By Brian Carlson
The BYU rugby team was planning to end its fall season with a breather against Utah Valley State College, but the Cougars got a call earlier last week that changed plans.
BYU head coach Dave Smyth accepted a challenge from the University of Nevada Reno to face off Friday, Nov. 9, before the Cougars compete against the UVSC Wolverines on Saturday, Nov. 10.
BYU matches up against Nevada Reno tonight on Haws field at 7:30 p.m. and UVSC on Saturday on Haws field at 1 p.m.
Forward Mike Gertz said the University of Nevada Reno Wolf Pack seemed confident in a victory over the Cougars.
“We”ll be more than happy to humble them,” Gertz said.
The challenge for the Cougars won”t be if they have the talent to do it, but just how they will do it, Smyth said.
“We don”t know what we”re up against,” Smyth said.
This will be the first and only time the Cougars square up against Nevada Reno in the fall.
Smyth said the Wolf Pack plays in the same league with power teams like Stanford University and No. 1 University of California.
“We have work to do on Friday,” Smyth said. “We got to go out and execute our style of rugby.”
Smyth said the Cougars run an open style of rugby that relies on swinging the ball behind to the backs to score.
So far it has paid off.
The Cougars have gone undefeated this fall, beating their opponents by an average of 35 points per game.
The team posted its largest margin of victory against Oregon State University, shutting out the Beavers 83-0.
BYU is ranked 2nd in the nation.
Gertz said he feels the key to overpowering the Wolf Pack is continuing to work together as a team.
“When we work together as a team, with the talent that we have, we”re unstoppable,” Gertz said.
Last year against UVSC, the Cougars showed just what kind of damage they could do, whomping the Wolverines 72-7.
This year Smyth said he looks to use the UVSC game as an opportunity to give his starters a rest.
“We”ll probably play our junior varsity against them,” Smyth said.
He said he wants to keep everybody healthy and fresh when play resumes in February.
Sophomore John Blaser is pumped for the Cougars” final two fall games.
“It”s definitely exciting to get that last chance to play this semester and get a jump for the winter semester,” Blaser said.