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The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Cougars are too confident too soon

By Bryan Chouinard

There’s so much to like about September.

September marks the end of summer and welcomes the coming fall. The leaves start to change and slowly drop as the temperature begins to dip with each passing week. In the world of sports, September means the baseball regular season is coming to an end. As some eye the Fall Classic, others pack their bags for vacation. But more importantly, September means football season is here.

College campuses across the nation stir with anticipation and excitement because in September, everyone is undefeated. National championship hopes are high for some, others look to break into the Bowl Championship Series, and others strive simply for a winning season.

As sure as the change of the seasons, September brings with it something Cougar fans hold close to their hearts8212;the hope for another national championship.

It’s unfortunate for the Cougars that the National Championship has to be played in January, because if it were played in September, BYU would have more championships than just one. It’s even more unfortunate that it seems as though residents of Provo are the only ones who haven’t realized a champion isn’t crowned in the first month of the season.

Year in and year out, word rumbles up to Salt Lake City from the south that this is the year the Cougars will not only win a national championship, but be led to the promised land by a Heisman Trophy winner as well. This has never been so prevalent than in the past two seasons, as the Cougars have perpetually sat backseat to Utah and TCU, which have made legitimate runs to the BCS.

The 2008 season was anointed the “Quest For Perfection” for the Cougars. As early as September, overzealous Cougar supporters could be found donning “Quest” shirts and calling from the rooftops for Max Hall to win the Heisman. That lasted until week nine of the season, when the Cougars actually played a team that was ranked in the Top 25. After beating the likes of Wyoming, New Mexico, Utah State and Northern Iowa, the Cougars fell to the then-No. 24 TCU Horned Frogs in Fort Worth 32-7 and, in the blink of an eye, the quest was over.

BYU finished the season ranked No. 25 by The AP and lost back-to-back games to Utah and Arizona in the regular-season finale and the Las Vegas Bowl.
The perfect ending to a perfect quest.

Flash forward to Sept. 5, 2009. The Cougars are at the center of the college football world as they just knocked off the No. 3 Oklahoma Sooners in the newly opened Cowboys Stadium. But once again, less than a week into September, Cougar nation throws the remaining 11 games of its schedule to the wind and took to the streets to celebrate the successful season.

Following the win, YouTube was littered with videos of the celebration. BYU shot up in the rankings from No. 20 to No. 9, and fans again called for Max Hall to get the credit he deserved and be mentioned alongside Tim Tebow and Colt McCoy.

That lasted for two weeks before the Cougars promptly got throttled by the Florida State Seminoles, now 5-5, at home by a score of 54-28.

To be honest, I tip my hat to you, Cougar fans. Your optimism and positive outlook deserves to be admired. All I’m saying is wait until November and December to start talking big picture.

After all, the national champion is named in January, not September.

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