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BYU football report card: Cougars earn high marks in win over Texas State

BYU’s first game against a team with a losing record this season ended about as you’d expect — with a 52-14 Cougars victory over Texas State on Saturday night.

BYU’s first game against a team with a losing record this season ended about as you’d expect — with a 52-14 Cougars victory over Texas State on Saturday night.

For the 6,000 fans in attendance at LaVell Edwards Stadium, there were largely satisfying efforts across the board as BYU improved to 6-0 on the season.

Offense

It all starts with junior quarterback Zach Wilson on this offense, and he had another solid game, completing 19 of 25 passes (76%) for 287 yards and four touchdowns in just over two quarters of play. It’s the first time in Wilson’s career he’s had back-to-back games throwing four touchdown passes — the most impressive was his 45-yarder to Dax Milne just before halftime — and he has a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 16:1 this season.

The offensive efficiency could be seen from the first unit, which gave way to the depth players late in the third. On BYU’s first seven drives, the Cougars scored six touchdowns and five of those drives covered 70-plus yards — including possessions of 86, 90, 71, 94 and 75 yards. BYU was also a perfect 4-for-4 in the red zone, scoring three touchdowns and adding a field goal.

The Cougars were balanced offensively, finishing with 579 yards of total offense — 352 in the passing game and 227 on the ground.

Grid View

  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) celebrates his touchdown with a bow against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) celebrates his touchdown with a bow against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU fans watch the game in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU fans watch the game in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Payton Wilgar (49) tries to make a tackle in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Payton Wilgar (49) tries to make a tackle in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars defensive back Jared Kapisi (43) celebrates his interception against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars defensive back Jared Kapisi (43) celebrates his interception against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Keanu Hill (86) celebrates his touchdown with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Keanu Hill (86) celebrates his touchdown with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • The Brigham Young Cougars defense gang tackles Texas State Bobcats running back Brock Sturges (5) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. The Brigham Young Cougars defense gang tackles Texas State Bobcats running back Brock Sturges (5) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU fans enter LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU fans enter LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars head coach Kalani Sitake holds his players back after an interception for a touchdown in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars head coach Kalani Sitake holds his players back after an interception for a touchdown in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU cutout fans displays are displayed in LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU cutout fans displays are displayed in LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brett Braegger and his children Hudson, Paityn, Boston and Kamden wait to enter LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brett Braegger and his children Hudson, Paityn, Boston and Kamden wait to enter LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars place kicker Jake Oldroyd (39) warms up in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars place kicker Jake Oldroyd (39) warms up in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats with Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Kody Epps (0) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats with Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Kody Epps (0) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) throws against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) throws against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) runs against Texas State Bobcats safety Auston Deason (16) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) runs against Texas State Bobcats safety Auston Deason (16) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) celebrates his touchdown against Texas State with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Masen Wake (13) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) celebrates his touchdown against Texas State with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Masen Wake (13) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) grabs a touchdown over Texas State Bobcats cornerback Jarron Morris (0) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) grabs a touchdown over Texas State Bobcats cornerback Jarron Morris (0) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Neil Pau’u (2) tries to catch the ball with defense by Texas State Bobcats safety Zion Childress (11) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Neil Pau’u (2) tries to catch the ball with defense by Texas State Bobcats safety Zion Childress (11) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars tight end Hank Tuipulotu (35) runs by Texas State Bobcats safety Kevin Anderson (5) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars tight end Hank Tuipulotu (35) runs by Texas State Bobcats safety Kevin Anderson (5) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Keanu Hill (86) celebrates his touchdown with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Keanu Hill (86) celebrates his touchdown with Brigham Young Cougars tight end Isaac Rex (83) against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) scores against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) scores against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Lopini Katoa (4) celebrates his touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU takes the field in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU takes the field in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU fans cheer in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU fans cheer in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars tight end Masen Wake (13) runs after a catch in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars tight end Masen Wake (13) runs after a catch in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) makes a catch against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) makes a catch against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs after catching the ball against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs after catching the ball against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) lobs the ball in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) lobs the ball in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs against Texas State Bobcats linebacker Brayden Stringer (33) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) runs against Texas State Bobcats linebacker Brayden Stringer (33) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) scores a touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars running back Tyler Allgeier (25) scores a touchdown against the Texas State Bobcats in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • BYU fans watch the game in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. BYU fans watch the game in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jacob Conover (17), Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) and Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) warm up in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jacob Conover (17), Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson (1) and Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) warm up in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Cougarettes perform in Provo at BYU’s game against Texas State on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Cougarettes perform in Provo at BYU’s game against Texas State on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) scrambles in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) scrambles in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) passes in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) passes in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) scrambles in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Baylor Romney (16) scrambles in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Isaiah Kaufusi (53) intercepts the ball and runs for a touchdown in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars linebacker Isaiah Kaufusi (53) intercepts the ball and runs for a touchdown in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars head coach Kalani Sitake calls a play in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars head coach Kalani Sitake calls a play in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) and Texas State Bobcats safety Zion Childress (11) compete for a pass in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars wide receiver Dax Milne (5) and Texas State Bobcats safety Zion Childress (11) compete for a pass in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Fisher Jackson (59) hurries Texas State Bobcats quarterback Brady McBride (2) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars defensive lineman Fisher Jackson (59) hurries Texas State Bobcats quarterback Brady McBride (2) in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Cosmo does a stunt in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Cosmo does a stunt in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Fans watch as BYU plays Texas State in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. In addition to the first BYU home game with fans in attendance, the stands were also filled with cardboard cutouts. Fans watch as BYU plays Texas State in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. In addition to the first BYU home game with fans in attendance, the stands were also filled with cardboard cutouts. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
  • Brigham Young Cougars and Texas State Bobcats play in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Brigham Young Cougars and Texas State Bobcats play in Provo on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

While two usual top performers were at it again — receiver Milne had four catches for 89 yards and a touchdown, while running back Tyler Allgeier had 76 rushing yards and a score — redshirt freshman tight end Isaac Rex also had an impressive night with a career-high five receptions for 66 yards and two touchdowns, his first multi-score game of his career.

BYU got a lot of players involved — 11 Cougars had a rush attempt and 14 came up with a reception, including Wilson, who had a 16-yard catch on a pass from Neil Pau’u.

Two turnovers — one where Wilson couldn’t corral a high snap and another from the backups in the third quarter — keep this from a perfect grade.

Grade: A-

Defense

Texas State caught the BYU defense a bit off-guard on the opening possession of the game, as the Bobcats used some unique formations to help them drive for a touchdown and an early 7-0 lead. After that, though, the Cougar defense clamped down on the Texas State offense.

During the second quarter, BYU gave up just 13 yards of total offense to the Bobcats as the Cougars outscored the visitors 21-0 in the quarter. Then in the third, BYU allowed Texas State just 26 yards. By that point, it was a 49-7 game.

When BYU’s offense made a rare error — in the second quarter, Wilson failed to secure a high snap that led to a Texas State fumble recovery at the Cougars’ 10-yard line — the defense made the stop. After two plays, the Bobcats had reached the BYU 6, but the Cougars forced a pair of incompletions from Brady McBride on third and fourth downs to thwart the scoring threat.

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Senior linebacker Isaiah Kaufusi, who had five tackles, came up with the play of the night for the Cougars defense in the third quarter, intercepting McBride at the Texas State 32 and weaving his way for a pick-six — reminiscent of Fred Warner’s effort against Boise State a few years back. It’s the first interception return for a touchdown of Kaufusi’s career.

Fellow linebacker Max Tooley added a team-high seven tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss, and a quarterback hurry, while redshirt senior Jared Kapisi had his first career interception late in the contest as BYU forced three three-and-outs and held Texas State to 267 yards of total offense.

Grade: A-

Special teams

Once again, the BYU special teams had a largely quiet night, as they weren’t needed often. In limited use, though, they were again sharp.

Late in the game, freshman punter Ryan Rehkow successfully converted a fake punt for a 49-yard gain, the longest run of the season for the Cougars. That play led to Jake Oldroyd’s only field goal of the night, a 28-yarder with just under five minutes to play.

Rehkow had two punts for a 49.5-yard average and hit a 60-yarder, with both of his punts being downed inside the 20. Oldroyd also stayed perfect on the season with his field goal — he’s 6-for-6 on field-goal attempts and 31 of 31 on point-after attempts.

Hobbs Nyberg also had a nice 11-yard punt return — his first of the season — late in the first quarter and the Cougars bottled up rare return opportunities for the Bobcats.

Grade: A-

Overall

BYU did what it was supposed to do: beat an overmatched opponent by a lopsided margin. For the most part, the Cougars played clean ball — BYU was penalized just three times for 33 yards — though they had a pair of turnovers.

The Cougars’ dominance was evident again, however, as BYU scored 49 straight points after that initial Bobcats touchdown. The Cougars were balanced in all three phases, too, leading to an easy win.

Grade: A-

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