When BYU battles Florida State Saturday, BYU will be out to amend a subpar history with the Seminoles. In two previous meetings, the 'Noles have outscored BYU 73-31.
BYU had particular difficulty establishing a run game in both the 1991 and 2000 meetings, with 33 rushing yards in the first encounter, and -2 yards in the most recent get-together.
The Cougar defense has started the season stingily, allowing only a single touchdown and 16 total points through the first two games of the season.
The last time BYU opened the season with fewer points allowed through two games: 1977, when BYU opened with a 39-0 win over Kansas State, followed by a 65-6 shellacking of Utah State.
For a program with 13 double-digit win seasons in the last 30 years, BYU is not accustomed to regularly ripping off win streaks to start the season.
If BYU beats Florida State, the Cougars will open 3-0 for a second consecutive year. The last time BYU had back-to-back 3-0 starts? 1951 and 1952.
One of the best third-down teams in the country last season is at it again: BYU has converted on 54% of its third downs, moving the chains on 14 of 26 attempts.
Of note, BYU has faced 3rd-and-5 or shorter on half of its 26 attempts; the opposition has seen 3rd-and-5 or shorter on only 7 of 23 attempts. In fact, BYU's opponents have faced 3rd-and-10 or longer on almost half of all third downs (ten of their 23 third down attempts have been 3rd-and-10-plus).
BYU on 3rd-and-5 or shorter: 9/13
Opp on 3rd-and-5 or shorter: 2/7
BYU on 3rd-and-10 or longer: 1/5**
Opp on 3rd-and-10 or longer: 3/10
**Note: Two of BYU's 3rd-and-long downs (3rd-and-19 v. OU and 3rd-and-16 v. Tulane) were clock-killing kneel-downs at the end of the game.
So, accounting for 3rd downs in which BYU was actually attempting to gain yardage, BYU is 14/24 for 58%, and has faced only three third downs of 10 yards or longer through two games.
With 383 career wins, Bobby Bowden is only two wins shy of Joe Paterno's alltime lead. Bowden's win rate of 75.3% is second among active coaches with at least 100 victories and five years at an FBS institution (Bob Stoops is first at 81.3%).
He needs a little more longevity, but Bronco Mendenhall's win percentage is actually ahead of Bowden's at this point; Bronco is 40-13, for a career win rate of 75.5%
Tonight's Bronco Mendenhall Show is live at Ken Garff Nissan on University Parkway in Orem, at 7:00pm. Iceberg Drive-Inn will be on hand with free burgers for all--get there early, seats (and burgers) go quickly!