PROVO – After passing the toughest test of the 2020 season so far, BYU football remained in place among the top national teams Sunday morning.
The Cougars threw two places in a No. 1 tie. 11 in the latest edition of the USA Today Coach ‘Poll, and climbed two more places to No. 12 in the latest Associated Press Top 25. Putting the Cougars just behind Miami (Fla.) And just ahead of North Carolina after the Tar Heels’ first loss of a year in unlocked Florida State in coach coaching .
The AP poll ranking remains the highest for BYU since climbing No. 7 in 2009 before graduating from No. 12 nationwide.
BYU also ranked sixth in Jeff Sagarin’s ratings at 94.86, followed only by Ohio State, Clemson, Alabama, Oklahoma State and Georgia on a more computer-based scale.
That BYU, who managed to beat Houston 43-26 on Friday night, ranked in the top 15 teams in the country is no longer a surprise. The Cougars are 5-0 for the first time since 2008, and just one of 10 unbeaten programs in a season with a minimum of three games.
Others on that list include top-ranked Clemson, who combined Georgia Tech 73-7 on Saturday; Alabama, the SEC’s power to take on Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett three times in a 41-24 win over the Bulldogs; Coast Carolina, the Sun Belt 4-0 team that won the first game as a FBS program against a ranked opponent with a 30-27 win over No. 21 Louisiana; and Liberty, the fellow FBS Independent who toured ACC’s previous program Syracuse 38-21 Saturday at the Carrier Dome to improve 5-0 for the first time since Flames was an FCS Big South program in 2008.
Clemson, Alabama, Notre Dame, Georgia and the State of Ohio scored in the top five in the AP poll. The Bulldogs (3-1) are the top-ranked one-loss team after beating Alabama. The Cougars jumped first to No. 13 Oregon for the first time since the AP began to allow teams to vote for Pac-12 schools whose seasons have not yet begun.
Utah received 36 votes, nine places outside the Top 25 and just behind undefeated Liberty.
With arguably the hardest test behind them – and certainly the hardest fit until a road trip on Nov. 7 in Boise State – the main focus for BYU still remains on maintaining the current schedule ahead of them. . Prior to that date with the Broncos, the Cougars had home tilts Saturday against Texas State and a first-time matchup in Western Kentucky on Halloween night.
How do they keep the focus on the Bobcats, who are just 1-5 after a 30-20 defeat to rival Sun Belt division South Alabama, and the Hilltoppers, who fell 1-4 after being held by UAB 37-14? BYU wide receiver Dax Milne provided some insight after the big win in Houston.
“It’s fun to win every week,” Milne said. “We celebrate it all weekend, we talk about it Monday, and after that, it’s over. We know we’re a great team, and if we minimize mistakes, we can play anyone . “
If BYU stays focused, it should take a 7-0 record with Blue Turf. That led to 6-0 starting in 2008, when Max Hall and Cougars suffered a fist loss in the season with a 32-7 blowout at No. 9 TCU. BYU finished 10-3 that season, adding losses to rival Utah and a loss to Arizona in Las Vegas, marked by almost the norm for the Cougars with their six 5-0 starting history. program.
Of course, one of the endings stands above the others:
- 2001: After a 12-0 start and increase to No. 9 in the AP poll, BYU lost to Hawaii 72-45 before a 28-10 defeat to Louisville in the Liberty Bowl during Gary Crowton’s first year as head coach. The Cougars ended the season ranked No. 25 of AP.
- 1984: The best case scenario, BYU rolls a 13-0 record with an 8-0 record in the Western Athletic Conference, and ends in AP 1st and coaches with a 24-17 win over Michigan in the Holiday Bowl for the singles championship program.
- 1981: BYU finished 11-2 with a 7-1 record in WAC before a 38-36 win over No. 20 Washington State in the Holiday Bowl. The Cougars finished No. 13 of the AP and Number 11 of the coaches.
- 1979: BYU sets an 11-0 regular-season record with a 7-0 mark in WAC play before losing to No. 9 Indiana, 38-37 in the Holiday Bowl. The Cougars ended the season ranked No. 13 of AP, No. 12 of the coaches.
This BYU team is ranked more complete in the country, even statistically. The Cougars rank among the most complete teams in the country, at least statistically. BYU ranks sixth in total offense, averaging 541.0 yards per game with 43.6 points, and just outside the top-10 in total defense with 288.0 yards allowed per game
Individually, quarterback star Zach Wilson is shining brightly – and he is even mentioned as a potential NFL Draft pick. The junior who prepped in Corner Canyon was in third country with 1,641 passing yards, tied for fourth with five touchdowns, and eighth overall averaging 348.2 yards per game. He also ranked second nationally with 110 points responsible before the slate of games on Saturday.
If the Cougars continue to play as before, he will also see a lot of marks.
In the air
No. 12 BYU (5-0) vs. Texas State (1-5)
Kickoff: Saturday, October 24 at 8:15 pm MT
Radio: BYU Radio, KSL Radio
Series: First meeting
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