Besides the struggles the BYU offense has faced over the last few weeks, which include putting points on the board, converting third down attempts and other key areas, there has been a bright spot on the offense. That is the play of wide receiver Cody Hoffman, one of the nation’s leaders in college football.
Currently, Hoffman is 17th in the nation in receptions this season with 49 catches for 620 yards and three touchdowns.
However, over the last three weeks, stretching the span of games played from Oct. 4 through Oct. 20, Hoffman is tied for second in the nation in receptions and fifth in receiving yards among those top players. He’s had 26 receptions for 302 yards and a touchdown catch, which came in Saturday’s close loss to Notre Dame.
BYU isn’t a leader in passing offense this year, either. In fact, of the teams that make up the top 17 spots in receptions, BYU ranks dead last in passing yards per game at 76th in the country, while the other teams have an average position inside the top 30, including three teams in the top 10: Marshall, West Virginia and Louisiana Tech.
The only player of the top 17 who has more receptions during the three-week span is Quinton Patton of Louisiana Tech, who has 34, including a 21-catch game two weeks ago.
The receivers in Hoffman’s company aren’t unknowns in college football. They include Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey from West Virginia, Marqise Lee of University of Southern California, DeAndre Hopkins of Clemson and Keenan Allen of California, among others.
Hoffman is still a contender for the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation’s top wide receiver at the end of the season. BYU has never had a winner in that category, and Hoffman is the first player to be named to the watch list since Austin Collie in 2008.
Whether Hoffman gains momentum in the race or more pass-heavy offenses take the limelight, the fact remains that Hoffman has emerged as one of the nation’s top receivers in his junior season.