In a huge boost to this year's defensive line, tackle Russell Tialavea will return for the entire season before leaving on a LDS mission to Chile. His decision to stay adds much needed experience and stability to a reconstructed front line, along with all-conference end Jan Jorgensen.
In unfortunate yet anticipated news, Brandon Howard is out for good. The LDS corner who transferred from the Louisville Cardinals to BYU in 2007, only to break his leg and miss the entire season, and play solidly in 08 has left the university for personal reasons. His decision to leave really surprised me, and I would have thought somebody like O'Neil Chambers or JJ DiLuigi (both non-LDS and supremely underused) would have been gone long before Howard. It's a crucial blow to a secondary that is historically slow and undersized--I'm sure Sam Bradford is giddy when thinking about September 5th. And finally, Glen Kozlowski's boy, Tyler, has wisely decided to give up the dream after a few Rudy-years on special teams.