BYU vs. No. 10 Wisconsin Postgame Notes and Quotes


The following notes and quotes are from BYU's 40-6 loss to No. 10 Wisconsin.

TEAM FLAGS: Corbin Kaufusi, Matt Foley, Hiva Lee
ALUMNI FLAG BEARERS: Brian McDonald (2000-01), Ross Apo (2010-14), Cody Hoffman (2009-13), Austin Collie (2004, 07-08)

No Touchdowns at Home. BYU did not score a touchdown at home for the first time since 2005. The Cougars made one field goal in a 20-3 loss to Boston College.

Retired Jerseys. BYU retired No. 6. to honor Marc Wilson (QB 1975-79), Robbie Bosco (QB, 1981-85) and Luke Staley (RB, 1999-01). The three All-Americans and BYU Hall of Famers were honored in a ceremony at halftime.

Beau Hoge
In his first career start, Hoge completed 11 of 20 passes for 111 yards.

Ula Tolutau
The freshman running back recorded two career highs with 13 carries and 58 yards.

Talon Shumway
Shumway led BYU in receptions with a career-high four for 29 yards.

Fred Warner
Warner had seven total tackles, including five solo stops and combined for a tackle for loss. He also tied for the lead in team tackles, along with Micah Hannemann and Butch Pau’u.

Micah Simon
The wide receiver had 60 yards on three receptions. Simon caught a 50-yard pass to keep a BYU scoring drive alive and resulted in a 32-yard field goal from Rhett Almond.

Rushing yards: Ula Tolutau (58), Austin Kafentzis (7)
Carries: Ula Tolutau (13)
Long pass: Beau Hoge (50)
Long reception: Micah Simon (50)
Receptions: Talon Shumway (4)

CAREER FIRSTS (The following players recorded their first in a respective category)
Start: Beau Hoge, Ula Tolutau, Marvin Hifo, Khyiris Tonga
Rush: Austin Kafentzis
Tackle: Lorenzo Fauatea
TFL: Troy Warner

BYU head coach Kalani Sitake
Congratulations to Wisconsin. They are a great team. You can see why they are ranked. I thought we were overwhelmed. We couldn’t get anything going. Defensively, we could have provided some plays but that wasn’t happening today. There are a lot of things we need to improve on, so the bye comes at a good time.

We have a lot of games left in the season so we need to find a way to win games. I was disappointed in the result, obviously. But if we had played our best game, I don’t know what the outcome would have been today. That is the type of team that you aspire to be. They did a good job of keeping us on our heels. They possessed the ball and played some great defense.

We wanted to see how we would measure up and there’s your answer. Not to make any excuses, but it was a good clinic to see who we want to be and what it takes.

I think we played better defense against LSU. Looking at the numbers we had eight more plays. It is difficult to win games when you’re only getting 200 yards of production and not getting in the end zone. When your defense isn’t playing great — there is your result — 46. We have a long way to go and a lot more season to play. So, we will take advantage of the bye week and try to help ourselves wins games.

Wide receiver Micah Simon
On scoring before halftime
It was great to get the momentum going, heading into halftime – trying to get a score. I wasn’t sure if we were just going to take a knee or not since there were only about 20 seconds left. It was great to get that momentum going and for Rhett (Almond) to knock a field goal down. It had us feeling good about ourselves heading into halftime.

On Wisconsin’s game plan
There was a lot of cover-one press and cover-four press. They did a few things differently than what we thought – or maybe saw on film. So, they changed a few things up, which was good on their part. They gave us a different look. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what they give us – we just have to execute. We have to learn from the positives and learn from the negatives.

On gaining an offensive identity
It’s hard on days like today when we only have 20 minutes of possession. It’s tough to try and really get things going. We had a few good, long drives which were really good. I think we’re still just trying to work things out. We’ll learn from it and we’ll be fine.

On bye week
We’ll just review the film – stay in the film rooms with our coaches. It’s another week to get our bodies as close to 100 percent as possible. That’ll be key for us. I think just focusing on the little things and trying to understand why we’re struggling. We’ll have time to get ready for Utah State in two weeks.

Tight end Matt Bushman
On halftime message from Coach Sitake
He acknowledged that Wisconsin came in here and kicked our butts. They played a great game. He also said we all need to do our parts. He talked about how we need to each do our 1/11th. We can’t be trying to do another guy’s job. We can’t be trying to do more than we can do. He just told us we have to stay together. We have a bye week and we have time to prepare for Utah State. We’re a little disappointed right now, but we need to step up. We need to take a moment to try and compete against these top-15 ranked teams.

On execution struggles
We’re trying to fix it. There are glimpses of us doing great things and other times we’re not doing well at all. I think we just need to find the balance where we’re not trying to do too much and once we have the opportunity where we have the defense on their heels, to go out and make plays. It’s just a little bit of us not making the plays that need to be made. It’s just hard to get the momentum going when we’re not completely doing our job. We’re trying, but we just have to step it up.

On Beau Hoge’s first start
I think he did pretty well. He showed glimpses of greatness. He made plays when we needed to make them. He played against a great defense in his first career start. There’s things to get better at from all of us, and I think he tried his best. He was just trying to do what the coaches were telling him to do. He messed up a few times, but we all messed up a few times. There’s no one to blame. We all just need to do better these next two weeks. ​

Linebacker Butch Pau’u
You look at the stat sheet and look at how many running yards they had and how many passing yards they had, and it was a lot of missed assignments. They ran the same play three times and we were just not in the right place at the right time. It’s us as players not doing our job. It got to a point where I feel like we started to play well but they made some adjustments and started to get plays. What we need to do is make sure we play every single down because we have the talent to compete against everyone. If we let our assignments down then we let a team like Wisconsin put in 40 points and that’s tough to see.

(Alex Hornibrook) was very accurate and calm under pressure. I felt like our defensive ends and our defensive tackles got a lot of pressure on him but he remained calm and everything was on time. I don’t know if it was a timing thing for them or if we didn’t get enough pressure, but he is a very good quarterback.

I think the only thing is the difference we can say is we allowed them to beat us. It’s a matter of us playing every single down perfectly. If we can do that we will be the defense that we expect to be.

You’ve got to give the running backs credit. There were times as a defense that we felt like the run wasn’t there but they managed to keep running so we’ve got to give credit to them. That’s not us playing ball. The coaches reminded us today that we didn’t do our 1/11th. That’s what we want to focus on this bye week. We have to be able to understand what our assignment is.

We still don’t have an identity. We’ve allowed some good teams to score points on us but we feel like they shouldn’t have scored that many points. We allow too many rushing yards. We allow too many passing yards. We have to figure that out.

I think Wisconsin loves to do what they did today which is run the ball really hard and tire you out. They were OK getting 15 play drives. I think what we need to do is be in better shape so that we can play all 15 or 20 plays. We need to make big plays and stop the ball more so that our offense can score.

Teams do what they want to do, and you just go out and play ball and respect them.

Defensive lineman Corbin Kaufusi
It is hard to measure how good an offense is. They are a great offense but whether they are the best or not depends more on our level of play.

We knew coming in that they were big and physical but every offensive line is supposed to be big and physical but more of it was us not being able to play to the level we are capable of so it makes them look bigger and more physical but it’s more on us rather than them.

In a game like this, you know they are going to try and run the ball, and we have to do a better job of reading that and getting up and going. We have to have a little bit more relentlessness.

There are times where the defensive line looks incredible. But then there are those plays where our technique kind of failed here or there and that’s what allows these teams to take advantage of us.

Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst
I was proud of the way the guys prepared this week. I thought we did a lot of good things today, and we brought a lot of energy. I thought the backs ran well, and Alex (Hornibrook) played sharp.  Alex bailed us out a little bit in the red zone, and we had a lot of third down plays. It is never going to be a perfect game, but I thought we played well. Our guys seemed to enjoy playing together today.

I thought we took step forward, but there will be things we need to do and areas we need to continue to work on and clean up. We need to take advantage of the bye week. We have a few guys that are banged up, and we need to hopefully get them healthier.

I thought Alex saw the field really well, and I thought he was decisive. He played really sharp and clean. He was in better rhythm than he was last week, and I liked the way he approached the game all week. Our offense executed and made things happen.

On the defense
I think this year’s group is starting to come together. I like what T.J. (Edwards) is bringing. I like that he is taking that step of being a leader. I also liked that fact that when something negative happened, the defense kept going. BYU had a good drive in the red zone, and I liked that our guys just kept playing. There are things we need to clean up, but I liked the way we approached things.

I was proud of the way our guys approached this whole trip, and I certainly have high respect for the program here at BYU, as well as for the coaching staff. Coming in to this week, we knew we had to play our best game, and in many ways we did. I thought that it was good for us to get on the road. I think when you go on the road you have to come together as a team. There is always going to be some adversity. We knew coming in that BYU wanted to be physical, and we really hadn’t faced this style of team this year. We knew it was going to be a physical game. 

[BYU’s] defense is the best defense we have seen to date. We had a lot of respect for BYU’s defensive scheme. I think they have some older guys who understand the scheme well, and I felt like they had a couple of really good football players that we had to handle. Going up against a veteran defense was good for our receivers. I think the challenges of this week were opportunities for growth. 

Wisconsin wide receiver Quintez Cephus
Guys were out there flying around making their assignments in a tough environment, so it’s a great feeling to come out on the road and get a confident win. Guys pulled together. We knew that it would be just us out here. We expected to be in a hostile environment, so we came out and did our job. We got closer through adversity, they came out strong in the first quarter and guys had to pull together. TJ had a big interception for us and the tables turned. We just had to do our job and so this was great for our team. 

Alex is working hard and he is preparing well. We have confidence in him knowing that he is preparing well and doing everything he can to come out here and have success like that. That’s what we expect. He gives us a chance and we expect to come away with a win every time, so it was a great win for us.

As a wide receiver group, we try to come out and be aggressive on the perimeter helping the running back by blocking and digging corners and safeties out, knowing that will open things up for us on the outside. It’s just a team sport and team game. We have to help out the run game in order to get the passing game going. We just try to do our job.

On his two touchdowns
Fumagalli told me that they were double-teaming him, and I knew that it would be a lot of one on one on the backside and Alex saw the same thing. Both times he just gave me a great ball and I just wanted to finish through the end zone.

It was great today. I have never been out west, so being out here and seeing the mountains, it was beautiful. The altitude was a little different we had to warm up and get adjusted to it, but this was really good for our team. We fought through it and came together.

Wisconsin quarterback Alex Hornibrook
I think it all started up front. The O-line was doing a great job in the run game and especially in the pass game pretty much the whole game. And our backs were doing a good job making plays for us and just kept moving the ball.

Everybody was locked in and it just felt like a different energy on the field. I was glad that we saw our receivers have a great game and our running backs and o line. It just felt good as an offense.

I think we came out with an edge. I think last week we know we didn't play as well as we could've and when we were on the field, we just executed the game plan and were ready to go.

That's one thing I love about my receivers - they'll fight for that football and go for it even if they don't even have a great chance of getting the ball. And that's the biggest thing that develops trust.

About having the new completion record in school history
It's pretty cool I guess, but obviously we had some great plays that our receivers made, that Danny made, Q made, and just our whole offense was clicking and it just felt good out there.

It felt pretty good and it was just confidence in our game plan and our coaches gave us a great chance to be successful

We had a pretty good idea of what we were going to get so it was just trusting that and making plays.