PROVO, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – After getting outscored in three straight losses 117-24, including a 45-13 beat down by Iowa State on Saturday, BYU head football coach Kalani Sitake is trying to stay positive.
“Obviously, last week it didn’t go the way we wanted it to,” Sitake said Monday. “But after watching the film and seeing where we’re at, I have a lot of excitement for what we can get done this week with a quality opponent in Oklahoma.”
The Cougars need to either beat #14 Oklahoma at home this Saturday or #24 Oklahoma State the following week on the road to get that elusive sixth win and get bowl eligible. While Cougar fans may be frustrated with the results, this may just be growing pains in their first year in the Big 12.
“I mean, we’re still looking at the most difficult schedule in BYU history, and we’re sitting at 5-5 with a chance to win a game and go to a bowl game,” Sitake said. “You have to understand we’re going against a different beast here. These are teams that have been at this Power-5 level way longer than we have. I’m not making excuses, I’m just telling you these are really good players.”
Quarterback Jake Retlzaff really struggled in his second career start, throwing for just 104 yards against the Cyclones. Sitake is hopeful Kedon Slovis will be able to return against the Sooners.
“[Slovis] is still banged up, not 100% yet,” Sitake said. “Last week. we felt like Jake gave us the best chance to win. I’m not in Kedon’s body but I can tell you that if he’s ready to go and if he’s full strength, then he’s our guy usually.”
One thing Sitake is proud of his how his team never quits, no matter how many points they’re down.
“I love the fight in the players,” Sitake said. “They work hard and they don’t quit. I believe the culture is still thriving because guys aren’t pointing figures, guys are still unified. With a lot of outside noise, guys are still connected.”
BYU will try to avoid a fourth consecutive loss against Oklahoma Saturday at 10:00 a.m. at LaVell Edwards Stadium.