BYU Football Alumni Game Finishes On Hail Mary TD From Max Hall

Apr 1, 2022, 1:59 AM
BYU Football - Max Hall - Alumni Game...
Former BYU Football quarterback Max Hall during the Alumni Game on March 31, 2022. (Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
(Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – BYU football fans experienced a wave of nostalgia on Thursday night at the Alumni Game. Of course, some fans were down about not seeing a spring scrimmage with the 2022 BYU squad, but an alumni game that delivered a hail mary finish was hard to beat.

An estimated 7,500 fans were in attendance to witness BYU’s winningest quarterback Max Hall complete a hail mary touchdown to former linebacker Bryan Kehl to give Team Navy a last-second victory over Team Royal, 31-27.

BYU Football Alumni Game was a success

The rosters leaned in favor of Team Navy, who had a younger team on paper. Most Team Navy players were key contributors during the Bronco Mendenhall era. In contrast, many from Team Royal played during the 90s under legendary LaVell Edwards. Some younger former BYU stars, such as Aleva Hifo and Colby Pearson, were put on Team Royal to counter the age discrepancy.

Team Royal, led by former BYU signal-caller Kevin Feterik, made sure to put up a fight. They took the lead with eight seconds remaining, which shocked players on Team Navy. But Max Hall, as he did so many times during his three-year stint as BYU’s starting QB, had some magic up his sleeve.

Bryan Kehl always believed the comeback was possible

“We were playing pretty good, beating them (Team Royal), but they played well and came back. They took the lead, which was terrible. As soon as they scored, I was in on defense; I ran over to where Max (Hall) was. And I said, ‘Let’s go. We got the deep ball; I can beat them.’ He says, ‘We need a chunk play first, and then we’ll go for it,'” said Bryan Kehl, who played at BYU in 2002, 2005-2007. “So sure enough, they did the chunk play to Cody (Hoffman), worked perfectly. We have three seconds left. Max was trying to do another chunk play. He’s like, ‘let’s get another chunk play and call a timeout.’ Then I was like, ‘we don’t have time for that; there are only three seconds. This is the last play.’ So Max is like, ‘Okay, I’ll throw it up.'”

Hall then delivered a ball that gave flashbacks of his 4th & 18 deep ball to Austin Collie against Utah in 2007—connecting with Kehl on a deep ball to seal the victory.

Max Hall showed why he was BYU’s winningest QB

“I ran and got down to the endzone as fast as I could. Max still has a cannon, and he put it up there and I just tracked the ball. It was great. Oh, and I got two broken fingers,” said Kehl.

Hall finished 18-of-32 for 313 yards, four touchdowns, and one interception. Feterik finished 26-of-32 for 224 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions.

“I don’t think anybody got hurt, so that’s a huge plus,” said Max Hall. “And then that last play, Bryan got in the [huddle] and said, ‘Max, throw it up to me, and I’ll go catch it.’ And he did. That was about everything I had to get it there. So that will hurt for a few days, but what a moment. That was a lot of fun.”

Kalani Sitake & Kevin Feterik reunite

BYU football head coach Kalani Sitake was on the Team Royal roster but only appeared in one play. The final snap for Team Royal on a two-point conversion attempt, Sitake ran a few yards then took a knee. After that, most of his work was as a coach, providing support to team royal. On Feterik’s comeback drive, Sitake was warming up Feterik’s arm. The two played in the same backfield together for three seasons.

“He’s a brother from another mother,” Kevin Feterik said of his relationship with Sitake. “We bled, sweat, and ahead tears on this field together. I love the guy. I love what he’s doing. He’s got this program going the right way. I’m so happy for him.”

Sitake gave a speech to the hundreds of BYU football alumni at the Student-Athlete Building about how he wants them to always be around the program. Regardless if they’re a “Crowton guy,” “LaVell guy,” or “Bronco guy,” he wants them all to be part of BYU football.

Sitake plans to hold the Alumni Game again next season, and after the success of this one, I have to imagine it’s only going to grow from here.

Quick Hits

  • Joe Sampson recorded two interceptions. Sampson is currently working on Kalani Sitake’s BYU football staff in a grad assistant role.
  • Team Navy backup QB Brandon Doman connected with 2001 teammate Reno Mahe for a touchdown.
  • BYU’s all-time leading receiver Cody Hoffman recorded five receptions for 79 yards.

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

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BYU Football Alumni Game Finishes On Hail Mary TD From Max Hall