BYU Athletics Blog

Tuesday Encore - Hoffman, Alisa and more ESPN

Jul 17, 2012 - Posted by Aaron Sorenson at 3:11 pm | Updated: July 17, 2012 7:39 pm | Permalink

Biletnikoff Watch List and Inspiring Actor?

On Tuesday BYU wide receiver Cody Hoffman was named to the Biletnikoff Award Watch List, an award given to the nation's top receiver.

The junior from Cresent City, Calif., led BYU with 943 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns last season. He recorded five games with 100 or more receiving yards, including a 162-yard performance in a victory against Oregon State. You can read more here.

In case you missed it, BYUtv released a commercial Monday featuring Hoffman as he "loyally guards the dark halls and studios of BYUtv." You can see the video here

Good Works Team

Junior running back Michael Alisa also received recognition on Tuesday for his off-the-field good works as a member of the BYU football team. Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) announced 117 nominees for the 2012 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®, including Alisa. As one of college football’s most prestigious off-the-field honors, the award recognizes a select group of college football players committed to making a difference in their communities.  

A junior from Laie, Hawai’i, Alisa enters the 2012 season as BYU’s top returning rusher after totaling 455 yards on 85 carries last year. In his first game as the primary ball carrier last season Alisa rushed for 91 yards on 16 attempts. He averages 5.4 yards per carry and 11.0 yards per reception coming out of the backfield.  Off the field, Alisa is always willing to help others and regularly seeks opportunities to serve in the community. He also spent two years as a missionary in Puerto Rico for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Alisa’s teammate Riley Nelson previously earned selection as a member of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®. The BYU quarterback was one of 11 nominees chosen to the 2010 team. 

You can read more about the Good Works Team here.

More Mendenhall on ESPN

As mentioned in this blog yesterday, BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall has been busy doing some ESPN interviews. Monday afternoon he appeared on ESPN SportsCenter as well as College Football Live. Today, ESPNU College Football released a podcast which headlined ESPN senior writer Ivan Maisel talking with Coach Mendenhall. They discussed, among other things, BYU's position as a football independent, the BYU-Utah rivalry and the emergence of Hoffman and quarterback Riley Nelson.

When asked by Maisel about some tough road games on the schedule, Mendenhall said, "We're not anxious to stay the same, we're anxious to grow, improve and measure ourselves and compete and win against some of the best (teams) in the country in some of the most unique settings. We're not taking a passive approach, we're taking an aggressive approach." 

Maisel and Mendenhall had a good-natured and candid conversation over the first 14 minutes of the podcast. You can listen to the podcast here.

Sander Leads U.S. to Pan Am Gold

Jul 17, 2012 - Posted by Whitney Craft Jordan at 11:42 am | Updated: July 17, 2012 5:14 pm | Permalink

from USA Volleyball, B.J. Evans 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 14, 2012) – A young group of players from the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team defeated Argentina, 29-27, 25-20, 25-11 to win the gold medal at the Pan American Cup in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

The U.S. Men, some of whom could be on the U.S. Olympic volleyball team in 2016, finished the tournament with a perfect 5-0 record. Argentina finished second at 4-1. It is the fifth time the U.S. Men have won the tournament since it started in 2006.

U.S. outside hitter Taylor Sander (Huntington Beach, Calif.) was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. Outside hitter Tony Ciarelli (Huntington Beach, Calif.) was named Best Attacker and Dustin Watten (Long Beach, Calif.) earned Best Defense honors.

The U.S. Men led Argentina in kills (46-30), blocks (5-4), aces (3-1) and digs (29-18).

After close contests in the first two sets, the U.S. Men blew the third set wide open, leading 16-6 at the second technical timeout (TTO) and scoring the last three points of the match.

U.S. opposite Carson Clark (Santa Barbara, Calif.) led all scorers with 19 points on a match-high 18 kills (62.1 kill percent, .517 hitting efficiency) and one ace. Sander added 10 points on nine attacks and one block.

Ciarelli finished with seven points on seven kills. Middle blocker Dylan Davis (Corona Del Mar, Calif.) and middle blocker Matt Rawson each scored six points and each had four attacks and two blocks.

Opposite Murphy Troy (St. Louis, Mo.) compiled four points on two attacks and two aces. Outside hitter Garrett Muagututia (Oceanside, Calif.) totaled two points on two attacks.

U.S. setter Kawika Shoji (Honolulu) was credited with 11 assists as he set the U.S. Men to a 48.4 kill percent and a .379 hitting efficiency. Argentina finished with a 30.0 kill percent and a .140 hitting efficiency.

Watten was credited with nine digs and seven excellent receptions. Sander led in receptions with eight.

U.S. Head Coach Shawn Patchell (Huntington Beach, Calif.) started Muagututia and Sander at outside hitter, Davis and Rawson at middle blocker, Clark at opposite, Shoji at setter and Watten at libero.

Ciarelli substituted in the first set for Muagututia and started the rest of the match. Opposite Murphy Troy (St. Louis, Mo.), outside hitter Jordan Dufault (Lakewood, Calif.) and setter Ryan Ammerman (Parker, Colo.) played as substitutes.

In the first set, the U.S. Men held leads of 8-6 and 11-9. Argentina came back to tie the score at 13-13 and the teams traded points. Argentina seemed to have the set in hand when it reached set point at 24-22. But the U.S. came back with a Sander kill, Argentina error and Troy ace to take its own set point at 25-24. The U.S. would take set point again at 26-25 and 27-26. Finally, the U.S. took set point No. 4 at 28-27 on a Ciarelli kill and won the set on Argentina’s error.

With the score tied 9-9 in the second set, the U.S. scored four unanswered points on a Clark attack, block by Sander and two Argentina errors to lead 13-9. Argentina closed the gap at 21-20, but then stopped scoring as the U.S. scored the final four points of the set, including three Argentina errors and a Sander attack, for the victory.

The U.S. Men led 7-5 in the third set when Team USA used a 7-0 run to build a significant lead. Clark had two kills in the run while Sander, Davis and Ciarelli each had one. The U.S. Men went on to lead 16-6 at the second TTO and scored the final three points of the match for the victory.

Seven Cougars named to WCC Honor Roll

Jul 17, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 10:39 am | Updated: July 17, 2012 11:01 am | Permalink

BYU women’s volleyball received seven WCC Commissioner’s Honor Roll accolades for the 2011-12 season.

Rookie defensive specialist Tia Withers received Gold Honors, which are given to letterwinners who completed more than 12 graded credit hours per term and maintain above a 3.75 GPA.

In the Silver Honors category, sophomore Kimberli Boswell, sophomore Jennifer Hamson and junior Nicole Warner represented BYU with GPAs higher than 3.5. Sophomore Coriann Clark Thompson, junior Kendalyn Hartsock and freshman Katie Vaughn received Bronze Honors.

View BYU’s official release for a complete list of honor roll award winners.

Mike Hall highlights

Jul 17, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 9:51 am | Permalink

Check this compilation of Mike Hall highlights. Hall is BYU's director of basketball operations and according to himself in the video, 'a nice dude.' Thanks to current Cougar Nate Austin (@RexosaurusRex) for posting this on Facebook.

Not a Mundane Monday

Jul 16, 2012 - Posted by Brett Pyne at 6:38 pm | Updated: July 16, 2012 7:06 pm | Permalink

Three Cougars named to preseason award watch lists

BYU seniors Braden Hansen and Uona Kaveinga along with junior Kyle Van Noy were each named to award watch lists on Monday recognizing the nation's best linemen and linebackers.

Hansen, a senior offensive guard, and Van Noy, a junior outside linebacker, were both named to the 43rd Annual Rotary Lombardi Award Official Watch List. The Rotary Lombardi Award is given to the nation’s top college lineman or linebacker each year.

Kaveinga was named to the 28th annual Butkus Award® Watch List recognizing the nation's top linebackers. 

Hansen has started all 39 games of his career for the Cougars, on pace to tie the BYU record of 52 consecutive starts. A product of Sandy, Utah, Hansen has helped BYU to 28 wins over the last three years and three straight bowl victories. Hansen was previously named to the Outland Trophy Watch List, recognizing the best interior linemen, for the second-consecutive season.

Van Noy led the Cougars in sacks (7.0) and tackles for loss (15.0) in 2011 to go along with his 68 total tackles. A 6-foot-3, 235-pounder from Reno, Nev., Van Noy was the only Division I player to record a statistic in each of the major defensive categories including tackle, tackle for loss, sack, quarterback hurry, pass breakup, interception, forced fumble, fumble recovery and blocked kick. Van Noy was also recently named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List for the nation’s best defensive player.

Kaveinga started all 13 games for BYU as a junior in 2011 after beginning his career at USC. The 5-foot-11, 236-pound native of Hawthorne, Calif., earned Phil Steele All-Independent Second Team honors last season while helping BYU achieve a 10-3 record and No. 25 final national ranking in the team’s first season as a football independent. 

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ESPN talks with Coach Mendenhall

In addition to the watch lists announcements, BYU football was also recognized Monday through some national interviews on ESPN. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall appeared live on SportsCenter talking with Michael Kim. He also was interviewed by Joe Tessitore on College Football Live. 

In addition to being on the flagship program for the Worldwide Leader in Sports and its daily program dedicated to college football, Mendenhall also did other interviews on Monday for upcoming ESPN shows, podcasts and stories. Mendenhall did most of his interviews via satellite from the state-of-the-art facilities at BYUtv. 

Schedule tidbits

Jul 11, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 3:09 pm | Updated: July 11, 2012 5:10 pm | Permalink

With the nonconference slate for the 2012-13 BYU basketball season announced, here are some facts about the teams the Cougars will face in November and December.

  • BYU plays three-straight games against in-state opponents (Utah State-Dec. 5, Utah-Dec. 8, at Weber State-Dec. 15). The last time the Cougars played three-straight games against in-state foes was in 1992. After opening the 1992-93 season at home against Arizona State, BYU played at Utah State and at Weber State before returning to the Marriott Center to play Southern Utah.
  • During the nonconference season, BYU will play four or five teams that played in the 2012 NCAA Tournament. At the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, the Cougars will face two of the following three teams — Florida State, Saint Joseph's and Notre Dame. Florida State and Notre Dame both played in the big dance last season and Saint Joseph's played in the NIT. Other NCAA Tournament teams on the schedule include Montana, Iowa State and Baylor. Florida State and Iowa State both advanced to the Third Round while Baylor advanced to the Elite Eight and lost to eventual national champion Kentucky.
  • Four of BYU's opponents played in the 2012 CollegeInsider.com Tournament, including Tennessee State, Georgia State, Utah State and Weber State. Tennessee State, Georgia State and Utah State were all eliminated by eventual champion Mercer. Weber State lost to WCC foe Loyola Marymount.
  • BYU's first four opponents won 20-plus games in 2011-12 and the Cougars will play nine teams during the nonconference season that won 20-plus games in 2011-12. Baylor won the most games at 30. 
  • Eight of BYU's nonconference opponents finished in the top three of their respective conferences. Montana was the Big Sky champion while Tennessee State (Ohio Valley) and Weber State (Big Sky) were second in their conferences and Florida State (ACC), Notre Dame (Big East), UT San Antonio (Southland West Division), Iowa State (Big 12) and Baylor (Big 12) were all third in their leagues.

Several of BYU's nonconference opponents were among the top teams in the NCAA in several statistical categories.

  • Georgia State was one of the top defensive teams in the NCAA in 2011-12: 11th in scoring defense (58.9), 4th in field goal percentage defense (38.0), 12th in blocks per game (5.4), 4th in steals per game (9.3) and 15th in turnover margin (+3.5)
  • Florida State was 5th in field goal percentage defense (38.1) and 7th in blocks per game (6.1)
  • Saint Joseph's was 2nd in blocks per game (7.1)
  • Notre Dame protected the ball as well as any team in the coutry as it was ranked 6th in assist turnover ratio (6th) and 3rd in turnovers per game (10.1). The Irish also fouled less than any other team in the country at 13.8 per game.
  • UT San Antonio relied heavily on 3-point shooting and was ranked 16th in 3-point field goals per game (8.5) and 13th in 3-point field goal percentage (39.4)
  • Iowa State was a few spots better than UT San Antonio in 3-point field goals per game (8.6)
  • Weber State was the best in the NCAA in free throw percentage (81.4), 7th in 3-point field goals per game (8.9) and 11th in turnovers per game (10.6).
  • Virginia Tech was 2nd in the NCAA in 3-point field goal percentage defense (28.0)

College Football Performance Awards Watch List - Offense and Defense

Jul 09, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 12:26 pm | Updated: July 9, 2012 12:37 pm | Permalink

Four BYU players were named to the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) Offensive and Defensive Watch Lists released recently.

Wide receiver Cody Hoffman was named to the CFPA Wide Receiver Trophy Watch List while tight ends junior Austin Holt and Richard Wilson were both named to the Tight End Trophy Watch List. BYU was one of three schools with two tight ends named to the list.

Linebacker Kyle Van Noy was BYU's lone defensive player on a list, making the CFPA Linebacker Trophy Watch List.

Hoffman led BYU in all-purpose yards with 1,825 yards, the sixth-best mark in BYU history. He led BYU in all receiving categories, pulling down 61 receptions for 943 yards and 10 touchdowns. He was named to the 2011 Phil Steele All-Independent First Team and both the Yahoo! Sports and FBS All-Independent Teams. He was recently included on the Phil Steele Preseason All-Independent First Team for 2012.

Both Holt and Wilson were off to good starts in 2011 but each suffered knee injuries preventing them from finishing out the year. Holt was named the Phil Steele All-Independent Second Team after recording 11 receptions for 180 yards and Wilson caught 11 balls for 130 yards and one touchdown. The duo should be healthy for the start of 2012 season.

Van Noy was one of the leaders on a 2011 BYU defense ranked No. 13 in total defense and was named to the CFPA Linebacker Trophy Watch List. The Reno, Nev. product led BYU in tackles for loss and sacks with 15 and 7.5, respectively. He was second on the team with 68 total tackles and tied for the team lead with 3 interceptions. He also forced and recovered a fumble for a touchdown to win the game at Ole Miss in the season opener. He was the only Division I player to record a statistic in every major defensive category.

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.

Fredette to play in NBA Summer League

Jul 06, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 10:42 am | Permalink

Former Cougar and 2012 NCAA National Player of the Year Jimmer Fredette will take his talents to Las Vegas for a week to play in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. Fredette will be joined by current Kings teammate Hassan Whiteside, the fifth overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Thomas Robinson, and a collection of rookies and free agents.

As a rookie last season, Fredette averaged 7.6 points, 1.8 assists and 1.2 rebounds while shooting 36.1 percent from downtown and 83.3 percent from the free throw line. He posted a season-best 20 points in a loss to Memphis and went for 19 twice, vs. Minnesota and Denver.

The Kings will play five games in seven days beginning July 13 vs. Charlotte at 7 p.m. PT. Summer League games will be available online at Summer League Broadband.

See the official media release from the Kings below:

SACRAMENTO, CALIF., July 5, 2012 -- The Sacramento Kings will field a team to compete in the 2012 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas from July 13-19 at the Thomas & Mack Center and Cox Pavilion. The Kings have participated in the last six NBA Summer Leagues. Sacramento will play five games in seven days, beginning with their first contest on Friday, July 13.

Nineteen players will be participating in the mini-camp in Sacramento from July 9-12 before the team opens its Summer League schedule against Charlotte on Friday. The team includes veterans Jimmer Fredette and Hassan Whiteside and the fifth overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Thomas Robinson, along with former Kings forward Darnell Jackson. Assistant Coaches Alex English and Bobby Jackson will be responsible for coaching the Kings’ summer league entry. Kings.com will provide comprehensive coverage of Summer League at Kings.com/offseason12. NBATV will televise all 60 NBA Summer League games, including 39 live. Games will also be available on digital platforms. Complete broadcast information will be released at a later date.

Tickets for the 2012 NBA Summer League are on sale and can be purchased by calling 702-739-FANS, through UNLVtickets.com or by visiting the Thomas & Mack Center Box Office and UNLV Ticket Outlets. All general admission tickets are $25 for the day; seniors and children (3-12) are $15 for the day; and children two years and under are admitted free of charge.

2012 KINGS SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE
Day Date Opponent Time Arena TV
Friday July 13 vs. Charlotte 7:00 p.m. COX Pavilion NBA TV
Saturday July 14 vs. LA Lakers 5:00 p.m. COX Pavilion NBA TV
Monday July 16 vs. Houston 3:30 p.m. Thomas & Mack Center NBA TV
Wednesday July 18 vs. Toronto 3:30 p.m. Thomas & Mack Center NBA TV
Thursday July 19 vs. Boston 3:30 p.m. Thomas & Mack Center NBA TV

Tavernari enjoys successful season in Italy

Jul 06, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 9:35 am | Permalink

Former Cougar Jonathan Tavernari had a successful season in Italy playing for Giorgio Tesi Group Pistoia in the LegaDue.

Tavernari averaged 10.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.7 steals while shooting 39.4 percent from downtown as Giorgio Tesi finished 18-10 in the regular season and advanced to the LegaDue Finals. Giorgio Tesi Group Pistoia fell to Enel Brindisi 3-1 in the best-of-five series.

The native of Sao Bernardo, Brazil, joined Giorgio Tesi Group Pistoia for the final 13 games of the regular season and averaged 9.8 points. He picked up his game in the playoffs, averaging 11.5 points while hitting 57.1 percent of his two-point field goals and 38.6 percent of his 3-point attempts.

One of his best performances came in the final game of the championship series as he posted 20 points, hit six threes and added five steals. He hit a three in all but two games and hit three-plus 3-pointers in 11 of 26 games.

The Bronco Mendenhall Era broadcast photos

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Rachel Hawks at 4:23 pm | Updated: June 27, 2012 4:26 pm | Permalink

Check out these photos from The Bronco Mendenhall Era broadcast.