BYU Football Questions Answered In Loss Against East Carolina
PROVO, Utah – The BYU football team suffered a heartbreaking loss at home to the East Carolina Pirates on the final play of the game, falling 27-24.
Let’s answer some burning questions from the Cougars’ fourth straight loss of the 2022 season.
Who was the most valuable player for BYU football?
Going into the game against ECU, BYU was without starting running back Christopher Brooks.
That meant Lopini Katoa would have an increased workload.
He’s my choice for the most valuable player.
Katoa rushed for 116 yards on 20 carries. He averaged 5.8 yards per carry.
#BYU 🏈 eclipses the 200 yard rushing mark for only the second time this season.
— Matthew Baiamonte (@baiamontematt) October 29, 2022
Credit is due for the offensive line as well.
It was obvious that getting the running game was a huge emphasis for the coaching staff.
They possessed the ball for over 33 minutes of time while rushing for 244 yards.
Those are numbers that usually result in a win, but questionable coaching decisions late in the fourth quarter gave the Pirates a chance.
What was the most impactful play of the game?
Midway through the fourth quarter, the BYU defense came up with a huge stop on a missed field goal by the Pirates.
The BYU offense had solid starting field position to drive down for the go-ahead score.
Facing fourth and one at the BYU 44-yard line, Aaron Roderick dialed up a quarterback sneak that was stuffed by ECU.
— Mitch Harper (@Mitch_Harper) October 29, 2022
The BYU defense responded, holding firm while forcing a turnover on downs.
Unfortunately, the offense failed to get a first down and punted the ball away.
East Carolina drove 46 yards for the game-winning field goal.
Most interesting stat of the game?
BYU has scored zero points in the fourth quarter of their last three football games.
They went for it on fourth down twice in the fourth quarter against the Pirates, both resulting in a turnover on downs.
Quite simply, the BYU offense lost this football game.
Two of the three drives ended on fourth down and the final drive was a three-and-out that resulted in a punt.
When was the game lost for BYU football?
BYU football had the ball in the red zone for a critical fourth down and two early in the fourth quarter.
They chose not to kick a field goal.
Kalani Sitake said in the post-game press conference that opting to go for it on fourth down was a mistake.
Instead, they ran the ball up the middle to Miles Davis for no gain.
#BYU head coach Kalani Sitake on the loss to ECU:
"You get defined by your culture when things go really bad…excited about correcting things and getting better."
— KSL Sports (@kslsports) October 29, 2022
It’s going to be a battle for the Cougars to get bowl eligible.
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