Recapturing the Rivalry: Reflections on the Holy War

For me, it all started in 2006. I was eight years old and watching the BYU vs Utah game. This was my first time ever watching a BYU game, and I was immediately captivated. The famous John Beck to Jonny Harline throw has been lodged in my memory forever. This is where it all started for me. I have been a die hard Cougar fan ever since, the highlight of each season being the Utah game.

Jonny Harline

Being a BYU fan is the greatest thing ever in my opinion, especially right now! BYU has so many things going for them! Everything from more top recruits coming, the ESPN deal, scheduling harder teams, new exciting offense, and a dominating defense, the Cougars are definitely headed in the right direction.

However, in the post-Max Hall era there are two expectations I have, which have never come to pass: Having a good quarterback, and beating Utah. The jury is still out on Taysom Hill, and I desperately hope that this week he will repeat a Texas-like performance, and not a Virginia performance. I am a high school sophomore and will graduate in 2016. I then depart for a two year mission soon after. If BYU loses this Saturday, I’m going to have a bad taste in my mouth for the next five years.

My favorite BYU-Utah game? The game made infamous by Max Hall’s anger-filled comments toward the University of Utah. Most people would probably say the 2006 game, but I don’t remember much from that game. Overtime in 2009 was magical. The perfect senior night for some of the best to ever play at BYU. Max Hall’s perfect pass to Andrew George in double-coverage will forever be in my top 5 BYU moments of all time; actually, make that my number 1 memorable moment! As I watched the crowd storm the field, unable to contain their excitement, I yearned so much to be out there with them.

In hopes that this year will create a similar memory, here is how I want the game to end: After a close game, it’s tied in the fourth, two minutes to go, BYU ball on the ten yard line, and no timeouts. Ninety yards to victory. Jamaal Williams has a big run on first getting them to the 20 yard line. After a couple of ineffective quick outs, and Jamaal hand-offs, it’s fourth and two. They go read option, Taysom keeps it and scampers for 20 yards. Now at the 40 yard line with 1 minute to go, Taysom fakes the QB draw and goes deep to Hoffman! Similar to last year’s big throw from Nelson to Hoffman.

Following the 30 yard Hill to Hoffman reception, there is only time for a couple plays left, but because of the coaches lack of confidence in Taysom’s arm, they decide to kick a field goal. Justin Sorenson trots on the field, with memories of last year haunting everyone’s mind. He drills it and redeems himself from last year’s disaster! BYU wins in a thriller!

Now that I have fantasized about what I want to happen, let me just say that I don’t care how it happens, I just want a win. I think it would be cool if Sorenson made a kick because I feel bad for what happened last year. The blue goggled fan in me is hard to hide. Putting that aside, I honestly can’t see BYU losing this year. The seniors will do whatever is needed to not go 0-4 against Utah.

Hopefully the royal blue throwback uni’s will bring the same magic and excitement they did in 2009 against Utah!

What’s your favorite Holy War moment? Sound off in the comments below!

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