Five players to watch during BYU-UTSA matchup

BYU Football is looking to go 4-0 for the first time since 2014 in the Cougars’ first-ever meeting with the University of Texas at San Antonio Roadrunners on Saturday, Oct. 10.

BYU is atop the FBS leaderboard for point differential with a +124 point differential through three games. Here are five players to watch as BYU seeks to continue its hot streak.

1. Zach Wilson (#1) – Quarterback (BYU)

Though the Cougars’ success can be attributed to more than just their quarterback, Zach Wilson is receiving all sorts of national attention after three weeks of near-perfect play.

Through three games, Wilson has as many touchdown passes (11) as he does incompletions (11).

“We are watching one of the best college football players in the country,” 1989 Heisman Trophy winner and college football analyst Andre Ware said of Wilson.

Wilson is now in the running to join Ware as a recipient of the Heisman Trophy – ranked fifth in the latest poll by PFF football. Wilson has completed 84.5% (60-of-71) of total pass attempts through three games.

Robert Griffin III (2011) is the only quarterback to have a better completion percentage through three games than Wilson. Griffin III won the Heisman Trophy that season while playing for Baylor.  

2. Gunner Romney (#18) – Wide Receiver (BYU)

Junior wide receiver Gunner Romney is coming off of his third consecutive 100-yard game this season. Cody Hoffman – BYU’s all-time receiving yards leader – was the last Cougar to have 100-plus receiving yards in three consecutive games.

BYU offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes named Romney the offensive player of the week against LA Tech, explaining that he played like, “the type of player we all felt he could be.”

Romney averages 124.3 receiving yards per game in 2020, the fourth most of any player in the country. 

3. Tyler Batty (#92) – Defensive Line (BYU)

True freshman Tyler Batty has garnered four sacks in three games for the Cougars, tied for the most nationally among all freshman this season. Batty recorded a career-high three sacks against LA Tech on Oct. 2. The defensive end said he was “happy, but not content,” following his performance against the Bulldogs.

BYU defensive coordinator Ilaisia Tuiaki selected the freshman as BYU’s defensive player of the game against LA Tech, saying, “He’s tough as nails. He’s got a motor. He brings a lot to the table.” 

4. Frank Harris (#0) – Quarterback (UTSA) 

The Roadrunners starting quarterback, Frank Harris, has been hampered by injury this season and was benched moments before kickoff in UTSA’s matchup last week against the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). 

Harris is a dynamic quarterback who signed with UTSA despite having offers from the likes of Baylor, Georgia Tech, and UCF. Harris is a threat in the air and on the ground. He had a total of four touchdowns, including three rushing and one passing, in the Roadrunners’ season opener against Texas State.

If Harris does not take the field on Saturday, the Cougars can expect to see Lowell Narcisse. The former four-star LSU quarterback transferred to UTSA after an unsuccessful start in Death Valley, but the dual-threat quarterback is not to be overlooked during the Roadrunners’ visit to Provo this weekend. 

5. Sincere McCormick (#3) – Running Back (UTSA)

The Roadrunners’ sophomore running back is the primary threat in a run-heavy offense that the Cougars will look to stifle early on with their dominant defensive line, featuring the aforementioned Tyler Batty and senior Khyiris Tonga.

McCormick has rushed for a total of 527 yards and four touchdowns through four games, including a season-high 197 rushing yards in a double-overtime win against Texas State. 

McCormick is joined by Brenden Brady in the Roadrunners backfield. Though both running backs are very capable of getting on the score sheet, McCormick will more than likely do most of the heavy lifting against the Cougars. 

The game is scheduled to kick-off at 1:30 p.m. MST on Saturday, Oct. 10. The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN2. 

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