We wanted to try something a little different as this off-season is getting underway. We asked ten questions of some of our Cougar contributors about the state of the BYU football program as well as what they say in 2012 and hope to see in 2013.
We will post one question with each response every day for the next ten weekdays. Make sure to check in every day to get your BYU Cougars update from our roundtable of Cougar faithful.
- Aside from Riley Nelson, what was the biggest problem with the offense this season and how is that improved for 2013?
- Who will be the impact players you will watch for in 2013?
- Will Cody Hoffman be around to be a part of this team next year?
- The continued vanilla-style playbook as called by Brandon Doman. Go with what you know, and if it doesn’t work, get out of the position. 2013 must be the year that Doman figures out what he’s going to run for BYU. He’ll know by season’s end if he has a future as an OC.
- Jamaal Williams, Skyler Ridley/Ross Apo tandem, Kaneakua Friel. I’m still a big believer that we have plenty of talent on offense. It’s there; it just needs to be utilized. The last two seasons have felt that BYU is only using 40% of the playbook.
- I’m not expecting him to. But he may scout the draft, determine he may not be as high as he wants and will decide to come back. It’s all his decision though. I believe he’s ready to make the jump.
- The offensive line, inconsistent play from tight ends, and inability of RN to distribute the ball more. Key playmakers were wasted. Ross Apo only having 9 more catches than Skyler Ridley is nothing short of a disaster. Playmakers NEED the ball in thier hands. And finally? The kicking game. The offense really sucked bad when you look at the numbers and how many positions struggled.
- Depends on what KVN, Hoffman, Apo do. If they stay by some miracle, they will be the play makers and field generals. I expect big things from Taysom Hill and I expect a dramatic group improvement on the offensive line. We need a big season from Kaufusi on the defensive line, and pray that Bronco can land some solid JC transfers to shore up a weak line. Finally, I am expecting a monster season from Jamaal Williams.
- I think Hoffman and Apo will be. I don’t think KVN will stick around.
- In a word, inconsistency. Bronco Mendenhall tried to be consistent but his only success at it was in supporting a player who should not have been playing. Taysom Hill played well, but because of lack of trust from the coaches, he never looked like the player we all heard he will be. If the team wanted consistency, they should have turned to James Lark in game 3 when it was obvious that Riley Nelson would not be able to play effectively and let Lark show the Cougar faithful why he was such a highly recruited quarterback prospect.
- Whoever the quarterback is will be expected to be an impact player for this offense. I expect that will be Taysom Hill. I understand he is ahead of schedule on his rehab and will be available come spring time for those crucial practices. He will have to beat out Ammon Olsen and Jason Munns, and I’m hearing whisperings that Tanner Mangum may hold off on his mission as well. Needless to say, whoever comes out of spring practices as the number 1 should be better off for it. Additionally, the super threat duo of Cody Hoffman and Jamaal Williams will need to lead this team once again.
- As he announced the week of Christmas, he will be. I think that had he had a quarterback like James Lark throwing him the ball all season, he’d have had a Marquise Lee type of season and would likely declare early. But he needs to have one more year of solid performances to elevate himself to the category of top wide out in the West.
- Doman is taking the majority brunt for the non-Riley offensive woes. Mark Weber and his poor offensive line was a glaring issue in 2012. Blocking, run blocking specifically, is a mindset much like playing great defense. Bronco is an absolute genius in tapping this mindset and building great defenses even with sub-par athletes. How he tolerates an offensive line that looks fat, lazy and soft is mind boggling.
- Taysom Hill #1, Jamaal Williams #2, and Cody Hoffman #3.
- I like to think enough college receivers have declared for the draft only to go undrafted will keep Cody at BYU one more year. With the offensive struggles it’s hard to blame him for looking that direction. Imagine the heartbreak for BYU fans if we find out this struggling 2012 team had NFL players in Ziggy, Van Noy and Hoffman.
- The offensive line was the biggest problem with the offense, but I think that gets improved by coaching and experience. Take a look at BYU’s roster. There were a lot of freshmen and sophomores on the offensive line. I think it improves, and if it does, I’ll be very excited to see what Taysom Hill, Jamaal Williams, Cody Hoffman, Ross Apo and JD Falslev can do.
- Taysom Hill and Jamaal Williams. If BYU’s offensive line can improve and coaches can figure out an identity for the offense, BYU’s offense in the future has the potential to be scary.