* Note: Current rankings are based on activity in the last calendar
The curse of Max Hall is real. And it is alive and well.
by UteThunder 2016-09-12 19:29:02
With our latest win over BYU, I decided it was time to dust off this post of mine from 2013 and update it a little bit. Updates are in bold.
Since November 2009, when Max Hall went on his hate-filled rant . . .
- BYU landed the #1 QB recruit in the nation only to run him out of town.
- The Pac-12 invited Utah & Colorado.
- BYU's plan to join the WAC blew up in their face.
- Harvey Unga missed his senior season due to an honor code violation.
- BYU got crushed by Utah State in Logan prompting the firing of their DC.
- Brandon Burton blocks the game winning FG attempt in the final MWC matchup between Utah & BYU.
- BYU fired arguably the best OC they've ever had, replacing Anae with Doman.
- Utah crushed BYU 54-10 in the first non-conference meeting between the two.
- Riley Nelson transferred to BYU and became their starting QB.
- Big XII talks with BYU break down. Big XII officials call BYU "a real piece of work" and move on to TCU & West Virginia.
- Big East comes to the same conclusion as the Big XII.
- Utah beat BYU 3 times in one night.
- Scheduling difficulties: A seemingly endless stream of 2-for-1s and 1-and-dones. While Utah gets a home-and-home from Michigan in addition to the perpetual home-and-homes that comes with Pac-12 membership.
- Rivalry game took a two year break. Utah's decision.
- BYU is no longer getting 3-for-1 or 2-for-1 from Utah State. Now they play the Aggies on equal terms.
- BYU fires their new "best OC ever!" and brings back the other guy who had become stale and predictable. The only difference now is that he will be stale and predictable at a much faster pace.
- Taysom Hill transfered to BYU and became their starting QB.
- Utah beat BYU 20-13 in Kyle Van Noy's "Super Bowl".
- Utah State stomped BYU in Provo using a LB as a RB.
- The Memphis Brawl exposed BYU for the dirty punks they truly are.
- Utah has regained control of the basketball series, winning 3 in a row followed by the cancellation of a game in Provo.
- Jamaal Williams missed an entire season for “undisclosed honor code violations”.
- Utah beat BYU in the Vegas Bowl, a match-up they begged for but that Utah did not want at all.
- One of the best coaching staffs they’ve ever had left for Virginia and was replaced by a bunch of Uncle Ricos with little to no coaching experience.
- LGBT and Title IX issues related to their precious honor code are likely going to keep them out of the BigXII during this round of expansion.
- Utah beat BYU 20-19, stuffing their hero, super-senior Taysom Hill, on a 2 pt attempt. And Utah gifted them 6 turnovers!
- 6 straight losses to Utah.
Max Hall lied. The curse is real. Get used to it Cougar fans, things are only going to get worse for BYU.
1. QB experience - BYU has a 26 year old QB with a lot more D1 experience than Williams. If the game is tight, this could be tough to overcome.
2. RB play - BYU's RB is really good, better than Joe Williams IMO. If he gets going, BYU will just run clock to play keep away and hope they can win a low scoring game like they did against UA.
3. Lack of game film - Our coaches only have one actual game of film to go off of. They are pretty much guessing at what to expect. The element of surprise could be difficult to overcome.
Reasons to be confident:
1. Defensive talent and experience - Our defense is pretty damned talented and aside from our LBs, they have a ton of experience.
2. QB play - I'm not sure how good Troy Williams is, but he looked like he could be better than Wilson. Having a competent passing game could turn what has been a "too close for comfort" type game most years into a blowout.
3. Coaching experience - Our coaches have been working together and coaching these players for years. BYU's coaches have been working together and coaching their players for less than a year.
4. Home field advantage - RES is going to be rocking.
5. Hill has lost a step - This doesn't make him one-dimensional, but he seems like less of a dual threat than before. If we don't have to commit one of our defenders to spying him for the whole game, our defense will be that much better.
Sitake and Tuiaki's familiarity with our program not as much of a factor as BYU fans would like to believe.
by UteThunder 2016-09-06 19:00:12
They left the program after the 2014 season, the same time that Dave Christensen left. We have new Co-OCs(A-Rod and Harding) and have replaced our DC twice since they left(Pease and Scalley). We also have new position coaches in Powell, Ena, and Holliday. And though it has been less than two years since they left, there has been a lot of roster turn over since they were with our program. Obviously all of the seniors who were on the team in 2014 are now gone as well as nearly every junior. In total, approximately one third of our roster is new.
As week 1 winds to a close with Ole Miss vs Florida State tonight, here are the week 2 games that will have my interest in addition to Utah vs BYU.
by UteThunder 2016-09-05 14:33:44
Utah State @ USC - The Aggies did what they were supposed to against Weber State and USC looked very vulnerable against Bama. I doubt USU can pull the upset, but I think there is more of a possibility now than I did a week ago.
Arkansas @ TCU - Big matchup between SEC & BigXII teams. I root for the Razorbacks as a secondary team and I have admired TCU's program ever since we were in the MWC with them.
Texas Tech @ Arizona State - If Graham can get his offense revved up, this could be a real shootout.
Washington State @ Boise State - There is little doubt the Cougars were looking ahead to this game when they lost to E. Washington and you know the Broncos have had this game circled all summer. Should be exciting.
Cal @ San Diego State - Cal took care of Hawaii but they will get a real test in the Aztecs.
UNLV @ UCLA - How do the Bruins recover from the tough loss at aTm? The Rebels should be just what the doctor ordered.
Virginia @ Oregon - Virginia lost to Richmond and Oregon didn't exactly look like "Oregon" against UC Davis.
LSU's Josh Boutte suspended one game for cheap hit at end of Wisconsin game. Just right? Or not enough?
by UteThunder 2016-09-05 11:03:04
If he truly thought the play was still live, then I think it is enough. If he didn't, and based on his reaction after the hit I don't think he did truly believe the play was live, then it isn't enough. Should be 3 games minimum.
Re-watched the SUU game. Some thoughts and observations.
by UteThunder 2016-09-05 10:36:49
We were much more basic on defense than I had previously thought, which is good. But, we went with 5 D-linemen quite a bit and still couldn't put a lot of pressure on their QB. Also, our tackling was not very good. Williams will have a career day against us if we tackle the same way against BYU.
The OL was about as bad as I had thought they were initially, both in the pass and the run. Several of TW's passes were designed to be quick throws and he still had pressure getting to him just as he released the ball. Considering it was an FCS opponent, there were too many times where our RB was being hit at the line of scrimmage. If both of these things aren't dramatically improved this week, we will be seeing a lot of Wishnowsky.
Williams ran very hesitantly throughout much of the game and still had a good ypc. If he is hesitant this week, we will struggle big time. McCormick was good, but I don't think he can carry the load.
I'm hoping our struggles can be explained by us overlooking SUU just a bit. If not, this could be a rough game Saturday.
Whittingham is 7-1 in week 2 games played at home.
Whittingham is 3-0 in games played against BYU in the month of September.
Whittingham is 5-0 in *notable games against BYU.
2005 First game against BYU and Bronco Mendenhall.
2008 Matchup of highest ranked teams - #7 Utah vs #14 BYU.
2010 Final game for Utah and BYU as members of MWC.
2011 First game for Utah as Pac-12 member and BYU as independent.
2015 First matchup in a bowl game and last time facing a Mendenhall led BYU team.
Brett McMurphy tweeted out a quote from WVU coach Dana Holgorsen advocating for P5 teams to play only other P5 teams in non-league games. I was curious if he puts his money where his mouth is, so I looked up their future schedules.
by UteThunder 2016-08-29 20:07:51
Gotta say, I am impressed.
In addition to their 9 BigXII games, they also play the following P5s in future seasons.
2017 Virginia Tech
2018 Tennessee, NC State
2019 Missouri, NC State
2021 Maryland, Virginia Tech
2022 Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech
2023 Penn State, Pittsburgh
2024 Penn State, Pittsburgh
That gives them 11 P5s in 6 of the next 10 seasons. And they still have one opening each year from 2018 to 2024, two openings in 2025.
I can't imagine they will fill those remaining spots with P5s though I suppose they might with Holgorsen's comment, but good on them for making the move to schedule more P5s and fewer G5/FCS teams.
I will be keeping an eye on all Pac-12 games, but I've only listed the ones I will attempt to watch all, or part of, plus a bunch of other games I find interesting.
Fri. August 26th Hawaii vs Cal in Australia - Pac-12 team and it is the first game of the year.
Thur. September 1st SUU @ Utah - Can't wait to see our new QB. Weber State @ Utah State - I almost always take an interest in the Aggies. Oregon State @ Minnesota - I am interested to see the improvement Gary's team has made.
Fri. September 2nd Colorado State vs Colorado - Opening week rivalry game. Kansas State @ #8 Stanford - How good are the Cardinal this year?
Sat. September 3rd #3 Oklahoma vs #15 Houston - Top 15 matchup. Rutgers @ #14 Washington - Solid opener for the Huskies. #16 UCLA @ Texas A&M - Big opener for the Bruins. #18 Georgia vs #22 North Carolina - Top 25 matchup. #20 USC vs #1 Alabama - Huge opener for the Trojans. #2 Clemson @ Auburn - Should be a good game. Arizona vs BYU - How good are these two future opponents.
Sun. September 4th #10 Notre Dame @ Texas - It's Texas and Notre Dame.
Mon. September 5th #11 Ole Miss vs #4 Florida State - Top 15 matchup.
Ok BYU fans, if you claim that BYU is not discriminatory to LGBT, then try this little exercise.
Take whatever reason or argument you would typically make about why BYU is not discriminatory towards LGBT, and insert African American/Black in place of LGBT. Then tell us how BYU's honor code isn't discriminatory.
"It's our religious belief, being [African American] is a sin."
"It's ok to be [black] at BYU, [blacks] just aren't allowed to kiss, hug, or hold hands with other [black] people. [Blacks] aren't allowed to be married to other [blacks] while at BYU."
"If [African American] people don't want to live by our rules, then [African American] people shouldn't come to BYU."
I really can't believe they try to defend their policies regarding LGBT as being non-discriminatory. Certainly, as a private institution, it is their right to discriminate based on their religious beliefs. But, it is absolutely asinine to try and claim BYU doesn't discriminate and it is equally asinine to expect others to tolerate BYU's discrimination.
With football season quickly approaching, does anyone have a way for me to watch Fox 13 without switching providers?
by UteThunder 2016-08-14 14:34:48
I have Dish Network and they dropped Fox 13 back in early June. At this point, I'm thinking both sides think they can use viewer demand for football as the impetus to get the other side to cave on negotiations. The problem is, if both sides are thinking that way, then neither side is going to cave and I am going to miss out on a lot of NFL and college football.
He is from the Lavell Edwards era and was a starter.
Asked his thoughts on BigXII expansion. He thinks it is over as far as BYU is concerned and they aren't getting in. Doesn't see anyway BYU gets in with how things have unfolded since the BigXII meetings.
Oh, the irony! There are few things more amusing than watching BYU fans try to accuse other groups of bigotry. :D
by UteThunder 2016-08-08 18:42:11
Newsflash BYU fans: LGBT groups aren't against you for being Mormon. They are against you because you, your university, and your religion have a history of being bigoted against blacks, gays, and women.
If you want tolerance from LGBT, then you need to be tolerant towards them. You can't expect others to be tolerant towards you when you are intolerant towards them.
Time and time again, people around here say things like "if we just average (insert ridiculously low number here) yards per game, we will win the division/conference."
by UteThunder 2016-08-02 12:25:09
We will not win the Pac-12 without a significant increase in offensive production
Folks, in our best season(2015), we averaged 386 total yards/game and 30 points/game in Pac-12 play. Averaging those same numbers or LESS is not going to result in us winning the division/conference.
A little while ago I posted a write up comparing the North/South division winners and their total offensive production. The lowest was last year with USC at 406 yards/game and 32 points/game. The typical division winners averaged 450+ yards/game and scored 35+ points/game.
We will not win the division with 200-250 yards passing unless that is accompanied by 200-250 yards rushing.
Arkansas has never played Arkansas State or FCS Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
Alabama has never played South Alabama, Troy State, or UAB. They have also never played FCS teams Alabama A&M, Alabama State, or Jacksonville State, and have not played Samford since 1944.
Ole Miss has not played Southern Mississippi since 1984 and has only played them 24 times dating back to 1913. They have also never played FCS teams Alcorn State, Jackson State, or Mississippi Valley State.
Cal and Hawaii kick off the football season one month from today.
by UteThunder 2016-07-27 14:50:02
Side Note: What the hell was Hawaii thinking when they scheduled the first two weeks of the season? They fly 5,071 miles to play Cal in Sydney, Australia in the opener. Then have to fly 4,442 miles to play at Michigan the very next week. That is 19,026 miles round trip for the two games. For context, Utah plays 6 road games this year and will travel a grand total of 8,290 miles round trip.
At least Cal had the good sense to schedule a bye after the Hawaii game and then they only have to travel to San Diego State the week after that.
Heard an interview on 1320 with an Austin reporter while driving this evening.
by UteThunder 2016-07-26 19:21:19
I've gone back and forth on whether BYU is going to get invited to the BigXII because they have a lot of positives, but they have a lot of negatives as well.
After hearing this Austin reporter, I am leaning heavily towards believing BYU does not get invited to the BigXII, and it is for two reasons.
1) He mentioned that any team receiving an invite will have to be approved by at least 8 votes: I'm not sure BYU has the votes. It seems like WVU would vote against adding BYU considering their motivation for expansion is to make themselves less geographically isolated. Adding BYU does nothing to help that. And if Texas & TX-Tech are really pushing for Houston, they would probably be willing to give up any Western expansion to get UH into the league, which means they would likely endorse whatever Eastern candidates are proposed. If that is the case, then that is 3 votes against adding BYU. Obviously, if they expanded by 4 teams this could all become moot as WVU could get 1 or 2 travel partners, Texas could get Houston, and there would still be room to add BYU. But then he said this next part.
2) There are schools in the BigXII who don't want to add "another Texas": He went on to explain that what he meant by 'another Texas' was a school with an ego like what Texas has. This is where things could get dicey for BYU even if the BigXII expanded by 4. If even just 3 BigXII presidents view BYU as being a high-maintenance school with a huge ego(which BYU definitely is), they won't have the votes to get in even as a 3rd or 4th option.
While I am hoping BYU doesn't get into the BigXII, there are a few reasons I wouldn't mind it.
by UteThunder 2016-07-22 13:06:59
1. The BigXII would not let BYU's dirty play go unpunished. They would no longer be able to handle things "internally" when one of their players throws a punch or leads with their head.
2. Stabilization of the BigXII can help prevent the formation of super-conferences. This is more of a general concept, as the BigXII doesn't necessarily get stabilized by adding BYU. In fact, whatever stabilization they can accomplish by expanding will happen regardless of which G5 teams they choose. So whether it is Houston and Cincinnati or BYU and Memphis, the resulting stabilization will be the same.
3. BYU in the BigXII basically guarantees that BYU will never be in the Pac-12. I know we like to think that is already the case, but with the threat of super-conferences looming there will always be a sliver of a chance that BYU could become an option with the lack of good expansion options in the West.
4. It will be nice to see BYU finally have to face the week-in and week-out brutality of a P5 schedule. Since going independent, they have never faced more than 3 P5s in a row and have never played more than 6 in a regular season.
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