|Tough night in Provo|
PROVO, Utah – An offense that has struggled continued to do so and a defense that has not uncharacteristically did Saturday night. That combination, combined with a season-high 11 penalties, made for a long evening for the Idaho Vandals as they tumbled 42-7 to Brigham Young University in a non-conference football game.
“This game was two steps forward and three steps back,” senior offensive tackle and co-captain Tyrone Novikoff said. “We just couldn’t get on a roll. That’s frustrating.”
Coach Robb Akey gave full credit to BYU – and wondered what happened to his team.
“We didn’t make any plays tonight,” he said. “That was the problem. We did a poor job executing offensively. We need to execute those things better. … It’s the whole offense. I’m disappointed we didn’t play better tonight.”
On the other side of the ball, he said, “What hurt us the most was the lack of ability to stop the run tonight and to make stops on third down.”
BYU, which missed a field goal on its first possession, came back on its next to score on a 32-yard pass from Riley Nelson to Cody Hoffman with 8:26 left in the first. The Cougars made it 14-0 on their next possession with a 17-yard run by Bryan Kariya with 1:18 to go in the first. On both drives, the Vandal defense gave big boosts to the BYU offense with penalties – first on an unsportsmanlike conduct call and then on a pass interference call.
The Cougars made it 21-0 on Kariya’s one-yard run with 6:49 to go in the first half. Again, BYU had a first-down by penalty to aid its progress. With time waning in the first half, BYU struck one more time – a 21-yard pass from Jake Heaps to Hoffman with :13 to go in the second. Again, the drive was aided by an Idaho pass interference call.
At the same time the Vandal defense was misfiring, so was the offense. Idaho had just 28 yards total offense in the first quarter. The second wasn’t much better with the halftime total inching up to just 65. By game’s end, Idaho had 241 total yards –but 82 of those came on a single play.
After the Cougars added two more TDs in the third to go up 42-0, Princeton McCarty provided the first highlight-reel play of the game when he romped down the left sideline for an 82-yard TD with 3:56 left in the third.
Junior punter Bobby Cowan, a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award, did regain the national punting average lead with seven kicks for 322 yards to push his average to 47.0.
McCarty’s run was the longest of his career.