Tag:Bronco Mendenhall
Posted on: December 30, 2011 4:06 pm
 

QUICK HITS: BYU 24, Tulsa 21 at Armed Forces Bowl

Posted by Jerry Hinnen



BYU WON: Riley Nelson 
hasn't put up the kind of stats BYU quarterbacks have historically/traditionally put up, but after two-thirds of a season as a starter, he's already etched himself into Cougar lore as one of the clutchest signal-callers the school has seen. After a season full of late-game heroics, Nelson did it again, taking over at the Tulsa 48 and guiding his team to the game-winning touchdown with just 11 seconds to play. That score came on a two-yard throw to receiver Cody Hoffman -- his third touchdown reception of the game -- after Nelson faked a clock-stopping spike a la Dan Marino. 

The Cougars trailed 14-3 20 minutes into the game but held the high-powered Golden Hurricane to just one touchdown over the final 40, and only 268 total yards for the game overall.

WHY BYU WON: Because Tulsa just couldn't keep their boot on the Cougars' throat. BYU was just this side of gawdawful in the first half, with Nelson erratic, the defense up-and-down, and the run game ineffective. When the Cougars punted the ball back to the Golden Hurricane with less than a minute left in the first half -- their fifth punt in seven possessions, with one of the others ending in a Nelson pick -- it appeared they would head into the half down 11 and with Tulsa in firm control. But punt returner J.D. Ratliff fumbled the punt under pressure, and the Cougars cashed in with a one-play, 17-yard touchdown "drive."

Thanks to G.J. Kinne executing a clinical 58-yard TD drive of his own early in the fourth, the Golden Hurricane were again in position to put the victory securely in their grasp when a BYU running-into-the-kicker call gave them the ball with a 21-17 lead and under 6 minutes to play. Instead they went a meek three-and-out (just as they had before the penalty), the next time they got the ball bask it was with a three-point deficit and only 11 seconds left. BYU was the better team on the stat sheet (with a 343-268 total yardage advantage), but the Cougars still never would have won this game without Tulsa's willingness to help them out at exactly the moments BYU needed that help the most.

WHEN BYU WON: When Nelson's fake spike threw the Golden Hurricane defense off just enough for Hoffman to come open in the front corner of the end zone. With so little time remaining, Tulsa's only hope was a crazy last-second lateral play that didn't make it past midfield.

WHAT BYU WON: Their first bowl game as an independent, a final 10-3 record that cements the program's continued relevance without a conference affiliation, and a bundle of optimism entering Nelson's senior year. It wasn't always pretty, but Bronco Mendenhall will surely take it.

WHAT TULSA LOST: Their fifth game of the season, which isn't so bad considering the first three came to Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Boise State. But if the 2011 Golden Hurricane were ever going to be anything other than just another pdecent Conference USA team, they needed to stay beat (or at least stay competitive with) Houston or win this very winnable bowl game. That they didn't do either means that it's been a nice enough debut season for Bill Blankenship, but not one anyone's going to remember as ultimately "special."

FINAL GRADE: The two teams combined for 611 yards of offense, or some 160 fewer than Baylor managed last night alone. Though the ending offered plenty of drama, the first 59 minutes offered far more in the way of punts, turnovers, and generally disorganized, sloppy offensive play. Kudos to a pair of defenses that showed up to play, but from an aesthetic standpoint -- especially in the immediate wake of the all-timer at the Alamo Bowl -- this was a snooze. C+.

Posted on: December 5, 2011 1:40 pm
 

Jake Heaps transferring from BYU

Posted by Chip Patterson

Highly touted sophomore quarterback Jake Heaps has decided to transfer from BYU, head coach Bronco Mendenhall announced on Monday.

“Jake has decided to leave the program in pursuit of a fresh start for he and his young family,” Mendenhall said in an official release. “Jake is a great young man with tremendous potential and someone I deeply care about. I am sorry to see him leave this wonderful institution yet anxious to follow his future development and success.”

Heaps started ten games as a freshman in 2010, setting school freshman passing records for yards, touchdowns, and wins. After starting the first five games in 2011, Heaps was replaced at the starting position by junior Riley Nelson. Early last month Heaps deflected questions regarding possible transfer or redshirt, committing to "give my 100 percent and commit to this team and this program throughout the rest of the season."

With the season complete, Heaps is now committed to looking for a new home. Mason Kelly, of the Seattle Times, listed Washington, Washington State, Cal and USC as possible destinations for the sophomore quarterback. Heaps leaves BYU having completed 363 of 635 passes for 3,768 yards, 24 touchdowns 17 interceptions in his brief stint with the Cougars.

BYU will face Tulsa in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl on Dec. 30. BYU announced junior quarterback James Lark as the new backup behind Nelson. You can check out the entire bowl schedule here.

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview
Posted on: December 5, 2011 1:40 pm
 

Jake Heaps transferring from BYU

Posted by Chip Patterson

Highly touted sophomore quarterback Jake Heaps has decided to transfer from BYU, head coach Bronco Mendenhall announced on Monday.

“Jake has decided to leave the program in pursuit of a fresh start for he and his young family,” Mendenhall said in an official release. “Jake is a great young man with tremendous potential and someone I deeply care about. I am sorry to see him leave this wonderful institution yet anxious to follow his future development and success.”

Heaps started ten games as a freshman in 2010, setting school freshman passing records for yards, touchdowns, and wins. After starting the first five games in 2011, Heaps was replaced at the starting position by junior Riley Nelson. Early last month Heaps deflected questions regarding possible transfer or redshirt, committing to "give my 100 percent and commit to this team and this program throughout the rest of the season."

With the season complete, Heaps is now committed to looking for a new home. Mason Kelly, of the Seattle Times, listed Washington, Washington State, Cal and USC as possible destinations for the sophomore quarterback. Heaps leaves BYU having completed 363 of 635 passes for 3,768 yards, 24 touchdowns 17 interceptions in his brief stint with the Cougars.

BYU will face Tulsa in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl on Dec. 30. BYU announced junior quarterback James Lark as the new backup behind Nelson. You can check out the entire bowl schedule here.

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview
Posted on: November 17, 2011 5:03 pm
 

PODCAST: College Football Insider Brett McMurphy

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Brett McMurphy tells us why the bowls will be hesitant to take Penn State, if Bronco Mendenhall would be a good fit for the Nittany Lions, what he's looking to see at the SMU-Houston game and much more. We also touch on expansion, Oklahoma-Oklahoma State, coaching salaries and Bob Davie's new job.

Remember, all of the CBSSports.com College Football Podcasts can be downloaded for FREE from the iTunes Store.


You can listen to the podcast in the player below, pop out a player to keep browsing, or download the MP3 right to your computer.  



Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview

Posted on: November 10, 2011 2:36 pm
Edited on: November 10, 2011 2:37 pm
 

BYU's Jake Heaps may redshirt

Posted by Tom Fornelli

After playing in every game as a freshman in 2010, BYU quarterback Jake Heaps began his sophomore season as the team's starting quarterback in 2011, starting the first five games of the season before being replaced by junior Riley Nelson against Utah State. Since then Heaps has only seen some spot action in a blowout victory over Idaho State.

As you'd expect, there's been a lot of speculation about what the highly-recruited Heaps will do, with some wondering if he'll transfer from the school. Heaps wouldn't really address those comments, but he has been talking with head coach Bronco Mendenhall about the possibility of redshirting for a season.

"I am just not worried about it right now," Heaps told The Salt Lake Tribune. "You know, I am not worried about it, and I think everybody else should not think about whether I am going to be here or not, or whether I am going to redshirt or not, or whatever the case may be. It is taking away from this team and what we have going on for us the rest of the season. I mean, all our guys are worried about, all I am worried about, is coming to practice today, and then coming to practice tomorrow and the next day. And then we play Idaho, so really just taking this day by day. I am going to give my 100 percent and commit to this team and this program throughout the rest of the season. So that's all I am focused on." 

Redshirting next season may be an idea that makes some sense. Nelson has played very well in Heaps' place, passing for 1,048 yards, 12 touchdowns and only 5 interceptions since taking the job. By redshirting next year, it would allow Heaps another season of eligibliity while Nelson finishes out his career at BYU and allow Heaps two seasons to start.

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview
Posted on: September 23, 2011 9:39 pm
Edited on: September 23, 2011 9:41 pm
 

Coaches to wear patch for Coach to Cure MD week

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Look closely at the sleeves of your favorite football coach this weekend, and there's a good chance you may spot something unusual--a green football patch, like this one on the shirt worn by Bronco Mendenhall during his BYU team's Friday night matchup against UCF:



That same patch will be worn by 109 of the 120 FBS coaching staffs this week (or in the case of bye weeks, next*) as part of Coach to Cure MD Week, a partnership between the American Football Coaches Association and Parent Project MD. The goal is to raise awareness of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the most common fatal childhood genetic disorder.

Including all levels of college football, the patch will be worn by some 5,000 coaches at more than 400 different schools.

This is the fourth year of Coach to Cure MD, with donations of the 2011 edition projected to top $1 million. The program has helped Parent Project MD fund muscle research grants at schools across the country, including football (and research) powers like Ohio State and Florida. Fans wishing to donate may visit CoachtoCureMD.org or text the word CURE to 90999 to contribute a $5 donation.

And if you wish to donate but need a reminder, you probably won't have to look any further than the clothing on the sideline Saturday.

*One exception: Texas wore them last week against, coincidentally, BYU.

Posted on: September 22, 2011 10:50 am
Edited on: September 22, 2011 1:27 pm
 

CBSSports.com Future Football Power Rankings

Posted by Chip Patterson

In our CBSSports.com realignment crystal ball, Brett McMurphy and the rest of the Eye on College Football team broke down each conference landscape and the division of power after the current wave of realignment settles and the college football ship sails forward. But what about the entire college football landscape? How do the six major conferences stack up against each other when it comes time for the BCS contracts to renew in 2014?

By our best guess, no conferences will implode we will still have six major conferences. There has been some expanding, replacing, and in the case of the Big East even further separation between football and basketball. As a reminder, here are our projections for further conference realignment once this current wave of transition is complete.

Big Ten - remains at 12 teams
Pac-12 - remains at 12 teams
SEC - Adds Texas A&M and Virginia Tech
Big 12 - Adds BYU to replace Texas A&M
ACC - Adds Connecticut, Syracuse, and Pittsburgh. Loses Virginia Tech to the SEC
Big East - loses Connecticut, Syracuse, and Pittsburgh. Adds TCU, Houston, UCF, Villanova, Navy, and Air Force as football schools.

Based on these projected movements, here are the CBSSports.com Realigned Football Conference Power Rankings

1. SEC - Based on our projections, the rich get richer. The almighty SEC, holder of the last five national championships, adds the passion and history of Texas A&M along with a Hokies program that has won four ACC titles in the last seven years. Since joining the ACC Virginia Tech has been the most dominant team in the conference, and adding Frank Beamer's squad along with the Aggies is nothing but an upgrade to an already dominant conference.

2. Big Ten - The reason Jim Delany is comfortable with his current membership roster is because he doesn't need any more members to survive. The most important pieces in the makeup of the Big Ten are some of the most storied programs in history, and he only increased that status with the addition of Nebraska. The Big Ten Network pioneered conference-wide television rights, and this conference is till among the best in the nation even after sitting out this last round of realignment.

3. Pac-12 - Larry Scott opts to stay at 12 in this wave of realignment because there is no reason to expand. The possible additions of Texas, Oklahoma, and their in-state counterparts was beginning to look like more of a headache than the conference wanted to deal with at this point. The Pac-12 has annually fielded at least one national title contender, including a top three AP finish in three of the last four seasons. But while the Big 12 can also claim title contenders, the Pac-12 offers depth where the Big 12 does not. Briskly brushing over Washington State, schools like UCLA, Cal, and Arizona State all have the potential to field a competitive team on a yearly basis. The same cannot be said for the likes of Iowa State and Kansas.

4. Big 12 - After being days away from possible implosion, this conference likely survived because Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said "no." With Oklahoma getting the reform they wanted from the conference, and Texas getting to keep the Longhorn Network, all the conference needed to do was replace Texas A&M. BYU doesn't bring enough to the table football-wise to boost their stock over the Pac-12, but tossing the Cougars into the mix isn't too much of a downgrade either. Bronco Mendenhall has delivered six bowl appearances and five Top 25 finishes since taking over as head coach in 2005, and the upgrade from independence will only boost exposure and recruiting.

5. ACC - From a football perspective, this wave of realignment will only add to the national criticism of mediocrity in the ACC. Pittsburgh, Connecticut, and Syracuse have only three COMBINED Top 25 finishes in the last decade - all three are Pittsburgh, and none of them is higher than 15. Additionally, losing Virginia Tech to the SEC strips some of their recruiting presence in the Hampton Roads/Virginia Beach area and erases their greatest recent benefactor in the BCS formula. These additions secured the conference's future, but did not boost their overall status among the other BCS conferences.



6. Big East - The addition several non-AQ schools will boost the excitement and intrigue for Big East football. Do not confuse this excitement and intrigue for an upgrade in performance, where you can likely expect a similar situation to the state of the conference since the last ACC raid. TCU and West Virginia will carry the banner for the conference nationally, while come combination of USF, UCF, Louisville and Navy will beat each other up to the result of the occasional national ranking and numerous 8-win seasons. The Big East's current membership boasts their "competitiveness," but after this realignment it will be TCU, West Virginia, and everyone else clawing to 7 wins for bowl eligibility.
Posted on: September 10, 2011 10:41 pm
 

QUICK HITS: No. 24 Texas 17, BYU 16


Posted by Jerry Hinnen

TEXAS WON: 
It wasn't always a thing of beauty -- in fact, it was very rarely a thing of beauty -- but after 2010, no doubt Mack Brown will take it. The Longhorn defense held their visitors from Provo to just three points over the game's final 43 minutes, enabling an inconsistent 'Horn offense to slowly erase an early 13-0 deficit. Brown will no doubt be particularly pleased by that offense's effort on the ground--the notoriously ground-shy 'Horns ground out 167 yards on 42 attempts, controlling the clock with freshman Malcolm Brown (68 yards) and backup quarterback David Ash (36).

WHY TEXAS WON: 
In the end, the Cougars didn't have much of an answer once Texas fully committed to their running game. The 'Horns two second-half touchdown drives featured run-pass ratios of 5-to-2 and 5-to-3, with another second-half drive checking in at 9-to-3 and eating up 6 minutes before ending on downs in BYU territory. Texas also ended the game with back-to-back first downs mostly earned on the ground.

But those drives also wouldn't have been quite as successful without some measure of balance, and that balance was due in large part to Jaxon Shipley. Shipley finished with just three receptions, but all of them came at key moments in the second half (including a critical 3rd-and-9 conversion on the game-winning touchdown drive). And for good measure, he also played a key role in the Bryan Harsin/Boise State special that ended the game; it was Shipley who took a Wildcat handoff and threw back to Ash for the icing first down. 

Texas still needs a dramatic amount of improvement in the passing game; nominal quarterback starter Garrett Gilbert was a disaster, completing as many of his eight passes to BYU (2) as he did to his own receivers. But backup Case McCoy provided a lift, completing 7-of-8 for 57 yards. Not that the rest of college football will want to hear it, but McCoy-to-Shipley could provide the foundation for that improvement.

WHEN TEXAS WON: The Shipley-to-Ask trick play put things beyond doubt, but it was Quandre Diggs' interception of Jake Heaps on the Cougars' previous possession that more-or-less finished things; as gassed as the Cougars were by that stage and as well as Texas was running the ball, the Longhorns running the little remaining clock dry was all but a foregone conclusion.

WHAT TEXAS WON: Thanks to their obvious issues on offense and BYU's own relative lack of firepower in their two games, the victory may not move the Longhorns' needle all that much where the polls or expectations are concerned. But this was also the kind of game that Brown's team would have found a way to lose last year, particularly after falling behind 13-0, and every week that goes by without a loss is another week for the young 'Horns to improve, adjust to Harsin and Manny Diaz, and prepare for the bigger challenges to come.

WHAT BYU LOST: Whatever slim hopes BYU might have had for a crazy BCS bowl run in their first year of independence, we guess. But this is also two straight weeks with a single offensive touchdown; while the Cougars have proven themselves capable of grinding out first downs and extended drives, Bronco Mendenhall may have to work on his team's confidence in either finishing those drives or finding the occasional big play.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com