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In want of offensive spark, BYU will begin backup quarterback towards WVU

MORGANTOWN — The BYU Cougars have been sputtering on offense in latest weeks and this week towards WVU, they’ll have to show to their backup quarterback.

As reported by The Salt Lake Tribune Friday morning, BYU (5-3, 2-3) will begin junior Jake Retzlaff rather than Kedon Slovis, who’s coping with accidents, towards WVU (5-3, 3-2).

Regardless of going 2-2 of their final 4 video games, the Cougars haven’t put up greater than 300 yards of offense since Sept. 23 towards Kansas. 

“We’ve received to get there. It doesn’t actually matter the way it will get finished,” BYU coach Kalani Sitake mentioned earlier this week. “I believe there’s quite a lot of methods to getting it finished, but it surely’s go time now. It’s been go time, however the way in which that we’ve been doing it hasn’t been working the way in which that I need it to.”

Slovis, who discovered his method to Provo, Utah this summer season by means of Pitt, transferred this offseason after spending 2022 because the Panthers’ starter. He, too, had struggled recently, not topping 200 passing yards in BYU’s final three video games whereas throwing extra interceptions (three) than touchdowns (two) in that span.

Slovis beat WVU in final yr’s Yard Brawl, throwing for 308 yards and a landing within the 38-31 Panther victory.

Retzlaff will reportedly step into the beginning function towards the Mountaineers (7 p.m./FOX). He’s a junior faculty switch who has been redshirting this season. He was ranked as the highest JUCO quarterback recruit this offseason after passing for 4,596 and 44 touchdowns in 2022 at Riverside Metropolis School.

Within the Cougars’ offense, he’ll have receivers Chase Roberts and Darius Lassiter to throw to. The duo has mixed for 61 receptions 806 yards and eight touchdowns. 

True freshman LJ Martin is the group’s main rusher with 465 yards and 4 scores. He ran for 93 yards on 10 carries final week towards Texas. The Cougars have been only operating the ball not too long ago, averaging 112 yards per sport over their final three contests.

“Greater than something, we’ve received to give attention to what we’ve received to do first,” Sitake mentioned. “I believe there are issues we have to do inside ourselves and our system that we will management greater than about having to fret about the rest.”

WVU’s protection is in search of a return to its early-season type following a disappointing outing towards Houston and a fourth-quarter collapse towards Oklahoma State two weeks in the past.

“We have to redeem ourselves after the fourth quarter towards Oklahoma State,” WVU coach Neal Brown mentioned. “Trying ahead to getting again in entrance of our residence followers.”

The Mountaineers confirmed constructive indicators throughout final week’s win over UCF, forcing 4 turnovers and solely permitting 27 dashing yards after halftime.

“They’re bodily, you possibly can inform that their group is used to contact,” Sitake mentioned of WVU’s protection. “They’re powerful guys and I’m wanting ahead to the matchup. I respect what they do and so they make the most of their expertise actually, very well.”

That is simply the second-ever assembly between WVU and BYU and their first as convention foes. The Mountaineers received their first matchup 35-32 in a impartial website sport at FedEx Discipline in 2016.

Howley Honored

Corridor of Fame linebacker Chuck Howley will likely be immortalized inside Milan Puskar Stadium through the sport as his No. 66 will likely be retired and positioned on the facade together with 5 different Mountaineer greats.

“One of many best gamers that’s ever performed right here,” Brown mentioned.

Howley, who was inducted into the Professional Soccer Corridor of Fame this summer season, performed for the Mountaineers from 1954-57 earlier than shifting on to the Dallas Cowboys of the NFL.

“When he was getting inducted into the (Professional Soccer) Corridor of Fame final summer season I noticed a (former Dallas Cowboys coach) Tom Landy quote that he may’ve been one of the best soccer participant he ever coached,” Brown mentioned. “That’s every little thing that must be mentioned about that.”