BYU COUGARS

Instant Takeaways From BYU’s Season-Opening Win At USF

Sep 3, 2022, 7:53 PM

Jaren-Hall-BYU-Cougars-USF-Bulls...

BYU quarterback Jaren Hall (Courtesy of BYU Photo)

(Courtesy of BYU Photo)

TAMPA, FL. – No. 25 BYU football took care of business in dominating fashion against USF. BYU defeated the Bulls at Raymond James Stadium, 50-21.

It was an impressive start to the 2022 season for a BYU team coming off back-to-back double-digit win seasons over the previous two years.

Here are some instant takeaways from BYU’s win that improves them to 1-0 on the young season.

BYU came out like lightning

The weather in the Tampa area caused a two-hour delay, and it began moments before BYU players and coaches were ready to take the field. Lightning was what started the delay, then it was rain, and two hours later, the teams were on the field.

BYU offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick was asked by KSL Sports earlier in the week if the coaching staff had a plan for weather delays. He said they had discussed what they would do in that situation.

Well, the preparations were top-notch. BYU was dialed in from the opening snap.

Just like the weather, BYU came out to open the 2022 season like lightning. On the first snap of the game, BYU QB Jaren Hall handed the ball off to wide receiver Puka Nacua on a jet sweep. Nacua took the ball 75 yards for an opening play touchdown.

The start had shades of BYU’s season-opening east coast trip two years ago against Navy.

Kickoff coverage was a glaring issue

USF’s two touchdowns in the third quarterback can trace back to blown coverages by BYU’s special teams on kick coverage. The Bulls opened the third quarter with an 89-yard return by Jimmy Horn Jr. that he took to the house for a score.

Then with less than six minutes remaining in the third quarter, USF’s Brian Battie returned a Jake Oldroyd kick 38 yards to the Bulls’ 42-yard line. Seven plays later, USF put together a touchdown drive.

BYU’s defense was stout throughout the game

BYU starting defensive end Tyler Batty told KSL Sports before the season began that the BYU defense “wanted to make their presence felt.” After seeing what occurred over the last 60 minutes, USF felt what BYU’s defense was putting down.

It wasn’t a defensive performance filled with sacks, takeaways, or explosive plays. But they were technically sound. They didn’t miss tackles, and they did what Ilaisa Tuiaki expects out of his defense, each player delivering their one/eleventh.

No one will be ready to say BYU’s defense has arrived after what they saw against a weak USF team. But they deserve some respect for the suffocating placed over a USF offense led by Baylor transfer Gerry Bohanon that gave the Cougar defense issues a year ago.

Record-setting first quarter under Kalani Sitake

BYU put up 28 points in the first quarter against the Bulls. That was the most points scored by a BYU team coached by Kalani Sitake. The previous high by a Sitake-coached team was 21 points.

Jaren Hall got everyone involved in the passing game

The great BYU offenses of the 80s and early 90s always were well known for having games where 10 or more receivers were hauling in passes. Well, BYU starter Jaren Hall gave Cougar fans a blast from the past as 12 different receivers.

It highlighted how deep BYU’s receiver and tight end rooms go. Plus, it showcases the running backs that BYU will utilize in the passing attack this year.

Experience doesn’t always guarantee success

BYU entered the 2022 season in the top five of most experience lists in college football. Another team that was among the top five was USF.

The Bulls were in the top five of ESPN’s returning metrics, yet you would have never guessed that on Saturday night.

BYU was the team that was operating at a high level. USF brought in a bunch of transfers over the offseason that had experience at their previous stops. Still, it’s a warning that you can’t guarantee immediate success by overhauling your roster through the portal.

Chris Brooks is filling Tyler Allgeier’s shoes nicely

Christopher Brooks, the 6-foot-1, 230-pound running back from Cal, showed he’s ready for the spotlight left behind by Tyler Allgeier. In his BYU debut, Brooks had a 52-yard rushing touchdown up the middle. He showcased his speed which made him a coveted transfer portal prospect for BYU’s coaching staff.

BYU’s offense will be aggressive in 2022

Early in the first quarter, BYU’s offense faced a fourth and short in their own territory. At no point did BYU even flinch. Quarterback Jaren Hall stayed on the field and BYU was able to pick up the first down.

BYU coach Kalani Sitake said he wanted Hall and the BYU offense to take “calculated risks” this season. The fifth-year quarterback appears to have the utmost confidence from his coaches.

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.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

  • BYU Cougars Scoreboard

  • BYU Cougars Team Leaders

  • BYU Cougars Standings

BYU Cougars

BYU Basketball, Max Triplett, Snow College...

Mitch Harper

BYU Basketball Adds Snow College Transfer To Frontcourt

BYU basketball picked up a commitment from Max Triplett out of Snow College.

2 days ago

Allstate, Big 12 Conference, Naming Rights...

Mitch Harper

Social Media Reacts To Big 12 Potentially Selling League Name To Allstate

Social media had its share of takes after the reports surfaced that the Big 12 is looking to sell its naming rights to Allstate.

3 days ago

Big 12 Conference, Allstate, Name Change...

Mitch Harper

Big 12 Looking At Selling Name Of League To Insurance Company

The Big 12 Conference is looking for additional revenue streams.

3 days ago

Big 12, Brett Yormark, Conference Expansion...

Mitch Harper

Big 12 Reportedly Considering Up To $1 Billion Private Equity Investment

SALT LAKE CITY – The Big 12 Conference could be ushering in a new era of college athletics. On Thursday, CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd reported that the Big 12 Conference is considering a private equity investment of up to $1 billion. Breaking: Big 12 considering private equity investment of up to $1 billion for as much […]

3 days ago

justin sterner rays...

Brian Preece

Locals In MLB: Former Cougar Justin Sterner Makes Most Of MLB Debut

Former BYU Cougar Justin Sterner didn't have much time to prepare when the rookie pitcher learned he was needed in the big league bullpen.

5 days ago

payton henry...

Brian Preece

Locals In MiLB: Former Pleasant Grove Baseball Star Suffers Scary Injury

It was a scary scene in late May when former Pleasant Grove Viking Payton Henry was struck in the head by an opponent's backswing.

6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

KSL Sports

Utah Hockey Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Want to get the latest info on Utah's newest sports franchise? Sign up for the Utah Hockey newsletter!

Hans & Scotty's Day of Adoption...

Hans & Scotty’s Day Of Adoption

Join the KSL Sports Zone for Hans & Scotty's Day of Adoption, in partnership with the Humane Society of Utah, on June 25th, 2024!

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Instant Takeaways From BYU’s Season-Opening Win At USF