Aggies Bitten By Bulldogs, 31-21, Saturday
Oct. 27, 2007
LOGAN, Utah - Behind 14 third-quarter points, Louisiana Tech pulled away from a 10-7 halftime lead and Utah State could not recover as the Aggies were beaten by the Bulldogs, 31-21, Saturday afternoon in a Western Athletic Conference game at Romney Stadium.
La Tech improved to 3-5 overall and 2-3 in WAC play, while USU falls to 0-8 overall and 0-4. Utah State suffered its third straight loss to LTU in the series and the Bulldogs now lead the all-time series, 3-2.
LTU jumped out to a 10-0 lead after one quarter, but an 82-yard pass play from senior QB/P Leon Jackson III to redshirt-freshman FB Jacob Actkinson followed by the PAT by freshman K Peter Caldwell closed the gap to 10-7 with 9:02 showing on the second quarter clock.
The 82-yard pass play for TD was the longest in USU history since an 80-yard pass from Jose Fuentes to Kevin Curtis (currently of the Philadelphia Eagles) vs. New Mexico in 2002 and the 10th-longest pass play in USU history.
The Aggies had a chance to tie it at 10-all in the waning seconds of the first half, but Caldwell's 34-yard field goal attempt was blocked by La Tech's Dominique Faust and USU went into halftime trailing for the fifth time this season.
The Bulldogs bolted out of halftime, moving the ball and running the clock down like a dog gnawing on a bone, ringing up 235 yards of offense while holding the ball for 10:58 of the 15 minutes in the stanza and scoring two TD's.
Meanwhile, USU had just two yards of offense in 4:02, going three-and-out in its lone two full possessions of the quarter and the Aggies would have had zero yards for the quarter if not for a 2-yard rush by back-up QB, sophomore Jase McCormick on the last play of the period.
The Aggies tried to rally after a 2-yard TD plunge by freshman TB Curtis Marsh for his first career TD in a Utah State uniform to pull USU within 24-14 with 7:32 left in the game.
However, La Tech countered with a 31-yard run for a score by Daniel Porter, his second of the day.
Utah State added a TD with 2:17 remaining on a 19-yard TD pass from McCormick to senior WR/KR Kevin Robinson.
Robinson's TD reception was his 19th career TD catch, tying him for fourth on the USU career TD reception list with Kevin Curtis (2001-02) and Ken Thompson (1979-80). It was Robinson's 27th career TD and he moves into a tie for sixth on the Aggie career TD list with Rick Parros (1976-79).
With 179 all-purpose yards, Robinson now has 5,799 career all-purpose yards, leaving him 74 yards shy of breaking Emmett White's career all-purpose record of 5,872 yards (1998-2001).
For the game, La Tech had 518 yards of total offense on 288 rushing and 230 passing yards, marking the fifth time this season that the USU defense yielded over 500 yards of offense.
Utah State had 326 total yards of offense, with 220 passing and 106 rushing, marking the second game in a row the Aggies had 106 yards rushing.
Jackson ended with 9-of-12 passing for 127 yards and McCormick was 8-of-14 for 93 yards and each QB threw a TD.
McCormick led USU with 33 yards rushing, while Robinson had a team-leading six catches for 58 yards.
Defensively, sophomore SS James Brindley led Utah State with a career-high 11 tackles, followed by junior S Caleb Taylor and freshman LB Kyle Gallagher with 10 stops each. Taylor had a game-high two tackles for loss, while Gallagher had a forced fumble.
Next week, Utah State faces its second-straight Bulldog opponent when the Aggies head to Kevin Robinson's hometown of Fresno, Calif., to take on the Fresno State Bulldogs on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 3 p.m. (MT).
USU returns to Romney Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 10 for its home finale, hosting Boise State at 1 p.m.
All Utah State football games are carried on KVNU 610 AM and KLZX 95.9 FM in Logan; 1230 AM in Salt Lake City; on KLZX 105.3 FM in Montpelier, Idaho, and at www.UtahStateAggies.com through Yahoo! Sports.
Football tickets are available through the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, online at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clicking on "tickets" in left column, or by calling 1-888-U-STATE-1 or (435) 797-0305.
Utah State Football
--Utah State suffered its third straight loss to Louisiana Tech in the series and LTU now leads the all-time series, 3-2.
--USU head coach is now 2-4 vs. La Tech, including 0-3 as Utah State head coach.
--Utah State was led in rushing by a quarterback for the second game in a row after a running back led the team the previous six games.
--Senior WR/KR Kevin Robinson led the team in receiving for the seventh time.
--Senior LG Shawn Murphy, junior C Ryan Tonnemacher and junior S Caleb Taylor all made their team-leading 20th consecutive starts while sophomore LB Paul Igboeli made his 16th consecutive start and senior DE Carl Singleton made his 12th straight start.
--Louisiana Tech's score on its opening drive was the third game in a row and the fifth time this season that the opposition scored on its opening drive on the USU defense this season.
--Freshman K Peter Caldwell's 50-yard missed field goal attempt was a career-long attempt.
--After scoring in the first quarter in its previous three games, Utah State did not score in the opening stanza Saturday... It was the fifth time this season that the Aggies were scoreless in the first quarter.
--Senior QB Leon Jackson III's 82-yard pass play to redshirt-freshman Jacob Actkinson was a career-long pass for Jackson and a career-long catch for Actkinson... Actkinson had eight catches for only 61 yards on the season.
--The 97-yard drive was USU's longest of the season and the longest since at least 2002, topping a 96-yard drive vs. Idaho on Nov. 22, 2003.
--Junior S Joshua Taylor's interception at the end of the first half was his second of his career and first since his freshman season of 2005.
--Taylor's INT gave the Aggie defense a pick in six of the eight games... Taylor became the seventh different player with an oskie.
--Utah State trailed at halftime for the sixth time this season.
--Freshman RB Curtis Marsh scored his first career TD with a 2-yard plunge in the fourth quarter.
--USU was held scoreless in the third quarter for the second game in a row and the sixth time this season.
--Robinson's TD reception was his 19th career TD catch, tying him for fourth on the USU career TD reception list with Kevin Curtis (2001-02) and Ken Thompson (1979-80).
--It was Robinson's 27th career TD and he moves into a tie for sixth on the Aggie career TD list with Rick Parros (1976-79).
--Robinson's 179 all-purpose yards give him 5,799 career all-purpose yards, leaving him 74 yards shy of breaking Emmett White's career all-purpose record of 5,872 yards (1998-2001).
--Jackson's 127 yards passing give him 3,605 yards for his career, leaving him one yard short of tying John Pappas (1966-68) for 10th with 3,606 on the USU career passing list.
--With La Tech's Daniel Porter (22-139) and Patrick Jackson (14-101) both rushing for over 100 yards, they became the second tandem to accomplish that feat on the USU defense this season (Oklahoma).