BYU Wins Holy War

BYU Wins Holy War
George, like Collie and Harline before him, is now still open!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Mark's Thoughts: After BYU Loss...Now What Happens?

With the bar set so high with the expectation of a perfect season, now what happens after a loss?

The Horned Frogs kicked BYU's butts. It was that simple. TCU looked faster, stronger, and more focused during last nights game. A shell shocked BYU team left the field last night with their heads down. Now the important question needs to be raised, now what? This question can be asked to all members of the football team, coaching staff, and even fans. What is left to look forward to this football season?

The goal going into this season for BYU was to make it into a BCS bowl game. To accomplish that goal, BYU knew that they needed perfection. BYU decided to schedule down, and give themselves the best chance of going undefeated during the season. The advantage to scheduling down was the ability for BYU to win every game that they played, the disadvantage was that even one mistake during the season would be devastating.

After the loss to TCU does BYU still have a chance at going to a BCS bowl game? There is always a chance, but realistically NO. BYU is going to be hurt by the computer element of the BCS rankings; however, BYU was planning on the human polls counteracting the poor computer ranking. BYU is going to fall a long ways in the human polls this week. (Even having a chance of falling completely out of the polls altogether.) BYU has a long shot scenario of making it into the BCS that would roughly included: Utah beating TCU and winning out until the BYU game, all other undefeated non-BCS teams losing, BYU winning out and beating a top ten Utah team decisively to end the season, and the Big East/ACC continuing to struggle and their champions being unranked. In that scenario BYU would have a chance of climbing into the top 15 in the BCS ahead of a BCS champion giving themselves an automatic bid. This is a possibility, but it doesn't look likely.

Plus, could BYU handle a BCS bowl bid this year? BYU's secondary was exposed. The entire season people have wondered how BYU would fare when they faced a team that could pass the ball. Last night BYU finally ran into a team with the ability to consistently pass the ball. The majority of the time BYU's secondary wasn't within ten feet of the receivers making the catch, and TCU exploited Howard attacking him all night with more talented receivers. The real problem for BYU is TCU is not a great passing team. Before last nights game TCU's Dalton had ZERO passing touchdowns, but he had two against BYU. Dalton could have had more if TCU's receivers didn't drop easy touchdown throws. If BYU was facing one of the many quality passing attacks from the Big 12 the game would be ugly.

Also the offense has struggled the last 11 quarters. What happened to BYU's offense after the bye week? BYU had one good quarter against Utah State, struggled against New Mexico, and was shut down at TCU. The play calling has been terrible! It seems that BYU forgot that the best offense player on the field is Harvey Unga. After not running early against New Mexico, BYU went away from the run against TCU. With only 14 carries, Unga averaged almost four yards a carry, but was left on the shelf for most of the game. Hall has lost his rhythm, and has tried to force many throws in the last three games. Hall has four interceptions and two fumbles in the last three games. TCU was the first team that was able to apply pressure to Hall, and Hall looked unable to respond.

With a single loss BYU no longer controls their own destiny. TCU is now in the drivers seat for the conference championship. Utah, also controls their own destiny and would be in the conference drivers seat with a win over TCU. Bronco Mendenhall has the task of keeping his team from getting down on themselves, and to motivate them to reset their goals to winning another conference championship. While all the players have been saying the right things, that the conference championship has been the real goal and they don't worry about the BCS, it is clear that was merely a talking point. Of course all players knew they had a chance to play in a BCS bowl game, or knowing that they had a shot at playing in a BCS title game. Now Bronco needs to refocus them for the rest of the season.

Coach Mendenhall said all of the right things after the game. He acknowledge his own fault in getting the team ready to play, and took the blame off of the players and other members of the coaching staff. He now needs to sell the team that they need to prove this loss was a fluke. That by winning out the remainder of their games they have a chance to not only win another conference title, but they have a chance (however long the odd may be) of getting back into the BCS.

It might be easier to sell that message to the players than the fans of the team. BYU fans have been expecting a BCS run since BYU beat UCLA in the Vegas Bowl last year. Now BYU needs help to get back to the Vegas bowl. Even if BYU wins out, the Armed Forces Bowl might be the best bowl offer they receive. The Armed Forces Bowl is a big step down from the Fiesta or Sugar Bowl. With a very bad home schedule remaining, it will be interesting to see if some fans decide to stay home instead of gutting out the cold for the remainder of the season.

BYU should be able to win every game they have left on their schedule, but it won't be easy. UNLV next weekend could prove to be a trap game for BYU if they aren't recovered from the TCU beat down. UNLV has the talent to play with any team in the conference any weekend. I think Bronco will have BYU ready to play, but if not they could have their hands full with a good Rebels team. Even getting by the Rebels, BYU still has three tough road games. They play Colorado State, Air Force, and Utah all on the road, and none of those are going to be easy wins on the road.

Yet, when all is said and done, BYU just needs to beat Utah!


Larry said...

BLOWOUT SPECIAL!- All "quest" t shirts will now be 75% off at the byu bookstore, and free with tithing receipt of current temple rec!

I have been saying it for weeks now, either by posting it or actually saying on the Pod-cast, that ybu is over-rated! They played a decent tcu team and got handled. No there is no chance for a bcs bowl now. The voters are going to kill you and the bcs poll is going to bury you with a blowout loss!

Where is the magic collie? I remember him talking about how living right off the field causes magic on the field. What kind of mis-deed or sin did max hall commit to have four turnovers? That must be the reason why there was no magic if the opposite is the reason there is! bottom line tcu must be doing things right off and on the field huh. But i guess to look at the pros of halls performance, his soul should be feeling very good!

Also why the "we are the kings" comments from collie? Shut up and play the game austin!

What is ybu going to do with all the quest t-shirts? Its over and don't be surprised if they lose one or two more!

I think to end this rant, its repentance time in provo, all better have interviews scheduled with their bishops this week!

32-7 'Nuff Said!

Anonymous said...

As a fellow byu hater i must say exposed is the best word to describe what happened. listening to the zoobies this year has been rough, hearing about the magic and how byu is the lords school. adding to that point if the big man upstairs really does care about sports and if he really has helped byu win which, admit it byu fans you all have said it, then it is time to convert. it was more than a football game, it was a battle of religion, seeeing that texas christian won must mean that they are living better and are a better religion. bull. byu is a normal team like everyone else and not "the kings" thank you tcu for saving us all from having to hear more crap from the socks and sandals byu fans.

Anonymous said...

Annoying and bitter, that is all you guys are. You are upset at what BYU football players say, but at the same time you look pretty foolish. It may be interesting the first time, but it is getting pretty old. It seems like people get more pleasure bashing BYU than cheering for their actual teams. At least they are more vocal about it.

Oh yeah, how often have you heard someone "thank God" after winning, or even "crossing" themselves after a score or points up towards heaven after a play??? Seems like it happens every game. Notre Dame enters the stadium after going to church, praying, and having a priest bless them. Why is it all of a sudden a terrible thing when a BYU player acknowledges God? It seems pretty hypocrytical to me. Everyone knows God doesn't determine the outcome of a game.

If you want to hate BYU fine. I respect that. Don't hate BYU because of their religion, especially when you share that religion.

There is a reason very very very few teams go undefeated in a season, let alone undefeated in conference for three years in a row. They are bound to lose a game. But that doesn't mean their season is over. They still have a ton to play for. It is unfortunate that the Las Vegas bowl is the best that the MWC can do.

It was a very disappointing game. They were out coached big time. Exposed is the correct description. This is why the BCS conferences don't want the MWC or WAC to join the party. 10-3, 11-2 or 12-1 is still a great season. If you don't agree, just remember how it felt when Crowton was coaching. If I remember correctly, LSU won a MNC (mythical national championship) last year with 2 loss. My point is that there is still a lot to play for, not that BYU will go to a BCS game. There are still 5 games left on the schedule.

Larr said...

If you remember ybu is in the mountain west, THE MOUNTAIN WEST! not the sec. The only reason that religion is brought into is because ybu players and coaches bring it into it. I guess the point is they are pointing out that they live so much better than everyone else and that why they win. Its ybu that quotes scripture at press conferences its ybu that thinks they are Gods team, and its ybu that has the mnc.

I don't hate their religion I spent two years sharing it. But I HATE the way ybu portrays it. when I have friends tell me that go to ybu -its okay ybu lost because god wanted them to lose, or ybu needs to work on their testimonies, or utah loses because their school is of the devil, or it was the hand of god that blocked that kick, or or or. its your fans that say that crap not us. We just get so sick of it when we have a chance we will be all over ybu fans cause they are all over everyone all season long.

I guess when its all said and done, ybu and their fans bring it on themselves and deserve whatever they get. the quest is conquered and the kings slain, so don't type some post thats trying to preach to us. I have the right so say whawtever i want. as do you. but don't try and be holier than me and preach why i should or shouldn't say the things I do. shut your mouth you stupid cougarette zoobie! (have the guts to use your real name by the way)

Taylor said...

Is it Larry or Larr? I think it's too bad that you've had these bad experiences with BYU fans, but please don't project the ignorant comments of a few onto all of us. Most BYU fans are like anyone else-- just happy to see their team winning, and they don't make the self-righteous comments you accuse them of making.

With regards to the players' comments-- As one who spent two years teaching about the Mormon church, would you prefer what happened during the Edwards/Crowton years when players "represented" a church-affiliated university by sleeping around and getting drunk every weekend? Like it or not, people associate BYU with the Mormon church, and Bronco Mendenhall is smart enough to know that hypocrisy does the church no favors.

Finally, if you do feel that BYU fans preach to you or have a self-righteous tone, comments such as "All quest t-shirts will be free with tithing receipt of current temple rec!" (whatever that means exactly) are not going to help you out. Offensive religious jabs are probably only going to get you more sermons.

P.S. Can I meet you Larr? You sound totally hot.