Monday, October 26, 2009

Pick 'em update: TCU

What a horrible display. I hope BYU players and coaches take this upcoming bye week to think long and hard about what happened on Saturday. Games like that are unacceptable.

Ashley T. is the big winner this week for correctly predicting that BYU has no business playing teams with actual talent.

Here are this week's scores (I left out everyone who scored zero points):

Ashley - 35
Matt Olsen - 26
Mars - 20
PJ - 20
Russell O. - 20
Jon - 10
Seth - 6

Friday, October 23, 2009

BYU wins, other predictions

Remember how high we were flying last year? We were undefeated heading into our game against TCU, we were ranked in the top ten and we knew we were going to win.

Sound familiar?

It’s the same show, just different actors in 2009. Now it’s TCU who is arrogantly tossing their undefeated record around. It’s the Horny Frogs who are ranked in the top ten, who are expecting to walk out of Provo with a win. This year BYU is playing the part of the jilted underdog.

It’s the part we were born to play.

TCU is in for a shock on Saturday. BYU is prepared for their speed, prepared for their “Wild Frog” offense, and we’re out for revenge. Ask Norm Chow and the UCLA Bruins what happens when BYU has revenge on the brain.

I believe in our coaches, I believe in our fans, I believe in our home-field advantage.

I also believe that TCU will lose tomorrow.

BYU 28, TCU 17


Air Force 31, Utah 20
Colorado State 27, SDSU 21
UNLV 31, New Mexico 28

**Bonus Pick**

Utah State 30, La. Tech 17

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Five reasons why we'll beat TCU

This post is meant to inspire confidence in those Cougar fans out there who might be a little nervous about this Saturday's game against TCU.

I know this will be a tough game. It will probably come right down to the wire. But TCU is far from unbeatable. They may be from Texas, but they are not a bunch of Chuck Norrises. They are human, and BYU will beat them.

Here are five reasons why:

1. The thrill is gone. When BYU was thrashed by TCU last year they showed us things we've never seen before. The "Wild Frog" offense was running wild, and we simply couldn't counter TCU's speed. Now we've seen their tricks. We know who we're up against, and they won't surprise us this year.

2. Addition by subtraction. Nothing against Brandon Howard, David Tafuna and Kellen Fowler, but we have definitely taken a step up at the cornerback and safety positions this year. Brian Logan, Howard's replacement, leads the NATION in passes defended. Scott Johnson and Andrew Rich are smarter and more assignment-sound than their safety predecessors. As a whole our defense is much improved.

3. We've seen speed before. When people talk about TCU they act like it's the first good team BYU has seen all year. Um, remember when we beat Oklahoma in week one? You can't tell me Oklahoma (which beat TCU by double-digits last year) doesn't have the same kind of athletes TCU has. We've seen speed, we've had some success, and we've learned from our mistakes.

4. Home cookin'. BYU is nearly unbeatable at home. Winning 20 of the last 21 games at home is pretty special, and the home crowd will be fired up and ready for a battle. I know I said the same thing about Florida State, but I'm pretty sure that loss was just a freak thing. BYU will hold down the home fort (and TCU will slip 'n slide all over our turf).

5. Revenge is sweet. As I mentioned in an earlier post, this is a revenge game for BYU. Since Bronco Mendenhall took the reins at BYU in 2005, the Cougars have never lost to the same MWC opponent two years in a row. I have confidence that our coaching staff can identify particular games in which we need to dominate. This is one of those games, and our coaches are all over it.

Care to add to the list? Care to disagree?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Revenge Game

Since Saturday's game is most definitely a revenge game for the Cougars, I would like to take the opportunity now to chronicle how BYU has fared in revenge games in the past.

2006: BYU 31, TCU 17
After a controversial 50-51 overtime loss to the Frogs in 2005, BYU came into Ft. Worth with a 2-2 record and a QB with two bum ankles. TCU, on the other hand, was ranked No. 15, had the nation's longest winning streak and was coming off a bye.

John Beck dissected TCU's vaunted defense, and the Cougar defense was an immovable object. BYU scored the big upset.

2007: BYU 20, Arizona 7
Arizona spoiled one of the best seasons of BYU football in recent memory in 2006. The Wildcats beat BYU on a last-second field goal in Tucson to give the Cougars one of only two losses on the season.

The next year, under new starting QB Max Hall, BYU was steady on offense and rock-solid on defense. We out-hustled the bigger, stronger, faster Arizona and picked up a huge season-opening win.

2008: BYU 59, UCLA 0
In 2007, UCLA and defensive end Bruce Davis stopped the Cougars in their tracks. The game was a matchup between Ben Olson and his former BYU team, and the UCLA Bruins scored the win in the Rose Bowl, crushing any hopes of a Cougar comeback.

In 2008, and within the friendly confines of LaVell Edwards Stadium, BYU destroyed UCLA in every facet of the game. It was perhaps the perfect BYU game, and UCLA limped off the Provo field like an injured doe.

2009: BYU ? TCU ?
Last year TCU was the first to expose BYU's paper tiger. They ran around, over and through the Cougars on their way to a 32-7 win.

What will happen this year?

Based on our performance in recent revenge games, I gotta say: I like our chances.

To Utah fans:

If you plan on invading College GameDay in Provo this Saturday, dressed in your Ute garb and waving your Ute pirate flag, then you are pathetic. There's really no other way to say it.

And if you come out in droves, you'll pretty much solidify yourselves as being our little brother. Please don't embarrass yourselves; stay home.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Looking back on week seven's picks

Another week, another slate of perfect picks. I shouldn't take too much credit, though, because picking MWC games is too easy.

The only time it gets sticky are when the best play the best and the worst play the worst.

Like who, for example, am I going to pick when New Mexico plays UNLV?

More importantly, what happens when BYU plays TCU this Saturday?

I'll have to put my thinking cap on this week to come up with the winners. In the meantime, feel free to bask in my power to make perfect picks.

BYU 41, SDSU 10
Actual Score: BYU 38, SDSU 28

Air Force 28, Wyoming 21
Actual Score: Air Force 10, Wyoming 0

TCU 34, Colorado State 13
Actual Score: TCU 44, Colorado State 6

Utah 28, UNLV 20
Actual Score: Utah 35, UNLV 15

Texas 30, Oklahoma 20
Actual Score: Texas 16, Oklahoma 13

This week: 5-0
Record to date: 32-11 (.744)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Aztec Analysis

Another solid win, no turnovers, a great offensive game—and Mitch Payne even made a 45-yarder to seal the deal.

Looks like the Cougs gave me pretty good birthday present.

Too bad the defense didn't think enough of me to show up to the party. Seriously, I couldn't believe some of the things SDSU got away with on offense today. Aztec QB Ryan Lindley was throwing up more crap than a Utah co-ed during pledge week.

And dang those wide receivers if they didn't catch every single thing.

Remember when that tight end even got in on the action? He hucked up some ball like 40 yards to set up an Aztec TD. What was that all about?

Tonight my love of Andrew Rich took a major hit. He's a great, physical player, but dude really needed to make some plays on the ball tonight. He was caught far too often with his arms flailing and his head turned in the wrong direction.

Scott Johnson made some big plays, particularly the interception on the goal line. I also liked the play of Brian Logan and Brandon Bradley, but the whole defense let a lot of stuff get behind them today.

Offensively speaking, we were clicking. Max Hall was a beast, throwing for 346 yards and 3 TDs. He also ran for about 50 yards and another score. If Max isn't the MWC offensive player of the week, then I've lost all respect for the award.

Mitch Payne came through nicely when we needed him today. That FG was huge, and a much-maligned Payne deserves some love.

So besides some defensive issues, I'd say we had a pretty good game today. Hopefully we can clean up the mistakes before next week's huge game against TCU.

Offensive MVP: Max Hall. Big numbers, no INTs.

Devensive MVP: Jordan Pendleton. Hits, clutch pass break-ups.

Play of the Game: It's a tie between Scott Johnson's goal-line interception and Max Hall's rushing TD right before halftime. I totally thought he was going to spike it.

Good work Cougs. Now take it to the Frogs next week.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

College GameDay!

Sorry, but this is too good to pass up.

ESPN's COLLEGE GAMEDAY is coming to Provo for the BYU/TCU game!

Thank you, Jay Drew, for breaking the news. Everyone: Get there early, think up some creative signage, and make some noise!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Pick 'em update: SDSU

Wow. Am I crazy or did the Aztecs just give us a game? What is it about BYU's defense that makes mediocre teams look out-of-this world fantastic?

Maybe that's an overstatement, but come on.

Anyway, BYU surprised us all again by scoring well below what we thought they would. Jeris, however, was not fooled. He picked BYU's score dead-on. He and my brother Andy are the big winners this week. (Andy picked a 34-31 win for the Cougs... Really Andy?)

Here are this week's scores:

Name Total Score
Andy 33
Jeris 33
Benjy 30
Eliot 30
Mars 30
Matt Orme 30
Ross 30
Adam 27
Becky 27
Jon 27
Justin 27
Knipps 26
Lesley 26
Matt Olsen 26
Rodney 26
Rusty 26
Seth 26
Ty 26
Aaron W. 25
Jonathan D. 25
KO 24
Ashley 23
Cindy 23
Kenny 23
Trizz 23
Boyle 20
Cade 20
Chris W. 20
Gus 20
Peter M. 20
PJ 20
Russell 20
Spencer C. 20
Travis 20

Friday, October 16, 2009

Quick picks for week six

I don't have a lot of time, so I'll just say it: Get ready for BYU vs. UNLV round two this Saturday.

BYU's offense will rip through San Diego State like a dog at a butt-sniffing convention.

SDSU's offense will break on BYU's defense like an old man's hip after a nasty spill.

Brady Hoke? Overrated. Rocky Long? Over the hill. San Diego State? Over.

BYU wins 41-10.

Around the MWC

Air Force 28, Wyoming 21
TCU 34, Colorado State 13
Utah 28, UNLV 20


Get ready to be disappointed again BYU fans...

Texas 30, Oklahoma 20

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Week six picks: Perfection

You know, MWC picks on weeks like week six are pretty easy to make. Just follow these simple rules:

*BYU, TCU and Utah are going to win
*New Mexico is going to lose

That was my philosophy, and it ended up giving me a week of perfect picks. Even though, admittedly, I was screaming at the screen as loud as anybody when Colorado State literally threw a win away against Utah.

Was that game unbelievable or what?

Utah sucks.

My pick: BYU 35, UNLV 20
Actual: BYU 59, UNLV 21

My pick: Wyoming 30, New Mexico 10
Actual: Wyoming 37, New Mexico 13

My pick: Utah 24, Colorado State 13
Actual: Utah 24, Colorado State 17

My pick: TCU 34, Air Force 19
Actual: TCU 20, Air Force 17

My Pick: Florida 27, LSU 20
Actual: Florida 13, LSU 3

This week: 5-0
Season-to-date: 27-11

Monday, October 12, 2009

The greenies

Maybe it's the future dad in me, but I love it when our young guys get to make plays in actual games.

Seeing JoJo Pili on Saturday bruise his way into the endzone in the first play of his collegiate career made me beam with pride. It felt good to see a young guy like Pili score a touchdown in a college football game. And I get equally happy when I see Riley Nelson scramble for big yards or Brett Thompson make big catches.

I like seeing newcomers get their time in the sun. It warms my heart.

Not only that, but it shows a certain chemistry on our team. There's a real effort there to make sure everyone succeeds. When Max Hall and Harvey Unga put aside their own ego, for example, to get a guy like Pili in the endzone, well that's just good leadership.

Getting the young guys in also gives me encouragement for the future. Riley Nelson has me excited for the QB battle in 2010. Nelson is a talented player, and I would be elated if he were named the starter.

Also, it shows recruits that if you're talented, you'll get in games. Brett Thompson is a true freshman, but his hard work and grasp of the playbook has already earned him the right to be one of the first receivers off the bench. Every year BYU has at least one or two freshmen that make a big impact on the team. If I were a recruit I would be encouraged by that, and motivated to be the next rising star.

Anyway, Good work new guys. Here's hoping you all get PLENTY of playing time this year.

A win we can be happy with

It was a rough week for BYU football, but you wouldn't know it after watching BYU man-handle the UNLV Rebels.

All of the controversies of the week were put to bed as BYU ran, passed and bruised their way to a 59-21 romp. It was a win that threw water on the fire--it was a win that brought a smile to all our faces.

I guess it's true what they say. Winning really does cure everything.

First, Harvey Unga was brilliant. The guy racked up over 100 yards and three touchdowns before half time. He broke some pretty long runs, and if BYU hadn't called off its dogs he probably would still be running around UNLV campus.

Max Hall was a master too. He very efficiently gathered 320 yards and two TDs on 21 of 27 passing. And best of all? NO PICKS.

In fact, the entire Cougar squad had zero turnovers. And we put up 59 points. I could be wrong, but I think there's a relationship there.

The defense played well. There was the one big Rebel TD scored on blown coverage, but other than that we held the Rebs in check. And we swiped three INTs. UNLV only picked up something like 350 yards of offense, and anything under 400 is great in my book.

Heck, even the special teams got in on the act! I mean, we blew one kickoff, but we almost returned the favor when O'Neill Chambers brought a kick back 97 yards to the one-yard line. He should have got in, but he just didn't have the horses at the end of the run.

Let's be honest... he looked pretty slow, didn't he? I've seen all kinds of highlights and you can see Chambers get gassed at the end of the run.

But he claims he was sick, so maybe he'll get a pass this time.

Anyway, that win was fantastic. It was one of those wins that makes fans happy. Even the stingiest of BYU fans have to be pleased with our efforts on Saturday. We look like a dominating team again, and that should continue when we travel to San Diego State for next week's birthday special.

Go Cougs!

Pick 'em update: UNLV

The results are in: BYU painted an offensive masterpiece on Saturday and scored more points than we could have possibly imagined.

Not one ASB Pick 'em participant picked a score close enough to BYU's to earn any points. The closest was Rodney, who predicted 49 points for BYU.

Fortunately, almost everyone picked UNLV's score within ten. Two Jonathans, Jon S. and Jonathan D., got this week's high score of 30 for picking UNLV's score dead-on.

This week's most embarrassing pick? I have to give it to Cade, who said BYU would only win by four points: 21-17. Come on Cade, get your head in the game.

Here are the scores for week 6:
Jon - 30
Jonathan D. - 30
Adam - 29
Jeris - 29
PJ - 29
Becky - 28
Chris W. - 27
Eliot - 27
Gus - 27
Rodney - 27
Trizz - 27
Aaron W. - 26
Andy - 26
Ashley - 26
Cade - 26
Justin - 26
KO - 26
Peter M. - 26
Russ - 26
Russell O. - 26
Benjy - 23
Cindy - 23
Knipps - 23
Matt Orme - 23
Ross - 23
Boyle - 22
Kenny - 22
Seth - 22
Travis - 21
Matt Olsen - 20
Spencer C. - 20
Ty - 20

Friday, October 09, 2009

Grabbing Destiny: Blackopintobeans takes the field

There's a hunger deep inside every true athlete. A hunger to achieve something great.

Allow me to introduce you to a group of athletes whose hunger has overcome even the stingiest hurdles: age, weight, bodily injury, cardiovascular health and laziness (to name a few).

This, my loyal compatriots, is our BYU intramural flag football league.

We may not have speed. We may not have skill. We may not even have the coordination as a team to successfully call and execute a correct play. But what we lack in... everything, we make up for in pure unadulterated desire.

Meet the team.

Team Name: BlackoPintoBeans?
Inspiration behind team name: Ordering a burrito at Cafe Rio
Record as of this date: 3-0

Name: Trevor Winn
Nicknames: Trizz, Triznaynay, Long Ball
Positions: TE, QB, Linebacker
What he brings to the team: Fatherly wisdom, Creatine
Favorite Movie: Land Before Time 1-5, 7
Bio: Trevor is the only father on the team, so his posterity will be very interested in his performance. A 5-year intramural sports veteran, Trevor has a big arm and can create space with his ample undercarriage.
Quote: "Visit today and click on an ad!"

Name: Seth Schenfeld
Nicknames: Sexy, Big Sexy, Huge Sexy and Gargantuan Sexy
Positions: OL, DL
Favorite movie: How Stella Got Her Groove Back Again
What he brings to the team: Hair Gel that simply won't fade in even the most extreme conditions.
Bio: Seth has consented to shave his very attractive George Michael beard to play in BYU's league this year, so expect a chip to be on Seth's sculpted shoulder. Look for Seth to distract the more effeminate players on the opposing teams.
Quote: "There's no way I'm wearing that polo."

Name: Russ Nelson
Nicknames: BUS, Rusty, Nelly, Rusticles
Positions: WR, DL, Second-Passer
Favorite Movie: "Air Bud"
What he brings to the team: The original bandana culture
Bio: Russ is the only "legal" member of Blackopintobeans?. He is our captain, and the emotional leader of our team.
Quote: "Who's drivin'? Am I drivin?"

Name: Ross Mitchell
Nicknames: Rock, Diddy, Did, Sam, Sammy
Positions: WR, CB, S
Favorite Movie(s): "Friday," "Next Friday," and "The Wood"
What he brings to the team: Sub-5 speed
Bio: Ross is a multi-year veteran of BYU intramural sports. Having been slighted by not making last year's team, Mitchell is eager to prove his worth to the team.
Quote: "That Cain and Abel... that was quite the situation."

Name: Jeris Hobbs
Nicknames: Jerry, Jer-ass, Pony
Positions: C, LB, DL
Favorite Movie: "Kill Bill Vol. 1 (edited)"
What he brings to the team: TD catches and drops
Bio: Jeris is from the mean streets of Idaho Falls. He has mad agility, crazy cheerleader moves and the calves that will make you yak. He also lost something like 75 pounds when he graduated from high school.
Quote: "Poonch it!"

Name: Cade Taylor
Nicknames: Chuggs, Uncle Chuggs, Cadron
Positions: WR, CB, LB
Favorite Movie: "She's All That"
What he brings to the team: A camera, and a non-BYU perspective
Bio: Chuggs is a first-time BYU flag football player in 2009. A graduate of Utah State, Chuggs has rejoined his high school buddies in their quest to obtain the coveted championship t-shirt
Quote: "1 streak 2 buttonhook 3 post 4 slant 5 out!"

Name: Adam Olsen
Nicknames: Hambone, hamBONE, Bone, AO, A-Yo, A-hole, Atom Bomb
Positions: S, WR
Favorite Movie: Anything with Hulk Hogan
What he brings to the team: The football, trash talk and a demand for the ball on every play.
Bio: Adam (me) is the architect of Blackopintobeans?. His love of organized sports, coupled with never having a championship experience, fueled Olsen's drive for one last shot at the t-shirt. So far the gamble has paid off tenfold.
Quote: "Just throw it up! I'll go get it!" followed by, "DANG IT! I was open!"

Name: Andrew Young
Nicknames: Andy, Greg Maddox
Positions: QB, Defensive back
Favorite Movie: "The Year of the Cougar: BYU's Quest for the 1984 National Championship"
What he brings to the team: BCS bowl wins, Quiet dignity
Bio: Recently married, Andy is well-known for his prowess on the basketball court. Andy is a slasher, and isn't afraid to use his legs on the football field. Look for Andy to make some incredible plays with his feet, and get incredibly frustrated at the rest of his team.
Quote: "Bronco lied! Kids died!"

History will teach us nothing

The Florida State debacle taught me a valuable lesson: You can't make future predictions based on past performance.

I know that sounds counterintuitive, but we all know what happened on September 19. FSU barely squeaked by Jacksonville State and then walloped BYU 54-28, playing a near flawless game.

BYU's opponent tomorrow is UNLV.

Last week UNLV got their throats stomped by the Nevada Wolfpack, 63-28. UNLV gave up 770 offensive yards, 500+ of which was rushing. It was tied 28-28 mid-way through the third quarter when the Rebels simply gave up.

This was supposed to be a promising season for UNLV, but now the entire program is in shambles. Coach Mike Sanford's job is hanging by a thread.

It would seem, then, that BYU will be able to rip through Las Vegas like a drunken Southern Californian on a weekend bender.

Not so fast, my friends.

I think BYU will win, but I don't see this game being a walk in the park.

First, I see UNLV as having this game circled on their calendars. After last year's frustrating, last-second loss to BYU I have to believe the Rebels will have some extra motivation against BYU. Plus, UNLV has been playing well at home this year with wins over Hawaii and a squeaker loss to Oregon State.

And let's not forget about UNLV's dangerous offense. Omar Clayton is a good QB--he's mobile and he's surprisingly efficient. Also, Ryan Wolfe and Phil Walker are two great wide receivers. They torched the BYU defense last year, and they have to believe they can do it again.

Fortunately for BYU, UNLV's defense is a train wreck. They are dead last in the MWC in rush defense and overall defense. I think they're starting a contest winner at free safety.

I'd like BYU to have a gameplan similar to last week. Run the ball, stay on the field for a long time, and eat up the clock. There's no reason why we shouldn't win this game by double digits.

My prediction: BYU wins 35-20

Around the MWC

Wyoming 30, New Mexico 10
Utah 24, Colorado State 13
TCU 34, Air Force 19

**Bonus Pick**

Florida 27, LSU 20

Thursday, October 08, 2009

My takes on a busy week for BYU football

It's funny- I'm always silent on the blog during BYU's biggest news days. I think it's mostly because I'm so disgusted by what I read and hear that I don't want to contribute to the muck.

But I figured now is a good time to break the silence and give my two cents about an array of BYU news items.

First, I never got to comment on the BYU/Utah State game. I was very happy with the game. Other than the three turnovers and the final Aggie touchdown, I think the game was played well by BYU and our defense made some big improvements. Especially when it comes to stopping a very explosive running back (Robert Turbin) and a mobile QB (Diondre Borel). Good tune-up for UNLV.

Max Hall has been taking some heat from fans this week because he threw two INTs on Saturday. He is now tied for the most INTs thrown by a QB this year with 10. I am not happy about this at all, but I am no where near other fans who are calling for backup Riley Nelson to start. I still stand behind Max Hall, who is still the best QB in the MWC and top 10 in the country. I know he's not perfect, but he's still my guy.

Speaking of which, Bronco Mendenhall commented on those who criticize Max, calling them "uneducated." For the record, Mendenhall went on to explain that the word uneducated refers to football-specific education, and not overall education. My thoughts? I agree completely with Bronco. The majority of fans don't understand football's little complexities like the coaches do. That's the cold, hard fact. This is evident every time the fans boo at a correctly called penalty, or when idiot BYU fan always complains that our cornerbacks play so far off the wide receiver (it's called zone coverage, and it's our scheme--get used to it).

Sure, Max could and should be making better decisions, but last time I checked BYU is 4-1. The sky isn't falling, and our QB is leading us to wins. It's time to relax, everybody. Also remember this: Ty Detmer threw a whopping 28 interceptions during his Heisman Trophy-winning season (1990).

The local media, not surprisingly, has had a field day with Mendenhall's comments. Gordon Monson, of the Salt Lake Tribune, melodramatically called for an apology from Coach Mendenhall, and David Locke of AM radio fame made Mendenhall's comments the subject of an afternoon tirade (from what I hear--I only listen to Jim Rome).

The local media knows a secret about their market here in Utah: Riled up BYU fans = ratings. I don't blame them for trying to ruffle some feathers, but I would caution BYU fans to refrain from taking the bait.

Okay, now Shiloah Te'o. What a sad story. I don't care about the details or the timetables or the conspiracies that abound on message boards. I am just disappointed that Te'o made such a huge mistake in his life, and I'm disappointed that BYU lost a talented football player. I hope Te'o gets his life back on track.

Also in the news... Washington canceled its series against BYU in 2011 and 2012. This news is good and bad. I'm happy we won't have to play any Pac-10 losers, but I'm sad Jake Heaps won't be able to play in Seattle. Plus I'm a little hurt BYU alum Steve Sarkisian doesn't want to embrace his BYU ties.

Finally, a look at UNLV this weekend. UNLV gave up like 2,000 offensive yards in their 63-28 loss to Nevada last week. UNLV's defense is unimpressive, and that's putting it lightly. However, I am sure they'll give BYU their best shot. By no means should BYU or its fans consider this game a blowout--I'm thinking it will be closer than we think. BYU wins, but it'll be by 10-14 points.

Well, that's all I have in me at the moment. Kudos to you for making it this far, and here's hoping BYU improves to 5-1 after this weekend.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Looking back at week 5's picks


I almost had it with my picks last week. Stupid Oklahoma.

My Pick: BYU 56, USU 20
Actual: BYU 35, USU 17

My Pick: Nevada 24, UNLV 20
Actual: Nevada 63, UNLV 28

My Pick: Texas Tech 49, New Mexico 6
Actual: Texas Tech 48, New Mexico 28

My Pick: Navy 27, Air Force 17
Actual: Navy 16, Air Force 13

My Pick: Wyoming 20, Florida Atlantic 13
Actual: Wyoming 30, Florida Atlantic 28

My Pick: San Diego State 28, New Mexico State 16
Actual: SDSU 34, NMSU 17

My Pick: TCU 31, SMU 27
Actual: TCU 39, SMU 14

My Pick: Oklahoma 38, Miami 17
Actual: Miami 21, Oklahoma 20

This week's record: 7-1
Record-to-date: 22-11

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Pick 'em update: USU

Can you hear the trumpet fanfare? Can you see the dancing in the streets? Celebrations are spontaneously popping up all over the valley, and it's all for one reason:

We have our first perfect pick of the season.

That's right, somebody has done it. Somebody picked a perfect score for Friday night's game, and therefore has right to claim the mystery prize. Everybody put your hands together for your friend and mine, The big K.O.!

Some of you might know that the man known simply as KO is actually my dad. The first thing he did after the game was brag about his perfect score. His face dropped a bit when I explained to him that the mystery prize is actually a gift card to Golden Corral, but I did give him the option of Chuck-A-Rama, and that seemed to brighten his spirits a little bit.

Congratulations KO!

Here are this week's scores:

KO 40
Andy 37
Ross 34
Cindy 33
Gus 33
Justin 30
Aaron W. 30
PJ 30
Travis 30
Spencer C. 30
Russell O. 30
Chris W. 30
Eliot 30
Cade 29
Matt O. 29
Peter M. 27
Adam 27
Matt Orme 26
Russ 26
Becky 26
Kenny 26
Knipps 26
Lesley 26
Jonathan D. 25
Jeris 24
Jon 23
Seth 23
Mars 23
Ty 20
Trizz 20
Benjy 20
Ashley 5

Friday, October 02, 2009

Playing Coach: Picks for week 5

I can see the BYU/Utah State game clearly in my mind, and I know exactly how I want it to unfold.

I’m going to put on my coach hat for a moment and describe the perfect game as I see it.

First defense. BYU has two people to worry about tonight: QB Diondre Borel and RB Robert Turbin. Both are athletes. They aren’t the best players we’ll face all season, but they are both playmakers. Borel can scramble and make plays with his feet, and Turbin has a knack for running away from people and getting huge yards.

From what I’ve seen, the ground game is the only real threat. Borel is not an accurate passer, and he doesn’t have a big arm.

So I want our defense to stack the box. Put eight guys right on the line and take away the run. Put pressure on Borel, don’t let him scramble and make USU throw the ball down the field. When Borel is forced to throw good things will happen for BYU.

Now offense. BYU is a lot bigger on the lines than USU, we have more offensive weapons than they can handle and USU ranks 117th (out of 120) in defense.

I don’t see offense as being much of a problem tonight.

What I’d like to see, though, is BYU really use its size. I’d like to see our offensive line push the defense around, and I’d like to see Harvey Unga and company run the ball right down the Aggies’ throats. I want to see a lot of running tonight—early and often.

BYU will score in bunches tonight, and former Aggie Riley Nelson will get a chance to drive BYU in for a touchdown or two against his former team.

I’m calling for a blowout: BYU wins 56-20.

Around the MWC:

Nevada 24, UNLV 20
Texas Tech 49, New Mexico 6
Navy 27, Air Force 17
Wyoming 20, Florida Atlantic 13
San Diego State 28, New Mexico State 16
TCU 31, SMU 27

**Bonus Pick**

Oklahoma 38, Miami 17

Thursday, October 01, 2009

BYU fans need to chillax

Here’s a riddle: When is a win actually a loss?

Answer: In the mind of a BYU fan? Every time BYU wins a football game.

Geez. We just came off a 42-23 win over a pretty good Colorado State team, and yet it’s almost like we got blown out. There is great unrest in the river bottoms of Provo, and suddenly we’ve lost confidence in our team.

Even Bronco is telling the fans to stop being so negative.

Guys: Take it down a notch. BYU is a pretty freakin’ good team. CSU will be bowling this year, so it’s not like we were on the ropes against the St. Francis School for Girls.

BYU is in great shape. Now start acting like it. I am sick of reading about how Max Hall sucks, I’m sick of people calling for Riley Nelson to start, I’m sick of the B-Lo smack (that’s Brian Logan, by the way… feel free to use that) and I’m sick of the overall whininess of our fan base.

I mean, I guess it’s great that we set the bar high for ourselves, but giving up 23 points to Colorado State is no reason to sell your stadium seats and take down the car flags. It’s also no reason to start panicking, or calling for the replacement of our three-year-starter and senior QB Max Hall.

The talent gap between Max Hall and the rest of the MWC quarterbacks is as deep and wide as the Kennecott Copper Mine. Hey, as the founding member of Bloggers Against Interceptions, I know Max isn’t perfect. But the dude is still a brilliant quarterback. Don’t be so hasty to throw him under the bus.

Here’s the bottom line: BYU is 3-1 and ranked No. 20 in the nation. We just beat Colorado State by 19 points. Stop crying, stop whining, stop living in the dark and enjoy this football season.

Kyle Collinsworth headed to BYU

Kyle Collinsworth, the 6-6 combo guard from Provo, committed to play basketball at BYU yesterday.

For those who don't know Kyle, he is the best player in the state of Utah, he is in the country's top 100 and he pretty much had his pick of schools. His brother, Chris, saw significant playing time at BYU as a freshman in 2007.

This is huge for BYU. The latest in a string of elite recruits headed to Provo.

This commitment tells me two things. First, Utah prep basketball is on the rise. Utah high schools are starting to produce some very impressive players (Tyler Haws comes to mind, as does Brandon Davies and now Collinsworth).

Second, BYU is doing an excellent job recruiting in-state. These kids identify with our coaching staff, and they want to play BYU's style of basketball. Coach Dave Rose does a great job of identifying his main recruiting targets and making them a priority.

BYU basketball is going to be a force for years and years. I couldn't be happier with the direction in which we're headed, and I'm a huge Dave Rose fan. He's doing a great job.

Welcome aboard Kyle!