Fight Hunger Bowl: Can BYU's offense deliver against a good defense?
Greetings from San Francisco, everyone.
The BYU Cougars and Washington Huskies, both 8-4, kick off in about five hours here in the City by the Bay. That's 7:30 p.m. MST (6:30 p.m. here in San Fran) and the game will be televised by ESPN.
Temperatures are in the mid-50s today, although they will drop shortly after kickoff and it will be rather chilly at AT&T Park when the game wraps up.
It looks like the Utahns visiting Northern California brought some of the inversion with them, because there's a hazy layer of something in the sky here that I noticed on the flight in this morning.<
On to the game. Here's my advance, in which BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall and quarterback Taysom Hill talk about what it will take for the Cougars to get their fifth-straight bowl win.
Hill said the offensive line has to control the line of scrimmage.
Mendenhall said the defense has to hold UW's sensational running back Bishop Sankey in check, contain quarterback Keith Price and avoid giving up the big play to tight end Austin Sefarian-Jenkins.
All three tasks will be difficult.
The Cougars' offense has to show up from the start (unlike at Nevada), score points in every quarter, and move the ball like it did against Houston, Boise State and Texas and not like it did against Wisconsin, Utah and Notre Dame.
First down is going to be huge. BYU has to get positive yardage out of that down to avoid third-and-long. Conversely, the Cougars can't give up big chunks of rushing yardage to Sankey on first down, which will open the Huskies' playbook.
My colleague who will be covering the game with me, Kurt Kragthorpe, is calling it 31-24 in Washington's favor and says the big coaching changes the Huskies have dealt with the last three weeks or so won't be a factor.
OK, time to clean out the ol' notebook, give you some comments from the past week that weren't published in full in our coverage.