Men's Football Blog

BYU Media Day--Marcus Matthews Interview

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Aaron Sorenson at 3:02 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 4:06 pm | Permalink

As we continue our interviews with BYU coaches and players, BYU Athletic Communications talked to tight end Marcus Matthews about the upcoming 2012 season.

"Summer for me, I've been marreid for two months now. I went on my honeymoon to Hawaii and that's my vacation for the summer. I've been gone long enough,  now I want to be here [Provo], I want to be working out. My summer is just going to be football now. Now that school is over, I have nothing to focus on but football."

He said being married is great and he loves having someone to support him. He had this to say about meeting his wife:

"She saw me on someone's Facebook account and she thought I was cute so she added me as a friend. Once she added me, I said, 'Hey, we should hang out.' I got her number, we hung out the next day, and I've never hung out with anyone else ever since."

Matthews, an exercise science major, said he has been really focusing on improving his body to be a more effective player.

"For me personally, my goal this summer has been to gain weight and still maintain my speed and incease my strength. At the beginning of last year, I weighed 205. Right now I weigh about 235 and I'm just as fast as I was last year and I'm way stronger than I was back then. My goal is to be able to play as a more traditional tight end so I don't have to come out of the game so much due to certain packages. I don't want to limit myself and I know I can handle playing as a tight end."

I asked the junior tight end how he was able to gain all the extra weight.

"I've been working with our nutricionist for a while now. He's got me on a diet where I eat about 6,900 calories a day. I'm gaining good weight, I still have about 10 percent body fat. That's my summer, I eat all day."

We ended the conversation talking about football and what game he looks forward to the most this year.

"I'm looking forward to Washington State so we can go out there and show how dominant we can be and set the tone for the whole season. I'm really looking forward to opening the door and getting going."

Interview with Coach Nick Howell

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Mason Porter at 1:58 pm | Permalink

BYU secondary and special teams coach Nick Howell is entering his second year with the Cougars. After spending the offseason immersed in recruiting duties, Howell said he looks forward to a great year from his returning defensive backs.

"I think all of our players are looking to have some break-out years," he said. "Every year they just get smarter, more comfortable and just get better."

According to Howell, one player in particular, senior defensive back Preston Hadley, is prepared for a big year. "He played good for us last year, I think he had like 15 pass break-ups," Howell said.

In reference to his spring recruiting trips, Howell said they kept him busy. "In May we're never home," he said. "May is recruiting on the road for four weeks until the week after Memorial Day. Then our summer camps kick in, which is also a big recruiting tool. Recruiting never stops, there's no clock on recruiting."

Howell said June has been a month of game preparation and that next month will bring a welcome, albeit short, break for the coaches. "In July we take some time off before fall camp so we have some time with our family," he said. "Once August hits though, we're back at it."

More interview photos from Media Day

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 1:48 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 1:52 pm | Permalink

Here are a few more pictures from interviews at Media Day.

Media Day-Cody Hoffman and Preston Hadley talk about football

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Jamie Morris at 1:40 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 2:50 pm | Permalink

Both senior defensive back Preston Hadley and junior wide receiver Cody Hoffman grew up with a love and a desire to play football.

Hadley said he was curious about football since he was little and started playing a little bit later than most kids.

“I saw it and I liked it, so I asked my parents if I could play,” Hadley said. “Once I started playing, I was kind of good at it so I kept playing.”

Hadley said he recognizes what an opportunity he has to play college football. “I know that not a lot of people get the opportunity [to play college football] so I try not to take it for granted,” Hadley said. “It’s the best. I’m living my dream right now.”

Hoffman shared similar sentiments as he talked about his journey to becoming a college football player.

“I always watched [football] on TV and my mom would never let me play,” Hoffman said. “Finally, she let me [play] and fortunately she did or else I don’t know where I’d be right now.”

As the son of avid San Francisco 49er’s fans, Hoffman grew up watching the great Jerry Rice. He hopes he can be an inspiration to others like Jerry Rice was to him as a kid.

“It’s surreal to me just because it’s almost like a dream come true to be able to have this opportunity and to have kids look up to [me],” Hoffman said. “I know I was one of those kids and I just hope I can inspire them to chase their dreams.”

Hoffman even gave some advice to his younger fans, telling them that hard work always pays off.

“Never give up,” Hoffman said. “I came from a small town and it just shows that my hard work really set me above and gave me opportunities [to] show the world what I could do.”

Media Day interview photos

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 12:48 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:52 pm | Permalink

Check out these photos from the interview sessions at Media Day.

Media Day -- Q&A with Preston Hadley

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Mason Porter at 12:31 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 12:41 pm | Permalink

Q: What has your summer been like?

A: It's been good. I've just been trying to get healthy. I tore my labrum in both shoulders last year, so I've just been rehabing a lot this summer trying to get back in shape. Trying to get my legs back and get my strength up. I'll be ready to go for the first game of the season though.

Q: Doing anything fun?

A: Football (laughs). I go boating a lot. I like to go to 7 Peaks, too. I just like being outside and relaxing for the most part. Football takes up the majority of the day though, between the workouts and watching film and getting all of that into my schedule, but it's good. I'm working the basketball camps right now, too. Teaching my guys how to win.

Q: Shooting a lot of threes?

A: Oh yeah, we live and die by the three (laughs).

Q: What games are you looking forward to this season?

A: I'm looking forward to the Utah game. I think a lot of us are. Obviously they won the game last year, but I don't feel like they were the better team, based off how both our seasons ended. I think they're a good team and I've got respect for them, but that's one game this year that we shouldn't let get away from us. I'm looking forward to going to Notre Dame and playing Washington State, too. They're going to be quite a test. They throw the ball a lot, so it's going to be good for us DB's. I've been watching a lot of film on Washington State and Utah. Those are the first two big games of the season so I've been trying to focus on them and knowing their personnel.

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."