UCLA Offense Vs. BYU Defense
BYU could be a clone of UCLA. Not only are they showing more power in the offense, but they are thickening up their defensive line as they adjust from a 3-4 to a 4-3 formation. If that helps them get better, then the BYU defense (which was 23rd in the nation in total defense) will give the Bruins a lot of trouble, but will they know exactly what to do with Josh Rosen and UCLA when they come to Provo?
Rosen will remember the three quarters of hell the Cougars gave him last year in Pasadena. He should also remember how he pulled it together at the end of the game and had help from Paul Perkins and Nate Starks to win the game. Though Perkins is gone, Starks, Soso Jamabo and Bolu Olorunfunmi should be able to continue to run over the BYU defense.
UCLA Defense Vs. BYU Offense
Ty Detmer (yes, that Heisman winning Ty Detmer) is back at his alma mater this season and looking to change things up. Last season, BYU went to a more power-based offense (similar to UCLA) with some success. Despite Detmer’s potential bias for the passing game, odds are that we could see more runs from the Cougars now that they have Williams back.
In 2015, BYU gave up 128.3 ypg (111th in FBS), but with the addition of Williams, they could probably get between 150-200 ypg in 2016. That would be a problem for UCLA if they do not fix their run defense that gave up 198.5 ypg.
After facing Texas A&M and UNLV, the Bruins should have a clue about where they stand said run defense. If it continues to be horrendous, BYU could run over the Bruins. If there is some improvement and UCLA forces BYU to go to the sky, the Bruins could have the advantage. Either way, the Bruins need to be on their toes every second of this game!
Next: Final Analysis and Prediction