Loyal Cougars

Statistical Analysis: BYU vs. UCF

Zak Hicken breaks down some of the statistics from BYU’s performance in last Thursday’s overtime loss at UCF.

BYU Offense

Called Plays: 86; Called Passes: 47 (6 scrambles, 2 read-options keeps, 2 sacks); Called Runs: 39


Read Option:

BYU ran the read option 37 times against UCF. Christian Stewart only pulled the ball away from the runner four times. Stewart ran the ball, by choice, on two of those four plays. On the two pass attempts, one was incomplete and the other ended in a scramble as Stewart could not find any open receivers. Algie Brown got the ball 15 times on the read option for a total of 78 yards while Paul Lasike ran the ball 11 times for 49 yards. There was a stretch between the 2nd and 3rd Quarters, the periods in which all of BYU’s scoring came, that Stewart gave the ball 24 times and only kept it once. Here is a complete rundown of the 37 read option plays:

1st Quarter: Give (Williams 1), Keep (-1), Give (Lasike 0)

2nd Quarter: Give (Brown 4), Give (Brown 7), Give (Hine 1), Give (Brown 9), Give (Lasike 9), Give (Lasike -2), Give (Lasike -1), Give (Hine 2), Give (Hine 0), Give (Brown 5), Give (Brown 9)

3rd Quarter: Give (Brown 10), Keep (11), Give (Lasike 13), Give (Lasike 1), Give (Lasike 10), Give (Hine 4), Give (Hine -2), Give (Brown 2), Give (Lasike 10), Give (Brown 2), Give (Lasike 3), Give (Brown 8), Give (Brown 4), Give (Lasike 4)

4th Quarter: Give (Brown 2, Fumble), Pitch (Juergens 2), Give (Brown -2), Give (Brown 9), Give (Brown 1), Give (Brown 8), Give (Lasike 3), Pass incomplete (Leslie)

Overtime: Pass (scramble for 7 yards)


Time in the pocket:

Christian Stewart’s time in pocket on passes:

1st Quarter: 3.3 seconds

2nd Quarter: 3.2 seconds

3rd Quarter: 3.2 seconds

4th Quarter: 3.1 seconds

Overtime: 3.2 seconds

Game avg: 3.3 seconds

Result: 6.95 yards per completion


Christian Stewart’s time in pocket before scrambling:

1st Quarter: N/A

2nd Quarter: 4.0 seconds

3rd Quarter: 3.3 seconds

4th Quarter: 3.2 seconds

Overtime: 3.7 seconds

Game avg: 3.6 seconds

Result: 6.75 yards per scramble


How many UCF defenders rushed the QB?

On Christian Stewart scrambles:

1st Quarter: N/A

2nd Quarter: (4+5)/2

3rd Quarter: (4+5+4+5)/4

4th Quarter: 5

Overtime: (4+4)/2

Game avg: 40/9 = 4.4 man rush


BYU missed blocking assignments:

The most critical missed blocking assignment was when DeOndre Wesley was beat on an inside swim move and his man went to sack Christian Stewart for a loss of 8 yards.


Ball distribution:

1st Quarter: Christian Stewart: 2/5 passing for 2 yards, 1 rush for 0 yards; Algie Brown: 1 rush for 2 yards, 0 receptions (1 target); Jamaal Williams: 1 rush for 1 yard; Adam Hine: 1 rush for -2 yards, 1 reception for -2 yards (1 target); Paul Lasike: 1 rush for -1 yard; Jordan Leslie: 1 reception for 3 yards (1 target); Mitch Mathews: 0 receptions (1 target); Colby Pearson: 0 receptions (1 target)

2nd Quarter: Christian Stewart: 8/10 for 56 yards and 1 INT, 2 rushes for 5 yards; Algie Brown: 5 rushes for 34 yards, 2 receptions for 6 yards (2 targets); Paul Lasike: 3 rushes for 6 yards, 1 reception for 19 yards (1 target); Adam Hine: 3 rushes for 3 yards; Mitchell Juergens: 2 receptions for 9 yards (2 targets); Colby Pearson: 1 reception for 9 yards (1 target); Mitch Mathews: 1 reception for 9 yards (3 targets); Jordan Leslie: 1 reception for 4 yards (1 target)

3rd Quarter: Christian Stewart: 8/9 for 71 yards and 3 TDs, 6 rushes for 43 yards; Paul Lasike: 6 rushes for 41 yards; Algie Brown: 5 rushes for 26 yards; Adam Hine: 2 rushes for 2 yards; Devin Mahina: 2 receptions for 29 yards and 2 TDs (2 targets); Jordan Leslie: 2 receptions for 13 yards (2 targets); Colby Pearson: 2 receptions for 13 yards and 1 TD (2 targets); Mitch Mathews: 1 reception for 13 yards (1 target); Keanu Nelson: 1 reception for 3 yards (2 targets)

4th Quarter: Christian Stewart: 2/9 for 14 yards, 2 rushes for -5 yards; Algie Brown: 5 rushes for 18 yards and 1 fumble, 0 receptions (1 target, 1 drop); Paul Lasike: 2 rushes for 5 yards; Mitchell Juergens: 1 rush for 2 yards; Devin Mahina: 1 reception for 12 yards (1 target); Mitch Mathews: 1 reception for 2 yards (4 targets); Colby Pearson: 0 receptions (2 targets); Jordan Leslie: 0 receptions (1 target)

Overtime: Christian Stewart: 2/4 for 10 yards, 2 rushes for 9 yards; Devin Mahina: 1 reception for 5 yards (1 target); Mitchell Juergens: 1 reception for 5 yards (1 target); Jordan Leslie: 0 receptions (2 targets)


Overall Offensive Analysis:

The offense lulled in the bookend quarters and overtime. In the 1st quarter, BYU only had 3 possessions with 9 total plays for 4 yards. Once they got their groove going, Christian Stewart was able to complete 16/19 passes for 127 yards in the 2nd and 3rd Quarters and the power running backs combined for 107 yards on 19 carries. At the end of the 3rd quarter and going into the 4th, BYU put together a great drive of 13 plays covering 67 yards which ended in a Algie Brown fumble on the 15-yard line. After that, the offense had three consecutive 3-and-outs for a total of -5 yards. BYU handed the ball to the power backs only 5 times following Algie’s fumble to start the 4th Quarter, which was surprising, as similar hand-offs had proven successful over the previous 2 quarters.


BYU Defense

Statistical Leaders:

Robertson Daniel: 10 (7 solo-3 assisted) tackles; Kai Nacua: 7 (6-1) tackles, 1 INT; Fred Warner: 6 (4-2) tackles; Skye PoVey: 6 (3-3) tackles, 1 INT; Travis Tuiloma: 5 (4-1) tackles, 3 TFL for -4 yards; Harvey Langi: 5 (4-1) tackles; Sione Takitaki: 2 (2-0) tackles, 2 sacks for -18 yards, 1 FF, 1 FR, 2 QBH


Coverage Targets:

Jordan Johnson: 2/2 (complete zone, complete)

Mike Davis: 7/14, 1 TD, 3 PBU (complete, complete zone, incomplete, complete, PBU, PBU, PBU, incomplete, incomplete, complete TD, complete, incomplete, complete, complete)

Fred Warner: 2/2 (complete zone, complete zone)

Zac Stout: 1/1 (complete zone)

Kai Nacua: 2/5, 1 INT (complete, incomplete, incomplete, complete, INT)

Robertson Daniel: 9/13, 3 PBU (complete zone, complete, PBU, complete zone, PBU, PBU, complete zone, complete, complete flat, complete, complete, complete, incomplete)

Sione Takitaki: 1/1 (complete zone)

Harvey Jackson: 0/2, 1 PBU (PBU, incomplete)

Jherremya Leuta-Douyere: 1/1 (complete zone)

Skye PoVey: 1/3 1 TD 1 INT (incomplete, INT, complete TD)

Graham Rowley: PBU (not targeted, tipped at the LOS)


Overall Defensive Analysis:

The corners were picked on (badly!). 29 pass attempts went towards them, and out of those, 18 were completed. Travis Tuiloma was a standout on the defensive line having three tackles-for-loss for -4 yards. BYU changed the way it brought pressure from the previous 2 games and brought just 3 men on a rush only five times, where it had been the norm against Utah State and Virginia. All five of these were in long yardage situations (passing downs). Defensively, the team struggled during the first three UCF series, giving up 10 points on drives of 12, 6, and 6 plays. After that, BYU forced four straight 3-and-outs and came up with a clutch strip-sack at the end of the half when UCF had put together a 7 play drive covering 34 yards and had entered the blue zone. The solid defensive play continued into the 3rd quarter, where BYU only allowed UCF’s offense to run 12 plays on three drives. UCF’s only points of the quarter came on a short-field 37-yard drive after a 60-yard kickoff return. There were a number of plays where Bronson Kaufusi came in as a down lineman. These were long yardage packages where BYU brought 4 men, 2 linemen and 2 linebackers. The personnel usually consisted of Kaufusi and Taele as the down linemen and Takitaki and Warner coming off of the edge.


  1. Sanpete

    October 13, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    “BYU handed the ball to the power backs only 5 times following Algie’s fumble to start the 4th Quarter, which was surprising, as similar hand-offs had proven successful over the previous 2 quarters.”

    Not so surprising if, as your analysis suggests, UCF started loading the box more in the fourth quarter.

    • Zak Hicken

      October 14, 2014 at 10:57 am

      UCF consistently put 4 down linemen on the field and from my game notes they only brought more than 4 men 5 times during the 4th Q and OT. During the 4th Q Lasike and Brown only rushed 5 times for 21 yards, still averaging over 4 YPC and didn’t hand the ball off once in OT.

      • Sanpete

        October 14, 2014 at 1:28 pm

        Maybe I’m not understanding your article, but in it you seem to say an average of 5 rushed the QB during the fourth quarter, more than any other quarter. If they were sending more to rush, they were likely stacking the box more too, making running plays less attractive than before. If I were UCF’s DC, that’s what I would have done after the backs started running well.

        According to the article, which differs from what you say in your comment, Brown had 5 carries for 18 yards in the fourth, which averages to 3.6 yards/carry, and had a very costly fumble on a rush play. The other backs averaged 2.3 ypc on three carries in the fourth .

        All things considered, it doesn’t surprise me much that there were so few runs in the fourth and OT. The UCF defense seems to have adjusted to BYU’s rushing success, so BYU responded with more passing.