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BYU Football POWER RANKINGS WEEK 2: Growing Pains

At least the Cougartails probably tasted really good.

NCAA Football: California at Brigham Young Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

We’re only two weeks into the football season and we’ve already experienced the full range of football emotions.

We started off with the unexpected win that gave all of us hope that things were going to be different this season. Optimism was about and even those who are usually had nothing but bad things to say about BYU Football were even finding reasons to smile.

Then a few days after the win, things started to get our of hand. And when I say things, I mean Cougarboard and the local media, where logic and reason go to die. People were talking about Jeff Grimes potentially getting a head coaching some in the next season or two. My personal favorite was a certain BYU sports show that posed the questions “HOW SOON WILL BYU BE NATIONALLY RANKED” because there are no expectations quite like astronomically high expectations.

Then Saturday came and everyone felt like it was a massive letdown, which was funny because going into the season everyone would have been happy with a 1-1 record after two games. Even without the high expectations the game was a real snoozer. It felt exactly like the game in 2016 against UCLA where a buzzing home crowd was put to sleep by a dormant offense that couldn’t get things going.

If anything, this was a good humbling experience for the everyone in the program to remember that you just don’t bounce back and rebuild Rome in a day. There will be good moments and then there will be games against Wisconsin and Washington where we get boat-raced but either way I don’t doubt there will be small steps of progress along the way.

And with that, let’s get to the POWER RANKINGS.


10) LES Wifi

I wasn’t there to experience the new tech but by the sounds of it this was the highlight of the evening. I know this because people were sending out their tweets complaining about the offense at record speed.

9) Riggs Powell

Welcome to the POWER RANKINGS Riggs Powell! You were flying around the field on Saturday night and on this play in particular I thought that you almost made a really dumb mistake to cost us a few penalty yards. Instead, you have earned my love and respect for being aggressive. It’s a fine line between earning my love and feeling my wrath. Just ask my barber who gives me my weekly haircuts. This is a joke because I cut my own hair. I also write my own jokes. The results have been mixed in both respects. But enough about me, let’s give it up for Riggs Powell!

8) Gunner Romney

Welcome to the POWER RANKINGS Gunner Romney! A lot of fresh faces on the rankings this week and we’re excited to see the start receiver out of Arizona make a nice splash this week with a couple of clutch catches. I have a feeling this won’t be the last time that that we see Gunner on the rankings. Let us also appreciate the fact that Gunner Romney has to be in the top ten of most BYU names of all time. It’s the perfect mix of strangely masculine first name and Mormon legacy last name.

7) Skyler “BIG BOOTS” Southam

We got our first field goal attempt from our guy BIG BOOTS and he delivered. He connected for a 36-yard attempt, and if we’re being honest, I would have liked to see the coaching staff give him a shot at what might have been a 40+ yard attempt. It’s easy to say that in hindsight, after seeing the offense fall short on a few of those 4th down conversions, but I think we need to see him attempt some of those longer FGs to build up his confidence when the moment comes when we’ll need him to live up to his nickname.

6) Isaiah Kaufusi

Last week it was Corbin Kaufusi at #6 and this week he’s replaced by another member of BYU’s legendary football family. Isaiah made a great read on this interception and almost gave #81 on Cal the ole oke-doke but he was taken down by a shoestring tackle. If BYU is going to make it to a bowl game this year they need to be forcing turnovers.

5) Brayden El-Bakri

For all of you that think Brayden should be punished for his costly 10-yard holding penalty in the first half, I’ll have you know that I called the ref up after the game and he profusely apologized for making such an egregious error. That might not be true but you know in your heart that’s what should have happened. REGARDLESS, we got to see a large human being go fully extended to make a touchdown catch. More of this please!

4) Moroni Laulu-Pututau

It was hard to find some bright spots for the offense, but it’s great to see Moroni become somewhat of a go-to guy. Hopefully they can continue to find ways to have him stretch the field and open things up for the rest of the offense. If BYU can’t get things going vertically they will have a rough season of fighting for 2-3 yards at the line of scrimmage.

3) Butch Pau’u

Butch, I’ve been meaning to talk to you about that hit on Saturday night. You should find yourself a safe house or a relative close by. Lay low for a while, because you’re probably wanted for murder.

2) Zayne Anderson

The Zayne Train led the team in tackles and continues to show us that moving him to the linebacker spot was a great decision. I think my favorite play of his was on special teams when Rhett Almond was backed up around the goal line and ended up drawing a “running into the kicker” penalty. Even without the penalty BYU would have been in decent shape because Zayne made a great open field tackle.

1) Dayan Ghonwaloku

Dayan had two big plays that really kept BYU in this game, and by all accounts we could write these up as lucky. On his fumble returned for a touchdown, the ball bounced right to him and he had a relatively clear path to the end zone. On the fumbled punt that he recovered, all he had to do was fall on the ball. While there was a certain amount of good fortune involved in those two plays, there is something to be said about being in the right place at the right time. I always felt that Fred Warner was a perfect example of this unique skill. Fred is obviously a gifted athlete (he KILLED IT in his first start with the Niners) but he had amazing instincts that put him in the right place at the right time. Dayan did have a pretty bad blown coverage that lead to an easy score for Cal but beyond that he was flying to the ball, even on special teams.



Adam saw an undefeated season and well it’s probably time for Adam to get his eyes checked.


HOOOOOOOO BOY. Well this is certainly an interesting...ohhhhh she’s a Boise State fan. This all makes sense now. Saying that BYU’s National Championship is the reason why there is separation between P5 and G5 conferences is, uh, a spicy take.


To celebrate Tanner’s 25th birthday, his older brother Parker posted this throwback photo of the QB visiting Provo back when he was much younger. There are so many things to unpack here, but let’s just appreciate that Dennis is in full long sleeves and Austin Collie is shirtless. Also, of course Austin isn’t smiling in this photo. Come to think of it I don’t think he smiled more than 3.7 times his entire career at BYU. The man was all business and his face clearly reflected his approach.


Honestly, we should all be congratulating Ken on convincing this lady that he had a life even when it wasn’t football season. We’ll follow up with our pal to see if how things are going with this girl that he’s apparently texting? Or is this a Mutual message? We might have to dedicate an entire section of the POWER RANKINGS to see how things are progressing here.


Each week we’ll compare the weeks of Jake Welch and JJ Nwigwe to see who performed at a higher level. While it’s pretty difficult to compare the performances of a Division 1 athlete and a 31-year-old buffoon who hurts his back while trying to tie his shoes, we’ll do our best.

It wasn’t exactly the best week for JJ Nwigwe and the BYU offense as they were only able to put together two scoring drives that amounted to 11 points. JJ and the rest of the offensive line had their moments but they also struggled to open up the running lanes and protect Tanner. Things won’t get easier in the coming weeks but hopefully a good challenge will help them grow.

It was a bear of a week for Jake Welch as he moved into a his apartment in Los Angeles, but he scored a huge victory on Thursday after his company’s holiday party. During the day Jake’s place of business had a big summer celebration to celebrate, well nothing in particular. It’s the nature of advertising agencies to celebrate nothing with an open bar starting at 10am. Anyway, at said party a local BBQ joint had catered the lunch. After the party was over and most everyone had gone home Jake discovered that there were mountains of brisket, pulled pork and chicken wings leftover in the kitchen. Being the resourceful man that he is, Jake crafted some makeshift ubranded plastic containers by stapling the edges of two paper plates together and was able to savor four large plates the delicious meats well into the weekend.

WINNER: Jake Welch - Extending free BBQ for multiple days will get you a guaranteed W.


UP NEXT: Wisconsin

We faced Wisconsin last year and they return a whole bunch of those same players that came into our house and branded us like cattle. Hey, at least the fans heading up to Madison will enjoy themselves some delicious cheese curds!