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BYU players weigh in on the best team unit

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Jamie Morris at 12:27 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:36 pm | Permalink

Senior defensive back Preston Hadley and junior wide receiver Cody Hoffman both shared their thoughts into who they thought was the best unit on the team.

“Oh, they’re all good,” Hadley said . “I think every unit has its strengths but I think definitely the most important is the D-line.”

Hadley helped the defensive line last year with 51 tackles, 2.5 tackles for a loss, one sack and one quarterback hurry. He also tied for ninth nationally in pass breakups with 14.

Hoffman, who works on the offensive side of the football, believed the offensive line was the best unit on the team.

“I feel like we’re deep in every position,” Hoffman said. “I’d probably say the offensive line because they are returning the most starters. The receiver unit, at the same time, is also great because we lost only two players from last season. We’re young and we have a lot of potential.”

Hoffman led the team last year in all receiving categories with 61 catches, 943 yards and 10 touchdowns while returning 36 kickoffs for 879 yards and one touchdown . He also set BYU’s single-season record for kickoff returns and kickoff yards.


BYU Media Day--Ian Dulan

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Aaron Sorenson at 12:26 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:30 pm | Permalink

I got a chance to sit down with Ian Dulan, a senior defensive lineman from Hilo, Hawai'i. We discussed his plans for the offseason and getting married.

"Right now I'm just training and working at the Marriott, so it's been good, it's been long and hard, but it's been worth it. I hope to go home this summer. I normally go home to Hawaii once a year, usually during the summer and once for Christmas."

Last year, Dulan redshirted and participated on the scout team after getting back from an LDS mission to Illinois. He said he's excited to get back on the field this year and accomplish some personal goals.

"As a defense, we want to be in the top 10 nationally. Personally, I'd like to get a sack a game. That's a goal I have right now."

He also spent some time this summer away from football.

"I got married, went on a honeymoon and went to Disneyland. Being married is awesome. It's been fun, it has its ups and downs but when you grow together, you can't compare anything else in this world to it."

Like many couples at BYU, Dulan and his wife met here in Provo.

"I met my wife at church. I came back from my mission a couple months earlier, so I was kinda nervous to talk to girls, but I got the courage to introduce myself and get her number. The rest is history."

State of the Program broadcast photos

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 12:17 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:27 pm | Permalink

Check out the photos from the State of the Program broadcast!

BYU Media Day--Cody Hoffman interview

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Aaron Sorenson at 12:08 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:20 pm | Permalink

Several current BYU players spent time doing interviews with the print media today at BYU Media Day. I sat down with Cody Hoffman and asked him about the offseason and the upcoming football schedule.

"I'm just staying here in Provo and taking some classes. Spring term is over now, so I'm getting ready for football. I'm just excited to get back on the field. The offseason has been taking forever as usual."

Hoffman, who will be a junior this year, is a returning starter at wide receiver. He became BYU's single-season leader in kickoff returns and kickoff return yards last year. He also played and started in all 13 games and led the team in receiving with 943 yards and 10 touchdowns.

"I like playing on the road a lot better, I'm glad we have a tough schedule on the road this year. There are going to be hostile environments this year at Notre Dame and Boise State. It's going be fun becasuse I love having a big crowd rooting against us. I feel like it motivates us to do better."

With such a tough schedule this year, I asked him which game he looks forward to the most.

"The Utah game for sure because of what they did to us last year," Hoffman said. "I'm still bitter about that game because it ended so horribly. I'm just looking forward to all the games because it's an opportunity to get back on the field."

Media Day begins with State of the Program on BYUtv

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Jamie Morris at 11:35 am | Updated: June 27, 2012 11:51 am | Permalink

On schedule for the first broadcast of the day at BYUtv was BYU football’s State of the Program.

Head football coach Bronco Mendenhall, BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe, ESPN analyst and former BYU football player Trevor Matich and managing director of broadcasting, Derek Marquis joined studio host Dave McCann to assess the upcoming season.

McCann and his guests discussed a number of topics to start off the day including the new college playoff system, ESPN and BYUtv and the outlook for the season.

In response to the new college playoff system, Mendenhall and Holmoe both agreed the modification is a welcome change to college football and college football fans across the country.

“It’s better,” Holmoe said . “College football fans across the country wanted something different and their voices were heard.”

ESPN and the increasing publicity of BYU football was another hot topic in the studio. In the previous five seasons, BYU football had only been featured on ESPN a total of 10 times. In the last year alone, BYU was featured on ESPN 11 times.

Marquis talked about the success experienced by BYUtv in the last year and delivered the statistics to prove it. Last year, BYUtv broadcasted 135 lives sporting events, 75-plus live studio shows and live pregame and postgame shows for every football game.

Marquis also said that BYUtv is in full HD and they are working with cable networks to get the channel available in HD on all networks. The best thing for fans to do is to tell their cable networks and let them know they have fans who will utilize the HD channel.

Starting his eighth season as head football coach, Mendenhall will look to improve upon his 66-24 record in the team’s second season of independence. He described his experiences at BYU in the studio.

“It’s been an amazing experience here at BYU and I wouldn’t trade it,” Mendenhall said . “We want to be a program of integrity and show that we can do things ethically and morally and it’s more worthwhile.”

According to coach, it’s going to be an exciting season, so stay tuned.

For more information on broadcasts throughout the day, check out the schedule on the Media Day Central page at  

Behind the scenes: the control room

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 10:36 am | Permalink

Check out these photos of the BYUtv crew hard at work in the control room for Media Day.

Media Day Web Chats

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 10:16 am | Updated: June 27, 2012 10:17 am | Permalink

Check out photos from the live web chats with Tom Holmoe, Trevor Matich and Michael Minor.

College Football Performance Awards Watch List - Special Teams

Jun 25, 2012 - Posted by Jordan Christiansen at 11:59 am | Permalink

A strong returning special teams class for BYU dots the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) Special Teams Watch Lists released on Monday with four players listed.

Senior punter Riley Stephenson and junior placekicker Justin Sorensen were both named to the CFPA Specialist Trophy watch list. BYU was the only team with two players on the list.

Stephenson recorded 1,985 yards on 47 punts, an average of 42.2 yards per punt, in 2011 on his way to being named to the Yahoo! Sports All-Independent First Team, Phil Steele All-Independent First Team and an FBS All-Independent Honorable Mention. The senior also earned's All-Bowl Team honors with 8 punts for 335 yards, an average of 41.9 yards, including seven inside the 20 and two over 50 yards vs. Tulsa in the Armed Forces Bowl.

Handling kickoff and field goal duties for BYU last year, Sorensen averaged 66.6 yards per kickoff and converting a school-record 48 of 48 PATs on the season. The South Jordan, Utah, native was a Phil Steele All-Independent First Team and FBS Independent Honorable Mention honoree.

Junior kick returner/wide receiver Cody Hoffman is on the CFPA All-Purpose Trophy watch list. Hoffman became BYU's single-season leader in kickoff returns (36) and kickoff return yards (879) in 2011 while also totaling 61 catches for 943 yards and 10 touchdowns as the Cougars' leading receiver. In all, the junior racked up 1,825 all-purpose yards, the sixth-best single-season mark in BYU history.

In addition, JD Falslev was named to the Punt Returner Trophy watch list after tieing for 29th nationally in punt return average last season at 10.0 yards per return. A Phil Steele All-Independent First Team honoree in 2011, Falslev returned 22 punts for 220 yards on the year, including a 67-yard return for a touchdown at TCU. He was the only player from a D-I Indepedent team to be on the punt returner list.

In 2009, BYU tight end Dennis Pitta was awarded an Elite Tight End Trophy following a senior season in which he was also named a Consensus All-American. Various other Cougars have also earned weekly recognitions since the CFPA began in 2008.

According to its website, the goal of College Football Performance Awards is to provide the most scientifically rigorous conferments in college football. Recipients are selected exclusively based upon objective scientific rankings of the extent to which individual players increase the overall effectiveness of their teams.



New Zealand's Maori TV features Bronco Mendenhall

Jun 07, 2012 - Posted by Brett Pyne at 8:13 pm | Updated: June 8, 2012 2:33 pm | Permalink

BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall appeared on the most popular sports show in New Zealand this week when he spent an hour on the famous Code couch at Maori Television in Auckland.

Coach Mendenhall was warmly greeted by the show hosts, including Jenny-May Coffin, a New Zealand netball legend, and celebrity rugby players Glen “Oz” Osborne and Awen Guttenbeil along with current rugby standout Liam Messam.

During the show Coach Mendenhall discussed BYU, college football, rugby, recruiting, the honor code, NCAA rule changes, quarterbacks, the NFL bounty issue, his family connections to New Zealand and the Maori culture, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and more.  

Other guests on the show included Jerome Kaino, a player for the famous All Blacks rugby team, Lesley Vainikolo, a former Kiwi and England rugby player currently playing in France, and Allan Tonkin, the barber to the stars at New Flava Barbers.  The band, Tomorrow People, also was featured.

After the show, Coach Mendenhall received the star barbershop treatment. Keep posted for possible photos of the new do.

Check out the entire show online at Maori Television.

BYU No. 35 in Phil Steele's Top 40 Countdown

May 16, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 5:13 pm | Permalink

College football pundit Phil Steele revealed BYU as No. 35 on his 2012 Top 40 college football teams. Visit for more information on his countdown.

Steele recognized the Cougars as having a team highlighted by a strong junior and senior class. His article includes full breakdowns of each position as well as an offensive and defensive depth chart, information on the 2012 opponents, statistics and more. Here are some excerpts from Steele's full page articles from his upcoming 2012 College Football Preview Magazine.

On the 2012 squad
"...has 14 starters back and 29 seniors this year. The schedule is tough with Utah, Boise, Notre Dame and Georgia Tech all on the road but this team is even stronger and capable of their sixth double-digit win season in seven years."

On the wide receivers
" ...the WR's had unusual size and speed for BYU ... this year they only lose McKay Jacobson (9 starts, 323 yards, 12.9 yards per reception) and I really like the size/speed combination of Hoffman and Apo."

On the defensive line
"They return two starters plus get back Russell Tialavea and Ian Dulan. They also add a true freshman Bronson Kaufusi and Simote Vea was granted a 6th yr. I'll call for continued improvement despite losing a top-notch DL."

On the linebackers
"While they lose 19 starts from last year, they return the top three linebacker tacklers (No. 1, No. 2, No. 4 overall) so I'll call them as having three starters back and this is one of the better LB corps in the country."

Phil Steele's complete two-page article on BYU