BYU Cougars officially Independent in football

By Kevin Kelley -

The BYU Cougars are officially a Football Bowl Subdivision independent today. This is the first time in school history that they will compete without a conference affiliation in football.

BYU leaves behind the Mountain West, a conference they competed in from 1999 through 2010. They won the conference title in 2001, 2006 and 2007 and tied for a share of first in 1999.

In their 12th and final season in the Mountain West, the Cougars finished 7-6 overall, 5-3 in conference play and beat UTEP 52-24 in the New Mexico Bowl.

Prior to the MWC, the Cougars were members of the WAC for 38 years (1962-1998). BYU won or shared the conference title 19 times during that span.

Their first game as an independent is on Saturday, September 3 against Ole Miss. The game will be televised by ESPN at 4:45 p.m. ET. The following week, the Cougars travel to face the Texas Longhorns in Austin (7:00 p.m. ET; ESPN2).

The first home game for BYU as an independent is Saturday, September 17 against the Utah Utes (9:15 p.m. ET; ESPN2). Utah will be playing their first season as a member of the newly expanded Pac-12.

Another big game for the Cougars is on Friday, October 28 against the TCU Horned Frogs. That game will be played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas (8:00 p.m. ET; ESPN). Check out BYU’s 2011 football schedule for their complete slate of games.

For all other sports, BYU is now a member of the West Coast Conference. The WCC is a Division I, non-football conference consisting of private, faith based institutions.

Comments (3)

Would have been funny had it been official on July 4th….

Anyone who doubted the step to independence, just check how many ESPN games we have. And there are none on thursday, or wednesday or tuesday. Just two on Friday.

Go Cougs!