Saturday, August 27, 2011

Big Blue Bash Report

SALT LAKE CITY--The Salt Lake Chapter of the BYU Cougar Club hosted its sixth annual Big Blue Bash. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall did not take part in the event but wide receivers coach Ben Cahoon and senior running back Brian Kariya spoke to the Cougar faithful.

Of the topics discussed, preparation and attitude were among the most popular. Cahoon discussed the work the coaches put into improving the players' skills. Calling the film room the "war room," he said that each coach takes individual notes on their assigned positions while watching the film and they are able to email those notes directly to the media room where the receivers that have time to watch practice can see the coach's notes while watching their own film.

Cahoon did not specify what those notes consist of but it has become apparent that the wide receiver position at BYU has improved since last year when dropped passes were not uncommon.'s "Voice of the Cougars" Greg Wrubell mention during the Big Blue Bash that, recently, BYU went three straight practices without a dropped pass. With the talent BYU has at the wide receiver position - Ross Apo and Cody Hoffman both starting - and the proper preparation going into teaching these athletes, quarterback Jake Heaps could have a stellar season.

According to running back Brian Kariya, BYU will dress for week one in a relatively different attire than past years. Kariya said that BYU will wear black cleats and socks to "represent an attitude and a new emphasis of just going out and playing with a chip on our shoulders." One of the major emphasis this year is special teams according to the senior running back.

Kariya, who is a captain of the special teams kick return unit, said, "We wanted to relate it in a way to our team that the black also represents our special teams and that's going to be the new foundation of our offense and defense and entire team." BYU returns their kick returners, Cody Hoffman and JD Falslev and it appears Falslev will return punts again this year. Junior punter Riley Stephenson returns for the Cougars and Sophomore placekicker Justin Sorensen is back from his mission and will likely be BYU's kickoff specialist as well.

Excitement is growing in Cougar Nation and the players are fueling the fire. "We're meshing as an offense and moving forward to make this one of the best seasons we've ever had," said Kariya, adding, "With the schedule we have and with the teams that we're playing, we have in mind to go out and beat them all." With week one and Ole Miss just around the corner, Cougar fans can not help but hope he is right.

--Jake Edmonds, Cougaracity Contributor
Twitter: @cougazul

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