BYU Cougars 2021 College Football Preview
Created July 20, 2021
Record – 11-1
ATS – 9-3
The Cougars rode the arm of superstar QB Zach Wilson to an 11-1 record that included a blowout win over UCF in the Boca Raton Bowl (W 49-23). The also blew Boise St to SMITHEREENS on the blue turf (W 51-17). In fact, they came within a yard or so of an undefeated season thanks to a painfully close loss to Coastal Carolina. That was BYU’s first double-digit winning season since they went 10-3 in 2011.
BYU Cougars 2021 Outlook
QB Zach Wilson was phenomenal LY (73.5%, 33-3 TD to INT, 10 rush TD) and will obviously be impossible to replace. The good news is that they have a few guys with experience (Baylor Romney, Jaren Hall) as well as a highly-touted freshman in Jacob Conover. Fall camp should be interesting! The rushing attack will be DEVASTATING with the return of star RB Tyler Allgeier who gained well over 1,100 yards on the ground at 7.5 YPC (13 TD). #2 RB Lopini Katoa is also back (444, 5.5, 5 TD). #1 WR Dax Milne will be missed (1,188 ! LY; NFL) but everyone else of consequence is back in the mix. WR Gunner Romney averaged close to 20 YPC and TE Isaac Tex booked 12 TDs LY. The OL was great in 2020 and allowed just 12 sacks whilst paving the way for 5.4 YPC. They lose a couple important pieces up front this year but appear to have decent depth. Note that they lost their OC and OL coach to Baylor.
The Cougars were fantastic on defense LY and finished the year ranked #11 in the FBS in total defense (318 YPG) whilst allowing a mere 15.3 PPG (#4 FBS). They’ll need to do some reloading as seven of the top-10 tacklers are gone including #1 tackler LB Isaiah Kaufusi. Thankfully, the LB group is the deepest defensive unit and they bring back some talented guys including Payton Wilgar (#3 tackles, 5 TFL, 5 QBH). There’s a lot of turnover on the DL and in the secondary and they’ll particularly miss large NT Khyiris Tonga who’s off to the NFL. The back end of the defense needs to work in three new starters.
PK Jake Oldroyd was a weapon LY connecting on 13/13 FG (3-3 50+). The other half of the kicking game is also solid as P Ryan Rehkow returns off an excellent 2020 campaign (45.1, 41.9 net). The primary KR and PR both return for duty.
Overall – The Cougars start with three of their first four games vs the PAC 12 and three of those games are at home. The opener with Arizona is on a neutral site. They’re aren’t too many FREE SQUARES on the schedule and they finish with back-to-back road games (Georgia Southern, USC).
Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Boise St (October 9th)
Revenge is a dish BEST SERVED COLD. The Broncos will be anxious to avenge the SPANKING they took at home vs BYU in 2020.
Season Win Total
Over 6.5 -110
Under 6.5 -110
GUN TO THE HEAD would have to say ‘over’ but they’ll deal with a much tougher schedule than LY and must replace some serious talent. We’ll almost certainly take a pass on this market.
September 11th ushers in another version of the HOLY WAR as Utah visits Provo. The Utes hold a 62-34-4 series lead and have won an impressive NINE straight times. Seven of those wins were by 8 points or less.
It’ll be interesting to see how far the Cougars fall this season. They still boast a solid roster but lose an impossibly good QB and a number of key pieces on defense. The schedule is nasty and will be a much tougher road to handle that what they dealt with in 2020. We expect them to finish a game or so above .500.
Want more BYU football ?
Hashtags – #GoCougs, #BYUFOOTBALL
Accounts to follow