100 days to kickoff — breaking down the 2019 football schedule

Abigail Keenan
Zach Wilson adds to his 204 passing yards in a loss to Utah on Nov. 24, 2018. (Abigail Keenan)

BYU football has one of the toughest schedules in the NCAA over the first four weeks of the season; the Cougars are the only team in the nation to open the season with four straight Power 5 games. In addition to its strong schedule to start the season, BYU will also play Utah State and Boise State, two teams that were nationally ranked during the 2018 season.

BYU is set to play six road games in 2019. These games will take place in all four time zones: one game in Central Time (Tennessee), one game in Pacific Time (San Diego), one game in Mountain Time (Utah State) and three games in Eastern Time (Ohio, USF and UMASS). The total travel distance for these six roads games from Lavell Edwards Stadium to the opposing stadiums is over 9,000 miles. USF will be most distant, forcing BYU to travel over 2,300 miles.

The teams that BYU will play in 2019 had a combined 2018 season record of 87-65, outscoring opponents 4,770-4,155. BYU’s opponents had a combined total of 2,396 points scored against them during their 65 losses, averaging 36.9 points given up per team, per loss. Separating the Power 5 and the 2018 ranked teams from the rest of the pack, these teams allowed an average of 31.2 points per loss last season.

Two of the teams BYU is set to face in 2019 are currently ranked — No. 13 Utah and No. 12 Washington. These two teams averaged 28.8 points per win last season while giving up an average of just 24.3 points per loss. These two squads had 19 passing touchdowns each while averaging 227.1 passings yards and 12.34 yards per completion.

As a whole, BYU’s 2019 opponents recorded an average of 249.3 passing yards per game while also averaging 23 passing touchdowns during the 2018 season. The Cougars’ schedule will feature three teams that were ranked in the top 20 in passing yards per game: UMASS (14), Utah State (17) and Boise State (18). These three teams averaged 30 passing touchdowns last season.

On defense, BYU’s 2019 opponents allowed their opponents an average of 396.4 yards per game of total offense. The Cougars will face three teams that were among the top 25 defenses in yards allowed per game during the 2018 season — Washington (12), Utah (14) and San Diego (21). In addition to these three teams, two more of BYU’s opponents — Boise State (39) and Tennessee (49) — were among the top 50 defenses in yards allowed per game.

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