PROVO, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – Where to start? It was the worst performance of the season for BYU, a 44-11 blowout loss to TCU on Saturday.
The offense scored just one touchdown and had a season low 243 total yards, while the defense gave up a season high 584 yards and 44 points.
The Cougars are hoping this game was an anomaly.
“Not good enough,” said head coach Kalani Sitake Monday. “We didn’t score any points, and we didn’t run the ball effectively. But it’s not a huge departure of what we’re capable of doing on offense. We’ve seen our offense be explosive.”
Kedon Slovis completed 15 of 34 passes for 152 yards and an interception that was returned for a touchdown less than two minutes into the game.
“The pick-6 kind of took the momentum away,” said wide receiver Keanu Hill. “I felt like that was a real buzz kill for us.”
The BYU defense wasn’t much better, allowing TCU to convert 12 of 19 third downs. Josh Hoover, making his first career start, shredded the Cougars secondary for 439 yards, four touchdowns and wasn’t sacked once.
“If you’re going to throw the ball 60 times and not get a sack, there are going to be problems,” Sitake said. “I know they had some quick throws, but we should have at least disrupted the timing.”
“Obviously getting pressure on the quarterback is a big deal,” said defensive lineman John Nelson. “We’ve stepped into a conference that has a bunch of really good players, and TCU has a really good team.”
As badly as they played, BYU is eager to get back on the field this Saturday at home against Texas Tech.
“You almost want to play right away again,” said cornerback Eddie Heckard. “Just because you’ve thought about the other mistakes that you made, and you want to fix them and just start the game over.”
The Cougars are going to have to go the rest of the season without last year’s leading tackler Ben Bywater, who decided to have season-ending shoulder surgery. Bywater was injured in the Kansas game, and has missed the last two games. He could come back to BYU for one more year, or test the NFL waters.
“That’s the right decision,” Sitake said. “Get the surgery, get him healthy, and not to put him in harm’s way. I would do the same, and I have to think of him as my son. We still need his leadership, and we’ll still need him to be a big part of our team.”
“He’s a great player and a big part of our defense,” Nelson said. “Not having him sucks a lot, but that’s football, and we kind of have to deal with what we’ve got.”
BYU (4-3) and Texas Tech (3-4) will kick off at 5:00 p.m. Saturday at LaVell Edwards Stadium.