BYU Athletics Blog | December 2010 | Officially Home of Cougar Club

BYU Athletics Blog | December 2010

New Mexico Bowl - Day 3

Dec 17, 2010 - Posted by Jordan Christiansen at 11:19 pm | Updated: May 2, 2011 3:35 pm | Permalink

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Dec. 17, 2010) - As the BYU football team comes ever closer to kicking off the New Mexico Bowl against UTEP tomorrow, the Cougars participated in the final bowl festivities on Friday.

BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall and team captains Andrew Rich and Matt Reynolds preceded the team to the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino to participate in a press conference which included UTEP head coach Mike Price and the UTEP captains.

Following the press conference, the trio joined up with their teammates and the rest of the BYU travel party, including wives and staff members, to participate in the Kickoff Luncheon. The UTEP contingent also joined in with New Mexico Bowl Executive Director Jeff Siembieda emceeing the event.

After everyone was seated, each school's band came into the hall and took turns playing, including both university fight songs, complete with cheerleaders and mascots.

The group then enjoyed lunch as Siembieda and others, including Coach Mendenhall, said a few words.

The Cougars returned to the hotel for a quick respite before going to the University of New Mexico's campus for a brief walk through as final preparation for the game. Chad Lewis and several players joined the band and cheer squad with fans at the Pep Rally as well.

BYU ended the evening with its traditional fireside where BJ Peterson, Jameson Frazier and Coach Mendenhall spoke. Travis Uale and his wife, Mata, performed a musical number as did Walter Kahaiali'i.

A visit from Santa Claus at the hotel ended the busy day for the Cougars, all set to face UTEP at noon tomorrow live on ESPN.

New Mexico Bowl - Day 2

Dec 16, 2010 - Posted by Jordan Christiansen at 10:18 pm | Updated: May 2, 2011 3:35 pm | Permalink

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Dec. 16, 2010) - The BYU football team had another enjoyable day in Albuquerque on Thursday.

The Cougars practiced again for an hour to begin the day, this time with a steady rain taking the place of the wind from the day before.

BYU players and coaches traveled to the Santa Ana Star in the evening for dinner and games. First, the Cougars played a variation of Family Feud with rounds featuring members of the BYU offense, defense and coaching staff.

The offensive team of Terence Brown, Rhen Wilson, Bryan Kariya, Cody Hoffman and Riley Nelson slipped behind early but rallied to win the triple-point round to finish on top, 291-288.

The defense, including Andrew Rich, Corby Eason, Carter Mees, Collin Keoshian and Travis Tuiloma pushed the lead to 691-488 after which the coaches, including Kelly Poppinga, Nick Howell, Brandon Doman, Patrick Hickman and Mark Weber dominated to give BYU a 981-713 win.

Following the game, the Cougars and Miners went upstairs for some bowling. After playing a game, BYU's team of Jake Heaps, Jason Speredon, Riley Stephenson, Brandon Brown and Tom Steele competed against UTEP in a bowl-off. The team finished with a score of 121, including two spares from Stephenson, but the lone strike of the contest helped UTEP sneak to the win with a score of 125.

A huge snowstorm pounding the state and closing schools that began in the late afternoon continued into the evening as the team once again returned to hotel for games and more food before going to bed.

Friday the team will participate in the Kickoff Luncheon, a final team walk-through and then a fireside.

New Mexico Bowl - Day 1

Dec 15, 2010 - Posted by Jordan Christiansen at 8:57 pm | Updated: May 2, 2011 3:35 pm | Permalink

Click to watch the video.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Dec. 15, 2010) – The BYU football team enjoyed its first day of New Mexico Bowl activities on Wednesday as the team arrived in Albuquerque, practiced, and joined UTEP for dinner and the announcement of the winner of the Chile Bowl cook-off.

After an initial delay on the tarmac in Salt Lake City waiting for the plane to be de-iced, the Cougars and company took off early this morning, landing in Albuquerque a little more than an hour later.

Upon arriving at the hotel, the party was greeted with an authentic mariachi band outside the front doors and the Cougar Fight Song proudly sounding down the halls inside, a welcome greeting provided by New Mexico Bowl representatives to the players, coaches, staff and their families.

The team had enough time to put down their bags and eat a quick lunch before getting back on the buses and traveling to nearby Manzano High School for practice. Despite warm temperatures just an hour before, a constant wind made things increasingly chilly during the approximately 80-minute run-through. Afterward, the team returned to the hotel to get ready for dinner at the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum, which sits adjacent to the grounds used for the city’s annual hot air balloon fiesta, the largest hot air balloon festival in the world, drawing around 750 hot air balloons every October.

While both BYU and UTEP enjoyed dinner, the winner of the New Mexico Bowl’s annual El Pinto Chile Bowl was announced. A video was shown of each team preparing its own chili after which three local judges, including Miss New Mexico, were shown testing each team’s end result.

Provided with a recipe provided by strength and conditioning coach Jay Omer’s wife, BYU’s team of Brandon Bradley, Brandon Ogletree, Jason Speredon and Richard Wilson helped the Cougars take home the El Pinto Chile Bowl plate for the best chile. The four-man team cooked the chile a few days before in the kitchens of Ruby River Steakhouse, using a spicy combination to beat out the UTEP's entry. BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall accepted the award from Dave “The Pope of Peppers” DeWitt, the world’s foremost authority on chile peppers who has authored more than 30 books on the subject.

BYU was happy to win the friendly competition and hopes to change the fortunes of past Chile Bowl winners as none of the previous four victors went on to win the actual bowl game in the four-year history of the event.

To end the night, members of the team enjoyed the hospitality room by playing video games, eating, watching television and socializing.'s Weekly Watch

Dec 13, 2010 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 10:51 pm | Updated: May 2, 2011 3:35 pm | Permalink

BYU men's basketball and Jimmer Fredette received plenty of recognition in the current Weekly Watch from

Look for the Cougars under More teams that impressed us, Other contenders for national POW, The week in quotes, Observations from the week that was and Places to be this week.

Thursday's Hero - Devin Jensen

Dec 10, 2010 - Posted by Carey Hoki at 9:19 am | Permalink

Devin Jensen was killed in a car accident following the BYU-Utah game just two weeks ago. He and his sister were taking a friend home after watching the game at their house, when they lost control of the car.

The second oldest of six children, Devin was a junior at Bear River high School where he was a letter-winner on the football team. He was very involved in student government and earned his Eagle Scout award.

Devin and his family attended the New Mexico game earlier this season. He enjoyed standing in the tunnel pregame, watching the team run out onto the field.

To read more about Devin go to