“I didn’t get to watch too much but their corners are good. No matter what Texas is going to have athletes,” said Leslie. “They’re going to be real athletic and they’re going to come out, and like I said, this game is going to be circled so they’re going to come out with intensity. We just have to match that intensity and come out ready to go and have a big day.”
The BYU receivers will face experienced playmakers in the Longhorn secondary. Quandre Diggs (a three year starter), Duke Thomas, who is a junior, and Mykkele Thompson (a senior safety who started in 10 games last season) held the University of North Texas to just 15 passing yards in their season opener. However, UNT is not BYU by any stretch of the imagination. The Cougars will face a tough secondary and will need to clean up their game in order to keep the pressure on.
“You know the first game is always going to be [sloppy], as you can tell we had 15 penalties or something like that, a little rough,” said Leslie. “Like Coach Anae said, ‘the biggest jump in the season is from the first game to the second game.’ It’s kind of like those nerves from the first game are kind of out. You’ve already played on a big stage and now you’re going to the next stage, so it’s going to kind of help us a lot. We’re already seeing what our quarterback can do and our offense can do is going to help push us even further.”
Joining Leslie for the Texas game will be Devon Blackmon, who was serving a one game suspension against UConn. Blackmon will be a welcome addition to the Cougar receiving corps when they take the field against Texas.
“It’s fun,” Leslie said. “Each of us kind of have our own thing. You know, Devon is kind of more shifty, a side-to-side guy, while I’m more down the field. Keanu [Nelson] is kind of more route disciplined and stuff like that so it’s fun.
“We all kind of help the other receivers, the younger receivers, with different techniques and stuff like that. Of course you already have leaders like Mitch [Mathews] and [Nick] Kurtz already teaching and helping them out, so it’s great for the younger people and great for us because we all pick up things from each other.”
While serving his suspension, Blackmon was helping the team prepare for UConn while playing on the scout team. Leslie was impressed that while Blackmon wasn’t going to be playing, he still contributed to the team heavily.
“They put him on the scout team for UConn and he was over there given them a great look,” said Leslie. “I talked to him after every practice and was like, ‘Man, I’m proud of you.’ A lot of people go over there and are like, ‘Okay, I’m not going to play this week so I’m just going to slack.’ He went over there and, you know, busted his butt and gave them a great look for UConn.”
Leslie is also impressed with how Blackmon handled his suspension.
“It just shows that he’s a grown man and it shows that he has respect for this team,” Leslie said. “He’s not bigger than the team and he understands that. When you get into trouble there’s a consequence and he paid the consequences. He did everything that he needed to do, and that gets a lot of respect from me, the team leaders, the captains and everything.”
Now Blackmon will be thrown into the fire against an experienced and tough Longhorn defense that will look to stifle any attempt by the Cougars to have success through the air. Leslie feels Blackmon is overly excited about his first game as a BYU Cougar in so much he caught his fellow teammate watching last year’s game film.
“Oh, he’s excited,” said Leslie. “I walked in and he was watching film by himself and he was watching last year’s film. I was like, ‘I think they have a new defensive coordinator.’ He was just watching the players and seeing the guy’s techniques and that was good to see.”
Three Keys to Victory Against Texas
The Cougar offense will have to come out firing on all cylinders both on the ground and through the air if they want to walk away from Darrell K. Royal- Texas Memorial Stadium with a victory. Jordan Leslie gives BYU fans his three keys to victory to making that outcome a reality.
“Come out with intensity and we have to match their intensity because they’re going to come out strong,” Leslie said. “I know our defense is going to play great, so we just have to keep it up and don’t take our foot off the pedal. We have to come out strong and we had some drives that kind of stalled out against UConn. We just need to keep going and make our last drive like our first drive but with less penalties. Then number three I would say that Taysom and the receivers have to have a big day. I mean, the offense needs to be explosive and that’s the job of the receivers, so we have to make plays.”
Cougar Cam: Jordan Leslie
Leslie will go back to his home state of Texas where he will face the Longhorns; a team that was at one time taking a look at him as a possible prospect. Leslie talks about the UConn game and all the Cougar fans that came out to supported them. He gives his thoughts about the new Cougar receivers and much more.
Jordan Leslie Video