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Men's Football Blog

Cavaliers lead 16-13 at half

Sep 20, 2014 - Posted by Zach Brady at 3:09 pm | Updated: September 20, 2014 3:17 pm | Permalink

The Cavaliers went on a 70-yard drive in 16 plays and kicked a 22-yard field goal as time expired to take a 16-13 lead into halftime.

On the first play of the second quarter, the Cavaliers lined up to go for it on fourth down from the BYU one-yard line. A false start penalty forced the Cavaliers to kick a field goal giving them a 10-3 lead. On BYU’s first drive of the quarter, quarterback Taysom Hill found receiver Devon Blackmon for 56 yards, BYU’s longest pass play of the season. Receiver Jordan Leslie capped off the drive with a nine-yard touchdown catch, his first touchdown as a Cougar.

Virginia continued to have success against the Cougar defense. With the help of a pass interference penalty the Cavaliers went on a 10-play, 39-yard drive that ended with a 41-yard field goal by kicker Ian Frye to regain the lead 13-10.

A holding penalty and a late hit personal foul killed BYU’s next drive, bringing on Scott Arellano to punt the ball away to Virginia.

Defensive back Robertson Daniel got the crowd back into the game when he stepped in front of a Grayson Lambert pass for his first interception of the season and returned it 32 yards to the Virginia 23 yard-line.

The offense wasn’t able to get much going off the turnover, only managing to gain four yards. BYU kicker Trevor Samson drilled a field goal from 37 yards to tie the game at 13. Another pass interference against the Cougars on third down kept a Virginia scoring drive alive before the end of the half.

Cavaliers lead the Cougars 7-3 at the end of one

Sep 20, 2014 - Posted by Zach Brady at 2:13 pm | Updated: September 20, 2014 2:20 pm | Permalink

Virginia's Darius Jennings took the opening kickoff 47 yards to set the Cavaliers up with great field position on their first drive. On the second play of the drive, Virginia quarterback Greyson Lambert ran 37 yards to the BYU one-yard line. Two plays later Lambert snuck the ball in from the one-yard line to give the Cavaliers the 7-0 lead.

BYU managed only three yards on its opening offensive drive and before punter Scott Arellano boomed a deep punt back to Virginia.

BYU’s defense stepped up on Virginia’s second drive. After a couple first down conversions, linebacker Alani Fua made a tackle on a screen pass short of the first down to force the Cavaliers to punt.

BYU’s first big play of the game came when quarterback Taysom Hill whipped the ball out to wide receiver Jordan Leslie who made a defender miss and took off for 18 yards. Virginia was called for a facemask on the play to add another 15 yards.  After a false start when the Cougars lined up to go for it on fourth-and-inches, Trevor Samson put the Cougars on the board with a 28-yard field goal. Leslie had three catches on the drive for 33 yards.

ICYMI: BYU in national media

Sep 19, 2014 - Posted by McKay Perry at 12:48 pm | Updated: September 19, 2014 7:58 pm | Permalink

In case you missed it this week, BYU football has been getting some attention in the national media. Before BYU's matchup against Virginia on Saturday, catch up with conversation with the links below:

Options for following BYU vs. UVa

Sep 19, 2014 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 9:21 am | Updated: September 19, 2014 9:30 am | Permalink

ESPN will broadcast Saturday's BYU vs. Virginia game, with kickoff at 1:35 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, Sirius XM 143, KSL 1160 AM or 102.7 FM, and the BYU Cougars app. Coverage begins at 11:30 a.m. MDT.

BYUtv will broadcast its Countdown to Kickoff show starting at 12:30 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 9:30 p.m. MDT.

Follow @BYUCougars on Twitter and the BYU Football Facebook page for updates and photos during the game. Join the conversation using #UVAvsBYU. Live stats are also available through Stat Broadcast.

Getting to know Taysom Hill and Jamaal Williams

Sep 18, 2014 - Posted by McKay Perry at 1:36 pm | Updated: September 18, 2014 1:37 pm | Permalink

Taysom Hill

What is one thing only a few people know about you?
Every one of my siblings played college sports. My two older brothers played college football and my older sister played basketball.
Why did you choose BYU?
Ultimately I felt like it was the best place for me with the environment, the style of play. The way it worked out with Coach Harbaugh leaving Stanford, I was able to come in and play spring ball and compete and play as a freshman, that was a big part of it as well.
When did you start playing football?
My two older brothers played college football so I was constantly around the game watching older brothers playing. I was at every one of their games, so it’s just what I did. They played at Arizona State and Dixie State.
Do you have any pregame rituals?
I’m not a very superstitious guy and saying that I guess I am, because I don’t like to get things out of whack.
What is your favorite football memory?
Last year when we beat Houston. I think that was a big win for us as a team when we did it on the last play with a minute left. As a team collectively that was a fun one to be a part of.

Jamaal Williams

What is one thing only a few people know about you?
Some people, but not a lot of people know that I’m really into classic skating.
Why did you choose BYU?
I came to BYU for the chance to play, and they wanted me to play running back when most schools wanted me to play defense.
When did you start playing football?
I started playing when I was a youngster. I just liked it from the beginning, my uncle played and from there just watching Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk--those are my two favorites.
Do you have any pregame rituals?
I do an Instagram dance video with all the running backs in the hotel room and then when we come out of the tunnel in the end zone, I warm up right there next to the cheerleaders and the student section. 
Favorite football memory?
My favorite one was in high school. I was running the ball and ran over three people and I got a flag, on offense, for excessive roughness. I’ll never forget that.

BYU moves up to No. 16 in CFCC rankings

Sep 16, 2014 - Posted by McKay Perry at 1:48 pm | Updated: September 16, 2014 5:09 pm | Permalink
After moving up four spots to No. 21 in the AP poll and entering the USA Today coaches poll at No. 23, another ranking system had BYU at an impressive No. 16 through week three.
The new College Football Computer Composite (CFCC) rankings, hosted by USA Today, is a composite of five of the six computer rankings utilized in the BCS rankings. The ranking systems of Richard Billingsley, Wes Colley, Ken Massey, Jeff Sagarin and Peter Wolfe are all combined into the CFCC.
The initial rankings had the Cougars at No. 32 in week one and No. 17 in week two.
Oregon is at the top of the ranking in week three, followed by Oklahoma, Florida State, Alabama and Auburn to round out the top five. BYU is ranked just ahead of Kansas State and two spots above Stanford. 
The new system uses metrics of wins and losses, strength of schedule, home-field advantage, recency of game and margin of victory in some cases, according to Daniel Uthman of USA Today Sports.
The College Football Playoff selection committee will not be using computer, AP, or Harris poll rankings for playoff selection, but that doesn't mean computer rankings have ceased.
Go to USA TODAY Sports' website to see the latest rankings.
The CFCC will be updated each week and available on

BYU beats Houston 33-25 in home opener

Sep 11, 2014 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 10:36 pm | Permalink

BYU ran for 325 yards and three touchdowns to beat Houston 33-25.

Quarterback Taysom Hill led BYU's rushing attack with 160 yards on the ground and a touchdown. Running back Jamaal Williams added 139 yards and two touchdowns for the Cougars. BYU averaged 5.2 yards per carry.

BYU gave up only 10 rushing yards in the win. Linebacker Alani Fua and safety Craig Bills each recorded seven tackles in the game.

Hill spread the ball to 11 receivers for 200 yards passing. Jordan Leslie led BYU receivers with 6 catches and 79 yards receiving.

Junior Devon Blackmon set up BYU's first touchdown of the fourth quarter with a 16-yard punt return. Taysom Hill rushed four times for 45 yards on the 56-yard scoring drive. Jamaal Williams scored on a two-yard touchdown run to make the score 33-15.

Houston answered with a 68-yard drive ending in a 15-yard touchdown pass from Quarterback John O-Korn to receiver Deontay Greenberry. With Greenberry's touchdown, Houston cut BYU's lead to 11.

An interception on BYU's following drive led to Houston kicker Kyle Bullard's 36-yard field goal, making the score 33-25.

BYU ate up nearly five minutes on its next drive, before punting to give Houston the ball on its 12 with 2:49 left on the game clock. BYU forced three straight incompletions, causing Houston to punt. BYU converted on two first downs and ran down the clock for the 33-25 victory.

BYU takes 26-15 lead into final quarter

Sep 11, 2014 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 9:43 pm | Permalink

BYU kicker Trevor Sampson accounted for the only points of the third quarter as BYU leads Houston 26-15.

With 51 seconds left in the period, Sampson made good on a 26-attempt. His kick capped a 53-yard, 15 play drive.

Quarterback Taysom Hill eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground. Hill ran for 107 yards on 15 attempts through the first three quarters of the game. As a team, BYU tallied 215 yards on the ground compared to Houston's 10 yards.

BYU enters half up 23-15.

Sep 11, 2014 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 8:48 pm | Updated: September 11, 2014 10:00 pm | Permalink

BYU took a 23-15 lead into halftime of its home opener against Houston.

Running back Jamaal Williams and quarterback Taysom Hill led BYU's rushing attack, combining for 128 yards andone touchdown each on the ground. Hill added 170yards and a touchdown through the air, as BYU's offense gained 301 total yards, compared to Houston's 188 first half yards.

Hill connected with junior wideout Mitch Mathews on a six-yard touchdown pass to give BYU a 23-0 lead early in the second quarter. With the reception, Mathews became the seventh BYU player to catch a pass from Hill in the game.

Houston scored its first points on kicker Kyle Bullard's 29-yard field goal, cutting BYU's lead to 20.

On BYU's first play following the field goal, Houston tipped and intercepted a pass from Hill, setting up a short field. Houston capitalized, scoring a touchdown with 1:17 left in the half. Quarterback John O'Korn connected with Deontay Greenberry for a seven-yard touchdown. Bullard's missed PAT kept BYU's lead at 23-9.

Houston forced a fumble on BYU's final drive of the half, and O'Korn connected on a 45-yard pass to Daniel Spencer as time expired. Bullard again missed the PAT, making the halftime score 23-15 in favor of BYU.

BYU leads Houston 16-0 after one

Sep 11, 2014 - Posted by Jack Urquhart at 7:50 pm | Permalink

Senior wide receiver Jordan Leslie's 70 receiving yards paced BYU to a 16-0 lead after one quarter of BYU's home opener against Houston.

BYU's defense started the scoring as linebacker Zac Stout wrapped up Houston running back Ryan Jackson in the endzone for a safety. The play was set up by Scott Arellano's punt that pinned Houston on its own three yardline.

After the free kick, BYU wasted no time in scoring again, as quarterback Taysom Hill led the offense to 64 yards on five plays for a touchdown. Jamaal Williams' 19-yard touchdown run capped the drive as BYU took a 9-0 lead. Almost half of the drive's yards came on a 35-yard pass from Hill to Leslie on a third down.

Following another defensive stop, BYU punched in another touchdown on a five-yard rush from Hill. The score finished off a 70-yard drive over eight plays as BYU increased its lead to 16-0.