Troy (1-0) at No. 18 BYU (1-0)
- Kickoff: Saturday, 8:15 p.m. MDT
- Venue: LaVell Edwards Stadium (63,725; no fans permitted)
- Surface: Natural grass
- TV: ESPN
- Livestream: WatchESPN
- Radio: KSL 1160 AM/102.7 FM
- Series: First meeting
- Weather: Mostly clear skies with temperatures in the 60s at kickoff.
For Troy … The Trojans have beaten prominent programs on the road before. Troy upset No. 18 Louisiana State in 2017 and it knocked off Nebraska in 2018. This is another shot for the Trojans to make a national splash against a ranked opponent. Offensive coordinator Ryan Pugh is returning to Provo after spending one season as BYU’s offensive line coach in 2018.
For BYU … It’s been almost three weeks — after the postponement of the Army game — since the Cougars’ impressive 55-3 rout of Navy. Can BYU build on that momentum in its home opener at an LaVell Edwards Stadium devoid of fans? It’s the first college football game played this season west of Texas.
For Troy … The Trojans are looking to continue this season’s run of road success for the Sun Belt Conference. Louisiana beat No. 23 Iowa State, Arkansas State topped Kansas State and Coastal Carolina defeated Kansas.
For BYU … The Cougars are 13-7 in home openers since 2000. Troy is the seventh Group of Five team to face BYU in its home opener during that stretch. The Cougars are 6-0 in home openers against non-PowerFive opponents over the past two decades.
THE CRYSTAL BALL
Troy will win if … The Trojans make big plays through the air and force turnovers. The past couple of seasons, Troy has been one of the top teams in the nation in takeaways.
BYU will win if … The Cougars can get off to a quick start and impose their will against Troy, particularly on the offensive and defensive lines.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Gunnar Watson, Troy quarterback: The sophomore completed 26 of 37 passes for 248 yards with two touchdowns and one interception in last week’s season-opening 47-14 win over Middle Tennessee.
BYU’s defensive secondary vs. Troy’s wideouts: The Cougars will be facing an “Air Raid” type of offense after shutting down Navy’s triple-option attack on Sept. 7. The Trojans have a bevy of speedy playmakers that BYU will have to contain.
“We were excited to get off to a good start. It was probably the most complete game we’ve played in all three phases since I’ve been here. We’re excited for this opportunity to play a storied program like BYU.”
— Troy coach Chip Lindsey
“I’ve seen the gratitude of these young men in the way they carry themselves every day, and I don’t see it changing at all throughout the whole year. I mean, these guys consistently appreciate everything. They don’t take things for granted and that’s part of being honest and loving, including in practice.”
— BYU coach Kalani Sitake
BYU hosts Louisiana Tech Oct. 2 while Troy visits South Alabama Oct. 3.
Sept. 7 — BYU 55, Navy 3
Sept. 19 — at Army (POSTPONED)
Sept. 26 — Troy (8:15 p.m., ESPN)
Oct. 2 — Louisiana Tech (7 p.m., ESPN2)
Oct. 10 — UTSA (TBA, TBA)
Oct. 16 — at Houston (7:30 p.m., ESPN2)
Oct. 24 — Texas State (TBA, TBA)
Oct. 31 — Western Kentucky (TBA, TBA)
Nov. 21 — Northern Alabama (TBA, TBA)
All times MT