BYU will play the rest of the 2014 season without one of its top offensive players, again. Running back Jamaal Williams will miss the final three games of the season after injuring his knee against Middle Tennessee State.
BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall said Williams will undergo surgery on Tuesday for significant injuries. Mendenhall confirmed the injury will keep Williams out for the rest of the season. The injury to Williams occurred late in the third quarter of BYU’s victory over Middle Tennessee. Nate Carter has been listed behind Williams on the depth chart, but it is unconfirmed now who will step up to replace Williams out of the backfield for BYU.
Williams was BYU’s leading rusher with 518 yards. He had been tasked with carrying the load of the offense since the injury to quarterback Taysom Hill, who was lost for the season with a broken leg in early October. At 5-4, BYU is one win shy of clinching its spot in the Miami Beach Bowl. As long as BYU can clinch bowl eligibility, the Cougars have a spot reserved in the new bowl game. BYU should be able to get at least one more win with three remaining games against UNLV, Savannah State and California.
Sure, it was just a spring scrimmage, but BYU quarterback Taysom Hill passed for three touchdowns and 307 yards Saturday in Provo. He also added 48 rushing yards on nine attempts, providing a glimpse of more of what to expect from the Cougars quarterback this fall.
Hill was locked into the starting role for BYU heading into the 2014 season, but the competition for the top back-up was settled Saturday as well. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall confirmed that job will go to senior Christian Stewart, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
“Christian Stewart is next,” Mendenhall said. “He’s a much stronger runner than thrower, currently. However, he is a capable thrower. So, for him and for me, we’re at peace and happy with where we need to be.”
BYU’s offense recorded four touchdowns and a pair of field goals during the 90-minute session. Hill led the offense for 11 out of 19 drives and completed 19 of 27 pass attempts. Nate Carter was the leading rusher with 61 yards and a touchdown. The offense was far from perfect. Jordan Egbert, DJ Doman, Garrett Jurgens, Jherremya Leuta-Douyere, and Skye PoVey all recorded sacks and the defenses forced three turnovers with a pair of fumbles and an interception.