BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

BYU’s Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

In a match between two Big 12 newcomers, the Cougars played with enough opportunism to hold off the Bearcats.

Congratulations to BYU football for their first conference victory in the Big 12 era.

Despite some difficulties in the first half, the Cougars overcame Cincinnati, the visiting team, 35–27 on Friday night at LaVell Edwards Stadium.


Following the game, BYU (4-1, 1-1 Big 12) learned three valuable (and not so useful) lessons:

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

What proved effective
A short field was created by special teams, and BYU scored on defence. They capitalised on the game’s two turnovers, two weeks after the Cougars allowed two defensive touchdowns in a 38-27 loss to Kansas.

A touchdown from cornerback Jakob Robinson gave BYU the lead early in the game. Once Robinson intercepted Cincinnati’s Emory Jones on the team’s opening play, the score was scored when Robinson sprinted 42 yards. Third of the season, Robinson had made the interception.

But the Cougars forced a turnover on special teams on the last play of the third quarter. Though he touched the ball, Cincinnati returner Braden Smith was unable to gather it up after misjudging a bounce on a punt. Denver Broncos wide receiver Austin Riggs made a comeback at the Cincinnati 15.

Although Marcus McKenzie,

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

the Cougars gunner, did not collect the ball, he managed to keep it out of Smith’s hands during the play and allow Riggs to take advantage of the loose ball.

A 1-yard touchdown run by LJ Martin gave BYU a two-point lead, 35-20, on the following possession.

2. To ensure the victory, BYU’s offence found enough life. Coming up next, I’ll talk about the Cougars’ appallingly poor offensive start.

However, BYU’s offensive problems were resolved in the last minute of the first half with an outstanding three-play, 82-yard touchdown drive.

Before a wide-open Darius Lassiter grabbed a 22-yard touchdown with six seconds remaining in the half, Kedon Slovis completed three straight throws on the drive for 23, 24, and 22 yards. Cincinnati pass interference also assisted in moving the ball downfield.

With four out of five possessions,

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

BYU scored touchdowns following that. Now that BYU had taken charge, they never trailed in the second half, even though the Cougars had struggled offensively for much of the game.

The third victory was a major one for BYU—its first in the Big 12 league. The victory was all that counted, even though the Cougars failed in a number of statistical analyses.

Not insignificantly, BYU’s numerous clutch plays in the last two quarters to seal the victory contributed to that.

In less than three minutes, BYU regained possession after the Cougars’ fourth-and-1 was stopped by safety Tanner Wall and Ethan Slade, who stopped the runner just short of the line.

While Tyler Batty’s sack early in the fourth quarter helped force a punt, BYU only had one sack for the game. This came immediately after the Cougars had taken a two-score lead again.

Also, in the second half, the offence produced a few clutch plays.

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

There were just under three minutes remaining in the third quarter when BYU took a 28-13 lead thanks to a 59-yard touchdown catch from Chase Roberts, who finished the game with six receptions for 131 yards.

While Tyler Batty’s sack early in the fourth quarter helped force a punt, BYU only had one sack for the game. This came immediately after the Cougars had taken a two-score lead again.

Also, in the second half, the offence produced a few clutch plays.

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points
Original public domain image from Flickr

There were just under three minutes remaining in the third quarter when BYU took a 28-13 lead thanks to a 59-yard touchdown catch from Chase Roberts, who finished the game with six receptions for 131 yards.

Martin’s 29-yard touchdown run earlier in the third quarter gave the Cougars hope that they would try to run up the middle and, if that failed, set up a short field goal.

A sufficient lead from those plays allowed BYU to win its first league game since 2010.

What ought to be enhanced?
A very slow offensive start almost put BYU on the ropes. The Cougars’ total offence was only 38 yards before the game-winning touchdown drive a few minutes before halftime.

Slovis was just 1 of 7 passing for 2 yards before that drive, and that let Cincinnati retain the ball for more than 21 minutes in the first half and establish a 10-7 lead. Slovis would go on to throw for 223 yards and two touchdowns.

By the end of the second quarter, Slovis also came dangerously close to throwing an interception deep in BYU territory.

On the other hand, the Cougars produced 295 yards of offence after nearly 29 minutes of offensive inertia were overcome.
2. BYU’s defence allowed significant yardage and third-down conversions to be given up. Despite giving up 498 yards of offensive yardage against the Bearcats, the Cougars defence also struggled.

At the end of the game, BYU gave up an 11-minute advantage in time of possession to Cincinnati, who was facing Jones, another adept quarterback. 51 plays were run by BYU, compared to 84 by the Bearcats.

Jones and Corey Kiner combined for 242 yards of rushing for the Bearcats, who converted 9 out of 18 third-down attempts.

Though BYU defeated another Big 12 newcomer on this particular night, giving up those kinds of scores will probably lead to additional defeats in Big 12 play.

It was too big for BYU to store. Two drives by the Cougars would have effectively sealed the victory if they had made it to a three-score game.

But on its final two possessions, which ended in Cincinnati territory, BYU was unable to acquire any points.

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

It was especially expensive—the first one. The ball was moved down to the Cincinnati 9 by BYU using a deliberate drive that included a healthy dose of passes and runs.

Though the Cougars lost 18 yards due to a high snap on first-and-goal, true freshman Martin recovered the ball with a smart fall. A field goal attempt from kicker Will Ferrin, a distance of 44 yards, was unsuccessful three plays later.

Finally, with less than three minutes remaining, BYU forced a late punt back to Cincinnati after coming up with a fourth-down stop. The Cougars had lost six yards.

The Cougars had the chance to lessen the suspense at the end, but it ultimately cost them the victory.

Up next: what?
BYU needs to get well before going on break. On Friday night, an offensive lineman named Weylin Lapuaho and a linebacker named Ben Bywater were absent from the Cougars. They can recuperate over the next week, and maybe some of those injured men will return.

Positively, BYU is into the game, having already won a conference.

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

Is it possible for the Cougars to improve their offensive efficiency? Though the Cougars have yet to play a complete game on that side of the ball, BYU’s offence has scored more than thirty points three times this season.

The Cougars still need to demonstrate that they can find better offensive balance and close out games, but Miles Davis came on in the second half to assist Martin with the rushing attack.

In three of the upcoming four games, the Cougars will travel. Maybe the most difficult part of BYU’s schedule lies ahead of them after the bye.

There will be one game in October at LaVell Edwards Stadium, which is scheduled to take place against TCU on October 14, and another at home against Texas Tech on October 21. Next up for the Cougars are two home games remaining before travelling to Texas on October 28 and West Virginia on November 4.

After a rough start, BYU pulls off a historic first Big 12 victory over Cincinnati.

BYU's Victory Over Cincinnati: 3 Key Points

  • Up next in BYU sports analysis
    BYU defeated Cincinnati in its first Big 12 conference victory.
  • See the highlights, critical plays, and pictures above.
  • See BYU vs. Cincinnati with Jimmer Fredette and a few Utah Jazz guys.
    During the Cincinnati game, BYU, Utah, or Utah State fans were critical of the end zone’s royal blue paint work.
  • What is the NFL salary of its former student body?
  • Could the reorganisation of conferences affect CFB viewership in any way?


1.What is the new college football conference structure?

In college football, conference reorganisation refers to adjustments made to the placement of clubs and institutions within various sports conferences; these changes are frequently the result of strategic decisions, realignment, or growth.

2.Why do college football conferences rearrange themselves?

Conferences rearrange themselves for a variety of reasons, such as budgetary advantages, geographical concerns, maintaining a competitive edge, and the aim to raise the profile and level of competition of participating universities.

3.What is the impact of conference reorganisation on CFB viewership?Reorganising the conferences may have an effect on CFB viewership by generating new rivalries, storylines, and matches, which may pique fans’ attention. It might also have an impact on broadcasting agreements and the games’ accessibility on television or streaming services.

4.Will CFB games become more competitive as a result of conference reorganisation?

Rearranging conferences to put teams in groups based on complementary strengths is an attempt to improve the competitive balance. But the consequences on competitiveness can differ, and it could take some time to notice the whole picture.
5.Does the reconfiguration of conferences impact long-standing rivalries?

Yes, when clubs in the same conference separate or when realignment gives rise to new rivalries, it can have an impact on long-standing rivalries. While some legendary matchups might endure, others might not.
6.What are the fans’ thoughts on the CFB conference reorganisation?

Fans’ views on the reshuffling of the conference are very diverse. While some people welcome change and fresh chances, others bemoan the end of cherished rivalries and conference alignments.
7.What financial effects will the reorganisation of conferences have on schools?

Conference reorganisation may have an impact on revenue because schools in different conferences may be eligible for different broadcasting contracts, revenue-sharing plans, and exposure opportunities.
8.Could rearranging conferences result in modifications to bowl games or playoff formats?

It is true that conversations regarding bowl game selection criteria and CFB playoff arrangements may be impacted by league reorganisation. Teams’ postseason eligibility may change as a result of new conference alignments.
9.What impact does conference realignment have on CFB recruiting?

Conference realignment can affect hiring by altering the level of competition. Schools that provide more exposure or leagues with fierce competition may draw players.

10.What long-term effects will the CFB conference reorganisation have?

Long-term effects are hard to predict since they rely on how effectively conferences adjust to their new configurations. It might result in more viewers, more intense competition, and financial gains, or it might bring up issues that need to be resolved.

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