BYU Cougars Preview 2022: Season Prediction, Breakdown, Key Games, Players

BYU College Football Preview 2022: Team breakdown, season prediction, keys to the campaign, and what you need to know

BYU Cougars Preview 2022: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the BYU season with what you need to know and keys to the season.


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BYU Cougars Preview
Head Coach: Kalani Sitake, 7th year at BYU, 48-29
2021 Preview: 10-3 record
Keys To The SeasonSeason Prediction, What Will Happen
BYU Top 10 Players | BYU Schedule

BYU Cougars Preview 2022

They’re not there quite yet.

It’s going to be easy to write this season off as the warm-up before finally joining a Power Five conference – going to the Big 12 next season – but there’s way too much talent, way too much experience, and way too many big opportunities for this year to be anything less than special.

The Cougars were a thrilling loss to Coastal Carolina away from going unbeaten in 2020, and last year they won the “Pac-12 Championship” with victories over Utah, Arizona State, Utah, Washington State, and USC in a fun ten-win campaign.

Now it’s time for the program to prove it can take things up a few notches.

Yeah, all those wins over Pac-12 teams were great, and rolling to a 66-49 victory over Virginia was fun, and taking down Mountain West champ Utah State was terrific …

So how does that team lose a bowl game to a good-but-not-killer UAB?

There were a slew of injuries that didn’t help in the midseason losses to Boise State and Baylor, but this time around there’s more depth, more options, and more talent to make a huge splash before the big move.

There isn’t a conference championship to play for, and there isn’t a date against Utah to use as a chest-thumping moment, but the team and schedule are strong enough to push for a New Year’s Six bowl.

21 wins over the last two seasons was a whole lot of fun.

Now it’s time for BYU to expect more.

BYU Cougars Preview 2022: Offense

The offense wasn’t always explosive, but it was efficient. It wasn’t always consistent, but it was great at moving the chains and keeping the big mistakes to a minimum. It wasn’t always clutch, but it finished the year 17th in the nation overall and 29th in scoring.

And now it’s loaded.

The offensive line might be among the best ever if the tackles play up to the hype. The combination of tackle Blake Freeland and guard Blake Barrington on the left side should be dominant – BYU was among the best teams in the nation in pass protection. The best of the bunch though might be Oregon transfer Kingsley Suamataia – he’s a future NFL starter who’ll work at right tackle for now.

The strong front five doesn’t have Tyler Allgeier to block for anymore, but the running game will be more than fine. Cal transfer Christopher Brooks will be an instant fit, and 215-pound veteran Lopina Katoa can add some work. Also able to add to the running game …

QB Jaren Hall is on the verge of being special. He’s not Zach Wilson, but he’s improving as a passer – throwing for 2,583 yards and 20 touchdowns with five picks – and he’s great on the move. Now he has to stay healthy with backup Baylor Romney leaving football to start his real job career.

Gunner Romney, though, is back along with Puka Nacua to form a deadly 1-2 punch. Those two combined for close to 1,400 yards and nine touchdowns, and they’re not alone. It’s a deep corps, and tight ends Isaac Rex and Dallin Holker can catch.

The offense will be great, and now …

BYU Cougars Preview 2022: Defense

The defense has to be better. It has the talent, and it has the experience, but the D that allowed 388 yards and 25 points per game needs to generate more of a pass rush and has to be far tougher against the run.

There weren’t too many issues overall. Virginia and Baylor were the only two teams to hit the 500-yard mark, and Baylor beat the Cavaliers. There weren’t too many problems with everyone else, but …

Again, the defense needs to be better, and it will be. It starts with getting healthy parts back to what should be a loaded linebacking corps. Payton Wilgar and Keenan Pili return after getting hurt – they should combine for well over 100 tackles.

Combine them with 2021’s leading tackler Ben Bywater and with second-leading tackler Max Tooley playing a hybrid role, and look out.

Now the pass rush has to be there. The Cougars only generated 20 sacks and 64 tackles for loss, and just three players registered more than 1.5 sacks – Tyler Batty is back after leading the way with only 3.5 sacks. However, there’s size, depth, and there should be a solid rotation for the 4-2-5 alignment.

The secondary did a good job despite the lack of a pass rush. The corner tandem of Kaleb Hayes and D’Angelo Mandell is experienced and outstanding, and the safeties are diverse and versatile. There are a whole lot of ways to play around with the deep lineup.

Keys To The Season | Season Prediction, What Will Happen
BYU Top 10 Players | BYU Schedule

BYU Cougars: Keys To The Season, Top Game, Top Transfer, Fun Stats NEXT

BYU Cougars Top 10 Players: College Football Preview 2022

Who are the top 10 BYU players going into the 2022 college football season?

BYU Cougars Preview 2022: Who are the top 10 players going into the season?


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BYU Cougars Preview 
Offense, Defense Breakdown | Keys To The Season
Season Prediction, What Will HappenBYU Schedule 

College Football Rankings, Season Predictions: Independents Spring Version 2022

Independents college football rankings and predictions with realistic best and worst case records and quick analysis – the 2022 spring version.

Independents college football rankings and predictions with the realistic best and worst case records and quick analysis – the 2022 spring version.


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The independents are all in interesting situations.

Former Big 12er BYU won’t be on its own for much longer, Liberty will once again be a thorn in the sides of several Power Five teams, Army should rip through its schedule, and New Mexico State, Notre Dame, UConn, and UMass are all starting the 2022 season with new head coaches.

The rankings are based on how good the teams should be and not the final projected records. Keeping in mind that this all could/might/will change when we make the final calls in August …

2022 College Football Schedules By Teams: All 131 Schools

Gonzaga vs BYU Prediction, College Basketball Game Preview

Gonzaga vs BYU prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win on Saturday.

Gonzaga vs BYU prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch: Saturday, February 5


Gonzaga vs BYU How To Watch

Date: Saturday, February 5
Game Time: 10:00 ET
Venue: Marriott Center, Provo, UT
How To Watch: ESPN
Record: Gonzaga (18-2), BYU (17-6)
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All of the CFN Fearless Predictions

Gonzaga vs BYU Game Preview


Why Gonzaga Will Win

You don’t come into the gym without planning on scoring at least 80 against Gonzaga, and you might need a plan to figure out how to hang 100 to have any hope.

The Bulldogs have taken their offensive up a few notches with well over 100 points in four of their last seven games, and with 89 or more in eight of their last nine.

One of those big scoring days was the 110 put up on BYU – 84 wasn’t enough to even get an appetizer.

BYU doesn’t force enough defensive stops, it fouls like it’s fun, and it’s having a big problem with turnovers lately.

And it just doesn’t score enough to keep up if and when Gonzaga goes Gonzaga.

However …

– Latest Polls AP | Coaches

Why BYU Will Win

As versatile as Gonzaga might be, it was able to win the first time around by going gonzo from three. It can get hot, but even Gonzaga isn’t going to hit 53% from three and nail close to 70% from the field again.

BYU can rebound well enough to clean up the glass on both ends. It’s not like Gonzaga can’t own the boards from time to time – it’ll get 40 coming off the bus – but BYU leads the nation in total rebounds and should be able to come up with more than the 11 offensive boards it generated the first time around.

Top 25 Game Previews, Predictions

What’s Going To Happen

Will it matter that BYU is playing in the Marriott?

It lost a clunker of a home game a few days ago to San Francisco for the first time all year it dropped a game in Provo. It was 10-0 before that at home, and now it gets the No. 1 team in its house.

There’s enough defense and production on the boards to keep this from getting too obnoxiously out of hand, but the co-No. 1 team in America is in way too good of a groove.

It’s too amazing from three lately to lose this, but BYU will make it fun for a while.

Gonzaga vs BYU Prediction, Lines

Gonzaga 90, BYU 77
Line: Gonzaga -12, o/u: 159
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2

Must See Rating: 3

5: One week off before the Super Bowl
1: Two weeks off before the Super Bowl

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2022 College Football Schedules: All 131 Teams

Bowl Game Reaction: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence

Quick reactions to the college football games: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence Bowls

Bowl Game Reaction to the Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, and Independence Bowls


Bowl Game Reaction: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence

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CFN Predictions | 2021-2022 Bowl Schedule

Bowl Game Reactions  
– Boca Raton: WKU 59, App St 38
– Celebration, New Mexico, Independence to come

Boca Raton Bowl Reaction: WKU 59, Appalachian State 38

– Now THAT’S a bowl game. It started early, started fast, and it kept on rolling until Appalachian State punched itself out in the second half. 1,246 yards of total offense, 97 points, big play after big play. This was why we all do bowl season.

– Bailey Zappe was incredible. He threw for 422 yards and six scores with no picks, but he had a whole lot of help. Zappe was the signature star coming in from Houston Baptist – and he set the single season passing record and broke Joe Burrow’s touchdown pass record – but battery mate Jerreth Sterns had a whole lot to do with it, too. The star WR caught 13 passes for 184 yards and three scores.

– Appalachian State could never get control. For good and for mostly bad, it kept scoring too quickly. It needed to slow things down to a stop, but it got caught up in a firefight and couldn’t keep up. The running game did what it was supposed to do – 251 yards – but the team only had the ball for just over 31 minutes. The time of possession battle needed to be lopsided.

– No, WKU’s defense didn’t do a whole lot – it couldn’t tackle, it gave up over 600 yards, and it struggled – but the four turnovers made a difference. The pace of the game made Appalachian State press, and the mistakes followed.

COMING: Celebration Bowl, New Mexico Bowl, Independence Bowl

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CFN Predictions | 2021-2022 Bowl Schedule

5 Best College Football Bowl Predictions Against The Spread: December 17-18

5 best predictions against the spread for college football’s early bowl games – December 17th and 18th. Which games appear to be the best bets against the spread?

5 best predictions for college football bowl games – Friday, December 17 and Saturday, December 18. What games appear to be the best bets and the best picks?


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Bowl Game Predictions, Previews 
CFN Experts Picks: Bowls Dec 17-27
CFN Experts Picks: NFL 
Bowl Schedule, Game Previews
How Good Is Your Bowl? Ranking all 43

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Results So Far ATS: 84-63-2

Even in the best of times trying to bet on bowl games is tricky – teams get out of their respective regular season grooves. In 2020 it was impossible, and in 2021 it’s forget-about-it tough.

But they’re bowl games. You’re going to bet on them.

Trying to navigate through the opt-outs, coaching changes, and relative interest among the various teams, here are five of the best-looking investment opportunities for the first batch on Friday, December 17th and Saturday, December 18th.

Good luck and godspeed.

Click on each game for the preview

5. Coastal Carolina vs Northern Illinois: Tailgreeter Cure Bowl

LINE Coastal Carolina -11
ATS PICK Northern Illinois

How much do you believe that the regular season could carry over into the bowls? If you think that’s possible, then Northern Illinois shouldn’t have a problem covering this.

Those are a whole lot of points to be giving away to the champion of the MAC. Some might be freaked out by the late-season blowout loss to Western Michigan – NIU already had a spot in the MAC Championship wrapped up.

Northern Illinois is a badly flawed team in a whole lot of ways, and there’s reason to be concerned against an ultra-efficient, high-powered Coastal Carolina squad.

The Huskies don’t do much to pressure the backfield, they give up a whole lot of yards, and they don’t come up with enough takeaways or third down stops.

However, they’re great at dominating the time of possession, and they should be able to counteract what Coastal Carolina does by grinding and grinding some more.

The Chanticleers are more fun, more explosive, and more splashy on both sides of the ball, but they also struggled against mediocre team after mediocre team over the back half of the season.

The best win of the year was against … Kansas? Troy? You have as many wins over 2021 bowl teams as Coastal Carolina does.

That doesn’t mean the Sun Belt star can’t and won’t win this, and there’s a historical reason to think there could be a problem for Northern Illinois. The Huskies haven’t just lost their last six bowl games going back to the 2011 GoDaddy.com against Arkansas State; they’ve been annihilated in most of them.

This Northern Illinois is good at making teams play at its pace.

Now, if Toledo has problems in the Bahamas Bowl early on Friday and if Northern Illinois gets bombed on in this, avoid the MAC fast. But until that happens …

11 is a big number to be giving away here.

CFN Experts Picks: Bowls Dec 17-27

NEXT: College Football Pick Against The Spread No. 4 Oregon State vs Utah State: Jimmy Kimmel Bowl presented by Stifel

BYU vs UAB: Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl Prediction, Game Preview

BYU vs UAB: Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might or might not win.

BYU vs UAB: Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, Saturday, December 18


Date: Saturday, December 18
Game Time: 3:30 pm ET
Venue: Independence Stadium, Shreveport, LA
How To Watch: ABC, Live stream on ESPN+
Records: BYU (10-2), UAB (8-4))

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BYU vs UAB Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl Preview

Can BYU close strong with yet another impressive bowl win? Last season the Cougars ripped apart UCF 49-23 in the Boca Raton Bowl, and instead of needing to rebuild without quarterback Zach Wilson at quarterback and other lost parts, they were even better.

The 2021 Cougars went 5-0 against the Pac-12 – including a win over Pac-12 champion Utah – throttled Virginia, and took down eventual Mountain West champion Utah State.

The offense was efficient, the team dominated the turnover battle, and other than a two-game midseason stretch with losses to Boise State and to Big 12 champion Baylor – no shame there – the wins kept on piling up.

UAB came into the season loaded with experience and talent, and it showed with the best defense in Conference USA, mostly dominating against the run.

The Blazer offense was a bit inconsistent. There’s a good downfield passing attack, and the ground game was good against the mediocre teams, but overall there were too many key mistakes, lots of penalties, and it was a solid year even though the expectations were for a Conference USA championship.

Why BYU, UAB Will Win
Prediction, What’s Going To Happen, History
Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl Top Players To Know

NEXT: Why BYU Will Win, Why UAB Will Win, Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl Prediction

BYU vs USC Prediction, Game Preview

BYU vs USC prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

BYU vs USC prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 27


BYU vs USC How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 27
Game Time: 10:30 ET
Venue: Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, CA
How To Watch: ESPN
Record: BYU (9-2), USC (4-6)
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BYU vs USC Game Preview


Why BYU Will Win

There’s still an outside chance of BYU sliding on up into New Year’s Six bowl territory.

On a roll with the schedule lightening up at the end, the Cougars have been rolling with a passing game that’s gone off for well over 1,000 yards over the the last three games – and hit 300 yards in five of the last six games – and with a whole lot of other key parts working.

This team doesn’t beat itself. It doesn’t get hit with a lot of penalties, it doesn’t turn the ball over, and it all comes with the explosion with the offense able to turn the lights out fast.

USC is hammered by a whole slew of problems. It’s still giving the effort, but it’s not stopping anyone’s offense right now.

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 13

Why USC Will Win

There’s still a ton of talent here.

USC might be playing out the string of a lost season, but win this, beat Cal next week, and there’s at least a bowl game to play for and something fun for a team that had the unfair gut punch of a coaching change early on.

The passing game still works, even without star WR Drake London. Jaxson Dart threw for 325 yards in the loss to UCLA, the BYU secondary will give up yards to teams looking to bomb away, and for all of the overall problems and issues, USC still has the No. 1 offense in the Pac-12.

NFL Expert Picks, CFN Week 12

What’s Going To Happen

Once again, USC will play hard and come up with a push offensively, but BYU will be too balanced and too sharp.

Don’t think this really, really doesn’t matter to BYU – a win means a 5-0 season vs the Pac-12.

College Football Schedule: Week 13 Predictions, Lines

BYU vs USC Prediction, Lines

BYU 34, USC 26
Line: BYU -7, o/u: 64
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2.5

Must See Rating: 3.5

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1: “Why don’t we have Thanksgiving food the rest of the year?”

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Week 13 Schedule | CFN Expert Picks
Rankings CFP | AP | Coaches | CFN 1-130
8 Teams In Playoff Chase | Bowl Projections
Bowl Bubble | CFN NFL Expert Picks

BYU vs Georgia Southern Prediction, Game Preview

BYU vs Georgia Southern prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

BYU vs Georgia Southern prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 20


BYU vs Georgia Southern How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 20
Game Time: 4:00 ET
Venue: Allen E Paulson Stadium, Statesboro, GA
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: BYU (8-2), Georgia Southern (3-7)
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All of the CFN Fearless Predictions

BYU vs Georgia Southern Game Preview


Why BYU Will Win

It’s not that the Georgia Southern offense has totally stalled, but it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to.

This is a running team that’s been able to bring in the passing attack enough to balance things out, and it all worked against Texas State last week. However, the ground game that ripped it up over the first half of the season isn’t getting the job done – it failed to get to 170 yards in four of the last five games, and now it goes against a BYU run defense that’s rested and good.

It allowed under 100 yards in two of the last three games and gives up 146 yards or fewer on the year.

On the flip side, the Cougar offense has been a machine with over 1,300 yards and 125 points in the last two games.

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 12

Why Georgia Southern Will Win

Yeah, that passing game. It has to be good.

Justin Tomlin and Cam Ransom have combined to get things going over the last few games, but no matter what’s happening, the Eagles have to push the downfield plays a bit more and take some chances against the Cougar defense that will give up the occasional big play.

BYU doesn’t do a ton to get into the backfield when it’s not playing the awful teams – the Georgia Southern ground game should get a little time to work, too. There should be a little bit of balance, but …

NFL Expert Picks: CFN Week 11

What’s Going To Happen

BYU will come back from the break roaring – after a quarter.

The running game will get going right away with nothing crazy, but the breakthrough dashes will start coming after a few drives. The defense that started to wear down a bit – at least it did in the 66-49 win over Virginia – will overcome a few early Georgia Southern scores to dominate in the second half.

College Football Schedule: Week 12 Predictions, Lines

BYU vs Georgia Southern Prediction, Lines

BYU 38, Georgia Southern 14
Line: BYU -20, o/u: 57
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2.5

Must See Rating: 3

5: Tummyache Soak
1: Adele 30

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Rankings CFP | AP | Coaches | CFN 1-130
Bowl Projections | Heisman Race
College Football Playoff Chase, Who’s Alive?
Coach Hot Seat Top 10 | Bowl Bubble: Who’s In, Out

BYU vs Idaho State Prediction, Game Preview

BYU vs Idaho State prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

BYU vs Idaho State prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 6


BYU vs Idaho State How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 6
Game Time: 2:30 ET
Venue: LaVell Edwards Stadium, Provo, UT
How To Watch: ESPN3
Record: BYU (7-2), Idaho State (1-7)
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All of the CFN Fearless Predictions

BYU vs Idaho State Game Preview


Why Idaho State Will Win

The Bengals aren’t bad at staying in games early on.

They wear down late – the second half scoring isn’t there – but they need to control the clock just a little bit early on, try to tilt the field with their great punting game, and the need to take lots and lots of chances down the field.

The BYU secondary give up plenty of yards and big plays, which goes hand-in-hand with being bad on third downs, and …

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 10

Why BYU Will Win

Idaho State doesn’t score in the second half.

BYU will use this as a light scrimmage, but it’s going to keep thing simple with the running game going right away.

The Cougars ran for 238 yards against Washington State and rumbled for close to 400 yards in the win over Virginia. They’re going to run early on the bad Idaho State defense, they’ll get up fast, and the only drama will be whether or not the Cougar D allows any plays on its side of the field in the fourth quarter.

NFL Expert Picks, CFN Week 9

What’s Going To Happen

It’s the last home game of the year, and BYU will have some fun before going off to deal with Georgia Southern before closing out at USC.

The College Football Playoff committee won’t care about the style points in this, but they’ll be there.

College Football Schedule: Week 10 Predictions, Lines

BYU vs Idaho State Prediction, Lines

BYU 52, Idaho State 3
Line: BYU -35.5, o/u: 52.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 3

Must See Rating: 1

5: Belfast
1: Ghostbusters: Afterlife

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