing his career with more completions (903), passing yards (11,365) and touchdowns (94) than any other Cougar signal caller not named Ty Detmer.

Dennis Pitta
Pitta wasn't even given a star-rating and walked on at BYU. The once lanky receiver bulked up and transformed himself into arguably one of the best pass-catching tight ends in NCAA history. Growing into a 6-foot-5, 247-pound consensus All-American, Pitta left BYU as the career leader in receptions (221) and third in receiving yards (2,901). He holds the NCAA record for most yards gained by a tight end.

Andrew George
The other half of what might be thought of as the best tight-end tandem in BYU history and one of the best in the NCAA is George. While his numbers weren't as prolific as Pitta, the near-identical 6-foot-5, 251-pound George was every bit as capable and will long be remembered for catching the game-winning touchdown in overtime against Utah in 2009.

Jordan Pendleton
Though often injury riddled, Pendleton was one of BYU's most ferocious defenders in recent memory. Originally coming in as a hard hitting safety, Pendleton grew into a fearsome outside linebacker and at 6-foot-3 and 238 pounds had a rare combination of size and speed. He burst onto the scene in BYU's 14-13 win over No. 3 Oklahoma in 2009 and had his best season as a sophomore.

Harvey Unga
In just three years, Unga became BYU's career leader in rushing yards with 3,455 on 696 attempts. As a freshman, Unga tallied 1,227 yards, a freshman record. Unga had three-straight 1,000 yard seasons and is one of only nine players to rush for at least 1,000 yards and have 1,000 yards receiving for a career.

Jan Jorgensen
Jorgensen played four-straight years for BYU and started all 52 games of his career, tied for a school record, helping the Cougars to a 43-9 record over that span. He set the Mountain West Conference record for career sacks and is second in school history.

Bryan Kehl
Currently an NFL player, Kehl was one of the most athletic Cougars to date. Kehl made plays all over the field for BYU and was an all-conference player in 2006 and 2007. He was drafted in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the New York Giants.

Curtis Brown
Brown is currently BYU's career leader in all-purpose yards (4,996) and was the first Cougar to put together back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons on the ground. Brown became the school's career leader in rushing yards before Unga broke the record a few years later.

Jonny Harline
A first-team All-American by The Sporting News, ESPN, College Football News, CBSSportline and SI.com, Harline came from Ricks College and in two years caught 121 passes for 1,742 yards and 17 touchdowns. He is 20th on BYU's career receiving yards list and has a place in Cougar history for catching the game-winning touchdown from his knees to beat Utah in 2006.

*ratings based off of both Rivals.com and Scout.com

Reynolds, Fangupo invited to NFL Scouting Combine

Feb 09, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 1:38 pm | Permalink

Offensive lineman Matt Reynolds and defensive lineman Hebron Fangupo have been invited to the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine held Feb. 22-28 in Indianapolis.

Over 300 players were invited to the combine and all 32 NFL teams will be represented by coaches and scouts to evaluate potential draft picks. In 2011, BYU did not have any players invited to the combine but had three in both 2010 and 2009.

Reynolds, a 6-foot-6, 305-pounder played and started all 52 games of his BYU career. After deciding to return for his senior season, Reynolds was named team captain for a second time and was awarded numerous preseason honors (Outland Trophy Watch List, Lombardi Award Candidate, Lowe's Senior Class Award Nominee). Reynolds finished the season on the Phil Steele All-Independent First Team, Yahoo! Sports All-Independent Team, FBS All-Independent Team and was invited to East-West Shrine Game.

Fans will remember one of Reynolds most recent plays from the 2011 Armed Forces Bowl. After losing his helmet blocking earlier in the play, an unprotected Reynolds ran after a Tulsa defensive lineman chasing quarterback Riley Nelson, pancaking him to the ground, springing Nelson to make a touchdown throw across the field to Cody Hoffman, helping BYU to a 24-21 victory.

The Provo native was also named a freshman All-American by the Football Writers Association of America, Rivals.com, College Football News.com and Sports News. As a sophomore he was part of the College Football News All-Sophomore First Team and as a junior was named Phil Steele All-MWC First Team.

Fangupo, a 6-foot-1, 331-pound transfer from USC helped BYU to another 10-win season and was part of a No. 14 overall defense (312.9 yards allowed per game) and No. 19 in rushing yards allowed (112.08) ypg). Fangupo spent the 2009 and 2010 seasons with the Trojans before deciding to come to BYU for his senior year where he made an immediate impact, playing in all 13 games and starting 10.

Known as the strongest player on the squad, Fangupo is also versitale enough to play both nose tackle and defensive end, where he spent most of the 2011 season. He totaled 26 tackles, including six tackles for loss, good for third-best on the team.

Fangupo was named to the Phil Steele All-Independent Second Team and was an FBS All-Independent Honorable Mention.

To see the full list of invitees for the 2012 Combine CLICK HERE.

Hoffman named potential breakout player by ESPN.com

Feb 09, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 12:56 pm | Permalink

After putting together an impressive sophomore campaign, wide receiver Cody Hoffman was recently recognized as No. 2 on ESPN.com's list of top five potential breakout players at the wide receiver position for the 2012 season.

The Crescent City, Calif. product finished the 2011 season with 61 receptions for 943 yards and 10 touchdowns to lead the team in all major receiving categories. The ESPN.com article focuses on Hoffman's big-play ability, noting that in 2011 he had high marks in yards per reception (15.2), receptions per game (5.0), yards per attempt (10.1), vertical yards per attempt (12.1), which is productivity on passes thrown 11 or more yards downfield.

Hoffman recorded five games of 100 yards or more and caught multiple touchdowns in three games. He also set BYU single-season records in the return game, returning 36 kicks for 879 yards, including a 93-yard return for a touchdown.

To read more of ESPN.com's article featuring Hoffman and other standout wide receivers CLICK HERE.

Signing Day Recap

Feb 01, 2012 - Posted by Jordan Christiansen at 8:13 pm | Updated: February 2, 2012 4:28 pm | Permalink

BYU football and head coach Bronco Mendenhall finished a celebratory day today after welcoming 17 recruits to the Cougar program.

Coaches began the morning excited as fax after fax came in with each member of the 2012 class. As each recruit came in, Joe DuPaix, recruiting coordinator and running backs coach, taped the player's picture on the wall of the football offices as Mendenhall offered each a congratulatory phone call.

Later, Cougar Club members met in the Cougar Room at Edwards Stadium and via online video as Mendenhall reviewed the football program's accomplishments, then spoke on each recruit and missionaries returning to the team this season. DuPaix then expounded on each recruit before taking questions from the audience.

Meanwhile, Mendenhall next participated in a press conference with members of the media at the BYU Broadcast Building which was streamed live (and is available for on demand viewing) at byutvsports.com.

Ending the day, coaches Mendenhall and DuPaix, director of athletics Tom Holmoe, current players Riley Nelson and Brett Thompson and former Cougars and NFL players Chris Hoke (via phone), Bryan Kehl and David Nixon all gathered at the Broadcast Building to record interviews for a BYUtv Signing Day special.

Mendenhall and DuPaix described each player in detail, with a few personal insights such as Matt Hadley's mother serving great meals and Micah Hannemann's surfing expertise.

"It's a great day to celebrate this class and we're really excited about it," DuPaix said.

Coming on the show with a shorter head of hair ("I'm not a one-trick pony," Nelson said), the senior quarterback talked about the 2011 season and what it was like returning back to football from a mission, something Thompson is attempting to do after returning from the Kentucky Louisville Mission one month ago. Thompson last played in 2009 when he caught six receptions for 95 yards in 12 games.

Click here to watch a replay of the Signing Day Special.

Players will continue to lifting and conditioning with spring practice beginning March 5.