Why BYU’s run game could pay dividends for quarterback Zach Wilson


BYU quarterback Zach Wilson looks towards the game clock from the line during the first half of an NCAA college football game against the Navy , Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Annapolis, Md. | AP Photo/Tommy Gilligan

PROVO — Analyzing college football in the age of a pandemic can be a chore.

How many ways can you break down a win or a loss without schedule continuity, contingencies, quarantines, cancellations, rescheduling? How good is BYU’s offensive line? Pretty good, one might think. But how would it have done against Utah and the rest of the schedule that disappeared?

We will never know.

But against Navy on Labor Day in front of a national TV audience, BYU looked pretty solid on both sides of the line.

I asked QB guru John Beck, former Cougar and NFL quarterback, now a throw motion expert in San Diego, what he thought of Zach Wilson, the protection he got, and the running game that gained more than 300 yards.

He was impressed.

Beck said a run game like the one BYU displayed against an undersized Navy front is the kind a QB likes because it keeps his uniform pristine and his body healthy.

“Any offense that can establish a run game like that really puts the defense in a bind because they can’t manage the box,” Beck said Tuesday.

Beck said it was very clear after the first series against Navy that BYU had total control of the box. It just remains to be seen in the analysis business if BYU’s offensive line can duplicate that kind of performance the rest of the season.

“Any offense that can establish a run game like that really puts the defense in a bind because they can’t manage the box.” — John Beck

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Against some, perhaps most of this reconstituted schedule, maybe.

“If you look at how defensive coordinators usually align their front, it is to stop the run and the guys they have in the box have responsibilities the way they line up to stop the run,” said Beck. “So, once you start as an offense, you try to establish a dominate running game and when you do you’ve now put their game plan on stopping the run in a real bind and they have to start making adjustments.

“If they can’t stop the primary function of their defense to stop or slow down the run or at least contain it to some degree, then your offense can really do so much more. The defense can’t pressure as much on drop-back situations.”

This becomes even more clear in third-down situations, and if you can run, it’s likely your quarterback won’t get hit that much, said Beck.

BYU looked every part of a bully against Navy in its 55-3 win on the East Coast.

THE PROCESS https://t.co/zxShV87S5J

— Jack Damuni (@JackDamuni) September 8, 2020

What is going to be most interesting in the weeks to come is finding out if BYU’s offensive line can continue to play at that level of intensity and …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News


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