Bronco Mendenhall’s BYU team looked better than advertised and Washington State looked like Paul Wulff hasn’t left yet. That’s basically what it boiled down to as Riley Nelson and the veteran Brigham Young offense marched their way over the Washington State defense on Thursday night. Nelson went 25-36 for 285 efficient yards and Kaneakua Friel was his favorite target with 6 catches for 101 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Alisa was the leading BYU rusher with 54 yards on 13 carries. Overall the Cougars in blue racked up 426 yards and 24 first downs, while their swarming defense did the rest.
Meanwhile, the Cougar offense (the ones in crimson), disappointed their faithful and their coach to the tune of a meager 224 yards, 2 turnovers, a blocked punt and just 6 points. The game was just the third time in the history of a Mike Leach coached team that his offense has not scored a touchdown. Mike Leach said in his “coaches show” on Tuesday that there couldn’t be 3 and outs by his offense, which he coined “total offensive failure”. Unfortunately there was a whole lot of that as Wazzu only converted 5 of 15 3rd downs and shot themselves in the foot on their 3 best drives of the day. Jeff Tuel led a masterful drive to open the game before throwing an ill-advised pass that was popped up into the air and intercepted inside the 20. Then to end the half and early in the 3rd quarter the offensive line killed them when holding penalties wiped out a touchdown by Marquess Wilson, ruined a drive started inside the BYU 30 after a huge kick return and then wiped out a 50 yards strike to Wilson again inside the BYU 5.
BYU now will tune up against Weber State while getting ready for the Holy War @Utah on September 15. WSU will welcome a gritty Eastern Washington team to newly renovated Martin Stadium next week before trying to prove on ESPN that they’re not as bad as what we just saw, on the 14th of September.