It's that time of year again. Time when reporters start asking underclassmen such as BYU receiver Cody Hoffman and BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy whether they will return for their senior seasons or enter their names in the NFL draft.
I asked Hoffman just that on Monday. I'm sure Van Noy will get asked after the Cougars practice tonight, the last chance reporters will have to talk to BYU players until next Monday in San Diego (defensive players weren't available for interviews on Tuesday night, and on Monday night Van Noy had to leave practice early to take a final exam).
Anyway, Hoffman said Monday that he "hasn't decided yet" whether he will turn pro.
"We will just have to see after the bowl game how everything turns out," he said.
Is he leaning one way or the other?
"No," he said. "It is just 50-50 right now. So I guess we will see."
Tuesday, BYU receivers coach Ben Cahoon, a 13-year veteran of the Canadian Football League and that league's all-time receptions leader, said Hoffman is talented enough to play in the NFL. However, Cahoon said he believes another year in Provo will improve Hoffman's stock with NFL teams.
For his part, Hoffman said he hasn't sought the free analysis of his draft possibilities that the NFL provides to underclassmen.
"I haven't focused too much on that," he said. "I have just been concentrating on this season, and doing what I need to do to get better."
Hoffman said a few agents have sent him emails asking if he needs representation, but he hasn't "really messed around too much with that, just to be safe with all the rules and everything."
He said he hasn't even talked to BYU coaches yet about his future. He figures he has one more year of school left to graduate, and plans on graduating next December with a degree in geography.
If he stays, Hoffman has a very good chance to become the most prolific receiver in BYU history. The most prolific in terms of receiving yards, Austin Collie, left after his junior year.
Hoffman is currently sixth in career receiving yards with 2,604, behind only Collie (3,255), Eric Drage (3,065), Dennis Pitta (2,901), Margin Hooks (2,841) and Matt Bellini (2,635).
Hoffman is third in touchdown receptions with 28, trailing only Collie (30) and Drage (29).
He is fourth in total receptions with 193, trailing Pitta (221), Collie (215) and Bellini (204).
As far as season total goes, Hoffman has 90 catches and can potentially move into the top two with a big game against the Aztecs. Collie (106), Jay Miller (100) and Reno Mahe (91) rank 1-3 and Hoffman is fouth.
Couple of links to pass along as the Tribune gears up its bowl game coverage with the game just eight days away: Here's my notebook with coach Bronco Mendenhall's thoughts on future bowl appearances, and here's a column on bowl game viewership as it pertains to the bowl games BYU and Utah State are playing in this year.