|The storm rolls in with a vengeance. . .|
As the clouds cleared and the game went on, a new storm came in: Hurricane Taysom! Holy cow . . . he tore up that field! It was totally unreal. That first 68-yard TD was crazy enough, but then he did it again . . . and AGAIN. 3 TDs, 259 yards rushing, almost half of a new school record of 550 yards rushing from the whole team. Totally nuts. Paul Lasike also contributed a TD, Jamaal Williams had his best game as a Cougar so far with 182 yards on the ground, and Justin Sorensen hit 4 field goals (which is definitely something to be celebrated, considering he only made 6 all of last season) to make it a comfortable win of 40 to 21 over the Longhorns.
I'm really excited for Taysom Hill and glad that he got this win. I think it will be a huge confidence boost going into the Utah game, which in my opinion, is BY FAR the most important game of the year. On the other hand, his passing rate was pretty terrible, only completing 9 of 26 on the evening. Now, of course you have to take into account that some of those balls were definitely catchable and the receiver either dropped it or just wasn't paying attention and let it blow right by. BUT, thankfully Taysom has a brain, and when he realized that throwing wasn't working, but running was, he started running. And running and running and running. I am starting to wonder if that knee brace gives him special powers . . .
Really the only thing that worries me about Taysom taking on the role of a running back is that it increases his odds of getting injured again. He really needs to start sliding and protecting himself better . . . I know Bronco and Anae have been encouraging him to do so, but it doesn't appear he's listening very much in real combat. Anyway, I guess at least in this situation, he did what it took to get results, and I think that's the most important aspect of being a great quarterback. Just PLEASE don't get hurt!!!
Is Taysom an elite BYU quarterback yet? No. Will he become one over the next few years? Not sure . . . he certainly has a chance to, but he's got a ways to go. However, if he can at least make his passing game passable (no pun intended) and he can retain those running back qualities he's got in him and stay out of the hospital, he could definitely become one of the all-time greats.
Of course Taysom wasn't the only one who showed improvements since the Virginia game. The offensive line was A LOT better. Thanks to them, Taysom had more than half a second to decide what he was going to do with the ball. They weren't perfect and still have some things to work on, but I think this lineup worked a lot better than the lineup against the Cavaliers.
Of course, Kyle Van Noy and a few other defensive players (Alani Fua and Eathyn Manumaleuna are the two who first come to my mind) had stand-out nights as well. I swear Kyle can just pop up out of nowhere and the offensive line doesn't even see him. Maybe he was alluding to that phenomenon when he called the game "magical" on the BYUtv post-game show. haha.
In another post-game interview, KVN said, "I think tonight really showed our team, our identity." I hope that it's a sign of good things to come. I definitely didn't see this win coming, but I was very glad to be proven wrong! Way to go, Cougs! Now let's go get them UTES!!!