BYU Crystal Ball: Cougars will get double-digit wins

2014-08-21T06:05:00Z 2014-08-21T10:30:06Z BYU Crystal Ball: Cougars will get double-digit winsJared Lloyd Daily Herald Daily Herald
August 21, 2014 6:05 am  • 
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  • Here is Jared Lloyd's look at his BYU football crystal ball to see what will happen to the Cougars in 2014.

    Scroll through the slideshow to see his breakdown of each game.

  • Aug. 29

    TV: ESPN

    At Rentschler Field

    Racing like blue blazes: Year 2 of the BYU offense will get off to a fast start and never look back, simply overwhelming a Husky squad that still has a long ways to go.

    Hitting the red light: It could be called “Virginia II” since once again the Cougars come out flat, make too many mistakes and lose to a team it feels like it should beat.

    Jared’s says: BYU learned an important lesson from 2013’s season opener and it proves it by taking care of business. UConn will stay within striking distance for at least a half, but this time the Cougars pull away for the win.

    Prediction: BYU 27, UConn 13

  • Sept. 6

    TV: Fox Sports 1

    At Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: In 2013, Taysom Hill went for 259 yards on the ground, Jamaal Williams went for 182. Both are back -- and the line is supposed to be better. Any questions?

    Hitting the red light: This is Texas … and Charlie Strong will get the most out of the phenomenal Longhorn athletes. Texas puts the Cougars back in their place.

    Jared’s says: Neither extreme will actually occur as both teams will have their moments. In another close game in Austin, once again it’s the home team who emerges with the win.

    Prediction: Texas 29, BYU 23

  • Sept. 11

    TV: ESPN

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: BYU’s secondary is a lot better this year and Houston QB John O’Korn will be kept under wraps. The home Cougars won’t let the visiting Cougars get going.

    Hitting the red light: The red Cougars shredded the blue Cougar defense in 2013 and just about all of the main pieces are back and better than ever. BYU won’t win another shootout.

    Jared’s says: The offensive firepower that could be on display at LaVell Edwards Stadium in this one could remind a lot of fans of the old WAC shootouts. There will be lots of plays and quite a few points, but the blue Cougars will force more mistakes.

    Prediction: BYU 48, Houston 39

  • Sept. 20

    TV: TBA

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: This was the team who stole a win from the Cougars and now BYU is going to make the Cavaliers pay with interest this season.

    Hitting the red light: If a loss in Charlottesville was embarrassing, just imagine what a slap in the face it will be for the Cougars to lose to Virginia two years in a row -- this time at home.

    Jared’s says: The Cavaliers need a big season for head coach Mike London to keep his job but a non-conference trip to Provo isn’t going to help. Virginia has some nice pieces and will make some plays but BYU wins comfortably in the end.

    Prediction: BYU 32, Virginia 15

  • Oct. 3

    TV: ESPN

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: Utah State lost a lot of playmakers and a few games at the beginning of the season won’t be enough for the Aggies to be prepared for the Cougar offensive machine.

    Hitting the red light: Chuckie Keeton will be hungry to get another shot at BYU and this time the talented USU quarterback wills his team to the upset win over the in-state foe.

    Jared’s says: Keeton might be the best football player in the entire state and Aggie linebacker Kyler Fackrell is excellent as well, but the Cougars have more experience across the board and won’t be overlooking Utah State. BYU takes care of business once again vs. the Aggies.

    Prediction: BYU 36, Utah State 22

  • Oct. 9

    TV: ESPN

    At Bright House Networks Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: This Knight team will take a big step backward and the Cougars will be primed to take advantage of the letdown. BYU starts fast and Central Florida won’t be able to answer.

    Hitting the red light: The Knights bring most of their speed and talent from last year’s Top 10 finish back, especially on defense. The Cougars will be lucky to get even close to the end zone.

    Jared says: The departure of Blake Bortles to the NFL might mean UCF won’t win a national title but this is still a very good, very fast team. BYU will battle in Orlando but the Knight pass defense will limit the Cougar offense and Central Florida will win the turnover battle on its way to victory.

    Prediction: Central Florida 25, BYU 17

  • Oct. 18

    TV: TBA

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: This isn’t the last game, this isn’t a team with its future completely determined and this isn’t a BYU that’s going to head on the road with nothing to gain.

    Hitting the red light: Nevada could’ve and maybe should’ve beaten the Cougars in Reno and thus won’t be intimidated as they stun BYU at home.

    Jared says: Wolfpack QB Cody Fajardo is a tough athlete who will make things happen but the BYU defense by this time will be battle-tested and able to limit his options. The Nevada defense just has too many holes.

    Prediction: BYU 41, Nevada 19

  • Oct. 24

    TV: ESPN/2

    At Bronco Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: The Boise State mystique evaporated when BYU crushed the Broncos in Provo. The Cougars will once again be the better team and prove it.

    Hitting the red light: Last year was a down year for BSU but this season the Cougars are in for a rude welcome on the blue turf, where they’ve never won.

    Jared says: This will be a more competitive game than the 2013 contest was as the Broncos have a lot of talent returning. BYU will need to play without making very many mistakes, but this is the type of game where all the Cougar experience will make a big difference.

    Prediction: BYU 33, Boise State 30

  • Nov. 1

    TV: CBS Sports Network

    At Johnny “Red” Floyd Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: It’s a directional school in a state dominated by SEC football. BYU won’t have any problems here.

    Hitting the red light: The Cougars will come in expecting an easy win and run into a buzz saw that will shut down the BYU attack.

    Jared says: This is a sneaky-dangerous game on the Cougar schedule as it is a long trip to Murfreesboro against a team who hopes to be competing for the Conference USA title. The Blue Raider defense will surprise BYU for awhile, but the Cougars will get some big plays to win a close one.

    Prediction: BYU 26, Middle Tennessee 20

  • Nov. 15

    TV: TBA

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: UNLV has had two winning seasons in 20 years. This isn’t the Rebel team that challenged BYU at times in the Mountain West and will go down without much of a fight.

    Hitting the red light: The Rebels have a new attitude and direction with some surprising momentum. Look for a repeat of 2004.

    Jared says: UNLV marks the second sneaky-dangerous game for the Cougars in a row as no one is quite sure what the Rebels will be like in 2014. This is a squad with some weapons but it struggled when opponents ran the ball well. Jamaal Williams and Taysom Hill should have fun.

    Prediction: BYU 45, UNLV 26

  • Nov. 22

    TV: BYUtv

    At LaVell Edwards Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: Come on, really? It’s Savannah State … any questions?

    Hitting the red light: This is when BYU gets the win but ends up losing because it loses good players to injuries.

    Jared says: The good news for the Tigers is they are returning 14 starters. The bad news is Savannah State only one a single game last year and thus has an uphill battle to get competitive. It won’t happen in Provo.

    Prediction: BYU 52, Savannah State 10.

  • Nov. 29

    TV: TBA

    At California Memorial Stadium

    Racing like blue blazes: BYU will be rocketing into the end of the year riding high while Cal will be stumbling to the finish. That’s a recipe for another blowout.

    Hitting the red light: The Bears will be better than they were in 2013 and have enough talent to stay close, then stun the visiting Cougars late.

    Jared says: The biggest concern for Cal is the defense, so if BYU is banged up and struggles offensively, this one might be close. It’s more likely that the Cougars will be gunning for nine or 10 wins and the Bears won’t be able to keep it from happening

    Prediction: BYU 38, Cal 17

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