The latest addition of what’s known as the Holy War will kickoff at 7:15 p.m. Pacific Time on ESPN2. Both the Utah Utes and the BYU Cougars are 2-1 on the season, with Utah’s sole loss coming in a heartbreaker last week to the OSU Beaver and BYU’s loss coming at the hands of Virginia. Here are the major questions you’re likely asking yourself about the game. Because I’m psychic and know what you’re thinking.
Will this game live up to last year’s contest?
I sincerely hope so, but it’s doubtful. For those who can’t recollect what went down, check out this video. (Yeah, it’s 23 minutes long, but it is definitely worth watching.) It was without a doubt one of the wilder endings in NCAA history.
So is this Travis Wilson guy the real deal?
I think so. He did throw three interceptions against Oregon State, true, but his 142 rushing yards kept the Utes in the game until the very end. He is not the most graceful runner you will ever see — read: he looks like a galloping giraffe when he takes off out of the pocket — but it’s hard to argue with his 244 rushing yards and five touchdowns through three games. Wilson only scored 11 touchdowns in 2012 and has exceeded that number already in 2013.
But the BYU quarterback Taysom Hill is also a good runner, right?
He’s the best in the nation (for quarterbacks, that is)! I unfortunately didn’t get a chance to see the Cougars annihilate the Texas Longhorns a few weeks ago, but Hill’s numbers were out of this world. On only 17 carries he was able to gain a staggering 259 yards and three touchdowns. Yes, he was also 9-for-26 passing, which is terrible, but those running stats are crazy. I expect both quarterbacks to put up rushing totals that far exceed what their running backs will produce.
So will there be, like, any defense at all?
Well, BYU is 35th in the nation in total defense and 41st in the nation in scoring defense. Utah is 69th in the nation in total defense and 79th in the nation in scoring defense. With Utah eighth in the nation in points scored per game (49.3) and BYU at second in the nation in rushing yards per game (368.5), I expect to see a lot of fireworks on display a LaVell Edwards Stadium.
Okay, the Holy War is a pretty good name for a rivalry. Does it have a rich history?
Does it ever! Check out the Wikipedia page about its history. Outside of a 54-10 blowout win by Utah in 2011, the game has been incredibly competitive this millennium. The game will go on a two-year hiatus after next season’s meeting, so enjoy it while you can!