“They’re really big,” said BYU linebacker Jherremya Leuta-Douyere. “They’re bigger backs about 6-0 or 6-1 and around 230. They just want to run the ball down your throat. One thing that I saw on film was they’re always falling forward, so we’ve got to be physical and get as many guys to the play as we can. Those guys, I think coming out of high school, are all five stars and whatever, so they’re going to come out and run their game plan. It’s up to us to stop them.”
“When I saw the film they hit the hole really fast, so if we’re able to just fill in our gaps and be aggressive in our gaps well be fine,” said BYU nose tackle Travis Tuiloma. “We should be able to stop them and stop the run.”
The Longhorn backs will be running without the services of senior center Dominic Espinosa, who started 40 straight games, and Trey Hopkins, and Mason Walters at the guard position. Texas has lost three starters on the offensive line from a year ago, but that doesn’t mean they won’t stop rushing the ball with double tight ends and fullbacks in the mix.
“They run a lot of tight ends and a lot of motioning,” said Leuta-Douyere. “There’s a lot of downhill action with a fullback in there, so it’s going to be fun.
“I do expect them to come out and be physical around the ball and try and establish control of the game with the run. That’s what I’m expecting from them and it’s going to be a challenge.”
“Based on what we’ve seen they do a lot of motion plays,” Tuiloma said. “They do a lot of play action and a bunch of extensions, so as far as that goes we need to stay in our gaps and execute.”
The loss of center Dominic Espinosa, who was the leader and anchor on the Longhorn line, is a big blow to the Texas offense. Travis Tuiloma, who had an excellent game against UConn, has been thinking about the possibilities that lie before him.
“That’s one of my favorite parts of the game is playing run defense,” said Tuiloma. “I’m up for the challenge and they’re going to see something else.”
When BYU lost to Texas a few years back Travis Tuiloma was a part of the Cougar defense and took the loss hard. He was serving a two-year LDS mission when the Cougars stomped the Longhorns in Provo last year. While the Longhorns may have BYU circled for revenge, Tuiloma has the Longhorns circled himself.
“I definitely do,” Tuiloma said. “That’s the one I’m most looking forward to out of all the games this year. Texas is the one I’m most looking forward to because Graham [Rowley] and I were a part of that loss. Now we’re back [for revenge].”
While the Longhorns might be looking for revenge from last year’s embarrassment, they’ll have to do so without quarterback David Ash who had sustained a concussion against North Texas.
“They have a new quarterback coming into the game and I don’t see any reason why they would change their game plan,” said Leuta-Douyere. “It doesn’t matter if he’s new back there he’s still a good player. We watched film on him during the spring game and he’s a playmaker. He’s a big dude who is mobile so we’ll see.”
Texas quarterback duties now fall upon 6-4, 243-pound Tyrone Swoopes, who was 5 of 13 passing for only 26 yards last season. Swoopes isn’t as big of a threat to run the ball but does have some mobility. Tuiloma prefers the pocket passer but either way doesn’t mind the competition of a mobile quarterback.
“Probably the pocket passer since we get to focus on one thing than worrying about the scramble and all that,” said Tuiloma. “Either way, it’s still good competition.
“I think as a defense we’ve got guys that are all well-rounded, and coming in this year we have a lot of talented guys. I feel we will match up really well and we just have to be assignment sound as far as playing defense goes.”
Cougar Cam: Jherremya Leuta-Douyere
Buck linebacker Jherremya Leuta-Douyere talks about his big play on the first play against UConn that caused a fumble. He also talks about the performance of the linebackers and what they can improve on. He talks about the run game Texas will bring to the field and how that fits into the type of game the Cougars are excited about and much more.
Cougar Cam: Travis Tuiloma
BYU Cougar nose tackle Travis Tuiloma talks about the defensive line's performance against UConn. He also talks about the personal fouls and penalties the Cougars racked up against UConn. Tuiloma also gives his thoughts about being back on the field since serving a two-year LDS mission, facing a new center against Texas, and much more.