Cougars host Broncos in Homecoming game Friday
PROVO, Utah – BYU football hosts Boise State in the Homecoming game Friday night at 8:15 p.m. MDT. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN.
Live radio coverage can be found on the BYU Sports Network with Greg Wrubell, which will be broadcast on BYU Radio Sirius XM 143, KSL 1160 AM/102.7 FM and BYUCougars.com. It will begin at 6:15 p.m. MDT.
BYU (1-4) vs. Boise State (2-2)
Friday, Oct. 6, 2017
Kickoff: 8:15 p.m. MDT
LaVell Edwards Stadium (63,470)
SERIES NOTES. BYU and Boise State signed to play a home-and-home series every year through 2023 back in 2012. In the five games since 2012, the home team has won every season, with Boise State holding a 3-2 advantage in that timespan and a 5-2 edge in the overall series. Every game but one in the series (2015) has been played on a Thursday or Friday night.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS. BYU is playing its second of three Friday night matchups this season. The first was last week against Utah State and last is Nov. 10 at UNLV. Last season, BYU went 2-0 in Friday night games, defeating Toledo 55-53 and Mississippi State 28-21 in double overtime. The Cougars had won five consecutive Friday games until last week.
HOMECOMING. This week is BYU’s Homecoming week. Last season, the Cougars defeated Mississippi State 28-21 in double overtime on Homecoming night. The week is packed full of festivities on campus, including Friday night’s game against the Broncos. Visit www.homecoming.byu.edu for more information.
TEAMS COMING OFF A BYE. Boise State is the first of two consecutive games, and one of three games, where BYU will face a team that is coming off of a bye week. The Broncos had last week off and BYU’s next opponent, Mississippi State, has a bye this week. BYU also hosts San Jose State later this season after the Spartans are coming off of their bye. The Cougars were in a similar situation in 2016 and went 2-1 against teams coming off of bye weeks (West Virginia, Toledo, UMass).
ALMA MATER COACHES. For the third time in as many games for the Cougars, both head coaches in the matchup are coaching at their respective alma mater. Bryan Harsin played quarterback for the Broncos from 1995-99 while Kalani Sitake was a fullback at BYU I n1994, 97-2000. Harsin and Sitake are among 22 FBS head coaches choacing at their alma mater.
HONORING LAVELL. Legendary hall of famer and beloved head coach at BYU for 29 seasons, LaVell Edwards, passed away on Dec. 29, 2016. The always steady and humble coach will be honored in several ways throughout the season, including the team wearing a uniform patch featuring his classic stoic profile he displayed for decades on the Cougar sidelines. Edwards not only had an impact on BYU, but also has roots with Utah State. Edwards played for the Aggies from 1949-51, and earned all-Mountain States Conference honors in 1950 as a linebacker. Edwards was named to Utah State's All-Century Football team in 1993 and was also inducted into the Utah State Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011.
The following quotes are from BYU's post-practice media availability on Monday:
Head coach Kalani Sitake
After reviewing the film, we saw that turnovers were a glaring negative, but there were also some mistakes we couldn’t overcome. There were bad penalties that took points off the board and even administrative penalties that made it harder for us to gain first downs and hurt our drives.
Defensively, the guys played hard. We put them in some bad spots, and I don’t know if they could have done anything differently. I’m pleased overall with the adjustments made from injuries.
Some positives I saw were that our O-line and D-line did well upfront, even if the score didn’t reflect that.
Practice was great today. They are battling and excited for the next game. They are still united and haven’t been hanging their heads.
Boise State has a quarterback with a lot of experience. They are coming off a bye week, so when they come out and play in our stadium, it’ll be exciting. I feel good about our matchup with them.
Injuries tests our depth. We need to get more quality depth, and for us it depends on returned missionaries being ready to go early—that makes it harder. It is important for us to get our guys ready to be successful and not risk their health. If you haven’t served a mission, it is hard explaining getting back into it.
Junior defensive back Zayne Anderson
Mood of the team
The energy was there but coming off a loss is hard. The energy is there for a new week, and you have to put that behind us and look forward to this week.
Coaches message to team
Just to stay together. It’s easy to point fingers when things are going well. Do your one-11th and worry about yourself and pick each other up when you’re falling down.
Defense against the Aggies
I think we handled it really well. There are always little things that we could have done better. We could have gotten a couple more turnovers that would have helped the offense. I feel like we did pretty good overall.
Eye control on the secondary
We got a little out of hand last game but our eyes need to be perfect in man coverage. It is something that we practice every day. Coach Lamb and Coach Gilford really emphasize keeping our eyes on the hip and really focusing on the receiver.
Junior defensive lineman Sione Takitaki
Attitude of the team
The attitude is to win. The energy is high. The Utah State game didn’t go as we wanted, but the energy was still high today — ready to practice, ready to get going for Boise State.
Defense staying united with the offense
We’re always united. We’ve always been united. We’re always going to have the offense’s backs and they’re going to have our backs. We’re not pointing fingers. We’re always a team.
Challenges of Boise State’s offense
We need to be ready for the long bombs that they throw. Boise State is known for their trick plays. We need to be ready for it all, so we’re preparing.
Importance of defense being disruptive
It plays a big role with the defensive front getting back there and causing pressure. We can help our cornerbacks and free safeties out to make sure the ball’s not on target and disrupt timing.
Freshman running back Ula Tolutau
We were definitely moving the ball and were able to establish a run game against Utah State. We felt comfortable with it. Takeaways from the game are that you’ve got to take care of the football — ball security.
I’m going to have the ball with me at practice at all times. Just to get into that rhythm of always having two hands on the ball, especially during contact. So that’s one of the things I’m trying to work on this week. Players, and even the trainers are trying to rip the ball out of my hands. It’s fun, but it’s serious.
We need to do our part. I know we can run the ball. I know we have the offensive line to make the holes and to put up those fights in the trenches. I think we just need to stick to our game and keep running the ball and of course ball security. That’s going to be a big issue this week so we’re going to come out and be ready.