Dropped passes continue to plague BYU

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PROVO -- A common theme to this year's BYU football team is the number of dropped passes from wide receivers, tight ends and running backs.

As I stood on the sidelines at Friday's game against Utah State I was blown away at the number of passes dropped that stalled and ended drives.

I went through the game tape and this is what my research showed.

There is some room for interpretation as to what is truly a dropped ball, but since I think the Cougar receiving corps has lost the benefit of the doubt I liberally counted 13 dropped passes that would have accounted for roughly 200 yards and 3 touchdowns.

BYU junior wide receiver McKay Jacobson doesn't think the Cougar receivers are having a hard time adjusting to freshman quarterback Jake Heaps' throwing style, so what accounts for all the dropped passes?

Good question, apparently. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall doesn't have an answer; Jacobson thinks it's just one of those things that's "going to happen" every once in a while, and Heaps doesn't care "why."

"It doesn't matter." said Heaps. "Overall, as an offense, [we've] got to go out there and execute. I've got to... put [the ball] in spots where my receivers can go catch it. If we don't wake up and bounce back from this it will be a rough Saturday next week."

Jacobsen, who has 16 catches for 168 yards through five games, added, "As receivers, we've got to be able to make plays and be a little bit more dependable at times."

Running back JJ DiLuigi leads the team with 23 catches for 262 yards. Freshman Cody Hoffman leads the receivers with 19 catches and 188 yards and has the lone touchdown by a receiver.

In fact as a team, the Cougars have scored only eight touchdowns; five on the ground and just three through the air- two of which were caught by running backs.

Last year the Cougars scored 60 offensive touchdowns, 34 through the air.

E-mail: dnoriega@ksl.com

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