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The One Coach Who Faced BYU & Coastal Carolina Sizes Up Undefeated Matchup

BYU Football offensive line against Texas State on October 24th, 2020. (BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey)

PROVO, Utah – Only one team can say they’ve faced both BYU football and Coastal Carolina in 2020. That’s the Texas State Bobcats.

The Bobcats, like everyone else that has faced the Cougs and the Chants, took a pair of L’s. Texas State head coach Jake Spavital joined ESPN’s SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt to breakdown college football’s game of the week in early December.

Jake Spavital breaks down BYU football

On October 24th, Texas State made the trek to Provo for a “guarantee game” on ESPN. BYU dished out a 52-14 whooping to Spavital’s young Bobcats squad. Here’s what the second-year head coach had to say on what he sees from BYU.

“It’s a very interesting team, to be honest with you. I think you look at them from an experience standpoint; they’ve been through a lot of ups and downs; they’ve played a lot of ball together. You can see everything clicking right now. I think that they are polished almost at every single unit on the entire field.

“Zach Wilson is playing at an extremely high level right now. He’s very fun to watch. You know, you can get into the pro-style system, and they can get under center, and they can run the ball and play-action and do a lot of rhythm throws. They can also spread it out, do the Air Raid stuff. So you know, BYU is a very exciting offense to watch. But you know what? I think that defense from BYU doesn’t get the credit they deserve. Because that defensive fronts one of the better ones out there in the country right now.”

Spavital is right. BYU’s offense has garnered all the headlines this season. Still, the Cougar defense that features nose tackle Khyiris Tonga in the middle of the defensive line is sixth nationally in total defense (292.6) and fourth in scoring defense (13.9).

Strongest unit for Coastal Carolina 

Coastal Carolina is fresh on Spavital’s mind as Texas State faced the Chants last week in San Marcos. CCU won the game by a score of 49-14, led by redshirt freshman quarterback Grayson McCall who tossed two touchdown passes, leading the Sun Belt East Division champions.

“I think that really the key factor is Grayson McCall,” Spavital said on SportsCenter. “He’s kind of putting everything together for them right now and being very consistent and having that threat to actually throw the football.

“The thing about their offense, it is a very innovative scheme. It is a unique scheme, and it’s very hard to prepare for because it’s a spread option system, which is hard to prepare for in a short amount of time. But you know that being said, that scheme puts a lot of one-on-one matchups across the board. I think they’ve got good wide receivers and good tight ends that will be in one-on-one matchups throughout the course of the entirety of the game because it’s so difficult to defend this spread option.

“So when you’ve got a quarterback that can do it all and if he comes out hot, I think it’s going to be a pretty interesting game to watch.”

Only in 2020 can we get insight from a head coach who’s played an Independent BYU football team and a Myrtle Beach team. This year continues to be wild, and let’s hope, as Spavital said, this will be an interesting game to watch.

No. 13 BYU at No. 18 Coastal Carolina

Date: Saturday, December 5th, 2020

Location: Brooks Stadium (Conway, South Carolina)

Kickoff: 3:30 p.m. (MT)

TV: ESPNU

Radio: KSL NewsRadio (102.7 FM, 1160 AM)

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m., KSL Newsradio). Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper and the KSL Sports app.

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