Tanner Mangum was named Co-MVP of the Elite 11 camps alongside former Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston when he was in high school and many forecasted he would go on to do great things in college. Now in his junior year at BYU, Mangum is the undisputed starting quarterback, whose competitive nature hasn't faded one bit.
"I think for him he just wants to improve no matter what," said BYU head coach Kalani Sitake of his starting quarterback. "So, it doesn't really matter if it's the first-string or second-string he's just a competitive kid. I think for him, he's a lot more comfortable because it's not a new offense anymore.
Although Mangum played second fiddle to Taysom Hill last season, Mangum was still able to soak up plenty of knowledge from Ty Detmer by being on the sidelines with the former Heisman Trophy winner.
"He was on the headsets with Ty all year, so he was able to hear a lot of what Ty was expecting," said Coach Sitake. "I mean after every play he was on the headset with him, and he could hear what Ty was saying, and he could hear Ty's frustrations, things that he liked, and he could hear expectations."
Now that Mangum is BYU’s starting quarterback, all the time he spent alongside Coach Detmer has paid off according to Coach Sitake.
"The crazy things about it is day one, before Ty could even say it, Tanner had already made the adjustments and audible a couple plays," said Coach Sitake. "He's already further and ahead of everybody else and that's because he had the benefits of being on the headsets. If everybody on the team had that our offense would be much better, but given what we had and the resources we had it was really beneficial for him to be on the same page as Ty. It's going to be huge for us."
Coach Detmer has been able to help Mangum navigate being a backup as he spent the majority of his NFL career as a backup.
"Yeah, well, you know Ty's been in that position and he was a starter here and won the Heisman and all that," said Coach Sitake. "When he was in the NFL he played that role of being a support for Brett Favre and all those other quarterbacks that he was able to mentor along the way."
Coach Sitake believes the time that Ty Detmer spent in the NFL helped prepare him to be in the position he is now as BYU’s offensive coordinator.
"I'm hearing from Steve Young how great Ty was in the NFL, so I think it's an easy transition for him as an offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach because he was already doing that for 14 years in the NFL," said Coach Sitake. "So, he understands the benefits of having the headsets on and communicating with the player and with the [head] coach like when he was in the NFL. Now he's the guy running the show and he's communicating with everybody."
Having spent all that time with Detmer along the sidelines last season, now it's Mangum's turn to lead the team. Coach Sitake feels the knowledge and training Mangum has received from Detmer will pay off for the program this coming season.
"One of [Coach Detmer's] biggest strengths is that he is a great communicator," said Coach Sitake. "I mean the guys know what to expect, they know what his expectations are, they know what his demands are, and he doesn't have to really say much because he's already established that with his relationship. I think it's going to pay huge dividends for us."