BYU football: A tale of two (embarrassing) losses

(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

BYU football’s embarrassing beat down at the hands of LSU looked and felt eerily similar to the program’s humiliating loss at Michigan back in 2015.

As I watched BYU football get completely dominated by a very talented LSU Tigers team at the New Orleans Superdome, I kept thinking to myself, “This feels just like the Michigan game back in 2015.”  A comparison of those two game’s reveals some remarkable similarities, particularly in the box scores:

Similar final score.  31-0 at Michigan compared to 27-0 against LSU.

Similar total yards disparity. In both games BYU’s offense was hopelessly man-handled, leaving a tired Cougar defense on the field way too long. At Michigan the final yardage count was 448 – 105 and against LSU the final yardage count was 479 – 97.

Similar time of possession disparity.  At Michigan the difference was 38:38 – 21:22. Against the Tigers it was 41:54 – 18:06.

In both games the opponent’s ground game ran all over a tired BYU football defense that was left on the far too much due to the extreme struggles of the offenses. Michigan had 254 yards rushing and LSU had 296.

In both games Tanner Mangum had a similarly woeful outing. Against Michigan he was 12-for-28 for 55 yards with a QBR of 13.5. Against LSU Mangum was 12-for-24 for 102 yards and a QBR of 14.0.

Next: What We Learned From BYU vs LSU

Both games were on the road. Of course Michigan was a true road game at the Big House and LSU was essentially a road game at the New Orleans Superdome in LSU’s backyard.

It truly is astonishing just how similarly bad these losses were. Both losses were big embarrassments on national TV and significant setbacks for the program.

The question remains, where will BYU football and Tanner Mangum go from here?

Will they allow this embarrassment to define them en route to a disappointing season or will they recover and be able to use this humiliation as proper motivation, to fuel their drive and hunger to improve and go on to have a solid season?

One thing is certain, the collective psyche of Cougar fans hangs in the balance this week. A win over Utah and all is forgotten regarding LSU. On the other hand, a 7th straight loss to the Utes will compound the depression significantly and have Cougar fans in full-blown despair.