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Jay Drew
Jay covers BYU athletics for The Salt Lake Tribune. You can follow him on Twitter @drewjay.

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BYU's Nelson doesn't envy new OSU QB Vaz, and Cougars add games to 2017, 2018 schedules

BYU quarterback Riley Nelson says he is glad he is not in the same position that Oregon State junior quarterback Cody Vaz is in. With starting OSU quarterback Sean Mannion out with a knee injury, Vaz will make his first college start on Saturday when the Cougars play host to the Beavers at LaVell Edwards Stadium (1:30 p.m. MDT, ABC).

"The last time this guy took snaps, it was 2010, and it was kind of a run-out-the-clock situation," Nelson said. "Our defense is very good. They have caused fits for every quarterback we have played. So for it to be your first start -- I don't envy that guy."

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Here's more about the Beavers and their 4-0 start, a start that has earned them a No. 10 ranking in the Associated Press Top 25.

"I am really excited for it, because they are ranked No 10, but you look at our two losses, we could very well be up there with them," Nelson said. "As I look at their playmakers, and the guys that they have, it is the same guys we played last year up at their house [in a 38-28 BYU win]. So they have to come down and play us in our house.

And, granted, they are improved. But we are improved also, and so I am excited about it. There is not extra intimidation, or no thoughts that way. If nothing else, we feel confident in our opportunity to get a marquee win. Having lost two close games in two tough venues, this is our chance to kind of earn some respect back by having a chance to beat a team like this."

Nelson said Tuesday that he pretty much knows how his sore back is going to feel each day when he first wakes up in the morning.

"The litmus test is waking up the next morning. I woke up this morning and felt really good. So not any soreness, or anything else. Like I said yesterday, the biggest obstacle is getting my fitness back and getting used to playing and getting my heart rate back."

BYU and Wisconsin announced Thursday afternoon that they will play in 2017 in Provo and in 2018 in Madison, Wis. Of course, they are already scheduled to play Nov. 9, 2013 at Camp Randall Stadium, so that is now a "money" game for the Cougars. Here's my story on the agreement.

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