BYU is only halfway there

Gene Sweeney Jr.

6 games in. 6 games left. Our record is looking good at 4-2. What does that mean for the rest of the season?

BYU's season can be broken down into quarters (like a normal calendar business year). The first quarter signifies the first three games, the 2nd quarter the next three games, etc. As of today, BYU has reached the halfway point in the season. Through six games they stand at 4-2 after a 1-2 start, winning their last three games in a row. What does that mean for our future?

Quarter 1:

Record: 1-2, Opponents: @Virginia 19-16 loss, Texas 40-21 win, Utah 20-13 loss
Total Yards 495 ypg
Rushing yards 307 ypg
Passing Yards 188 ypg
Points 23 ppg
Points allowed 20 ppg
Hill's passing stats

188 ypg, 35% completion,

1 TD, 4 Ints
Hill's rushing stats

16 carries per game, 133 ypg,

8.3 yards per carry, 4 TD's

Games delayed for lightning 66%

Recap: BYU sputtered offensively to put points on the board. Taysom Hill struggled mightily with efficiency. His TD/INT ratio was terrible -- 1:4 -- and he relied excessively on his legs to make plays, which he did very well. BYU was a run-dependent team as the passing game was highly ineffective. BYU's defense played stout as usual being very consistent allowing only 19, 21, and 20 pts. respectively.

Quarter 2:

Record: 3-0

Opponents: Middle Tennessee St. 37-10 win, @Utah St. 31-14 win, Georgia Tech 38-20 win.

Total Yards
452 ypg
Rushing yards
219 ypg
Passing Yards
233 ypg
Points
35 ppg
Points allowed
15 ppg
Hill's passing stats

233ypg, 65% completion,

3 TD, 2 Ints
Hill's rushing stats

14 cpg, 110 ypg,

8 ypc, 3 TD's

Games delayed for lightning 0%

Recap: BYU developed a passing game, Taysom Hill improved dramatically, which balanced out BYU's offense from being a run dependent team to a well balanced offensive squad. He improved his completion pct. from 35% to 65% from games 1-3 to 4-6. BYU's offense has created a more established identity, and they have averaged 35ppg the last 3 weeks, compared to 23 the first three. BYU is a completely different team now that they are a passing threat.

Going Forward:

BYU's next three games -- or Quarter 3 as we'll call it -- might be their toughest yet. They face undefeated Houston on the road, Boise St at home, and Big 10 power Wisconsin on the road. It will rival if not surpass the toughness of the first three games of the season against Virginia, Texas, and Utah.

BYU has a passing game, Taysom Hill has the arm strength to throw the deep ball, the accuracy to keep the chains moving (65% the last three games), and the rushing ability to beat teams with his legs. He is only a
Sophmore. Saying the sky is the limit for Taysom Hill is an understatement.

BYU's defense is as consistent as ever. They are best at points management, not allowing over 21 points this season through the first half, 4 of the 6 teams being BCS conference opponents. Of the remaining 6 teams BYU has yet to play, two are in BCS conferences and then Notre Dame -- who I'd consider a BCS team and Boise St. -- who has been a consistent BCS buster and threat. The challenge at hand is large and real for BYU, but I think they're fit for the task.

Big things are in store for Quarter 3 of the BYU football season, these next three games will help finalize what record BYU will finish with. If BYU simply mirrors what they did the first half of the season, BYU will finish 8-4, 9-4 with a bowl win. If BYU goes 2-1 in the next three games, then finishes off 3-0, they will finish 9-3, 10-3 with a bowl win. Winning 10 games on this schedule is equivalent to -- if not more impressive than -- John Beck's and Max Hall's 11-2 seasons with a MWC schedule.

We shall see what the next half has in store.

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