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BYU football: Turnovers have killed Cougars against talented TCU

Published October 28, 2011 3:58 pm

BYU football notes • In Horned Frogs' three-season domination, Cougars have turned the ball over eight times to just once for TCU.
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Provo • There is one statistical category in which BYU has not fallen short of TCU the past three years, but it is not a positive one.


The Cougars have coughed up the ball eight times while being outscored 101-17 in three games, while the Horned Frogs have given the ball away just once.


"Not sure, other than the emotion, maybe, or the teams that we are playing are more skilled at taking the ball away," BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said. "It could be both. It could be a combination of both. But what we do know is it doesn't lead to victory."

Mendenhall is 2-4 against TCU, and his teams have had 13 turnovers in those six games; TCU has had four.

In 2006, when BYU had its most convincing win over the Frogs, 31-17, the Cougars did not have a turnover.

"We do work on [eliminating turnovers], and so if there is a historical perspective that says otherwise, I don't really intend to go back and now say because of this, this is what happened," Mendenhall said. "My intent is to just keep improving the team, with the focus on today, then tomorrow, then the next day. I am more comfortable that way."

More mobility

Mobile, dual-threat quarterbacks are the rage in college football these days, and BYU's Riley Nelson fits that description as well as any quarterback the Cougars have had since Brandon Doman in 2001, according to the man who snaps the ball to Nelson, center Terence Brown.

"You just have to continually stay on your man because you never know what's going on behind you. The time you stop blocking, or think the ball is gone, or whatever, that is the time that it is not, and you are wrong, because you didn't finish blocking," Brown said. "Just knowing that he can make plays with his legs [causes a different blocking mentality]," Brown said.

Injury update

BYU head athletic trainer Kevin Morris said linebacker Austin Heder is doubtful against TCU because of nasty shoulder stinger he suffered against Idaho State. Defensive tackles Hebron Fangupo (ankle) and Romney Fuga (knee) did not play against the Bengals, but are healthy and good to go against TCU, Morris said.

Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah, a reserve linebacker and special-teams ace, is recovering from a knee strain suffered against Oregon State and will be a game-time decision, but has practiced this week.


The Cougars have their first bye of the season after Friday's game against TCU. … The Cougars have allowed passing touchdowns in just three of their eight games this season. … The Cougars are 24-20-1 all-time in neutral-site games.


Twitter: @drewjay —


P At Arlington, Texas, Friday, 6 p.m.


BYU turnovers vs. TCU past three seasons

Date Result BYU TCU

Oct. 16, 2010 TCU 31, BYU 3 2 0

Oct. 24, 2009 TCU 38, BYU 7 2 0

Oct. 16, 2008 TCU 32, BYU 7 4 1






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