Biggest Reason BYU Went Independent Was to Spread Mormon Faith

BYU was one of several college football teams to change conferences this offseason. Colorado and Utah joined the Pac-12, Nebraska became the 12th team in the appropriately-named Big Ten, and BYU decided to go Independent. For many people, the reasons why they went Independent was uncertain. Was it for more exposure? For monetary purposes? To be able to pick and choose their football schedule? It could be all of those reasons, but the biggest reason is religion.

As Jay Drew of The Salt Lake Tribune tweeted Tuesday at BYU’s media day, football coach Bronco Mendenhall said “the biggest reason for BYU going independent in football is ‘exposure for the LDS Church.'”

“LDS Church” is short for Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the Mormon church established by Brigham Young. They’re trying to go national to gain more exposure for the religion, and the football team is a vehicle to spread their faith. So long as their honor code doesn’t get in the way again, they should be all set. Or maybe the athletes should just follow the Jim McMahon plan to avoid trouble.

Around The Web

  • http://www.facebook.com/terrie.bittner Terrie Lynn Bittner

    First, Brigham Young was the second leader of the church, not the first. The first was Joseph Smith.  BYU is no different than any other college–they want their football teams nationally known because it’s good for the school and their football team. As for the church wanting to go national–it’s a little late for that. There are Mormons in every state in the country and in most countries of the world. There are, according to Pew Foundation, about as many Mormons as there are Jewish people. I’m Mormon and not in Utah–I’m in Philadelphia and there are a lot of us here.

  • Stian French


  • Joshua Dunn

    You take a tweet made by a newspaper-writer that offhandedly quotes a college football coach to back this article. Good night! Your “nine years of professional sports media experience” hasn’t really done much for ya, huh?

  • http://larrybrownsports.com Larry Brown

    Get lost, clown, nobody wants you here

  • Anonymous

    Fact checking is a lost art apparently.