September 5, 2017
After a subpar showing against Portland State and a dismal performance against LSU, the BYU football team’s offense will be making “changes,” according to head coach Kalani Sitake.
“You have to change it,” Sitake said during Monday’s media interviews. “There is no staying the course when it is not working well. (Offensive coordinator Ty Detmer) knows that.
“We didn’t stay the course from Week 1 to Week 2. We changed some things up — and maybe we need to change things up more. If you want something to change, you have to do it as a coaching staff.”
Sitake didn’t mince words as he emphasized the importance of immediate offensive improvement, especially after being shut out and held to fewer than 100 yards in Saturday’s 27-0 loss to the Tigers.
“I know I’m coming down hard on the offense but, man, let’s be honest,” Sitake said. “That was the issue. Ty knows that and our offensive players know that, so we will fix it.”
The big question now is what form the changes and fixes will take.
Possibilities the BYU offense could look at include looking at other personnel, changing the approach, implementing different schemes or even looking at adjusting the tempo.
Senior wide receiver Jonah Trinnaman doesn’t expect a complete overhaul but rather improvements in execution.
“I don’t think we need to change much,” Trinnaman said. “It’s just about executing. We left a lot of plays out on the field this last weekend. It’s about making the plays when they come our way.”
When Sitake was asked about what he saw from junior quarterback Tanner Mangum on film, however, he hinted at significant adjustments.
“His numbers weren’t great,” Sitake said. “I can’t be truly honest with you. Tanner knows where he sits and our guys know what we need to fix. Without giving Utah the game plan, there are things we are addressing and things we need to do differently.”
Trinnaman said the focus has been on becoming more cohesive and showing the BYU offense that did so many good things in fall camp.
“There is something missing, obviously,” Trinnaman said. “We are trying to figure it out. We are working every day to get better and get on the same page.”
He said Detmer and the offensive coaches aren’t the type to berate the players for their failures.
“Getting mad and yelling about it isn’t going to do much for us,” Trinnaman said. “It’s about what we did wrong and how we can fix it.”
He said the best thing Detmer said to the offense was to look forward because nothing can be done about the past.
“I think we have a lot to work on but I think we are pretty confident,” Trinnaman said. “We know what we need to work on, know what we need to fix to play the way we know we can play.”
Sitake explained that he felt the offensive issues affected the whole team and he pointed to the number of plays as an example.
“It’s hard to evaluate when you had just 38 plays of offense,” Sitake said. “That can’t happen. We had 81 snaps that we graded on defense.”
He even indicated what an embarrassment the overall showing was.
“Where I feel really bad is that our fans had to watch that,” Sitake said. “That’s my fault. I will make sure we do better as a team and do better as a coaching staff.”
But he pointed out that, to him, there is hope.
“It’s not too stressful when you feel like you can make things better,” Sitake said. “I would be really nervous if we didn’t have players who I think can play better than what we did.”