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BYU football: Five reasons Stanford receiver Keanu Nelson transfer makes sense

Stanford wide receiver Keanu Nelson.
Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

When it was announced officially on Monday, April 7 that Stanford receiver Keanu Nelson would join the Cougars for his senior year of eligibility as a graduate student, every Cougar fan probably screamed at their computer screen.

Why? It’s simple, really. The BYU football team’s depth chart at quarterback reads like a “See Taysom Hill Run” book you’d give to your three-year-old. In other words, it’s Hill and then … nobody.

It’s an easy read for any BYU fan. If Hill goes down to an injury, you have a senior, Christian Stewart, who has played in exactly one game during his career -- which was interrupted by a church mission and then time at Snow College.

There is also junior college transfer, Nick Kurtz, who received pats on the helmet from BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall during spring practices.

After that, there is simply “See Taysom Run. Run Taysom, Run” in BYU’s crystal ball forecast. But bringing in another wide receiver does make sense -- especially when that player is a threat to be a game breaker every time he touches the ball.

Also, BYU's wide receiving corps was hit hard by graduation -- and one player running out of his eligibility in particular is the main reason Nelson has decided to join the Cougars.

Here are five reasons why BYU brought in Stanford wide receiver Keanu Nelson instead of a QB.

Cody Hoffman
Cody Hoffman Stacy Revere

Cody Hoffman

Hoffman is now gone to the NFL presumably -- where he’s expected to be a second-round draft pick. BYU will miss his 894 yards of receiving, not to mention his five touchdowns and experience.

Losing Hoffman means BYU’s offense will now need to make up two-thirds of its passing offense with someone else. Hoffman was also BYU’s No. 2 punt returner last season.

In his stead will be 6-3 UTEP transfer receiver Jordan Leslie, who had over 1,000 yards receiving for the Miners in 2012.

Skyler Ridley
Skyler Ridley George Frey

Skyler Ridley

For similar reasons as Hoffman, Ridley will be missed as well at wide receiver. He has also run out of eligibility.

However, it is expected that Oregon and Riverside (Calif.) College transfer Ashanti Blackmon Leslie will fill a similar role to Ridley’s this fall.

Ross Apo
Ross Apo George Frey

Ross Apo

Apo is currently on the BYU football team roster as a senior -- but even when he’s there he really isn’t. Apo’s career at BYU started bright enough -- but has since devolved.

As every year goes by, his yardage is less. At the rate he’s going -- his yardage is dropping 100 yards for every year he’s at the school -- he’ll have about 100 yards receiving this fall.

Adam Hine
Adam Hine Mike McGinnis

Adam Hine

Hine is BYU’s deep threat at kick returns -- but what happens to that area of expertise if the junior running back from Santa Clara, Utah goes down to an injury?

Hine had 893 yards last year, at a impressive 27.3 yards per return average.

JD Falslev
JD Falslev Gene Sweeney Jr

JD Falslev

Falslev will be missed for his receiving yards (329 to be exact) but where BYU will really miss him is in the punt return game where he had 253 yards and one electrifying touchdown against Middle Tennessee.

He will be sorely missed in that area alone -- as well as in special teams, both areas in which Nelson thrives.

The No. 1 reason Nelson has come to BYU is that Falslev has run out of eligibility, period.

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