BYU proves point with big push against Wisconsin - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

BYU proves point with big push against Wisconsin

(AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU head coach Kalani Sitake watches during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Wisconsin Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21. (AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU head coach Kalani Sitake watches during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Wisconsin Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21.
(AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU players react after Wisconsin kicker Rafael Gaglianone missed a field goal in the final seconds of the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21. (AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU players react after Wisconsin kicker Rafael Gaglianone missed a field goal in the final seconds of the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21.
(AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU head coach Kalani Sitake celebrates with Matt Hadley after an NCAA college football game against Wisconsin Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21. (AP Photo/Morry Gash). BYU head coach Kalani Sitake celebrates with Matt Hadley after an NCAA college football game against Wisconsin Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Madison, Wis. BYU won 24-21.

By GENARO C. ARMAS
AP Sports Writer

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - BYU will not be pushed around.

The Cougars proved their point against one of the Big Ten's most bullish teams.

Success starts up front for coach Kalani Sitake. Win the line of scrimmage, and BYU will win some games.

Sounds simple, but after a four-win season in 2017, the 24-21 upset victory over the Badgers provided quite a statement. Wisconsin dropped from sixth to 18th in the latest AP Top 25 poll , while BYU entered the ranking at 25th.

"For a team that's super physical and big and hangs their hat on the run game and stopping the run, I thought we were hanging in there," Sitake said.

That might be an understatement.

Yes, the Badgers (2-1) outgained the Cougars (2-1) in total offense (394-311) and first downs (20-14). But unlike many other nonconference teams that have strolled into Camp Randall Stadium looking for an upset, BYU punched back. It stayed with Badgers right to the end.

"We got ourselves bigger and stronger and exhausted a lot of scholarships on the O-line and D-line," Sitake said. "One thing we don't have is the cheese here to beef up our guys. I really admire what (Wisconsin) did and it's a good system.

"That's why we played that type of game, an old-school game," Sitake said.

A former BYU running back, Sitake played in Provo in the late 1990s and 2000 during the end of LaVell Edwards' run as head coach.

Under Edwards, a BYU offense featuring a high-octane passing game regularly rolled to double-digit wins in the 1980s. The Cougars won the national championship in 1984.

The current program might have a ways to go to get back to that level. A 4-9 season last year was a setback after BYU went 9-4 in 2016, Sitake's first season.

This season, the Cougars defeated Arizona on the road before losing to California last week at home. The loss to the Bears was especially concerning after BYU struggled on offense.

Looks like it's back on track.

Offensively, BYU took advantage of Wisconsin with spread formations, motion plays and jet sweeps.

"They skimmed us pretty well. They made some plays, took advantage of some things that we were not necessarily in the places for, so hats off them for that," Wisconsin linebacker Ryan Connelly said.

Defensively, linebacker Zayne Anderson intercepted Wisconsin's Alex Hornibrook in the third quarter, and BYU converted that turnover into a touchdown on the next series. Hornibrook looked off for much of the game and star running back Jonathan Taylor didn't break off a big play.

"We knew we had to play big and stout up front. We know they like to pound the ball," said Cougars linebacker Sione Takitaki, who finished with a career-high 13 tackles and a sack.

BYU got its first win over a top-10 team since defeating third-ranked Oklahoma 14-13 in 2009. It made for a happy trip back to Provo.

"We gave the game ball to the strength and conditioning group," Sitake said. "Those guys kept working and got them bigger, stronger, faster. But the players were gritty. They played hard with a lot of toughness."

___

More AP college football: https://apnews.com/tag/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • NationalMore>>

  • Officials: 3 killed in shooting at Maryland Rite Aid center

    Officials: 3 killed in shooting at Maryland Rite Aid center

    Thursday, September 20 2018 10:38 AM EDT2018-09-20 14:38:29 GMT
    Thursday, September 20 2018 12:40 PM EDT2018-09-20 16:40:04 GMT
    Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation". (Source: Raycom News Network)Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation". (Source: Raycom News Network)

    Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation".

    More >>

    Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation".

    More >>
  • The Latest: Sheriff: Shooting suspect in critical condition

    The Latest: Sheriff: Shooting suspect in critical condition

    Thursday, September 20 2018 11:28 AM EDT2018-09-20 15:28:16 GMT
    Thursday, September 20 2018 12:39 PM EDT2018-09-20 16:39:47 GMT
    (Jerry Jackson /The Baltimore Sun via AP). Authorities respond to a shooting in Harford County, Md., on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.  Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter ...(Jerry Jackson /The Baltimore Sun via AP). Authorities respond to a shooting in Harford County, Md., on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter ...
    Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation".More >>
    Authorities say multiple people have been shot in northeast Maryland in what the FBI is describing as an "active shooter situation".More >>
  • Police: 1 victim upgraded after workplace shooting

    Police: 1 victim upgraded after workplace shooting

    Thursday, September 20 2018 1:13 AM EDT2018-09-20 05:13:58 GMT
    Thursday, September 20 2018 12:39 PM EDT2018-09-20 16:39:44 GMT
    (Steve Apps/Wisconsin State Journal via AP). A woman is escorted from the scene of a shooting at a software company in Middleton, Wis., Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018. Four people were shot and wounded during the shooting in the suburb of Madison, according...(Steve Apps/Wisconsin State Journal via AP). A woman is escorted from the scene of a shooting at a software company in Middleton, Wis., Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018. Four people were shot and wounded during the shooting in the suburb of Madison, according...

    Authorities say they don't yet know what prompted an employee of a Wisconsin software company to open fire at his office, injuring four people, including three seriously.

    More >>

    Authorities say they don't yet know what prompted an employee of a Wisconsin software company to open fire at his office, injuring four people, including three seriously.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly