Can BYU replace Taysom Hill under center?
Despite a come-from-behind victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers in Lincoln, BYU will once again look to their depth at quarterback to replace Taysom Hill after a season-ending foot injury. Following a 21-yard scamper that culminated in a second-quarter touchdown, Hill grimaced in pain at the end of the run.
Exactly 11 months ago, Hill was injured when a Utah State defender pulled him down from behind and horrifically twisted his left leg. He missed the remainder of the season after that Week 6 leg fracture required surgery to insert eight screws and a plate to repair the damage.
Prior to that injury, Hill had done enough on the ground to record the fifth-best PFF run rating (88.0) in the country on 353 total snaps. Hill fell short of matching that success through the air, scoring the 68th-best PFF passer rating of 71.3. His desire to keep plays alive led to a high sack percentage of 22.1 and a 3.13 time-to-throw average in 2014. Hill earned a positive +1.1 grade for his efforts against Nebraska, including a +1.1 grade as a runner.
QB Tanner Mangum came on in relief of Hill, after today’s injury, and proceeded to post 7-of-11 passing for 111 yards and a game-winning 42-yard hail mary pass to WR Mitch Matthews. Mangum was a highly-touted player out of high school who earned co-MVP honors at the Elite 11 in 2013 — along with QB Jameis Winston — and provides BYU with plenty of reason for optimism — he earned a -0.7 grade in his limited action Saturday, but should be able to improve upon that as the season progresses and he settles into a starting role.