BYU forgetting how to pass is …

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As of today, BYU is ranked  last amongst NCAA college football teams in pass efficiency.

As of Sunday, BYU is ranked last among Football Bowl Subdivision teams in pass efficiency. (Photo by BYU)

So I was sitting in the press box late Saturday night at LaVell Edwards Stadium, watching BYU lose to Utah, and wondering how it had come to this.

Ute quarterback Travis Wilson completed 24-of-34 passes for 273 yards and two touchdowns. He was cool, calm, collected. He made plays. He threaded the needle. He avoided sacks.

Except for his red jersey, and honor-code-violation hair flowing out the back of his helmet, he looked like, well, a traditional BYU quarterback.

Cougar quarterback Taysom Hill completed just 18-of-48 passes and has a season completion percentage of around 36 percent. Against the Utes, some of his passes were dropped, and some of them seemingly landed somewhere near Payson.

It didn’t look like BYU football. It didn’t look like the school that produced a string of All-American quarterbacks.

What in the name of Ty Detmer is going on here?

When the NCAA statistics were released Sunday, BYU was dead last — yikes! — in the nation in pass efficiency.

When, why and how did the Cougars forget to pass the ball?

It was the passing game, after all, that put BYU football on the map. It was quarterbacks making the easy throws, receivers making the easy catches. It was quarterbacks making the difficult throws, receivers making the difficult catches. It was quarterbacks throwing to tight ends and running backs.

BYU senior receiver Cody Hoffman entered the season needing just 19 receptions, 538 yards and three touchdowns to be No. 1 in school history in all three categories. At this rate, who knows if he’ll reach those milestones?

The majority of BYU fans grew up watching the Cougars throw the ball, and doing it successfully. I used to know people that would get upset if BYU didn’t pass for at least 300 yards in a game, even if the Cougars won.

These days, BYU is more proficient at running the ball — such as the school record 550 yards the Cougars gained on the ground against Texas — but throwing the ball is another matter.

This is not BYU football, which used to be synonymous with throwing the football.

Does BYU football have amnesia?

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like DaVinci forgetting how to paint.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Michelangelo forgetting how to sculpt.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like George Washington forgetting how to lead a revolution.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Abraham Lincoln forgetting how to write a speech.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Clara Barton forgetting her bedside manner.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Napoleon (Bonaparte, not Dynamite) forgetting he was short.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Napoleon (Dynamite, not Bonaparte) forgetting how to say, “Flippin,” or “Sweet” or “Gosh.”

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Pavarotti forgetting how to carry a tune.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Johnny Carson forgetting the punch lines of jokes.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Elvis Presley forgetting how to shake his hips.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Celine Dion forgetting how to carry a tune.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir forgetting the words to “Come, Come Ye Saints.”

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Julia Child forgetting how to boil water.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like the National Enquirer forgetting how to publish fiction.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Charlie Daniels forgetting how to fiddle.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like William Faulkner forgetting how to write a novel.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like the Kardashians forgetting how to draw attention to themselves.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like a dentist forgetting to brush his teeth.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Jeff Gordon forgetting how to make a left turn.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like J.K. Rowling forgetting Harry Potter.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like a flower forgetting how to bloom.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Google forgetting its how to provide a search engine.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Mikhail Baryshnikov forgetting how to pirouette.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Michael Phelps forgetting how to swim.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Usain Bolt forgetting how to run.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like New York City forgetting it is The Big Apple.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like McDonald’s forgetting the Big Mac.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Tom Hanks forgetting how to act.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Barack Obama forgetting how to use a teleprompter.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like George W. Bush forgetting how to mispronounce words.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Hillary Clinton forgetting she is a Democrat.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like George Lucas forgetting how to make action-adventure-science fiction movies.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Miss America forgetting how to put on her crown.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like Rodney Dangerfield forgetting that he has no respect.

BYU forgetting how to pass the ball is like BYU forgetting how to pass the ball.

Leave your “BYU forgetting how to pass the ball …” ideas in the comments section.

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Jeff Call has covered BYU sports since 1993, including the past 16 years for the Deseret News. He, his wife and six sons live in Cedar Hills.

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