Jeff Potrykus reviews the Badgers’ 24-21 loss to unranked BYU Saturday at Camp Randall Stadium.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
We’ll hand out game balls to two BYU players, one on offense and one on defense. Both players made play after play.
Tailback Squally Canada entered the day with 147 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 40 carries. His per-carry average was 3.7 yards. Not very impressive.
Yet Canada recorded 118 yards and two touchdowns on just 11 carries Saturday.
Canada ripped off a 44-yard run to the UW 28 to set up the Cougars’ first touchdown after the Badgers took a 7-0 lead.
Then after UW forged a 21-21 tie in the final quarter, Canada ripped off a 46-yard run to the UW 29 on the first play of the Cougars’ possession.
That led to Skyler Southam’s 45-yard winning field goal.
Weakside linebacker Sione Takitaki entered the game fifth on the team in tackles with nine. He recorded a game-high 13 Saturday, including two for loss, as he ranged from sideline to sideline.
Takitaki played a big role in helping to keep UW’s rushing attack from taking control of the game.
GAME REVIEW: Sixth-ranked Badgers suffer worst loss of Chryst era
BOX SCORE: BYU 24, UW 21
GAME BLOG: UW-BYU review
OFFENSIVE PLAY OF THE GAME
BYU faced second and 4 from the UW 31 early in the second quarter when offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes got the best of the Badgers’ defenders to break a 7-7 tie.
Quarterback Tanner Mangum fired a lateral to tailback Lopini Katoa, who was lined up wide right.
Katoa hit tight end Moroni Lajlu-Pututau, who blew past safety D’Cota Dixon and into the open field, for an easy score with 12 minutes 17 seconds left in the half.
“I had us in the wrong call,” Dixon said. “I was anticipating my safety (Scott Nelson) on my right, but he had a guy on his right. It was just a communication error, and it’s on me.
“They did a good job moving some guys around. We had a few guys (rotating) in here and there, but I take full responsibility. That was definitely my fault.”
DEFENSIVE PLAY OF THE GAME
Trailing, 24-21, UW faced third and 8 from the BYU 24.
Quarterback Alex Hornibrook dropped back and looked for wide receiver A.J. Taylor down the left seam inside the BYU 10.
The throw was a bit low and away from free safety Austin Lee.
Taylor went down to try to make the catch but it appeared Lee hit him from behind just as the ball arrived and the pass was incomplete.
That led to the 42-yard field-goal attempt by Rafael Gaglianone, who pulled the ball to the left with 36 seconds left.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAY OF THE GAME
Give BYU freshman kicker Skyler Southam a thumbs-up for his clutch performance Saturday.
Southam entered the day having made his only college attempt, a 36-yarder the previous week in a loss to California.
He missed his first try against UW, a 52-yarder that sailed wide right. Southam made the kick that gave BYU the victory, however, a 45-yarder with 9:58 left in the game.
The snap was low but holder Gavin Fowler got the ball down in enough time so that Southam’s rhythm wasn’t disrupted. The ball fluttered like a knuckler but it split the uprights.
“Skyler coming back and making the field goal after he missed one from roughly around the same area,” BYU coach Kalani Sitake said. “It was kind of a bad snap. Gavin Fowler has been solid for us for so many years and is really a team guy. He really won the game by taking an errant snap and letting Skyler kick it fully. We made the kick.”
INSIDE THE HUDDLE
Redshirt junior Jon Dietzen, who did not play in the second half of the opener and was held out against New Mexico, returned to the starting lineup at left tackle Saturday. The staff has been limiting the workload of Dietzen, who had surgery on both hips in the off-season. Dietzen and Cole Van Lanen split time throughout the game.
During one series in the third quarter, UW’s offensive line featured Logan Bruss at right tackle, Micah Kapoi at right guard and Jason Erdmann at center. UW went back to its normal unit on the next series.
Remember when UW moved Mason Stokke to fullback from inside linebacker to back up starter Alec Ingold. Well, in case you haven’t noticed, reserve fullbacks Coy Wanner and Jake Collinsworth have been sidelined because of unspecified injuries.
“Anytime you lose, it hurts. All the preparation you put in, the guys you’ve been practicing with all week. It hurts to see the guys’ reaction on their faces on the sideline, having to accept the loss. It’s not necessarily the loss itself. It’s the opportunity we let go. But it’s fuel. I’ll make sure of that.” – D’Cota Dixon, UW safety
BY THE NUMBERS
4 Combined tackles for UW’s outside linebackers, including three by Zack Baun
6.8 BYU’s rushing average – 191 yards on 28 carries. The Cougars came in averaging 3.6 yards per carry and 137 rushing yards per game
30.8% UW’s third-down conversion rate (4 of 13), down from the 59% mark in the first two games
2009 The year in which BYU last beat a top-10 team, a 14-13 decision over Oklahoma
UW (2-1) at Iowa (2-0), 7:30 p.m. Saturday. The Hawkeyes handled Northern Illinois in the opener, 33-7, and then won a defensive slugfest, 13-3, over rival Iowa State in Week 2. Iowa, which hosted Northern Iowa on Saturday night, entered the weekend leading the Big Ten in scoring defense (5.0 ppg) and total defense (199.5 ypg) and third in rushing defense (60.0 ypg).