Following the Cougars' eighth straight victory of the season - a 59-21 win over San Diego State - No. 8 BYU (8-0, 4-0) will play host to defending MWC champs Colorado State (4-4, 3-1) in a Thursday night contest on ESPN2. The Rams come to Provo after knocking off Utah on Saturday, 19-17, in Fort Collins. CSU is just one game behind BYU in the MWC standings and could clog the leader board with a win in Provo. The Cougars, on the other hand, could take a two-game lead in the race for their first-ever outright Mountain West title with a win against the Rams. (A win against Colorado State and a Utah loss at UNLV would clinch at least a share of the MWC championship for BYU.)
Thursday's game will be broadcast live to a national television audience on ESPN2 - the Cougars third national appearance on ESPN2 this season. Rich Waltz will call the action, with Dean Blevins lending analysis and Heather Cox reporting from the sidelines. Game time is slated for 7:45 p.m. (MST).
The BYU-Colorado State Series (The 60th Meeting)
The Cougars and Rams will be meeting for the 60th time on Thursday, dating back to Nov. 25, 1922 - BYU's first official season of competition. BYU owns a 31-25-3 advantage in the 79-year old rivalry, including a mark of 17-10 in Provo. BYU has won eight of the last ten meetings, however, both teams have won two of the last four contests. CSU coach Sunny Lubick is 2-3 against BYU, while Thursday's game will mark BYU coach Gary Crowton's first-ever meeting against his former college team. Crowton played for the Rams from 1977-78 before serving an LDS Church mission to Korea. (Crowton and the Rams were 0-2 against BYU during those two seasons.) The Rams dismantled the Cougars last season, posting a 45-21 victory in Fort Collins. When last the two teams met in Provo, BYU came up with a decisive 34-13 victory during the 1999 season.
Battle of the Best
Colorado State and BYU rank as two of the top winning programs in the nation since 1994. The Cougars have tallied 69 wins to rank 10th, while Colorado State has posted 68 wins to ranked tied for 11th with 68 victories. Nebraska has the most wins since 1994 with 87 wins.
Colorado State Three-Dot Data
CSU overcame a 17-13 deficient against Utah on Saturday to move into second place in the MWC Championship race ...Bradlee Van Pelt connected with receiver Pete Rebstock on a 46-yard pass play to set up Duan Ruff's one-yard scoring drive to give CSU the lead against the Utes ... Linebacker Eric Pauly, who leads the league in tackles per game (10.0) and safety Aaron Sprague each had 13 tackles for the Rams ... The Cougars will mark the Rams second top-25 opponent ... CSU is 0-1 against ranked opponents, falling to then-ranked No. 8 Fresno State in overtime, 25-22, earlier this season ... CSU head coach Sunny Lubick has posted a record of 11-11 against nationally-ranked opponents, including a 5-4 mark against the nation's top-25 on the road ... The Rams last four games have been decided by five points or less, including back-to-back two-point victories ... CSU ranks fourth nationally, averaging 26.7 yards per kick return ... Dexter Winn leads the Mountain West and ranks seventh nationally in punt return average, posting 15.1 yards per return ... Wynn also ranks second in the MWC in kickoff return average, producing 28.2 yards per return ... Dallas Davis recorded a season high five receptions for 74 yards against Utah, marking the most receptions by a Ram since Pete Rebstock caught six passes against Colorado earlier this season ... The Rams rank second in scoring defense, allowing just 20.0 points per game.
Security at Edwards Stadium
BYU will maintain and enforce all existing stadium safety guidelines, particularly the rules regarding bringing large containers or coolers to the game. Coolers and large containers will not be permitted, while other items, such as large bags, are subject to search.
Head-to-Head With the Rams
On the season, BYU and Colorado State have played three common opponents. The Cougars have posted a 3-0 record against those teams, while CSU has recorded a mark of 2-1.
The Revenge Factor
Thursday's game will mark the third straight game against an opponent which defeated BYU last season, as well as the only three teams that defeated BYU in league play. The Cougars have claimed revenge over Air Force and San Diego State already this season and will be looking to settle the score against Colorado State on Thursday. Last season the three teams beat BYU by an average 30.1-19.7. This season, BYU has posted a combined 122 points against two of the three teams, defeating each team by an average 34 points per game.
Chasing the Title
A win on Thursday would put the Cougars just one win away from clinching at least a share of the MWC title. (Should BYU win and Utah lose at UNLV on Saturday, the Cougars would then be guaranteed at least a share of the league title.) A win against Colorado State and a win at Wyoming would seal the Cougars' second MWC title in the past three seasons, including their first outright title. The Cougars have won 20 league titles since the 1974 season, including a stretch of 10 straight WAC Championships from 1976-1985. Of the 20 conference titles, BYU has won the championship outright 12 times. The Cougars have not won an outright title since the 1996 season.
Cougars Continue to Climb National Polls
Following the Cougars' 59-21 victory over San Diego State on Saturday, BYU climbed to No. 8 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, from No. 10 last week. BYU also jumped three spots in the Associated Press top-25 poll, climbing to No. 13. The Cougars' 18th-place rankings marks the highest BYU has been ranked in either poll since the 1996 season. After entering both polls on Sept. 9, following a 44-16 win at Cal, the Cougars climbed to No. 20 in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll on Sept. 23. The Sept. 9 polls marks the first time BYU had been ranked nationally since the final game of the 1999 season - a 21-3 loss to Marshall in the Motor City Bowl. BYU entered the Motor City Bowl ranked 25th in the coaches poll, while it had dropped from the AP poll on Nov. 21. Nov. 14, 1999 marked the last time BYU was ranked in both the AP and ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls. BYU was ranked 19th in each poll that week, but dropped out of the AP poll and fell to 25th in the coaches poll on Nov. 21. BYU has now been ranked in the Top-20 or Top-25 polls in 22 of the last 26 years. The only years in which BYU has never been ranked during the season since 1976 were 1978,1987, 1998 and 2000. The Cougars, along with Nebraska and Miami (Fla.), are the only three undefeated teams in the country.
Week USAToday/ESPN AP
Aug. 26 NR NR
Sept. 2 NR NR
Sept. 9 25th 24th
Sept. 16 No Polls No Polls
Sept. 23 20th 20th
Oct. 7 17th 18th
Oct. 14 13th 18th
Oct. 21 10th 16th
Oct. 28 8th 13th
Cougars Wallop Aztecs
With the high-powered BYU offense needing a jump start early on, the Cougars' special teams and defensive units gave the offense the jumper cables needed to propel the team to its eighth straight victory of the season, downing San Diego State, 59-21 on Saturday. With the win, BYU (8-0, 4-0) moved into sole possession of first place in the Mountain West Conference. After the two teams traded punts to start the game, the BYU defense held again on the Aztec's second drive, forcing a 23-yard field goal attempt. Justin Ena powered through the line to block Tommy Kirovski's kick, while defensive end Ryan Denney scooped up the ball and sprinted 82 yards for the Cougars' first score of the night. After the Aztecs rattled off 14 straight points, Matt Payne kicked a 34-yard field goal to make the score 14-10 with 9:27 remaining in the first half. The Cougars reclaimed the lead when Luke Staley ran the ball 63 yards for one of his three touchdowns on the night, giving BYU a 17-14 lead. Staley has tallied multiple touchdowns in five games this season, setting the BYU single-season touchdown record with 17 TDs. Isaac Kelley gave the Cougars the lead for good when he intercepted a Lon Sheriff pass and returned the ball 60 yards for BYU's first defensive touchdown of the season and the first since Brian Gray returned an interception for a TD against Virginia in 1999. The Cougars went to the locker room up 24-14 at the half despite two first half turnovers and only one offensive touchdown. The second half was a different story for BYU, which scored on two of its first three possessions to open up a 38-21 lead by the end of the third quarter. The Cougar defense came up big again at the start of the fourth quarter when Ryan Denney sacked Lon Sheriff, forcing a fumble which Jeff Cowart gathered in at the San Diego State four-yard line. Gabriel Reid hauled in a Brandon Doman pass on the next play to put the Cougs up 45-21 with 13:36 to go in the game. Doman finished the night 15-19 for 154 yards and two touchdowns. Staley picked up his record-setting 17th touchdown of the season with an eight-yard run with 7:38 to go in the game, giving the Cougars a 52-21 lead. Staley ran for 167 yards on the night, the fifth time this season he has ran for more than 100 yards in a game. His three touchdowns on the night marked the fifth time this season and 11th time in his career he has had multiple touchdown games. BYU's final score of the night came late when Charlie Peterson connected with Toby Christensen on a 68-yard pass with 4:38 left in the game. Toby Christensen's touchdown finished BYU's second half scoring barrage which saw the Cougars rattle off 28 consecutive points to put the game out of reach. The 59 points on the night was the second consecutive game the Cougars have scored more than 50 and the fifth time BYU has eclipsed the half-century mark this season.
Cougars Clinch 28th Straight Non-Losing Season
Following a 63-33 win over Air Force on Oct. 20, the Cougars improved to 7-0, ensuring their 28th straight non-losing season. BYU has not had a losing season since posting a 5-6 mark in 1973-former head coach LaVell Edward's second season as head coach. The Cougars' streak of 28 straight seasons ranks 11th all-time at the NCAA Division I-A level and is currently the third longest non-losing streak in the nation. (Nebraska leads with an impressive 40 straight seasons without a losing record.)
Saturday's win at San Diego State marked the Cougars' eighth win of the season. BYU has produced 24 eight win seasons since 1922, including 22 since 1976. The Cougars recorded their first eight-win season in 1932. BYU did not have another eight-win season until 1966; 34 years later. From 1976-1992 the Cougars recorded 17 straight eight-win campaigns. BYU's eight-game win streak is the longest since recording 12 straight victories during the 1996 season.
After picking up its seventh victory of the season (vs. Air Force), BYU became the first team in the Mountain West Conference to become eligible for post-season bowl consideration. Should the Cougars earn a bowl bid, it will mark the 23rd bowl game since the 1974 season. BYU last went bowling during the 1999 season. A bowl game would mark the third post-season appearance for the Cougars in the past four seasons and the first-ever for head coach Gary Crowton.
Staley Sets Single-Season Touchdown Record
Junior running back Luke Staley recorded three more touchdowns on Saturday (at San Diego State) to become BYU's all-time, single-season touchdown leader. Staley, who has tallied 17 touchdowns on the season, broke Waymon Hamilton's 20-year-old record (16) on one of his more spectacular touchdown carries to date. Staley caputred the record on an eight-yard run, dragging two SDSU defenders into the endzone, giving the Cougars a commanding 52-21 lead midway through the fourth quarter. With 17 touchdowns on the season, Staley has totaled 37 throughout his career and needs just three more to tie Jamal Willis for the BYU career touchdown record (40). The 6-foot-2, 225 pound running back currently leads the nation in both scoring, averaging 14.57 points per game. Staley has tallied at least one touchdown in every game he has played this season and with his first TD against San Diego State, has produced at least one touchdown in 19 of the 26 games he has played at BYU, including multiple-scoring games in 11 different outings. Staley turned in career-high five-touchdown performance against Utah State this season, equaling the BYU record for most TDs scored in a game. Staley turned in 207 yards rushing against the Aggies to become the first BYU back to total 200+ yards rushing in a game since Ronney Jenkins posted 250 yards against San Jose State in 1998.
STALEY QUICK FACTS
* Leads the nation in scoring, averaging 14.57 points per game
* Leads the nation in rushing yards per carry, averaging 9.01
yards per touch
* Ranks 8th nationally in yards per game, averaging 128.00
yards per contest
* Has tallied 11 multiple-scoring games over his career
* Has produced at least one touchdown in 19-of-26 career games.
* Named MWC Player of the Week after posting 207 yards and five
TDs against USU.
* Has 1,807 career rushing yards
* Has 896 yards rushing this season - a career high.
* Could become BYU's sixth 1,000-yard rusher with 104 more yards.
* Has produced 222 career points
STALEY RECORD WATCH
* Tied BYU single-game record with 30 points
(vs. Utah State; Oct. 5, 2001)
* Tied a school record with five touchdowns
(vs. Utah State; Oct. 5, 2001)
* Set BYU single-season touchdown record with 17 TDs (2001)
* Set BYU single-game record with 14.2 yards per carry
(vs. Tulane; 10-for-142)
* Set BYU single-season (non-kicker) scoring record with
102 points scored
* Needs 21 points to set BYU single-season scoring
record (123 points)
* On pace to set single-season yards per carry record,
averaging 9.1 y/c
* Needs just three touchdowns to become BYU's all-time
* Needs just 490 yards to become BYU's single-season
* Needs just 1,163 to become all-time leading rusher
* Needs 104 yards to become BYU's first 1,000-yd rusher
since 1998 (Jenkins; 1,411)
* Needs 111 points to become BYU's all-time leading scorer
* Needs 18 points to become BYU's all-time (non-kicker)
BYU CAREER TOUCHDOWN LIST
Player Years TDs Rushing Receiving
Jamal Willis 1991-94 40 35 5
Luke Staley 1999-Present 37 31 6
Lakei Heimuli 1984-86 32 30 2
Waymon Hamilton 1981-83 32 29 3
Eric Drage 1990-93 29 0 29
Ronney Jenkins 1996,98 29 24 5
Scoring Defense Busters
Through eight games, the Cougars have paid little attention to their opponents scoring defense average. On the season, BYU has surpassed its opponent's previous scoring defense average by 31.56 points per game. The Cougars'largest point differential came against Air Force, putting up 43.8 points more than the Falcons had previously allowed. Against San DiegoState, BYU posted 33.6 points over the Aztecs'previous scoring defense mark of 25.4 points per game. CSU enters Thursday's game ranked second in the MWC allowing just 20.0 points per game, while the Cougars lead the nation in scoring offense, averaging 50.1 points per contest.
Single-Season Scoring Record in Sight
Through the first eight games of the season, BYU has produced 401 points, averaging a nation's best 50.1 points per game. However, during the 1980 season, BYU posted a record 422 points over a mid-season eight-game stretch. With five games remaining, BYU is on pace to break the current single-season scoring record set in 1980. BYU chalked up 606 points that year, averaging 46.6 points per contest.
A Look At The Rivalries
Since 1922, BYU has maintained several long-standing rivalries. BYU will face each of its oldest rivals during the 2001 season. The Cougars own a winning record against four of the five rivals, including a mark of 31-25-3 against Colorado State. Following is a look at the Cougars' five oldest rivalries:
School No. Games Series Record First Game Last Game
Utah 76 Utah leads, 45-27-4 Oct. 14, 1922 Nov. 24, 2000
Utah State 75 BYU leads, 39-33-3 Oct. 7, 1922 Oct. 5, 2001
Wyoming 67 BYU leads, 35-29-3 Nov. 14, 1922 Oct. 26, 2000
Colorado St. 59 BYU leads, 31-25-3 Nov. 25, 1922 Nov. 2, 2000
New Mexico 51 BYU leads, 38-12-1 Nov. 17, 1951 Oct. 13, 2001
Margin of Victory
Throughout the season, the Cougars have tallied 401 points, averaging a nation's best 50.1 points per game. BYU has allowed 197 points, giving up an average 24.6 points per contest. Overall, the Cougars have tallied a +25.5-point margin of victory.
Red Zone Review
The Cougars have scored on an amazing 41-of-45 trips to the Red Zone (.911), including a season-high nine of nine trips inside the Red Zone against Air Force. The Air Force game also marked the fourth time this season BYU has scored at least six different times inside the Red Zone. Prior to a BYU fumble on the eight-yard line against UNLV, the Cougars were a perfect 20-for-20 inside the Red Zone. 33 of the Cougars' 39 Red Zone scoring drives have been touchdowns, while just four have been field goals. The BYU defense has held its opponents to just 22-of-31 Red Zone scores on the season, including an impressive 1-for-4 against SDSU. The Cougar defense forced two missed field goals (including one blocked attempt) and an interception to prevent the Aztecs from scoring on three of their four trips inside the Red Zone. The Cougars have scored 36 Red Zone touchdowns, which is more TDs than BYU scored during the entire 2000 season (32).
Fast Times at BYU
On the season, BYU has produced 11 scoring drives of under 1:00 or less. The Cougars began the 2001 campaign with a season-high four scoring drives under 1:00 against Tulane. The quickest drive came at San Diego State, when Brandon Doman connected with Gabe Reid for a four-yard touchdown pass. Equally impressive, the Cougars have 30 scoring drives of under 2:00. Against Tulane, BYU produced a season- high six scoring drives under 2:00. BYU closed out the second quarter (against the Green Wave) with four straight scoring drives of :55, :47, :46 and :33. A week later, the Cougars posted five scoring drives of 1:58 or less. Against Cal, the Cougars posted five scoring drives of 1:50 or less, including two scoring drives under 1:00. On the Cougars'six scoring drives against Cal, two totaled three plays or less. On the season, BYU has totaled 25 scoring drives of five plays or less, including against SDSU. Against Air Force, the Cougars scored racked up four scoring drives of under 2:00 and added three more scoring drives under 2:20. All totaled, all nine scoring drives were produced under 3:48.
THE STREAK IS STILL ALIVE ... 332 Games And Counting
With Ryan Denney's 82-yard touchdown in the first quarter at San Diego State, following a blocked field goal, BYU extended its NCAArecord streak to 332 games without being shutout. BYU was last shutout during the 1975 season (Sept. 27, 1975 vs. Arizona State.) The Cougars have only one player on its 2001 roster who was alive the last time BYU was shutout. Offensive lineman Aaron McCubbins was just two days old.
Another Streak of Note
Dating back to last season, BYU has won a total of 10 straight games, marking the third longest winning streak in the country. Miami (Fla.) leads the nation with 17 straight wins, followed by Nebraska with 11.
Cougars Re-Schedule Mississippi State, Switch Hawai'i
In cooperation with the University of Hawai'i and Mississippi State University, BYU announced it has re-scheduled its contest against Mississippi State for Saturday, Dec. 1. The game, originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 15, was postponed after the terrorist attacks on the United States. In order to play the Bulldogs on Dec. 1, Hawai'i generously agreed to switch its game with BYU from Dec. 1 to Saturday, Dec. 8. The SEC announced it would re-schedule the SEC Championship game from Dec. 1 to Dec. 8, allowing for games scheduled to be played on Sept. 15, to be played on Dec. 1. With this move, BYU and Mississippi State were able to re-schedule, only after Hawai'i had agreed to play BYU on Dec. 8, as opposed to Dec. 1.
Compare The Stats
STATS BYU CSU
Scoring 401 167
Points Per Game 50.1 20.3
First Downs 207 125
Rushing yardage 1,794 1,342
Average Per Game 224.3 167.8
Rushing TDs 28 10
Passing Yardage 2,498 1,245
Att-Comp-Int 282-187-2 204-96-10
Average Per Game 312.3 155.6
Passing TDs 25 9
Total Offense 4,257 2,587
Total Plays 587 527
Average Per Game 532.1 323.4
Kick Returns: #-yards 25-545 19-508
Punt Returns: #-yards 31-285 30-328
INTReturns: #-yards 14-240 10-113
Kick Return Average 21.8 26.7
Punt Return Average 9.2 10.9
INT Return Average 17.1 11.3
Fumbles-lost 23-6 13-9
Penalties-yards 50-446 43-343
Punts-yards 27-1,075 48-1,999
Time of possession/game 28:15 28:40
3rd-down Conversions 43/103 38/119
4th-down Conversions 12/16 7/13
Sacks by-yards 20-142 14-88
Touchdowns 55 21
Field Goals-Attempts 6-11 6-9
PAT-Attempts 51-54 17-17
Attendance 342,701 111,176
Average Attendance 42,838 27,794
Pick A Receiver; Any Receiver
Throughout the 2001 season, the Cougars have used 20 different receivers, including a season-high 12 different receivers against Nevada. The BYU receiving corps has accounted for 2,498 of the Cougars'4,257 (58.7 percent) total yards on the season, including a season high 408 yards against Air Force. Reno Mahe ranks nationally with 49 receptions for 564 yards and three touchdowns. The Cougars rank ninth in the nation in passing offense, averaging 312.2 yards per game. 10 different receivers have over 100 yards on the season, including six receivers with 200 or mor yards. Eight receivers have 10 or more receptions. Tight end Doug Jolley leads all receivers with four touchdown receptions, while Mahe, Luke Staley, Mike Rigell, Rod Wilkerson and Spencer Nead each have three touchdowns on the season. All totaled 11 different receivers have scored at least one touchdown, including Soren Halladay and Toby Christensen, who both recorded their first-ever career touchdowns receptions on Saturday at San Diego State.
BYU began the season using a new hi-tech video-editing system to help coaches break down film and prepare for upcoming opponents. Since switching over to the Knowledge Inc., Interactive Play Book, the Cougars are a perfect 8-0. In fact, of the three other schools in the country that use the system, the teams have compiled a combined record of 21-3 on the season.
Perfect After Eight
The Cougars'59-21 win over Air Force on Saturday gave BYU its eighth straight win of the season, marking the best single-season start since 1984. (BYUwent undefeated in 1984, winning the National Championship with a 13-0 record.) BYU's Gary Crowton became the first head coach in BYU football history to win the first eight games of his career. With the Cougars'victory over San Diego State, the former Louisiana Tech head coach has posted a 29-13 career coaching record. With BYU's 52-7 win over Nevada, Crowton became the first BYU coach to win the first two games of his career at BYU since G. Ott Romney won his first two games in 1928. Romney went on to post a 3-3-1 record in his first season. After winning the first game of his career, defeating Kansas, 32-9, former head coach LaVell Edwards lost to Utah State in his second game, 42-19. With a 35-point victory over Tulane to kickoff the Gary Crowton era, the Cougars are 6-7 in the opening game of a coach's tenure at BYU.
The Crowton File
Gary Crowton, a native of Orem, Utah, takes over a BYU program that has been under the direction of college football's sixth all-time winningest coach, LaVell Edwards. Edwards took over the program in 1972, coaching the Cougars to a 257-101-3 (.716) record. Crowton, 44, comes to BYU with a long and proven list of coaching accomplishments. Prior to serving the past two seasons as the offensive coordinator with the NFL's Chicago Bears, where his offense ranked third in the NFL in passing yardage during the 1999 season, Crowton was head coach at Louisiana Tech from 1996-1998. There he guided the Bulldogs to a 21-13 (.618) record over three seasons, including a 9-2 mark in 1997. Competing as an independent for three straight years, Louisiana Tech recorded wins over the likes of Mississippi State, Cal and Alabama. Using its Crowton-designed, high-powered offense, the program also recorded impressive wins by scoring 50-or-more points against eight different opponents, including games of 60-or-more points in five different games. Crowton's offense ranked third in the nation, both in passing and total offense, while the Bulldogs racked up 12,746 yards passing in three years, an average of 4,249 yards per season. The prolific Tech offense also produced 115 touchdown receptions, averaging 38.3 TDs per season. Under Crowton, Louisiana Tech engineered 22 different 300-yard passing games, including a school-record 10, 300-yard outings during the 1998 season. In 1998, Crowton's final season at Louisiana Tech, the Bulldogs combined for a school-record 4,943 yards passing. Crowton's coaching career actually began in 1982 as a student assistant under Edwards at BYU. While at BYU he worked with current Seattle Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren and future NFL Hall of Famer, Steve Young. From BYU, Crowton moved on to Snow College in Ephraim, Utah, where he coached from 1983-86. While at Snow College, Crowton moved from defensive backs coach to offensive coordinator. Under his offensive leadership, the Badgers won the National Junior College Athletic Association National Championship in 1985. From Snow College, Crowton moved to Western Illinois for one season, before taking over as the offensive coordinator at New Hampshire. In 1991, Crowton was hired as the quarterbacks coach at Boston College under head coach Tom Coughlin. There he helped develop quarterback Glenn Foley as a candidate for the Heisman Trophy. After three successful seasons with the Eagles, Crowton was hired as the co-offensive coordinator at Georgia Tech, where his offense led the Yellow Jackets to a No. 21 national ranking in his first and only season in Atlanta. In 1995, Crowton was hired as the offensive coordinator at Louisiana Tech, where he would become the head coach the following season. Crowton, who is the first-ever head football coach at BYU to serve an LDS Church mission, is married to the former Maren Peterson of Bountiful, Utah. The couple was married on August 3, 1985. The Crowtons have six children. NOTEABLE: Crowton is the first coach in BYU history to start his career 7-0 with the Cougars ... In only his fourth year as a Division-IA coach, Crowton recorded his 25th career victory - a 35-31 victory over future Hall of Fame coach John Robinson and the UNLV Rebels.
In only his tenth career start (vs. Air Force), senior quarterback Brandon Doman became the first BYU signal caller since Robbie Bosco in 1984 to win his first 10 games as a starter. Click HERE for the Domanator Update. Doman led BYU to back-to-back wins to close out the 2000 season and has guided the Cougars to eight straight wins to open the 2001 season - the Cougars best start since the 1984 season. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound senior has paced the Cougars to a national-leading 50.1 points per game this season, posting 297.1 yards of total offense per game, which ranks second in the country. His passing efficiency (167.92) ranks 4th in the nation. Other national rankings:
Individual Category 2001 Stats National Ranking
Touchdown Passes 22 2nd
Passing Efficiency 167.92 4th
Total Completions 156 4th
Touchdown-Interception Ratio 11-1 (22/2) 1st
Points Responsible p/game 21.3 2nd
Total Points Responsible for 170 1st
LaVell Edwards Stadium
On November 18, 2001, Cougar Stadium was forever changed, honoring the man who built BYU's football tradition from the ground up. President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints, Gordon B. Hinckley, announced the historic name change prior to Edwards'final home game (vs. New Mexico). Now known as LaVell Edwards Stadium; Home of the BYU Cougars, the stadium has been home to more than 112 games since it was expanded to 65,000 seats in 1982. BYU has produced a 93-22 record in the Stadium since the 1982 season, including a 37-13 victory over New Mexico in Edwards' final game in the stadium. Fittingly, Edwards retired with a perfect record (1-0) in LaVell Edwards Stadium. Since 1972, BYU has posted an impressive 135-22 (.860) record in Provo. The Cougars have won five straight in Provo, dating back to 2000.
Ramage Set to Retire After 30th Season
Entering his 30th season at BYU, defensive line coach Tom Ramage announced he will retire following the 2001 season. Ramage came to BYU after a successful playing career at Utah State, where he also served as a graduate assistant coach from 1958-60 and the d-line coach from 1962-65. He left USU to serve as the defensive coordinator at Weber State for seven seasons and was named the head coach at Dixie College in 1971. He coached at Dixie for two seasons before coming to BYU under second-year head coach LaVell Edwards. Ramage has coached over 34 players who have gone on to the NFL. The long-time defensive coach celebrated his 66th birthday (Aug. 25) with a 70-35 win over Tulane in the BCA Classic.
Paper Or Plastic
After eight games, BYU has allowed just nine sacks on the season. Nevada got to Brandon Doman in the first quarter for the first sack allowed on the season. UNLV picked up two more sacks against the Cougars. BYU has allowed at least one sack in six of the eight games it has played this season. In the first eight games last season, BYU had already given up 31 sacks, including five against Air Force and four more against Syracuse and three against San Diego State. During the 2000 season, BYU allowed 36 sacks, averaging 3.0 per game. However, the BYU offensive line did not allow a sack in back-to-back games, including the Colorado State and New Mexico games and allowed just one sack against Wyoming as the line began to gel. On the defensive side of the ball, BYU has already sacked its opponent 20 times, including a season-high five sacks against Cal. In the 2000 season, the Cougars had 20 sacks after eight games. Senior defensive end Ryan Denney ranks second in the MWC with six sacks on the season, averaging .81 sacks per game. Denney has twice produced two sacks in a game this season, including the Tulane and Cal games. Senior Brett Keisel recorded two of his three sacks this season against Utah State.
Fourth-And-Go For It!
After going 3-for-3 on fourth-down conversions against Utah State, and 3-for-4 on fourth-down attempts at New Mexico, the Cougars went 0-for-1 against Air Force and 1-for-2 at SDSU, dropping their season average to .750 (12-of-16). Three of the fourth-down conversions have gone for touchdowns, including Luke Staley's 37-yard touchdown run on a fourth-and-three in the third quarter against Utah State. Against New Mexico, Brandon Doman converted a crucial fourth-and-11 situation that led to an eventual go-ahead, game-winning touchdown.
Saturday's game (vs. San Diego State), marked the 800th game for the Cougars, dating back to Oct. 7, 1922. With the victory, BYU has posted an all-time record 438-336-26 (.564).
The Cougars' 38-point victory over the Aztecs marks the sixth double-digit victory of the season.
After posting 59 points against SDSU, BYU has recorded 40 or more points six different times this season, including the second straight game scoring more than 50 points. Entering the SDSU game, BYU was averaging 48.9 points per game. The Cougars continue to lead the nation, averaging 50.1 points per game.
Ryan Denney's TD in the first quarter marked the first time a BYU player has returned a blocked field goal for a touchdown since Oct. 3, 1998 against Fresno State. Denney's TD is the longest touchdown play since Margin Hooks took a reception tion 83 yards for a TD against UNLV during the 1999 season.
Isaac Kelley's touchdown marks the first time the BYU defense has scored a touchdown since Nov. 6, 1999 (against SDSU).
The Cougars recorded three interceptions on the night (vs. SDSU), marking their 12th, 13th and 14th of the season. The Cougars have produced at least one interception in each of the eight games they have played this season.
The Cougars' 59 points against San Diego State marks the most points allowed by the Aztecs since giving up 63 points against Fresno State on Nov. 11, 1993.