Report Card: Grading BYU’s Go Fast Go Hard Offense Against Texas


At the beginning of the season Lawless Republic gave our readers a detailed explanation of BYU’s “Go Fast Go Hard” (GFGH) offensive scheme and why it is the perfect offense for BYU. Each week, we will provide a report card assessing how GFGH worked in each previous game. This week we focus on BYU’s 41-7 victory over Texas.

Sep 6, 2014; Austin, TX, USA; Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Taysom Hill (4) runs the ball against the Texas Longhorns during the first half at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brendan Maloney-USA TODAY Sports


It’s hard to believe that Taysom Hill could improve on the bludgeoning that he delivered to the Longhorns in Provo last year, but he did. This year there were no complaints about elevation, rain delays, or poor coaching preparation from the Longhorn apologists. The Horns have had this game circled on their calendar since at least the end of last season, though probably before. Phrases like “totally embarrassing” and “worst moment of my life” were among the commentary heard from players and coaches after the white quarterback with the bionic knee took them down. Whatever motivation, preparation, or revenge was expected to be returned to Hill by the Longhorn D was put to rest by Hill and the “Go Fast Go Hard” offense early in the 3rd quarter when he turned a broken pass play into one of the most spectacular, iconic plays of his career and BYU history as he dodged several linemen, flew past the linebackers before they knew what hit them, and hurdled over the safety before landing triumphant in the end zone. Below is the GIF that everyone has already seen, though, let’s be honest, can you really get tired of watching this play???

BYU QB Taysom Hill hurdles a defender to complete a 30 yard TD run against Texas. BYU would go on to win 41-7.

All in all, it was a 99 yard rushing performance with 3 TDs for Hill. Taking out sacks (the Longhorns did sack Hill six times) and his rushing total is 130. Hill also had a 60+ yard rushing TD called back due to a holding penalty on Jordan Leslie, though it appears that the referee may have had his jersey colors backwards when he made the call on Leslie. That alone would have left Hill with another 200+ yard rushing game and 4TDs against a Longhorn D that was looking to key on him. What a stunning performance, guys. If you aren’t hopping on the Taysom Hill wagon this year, you are missing out on one of the most special players to ever play at BYU. Go Fast Go Hard was made for a dynamic, special player like Hill.

Unlike the 2013 game in which Hill struggled to throw the ball (though no one really seemed to care), Hill showed he could pass as well during the 2014 rematch. The Longhorn faithful remembered Hill’s rushing performance, but also his lack of pass playmaking ability. On the trip down to Austin, a Longhorn fan and I had the following conversation:

LONGHORN: Y’all don’t still have that runnin’ quarterback, do ya?

ME: Yep, we sure do. And he’s better than last year. (wink wink)

LONGHORN: What, he didn’t learn how to throw, did he?

ME: Yep, sure did!


Hill was efficient throwing the ball, completing 18-27 for 181 yards. Though he didn’t reach the end zone for the first time in a regular season game since Middle Tennessee State on Sept 27th of last year, Hill’s passing efficiency led to first downs and kept drives alive. A lone interception at the back of the end zone near the end of the first half and a blindside fumble were the only blemishes on an otherwise Heisman-esque performance by Hill.


Hard to be too hard on any piece of the offense when you win 41-7 against a defense thought to be as daunting as Texas’, but there were a few areas for improvement. Hill was sacked six times and was forced to leave the pocket to avoid several other sacks. Hill rushed a team high 24 times in the game, which was likely not the game plan going in, particularly as we try to keep Hill’s specimen of a body healthy. But the rushing game was dominated by BYU and it started with stellar play by Brad Wilcox (C) and Tuni Kanuch (RG). Kanuch will be looking to make his first start of his career on Thursday against Houston, after a solid game.

The scary thing about the BYU offense right now is that the pocket is still collapsing before Hill has time to let many medium to deep pass plays develop. As the season develops, look for the Cougar O-line to get nastier and open up the “Go Long” facet of the Go Fast Go Hard offense.


After a less-than-memorable performance against UConn, the BYU running game was running on all cylinders, led by the return of Jamaal Williams. I watched from field level as Williams warmed up and was blown away by his size. It is obvious that that kid has been putting in the time in the weight room and pounding plenty of calories while he takes his now-famous laps around the roller rink. He isn’t just cut and strong, but his muscle mass is so thick. That strength translated onto the field Saturday night as Williams’ season debut led all BYU running backs with 89 yards on 19 carries, including a 31-yard scamper in the 1st quarter that demonstrated both his speed and improved strength. That run put the Cougars in the red zone for the first time and led to a FG by Trevor Sampson.

Adam Hine and Alge Brown also had great games. Hine found the end zone twice and all three Cougar running backs (plus Hill) averaged 4+ yards per carry on the game.

If there is a dark spot on the running back performance, it is a lack of contribution to the passing game. With the exception of Alge Brown’s 4 catch/40-yard performance, only Jamaal Williams had a catch in the game. In a GFGH offense the receivers need to pick up more screen passes, dumpoffs, and have designed routes down field.


While no receivers touched the end zone, their play was key to the 41 points put on the board. This was a coming-out-party of sorts for senior transfer and former Texas HS player Jordan Leslie. Leslie recorded seven catches for 85 yards, with 59 of those yards coming in the second half. Most impressively, though, was the timing of those catches as five of the seven resulted in Cougar first downs. Most memorable may have been his 27 yard catch in the third quarter. On the play, Taysom Hill was hit as he released the ball, causing it to fall shorter than intended. Leslie adjusted, positioned himself between two Longhorn defenders and tipped the fluttering ball to himself not once but twice as he laid on the turf. No challenge or review was necessary, as that catch was as solid and secure as they come. Here’s a Vine of the catch just for old time’s sake:

Mitch Mathews had a relatively quiet game, registering four catches for 24 yards. Besides Mathews and Leslie, only Terenn Houk registered a catch. Disappointing was the lack of targets or production from Devon Blackmon as he made his Cougar debut.


After Devin Mahina made the first catch of the game, I figured that the lack of tight end play that I referenced after the UConn game had been corrected. That catch proved to be the only TE catch or target of the game. The play calling does seem to be calling for more max-protection blocking schemes that keeps the TE in the protection plan more, but a high-powered offense like GFGH needs to see improved production at the tight end position.


Once again, Coach Mendenhall and Anae put together a fantastic game plan. Anae and Tujague seem to have the offensive line getting better and better each week. It’s funny the way that confidence and doubt creep not just into player’s heads but also into the coaches’ heads. For whatever reason, the Utes seem to be in Bronco’s head the last several years, despite perhaps not being the more talented team. Well, it’s good to see that Bronco has that same effect on Texas. Texas doesn’t want to even think about playing BYU again any time soon. The past two games have seen the Cougars destroy the Longhorns in every facet of the game and that doesn’t come without preparation, motivation, and mid-game adjustment.

Being present at both games I am proud not only to be a Cougar, but also to have Bronco leading the way. As legendary Texas coach Darrel Royal (for whom UT’s stadium is named) once said “I learned this about coaching: You don’t have to explain victory and you can’t explain defeat.” After the dominating performance this weekend, there’s no explanation necessary, Coach.


The Cougars have a short week before taking on Houston on Thursday night. Last year was a thrilling display of GFGH as BYU squeaked out a nail biter 47-46 in Houston. It will take a top-to-bottom performance on all facets of the GFGH squad in order to prevent a similarly potential upset this week. Look for Taysom to continue having his way running the ball and for the passing game to continue improving as Leslie and Devon Blackmon develop as bigger and bigger weapons for Hill. I predict a 250(pass) 100(rush) performance by Hill and 100+ yards for Jamaal Williams as the BYU Cougars take care of business against the Houston Cougars in the first game in which BYU has been ranked in two years.

Prediction: 38-17.