A fired-up defense dominated scrimmage #2
The Cougars held their second scrimmage of Fall Camp today at LaVell Edwards Stadium and based on the reports the day belonged to the defense. In his post practice interview Coach Sitake mentioned that they called out the defense after the last scrimmage and they responded with a great performance. He mentioned specifically that they did a good job disrupting the offense by pressuring the quarterback and forcing turnovers. The QB pressure was in large part thanks to Sione Takitaki who was held out of the first scrimmage. When asked about the safety position and who would be starting next to Micah Hannemann, Kalani talked about the level of talent and said that the coaching staff will have tough decision to make when the time comes to name a starter.
Tanner Mangum also spoke to the media and said that it was a sloppy practice for the offense but there were some good learning opportunities coming out of the scrimmage. He credited the defense and mentioned that it’s always going to be a challenge because there are a lot of talented players on that side of the ball. There has been a lot of discussion about who the featured running back will be but Mangum reiterated that he’s happy with the running back by committee that he has beside him. He did call out Kavika Fonua specifically, saying that he has picked up the offense quickly and has done a decent job in pass protection.
In addition to the interviews we were provided with a couple of video clips that give us a quick peek into the scrimmage. These videos hardly tell the entire story but you can see that a very vocal defense made more plays. Zayne Anderson and Sam Baldwin both had great interceptions and Troy Warner came up with a great pass deflection on a deep pass from Tanner Mangum. In terms of offensive highlights, both Beau Hoge and Joe Critchlow are seen threading the needle and tight end Matt Bushman once again caught a TD pass.
We were also favored with a “Welcome to the Family” video of the scrimmage, which just makes all kinds of happy inside. In addition to the great drone shots of the team playing in the stadium, we also see a very happy Mo Langi and Coach Sitake wearing a t-shirt with LaVell Edwards with the caption of “Legend”. Rest assured I will be purchasing one of these shirts very soon.
BONUS: Former Cougars make their NFL pre-season debut
A bunch of BYU alumni suited up for their first pre-season games tonight and most of the seemed to fair pretty well. We’ll start in Green Bay where Jamaal Williams led the Packers in rushing (4 carries for 14 yards) and Taysom Hill had a nice drive at the end of the game which resulted in a touchdown and (as is customary in Green Bay) a Lambeau Leap.
Over in New England, undrafted free agent Harvey Langi started for the Patriots and recorded a four tackles. It’s still a little bit of a mystery why Langi wasn’t drafted but the Patriots coaching staff aren’t discriminating as they seem to be giving him a lot of reps with the starting unit.
Deatrich Wise and Harvey Langi both are running with the starting defense.— Zack Cox (@ZackCoxNESN) August 10, 2017
After missing all of last season with an injury Bronson Kaufusi returned to the gridiron and got in on the action with a sack. He’s cracked the two-deep so far in camp and is gunning to part of the regular rotation on the defensive front.
Kai Nacua made his debut with Cleveland and old friend Jordan Leslie also suited up for the Browns. We’ll keep tracking these guys as they make their way through camp and hopefully onto an opening day roster.