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Cougar Kickoff Countdown: 83 Days & a 83-Yard Punt Return

83 days left in the Cougar Kickoff Countdown. In the 1980 Holiday Bowl Vai Sikahema returned a punt for 83-yards in the first half.

BYU takes the field before taking on Boise State
BYU takes the field before taking on Boise State
Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Before Vai Sikahema became the first Tongan player in the NFL he made a big splash at BYU as a freshman returning punts. Perhaps his most remembered play as a Cougar came against SMU in the 1980 Holiday bowl. SMU was rolling BYU in the first half and was up 29-7 just before halftime. The Cougar defense held and forced the Mustangs to punt. The punt was short and took a big bounce, several SMU players overran the ball and Sikahema took a chance. He caught the ball in stride, catching the SMU punt team off guard, and made the 83 yard dash into the end zone. Cougars were still down 29-14 at the half but found themselves in a much better position to stage an epic comeback in the second half.