Nov. 17, 2013
LOGAN, Utah -
COLORADO STATE at UTAH STATEWHAT TO WATCH FOR...
GAME ELEVEN INFORMATION Date: Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013 Kickoff: 1:30 p.m. (MT) Location: Logan, Utah Stadium: Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium (25,513) Series: CSU leads, 36-31-2 TV: CBS Sports Network Dave Ryan (Play-by-Play) Adam Archuleta (Analyst) Evan Washburn (Reporter) Radio: Utah State Sports Network Al Lewis (Play-by-Play) Craig Hislop (Analyst) Live Stats: UtahStateAggies.com Twitter Updates: /USUFootball YouTube: /USUAthletics Facebook: /USUFootball Tickets: 1-888-USTATE-1
Utah State is in its 116th season of football and is 512-512-31 (.500) all-time. USU has nine nationally televised games on ABC, ESPN, CBS Sports Network and Fox Sports 1 in 2013 and two more that will be broadcast regionally on ROOT SPORTS.
With its 28-24 win at UNLV on Nov. 9, Utah State is bowl eligible for the third-straight year. USU has never gone to three-straight bowl games and has played in back-to-back bowl games just three times in school history (1946-47, 1960-61, 2011-12).
Utah State has won 16 of its last 17 league games dating back to 2011, and won a school record 13 straight conference games before falling to Boise State, 34-23, on Oct. 12, 2013.
Utah State has won 10 of its last 12 home games overall and six of its last seven home games against conference foes. Overall, USU is 122-98 (.555) all-time at Romney Stadium.
Utah State has won 22 of its last 29 games overall, starting with its 35-31 road win at Hawai'i on Nov. 5, 2011 and those seven losses during its last 29 games have been by a combined 41 points as it lost to Ohio (24-23) in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, at No. 22 Wisconsin (16-14) and at BYU (6-3) in 2012, and at Utah (30-26), at USC (17-14), against BYU (31-14) and against Boise State (34-23) in 2013.
Utah State has won nine straight games and 11 of its last 12 overall during the month of November. The last time USU lost a game in November was during the 2011 season at home to Idaho, 28-6. USU is also 5-3-0 all-time in known games played on Nov. 23.
True freshman quarterback Darell Garretson will make his fourth career start against Colorado State and is one of just 21 true freshmen at the FBS level to start at quarterback this year. Garretson is the first freshman quarterback in USU history to win his first three starts, and ranks second all-time behind Adam Kennedy who won his first four career starts as a junior in 2011.
Senior linebacker Jake Doughty ranks third in the Mountain West and seventh in the nation with an average of 10.8 tackles per game, while junior linebacker Zach Vigil ranks fifth in the Mountain West and tied for 33rd in the nation with 9.2 tackles per game. Overall, Doughty has six double-digit tackle games this year and 10 in his career, and Vigil has six double-digit tackle outings this year and 11 in his career.
Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson ranks first in the Mountain West and third in the nation with an average of 1.70 passes defended per game.
UTAH STATE CONTINUES MOUNTAIN WEST PLAY AGAINST COLORADO STATE
Utah State (6-4, 5-1 MW) continues its 2013 season with a Mountain West home game against Colorado State (6-5, 4-2 MW) on Saturday, Nov. 23 at 1:30 p.m. (MT). The game will be televised nationally on the CBS Sports Network (Comcast Ch. 269/753HD, Dish Network Ch. 158, DirecTV Ch. 221) with Dave Ryan (play-by-play), Adam Archuleta (analyst) and Evan Washburn (reporter) on the call. Live audio of the game is also available on www.UtahStateAggies.com. Live stats will also be available through GameTracker, while Twitter updates - @USUFootball - will also be a part of Utah State's Game Day coverage.
UTAH STATE FINISHING 2013 REGULAR SEASON WITH CONSECUTIVE HOME GAMES
Utah State will conclude its 2013 regular season with back-to-back home games against Colorado State (Nov. 23) and Wyoming (Nov. 30). The last time USU finished its regular season with consecutive home games was in 1998 and this year marks just the 12th time in school history that USU has had at least its last two games of the season at home along with the 1901, 1903, 1905, 1906, 1909, 1916, 1944, 1972, 1978, 1996 and 1998 teams.
UTAH STATE ON CBS SPORTS NETWORK
Utah State will be making its fifth and final appearances on the CBS Sports Network this weekend when it hosts Mountain West foe Colorado State. USU's first game on the CBS Sports Network included its first-ever MW game at Air Force (W 52-20). Other USU games on the CBS Sports Network included home games against BYU (L, 31-14), Boise State (L, 34-23) and Hawai'i (W, 47-10).
UTAH STATE IN FIRST SEASON IN THE MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE
Utah State is in its first year as a member of the Mountain West and has been a Division I-A/Bowl Championship Series football playing school in each of its 116 seasons of competition. USU joined the Mountain States/Skyline Conference in 1938 until 1961. USU then played as an independent from 1962-77 when it became members of the Pacific Coast Athletic Association in 1978. The PCAA changed its name to the Big West Conference in 1988. Following the 2000 season when the Big West no longer sponsored football, USU spent two years as an independent (2001-02) and two years in the Sun Belt Conference (2003-04) before joining the Western Athletic Conference in 2005 for eight seasons.
UTAH STATE ONE OF THE MOST EXPERIENCED TEAMS IN THE NATION
Utah State entered this season tied with Army and trailing South Alabama as the second most experienced team at the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) level according to Phil Steele's College Football Preview as USU returned 13 seniors and seven juniors who have started games, in addition to three seniors and 12 juniors listed on its depth chart.
UTAH STATE ENTERED 2013 WITH FOURTH-MOST EXPERIENCED OFFENSIVE LINE IN THE NATION
Utah State entered the 2013 season returning all five of its starters on the offensive line from a year ago and had the fourth-most experienced offensive line in the nation according to Phil Steele's College Football Preview before losing senior guard Kyle Whimpey to a knee injury against San Jose State. Overall, USU's current offensive line has 137 career starts between senior center Tyler Larsen (48), senior tackle Eric Schultz (42), senior guard Jamie Markosian (25), junior tackle Kevin Whimpey (22) and senior guard Sini Tauauve'a (5), while Kyle Whimpey had started 18 straight games before his injury.
WELLS IS THE 11TH-YOUNGEST HEAD COACH AT THE FBS LEVEL
First-year Utah State head football coach Matt Wells is the 11th-youngest head coach at the FBS level at 40 years of age (8-10-73). Wells is also just the second USU graduate to be appointed its head football coach joining Chris Pella who graduated from USU in 1965 and coached the Aggies from 1983-85. Wells was a three-year letterwinner at quarterback/safety for USU from 1994-96.
WELLS IS ONE OF 12 HEAD COACH AT THE FBS LEVEL WHO PLAYED AT SAME SCHOOL
First-year Utah State head coach Matt Wells is one of just 12 coaches at the FBS level who played college football at the same school he is currently the head coach at joining Troy Calhoun (Air Force), Ruffin McNeill (East Carolina) Paul Haynes (Kent State), Don Treadwell (Miami, Ohio), Pat Fitzgerald (Northwestern), Mike Gundy (Oklahoma State), David Shaw (Stanford), Kliff Kingsbury (Texas Tech), Bill Blankenship (Tulsa), Sean Kugler (UTEP) and Frank Beamer (Virginia Tech).
A LOOK AT UTAH STATE
Utah State is 6-4 on the season and 5-1 in Mountain West play following its 28-24 road win at UNLV two weekends ago. Offensively, USU is led by senior running back Joey DeMartino who has carried the ball 125 times for 785 yards (78.5 ypg/6.3 ypc) with 10 touchdowns, while senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds has 49 catches for 818 yards (81.8 ypg/16.7 ypc) with four touchdowns, and freshman quarterback Darell Garretson is 69-of-107 passing for 928 yards (232.0 ypg) with six touchdowns and three interceptions. Defensively, senior linebacker Jake Doughty leads the team with 108 tackles (31-solo, 77-assist) including 8.5 for loss, while junior linebacker Zach Vigil has 92 tackles (35-solo, 57-assist) with 8.5 for loss, and sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell has 66 tackles (32-solo, 34-assist) with 10.0 for loss. As a team, Utah State is averaging 35.9 points and 466.7 yards of total offense per game (269.5-passing, 197.2-rushing) and allowing 19.4 points and 348.2 yards of total offense per game (220.9-passing, 127.3-rushing).
UTAH STATE NOTABLES AT ROMNEY STADIUM
Utah State has had three sellouts this year, marking the first time in the 46-year history of Romney Stadium that it has recorded three-straight sellouts. Prior to 2013, USU had never recorded three sellouts in the same season at Romney Stadium. USU's attendance figure of 21,428 against Hawai'i was the largest crowd during a November home game since 1985 when it hosted BYU (29,024) and was the third-largest November home crowd in Romney Stadium history behind the 21,594 fans when USU hosted BYU in 1975. On the season, USU had drawn 97,967 fans in four home games (24,492) and needs just 31,239 fans during its last two home games to tie the single-season record from 1996 when 129,206 fans attended six games at Romney Stadium for an average of 21,534 per game.
INJURY BUG HITS UTAH STATE
The injury bug hit Utah State hard during a two-week period in September and October as starting senior offensive guard Kyle Whimpey and junior starting running back Joe Hill both suffered season-ending knee injuries against San José State (9/27/13), while junior starting quarterback Chuckie Keeton (knee) and senior starting tight end D.J. Tialavea (foot) suffered season-ending injuries against BYU (10/4/13). Between Whimpey, Hill, Keeton and Tialavea, the foursome had combined for 69 career starts and 102 career games played in while at Utah State.
UTAH STATE EXTENDS SCHOOL RECORD WITH 11TH STRAIGHT LEAGUE ROAD WIN
Utah State extended its own school record by notching its 11th straight conference road win with its 28-24 victory at UNLV on Nov. 9. The previous school record was six straight league road wins from 1995-97 in the Big West. USU's last road loss in conference play was on Oct. 15, 2011 at Fresno State, 31-21. Overall, USU has won 11 of its last 16 road games against all opponents, which includes a 4-2 record this year.
UTAH STATE DURING ITS THREE-GAME WINNING STREAK
During its current three-game winning streak, Utah State is averaging 40.0 points and 488.7 yards of total offense (274.3-passing, 214.3-rushing), while converting 57.1 percent of its third downs (28-49) and averaging 25.7 first downs per game. Defensively, USU is allowing just 14.7 points during its last three games and limiting its opponents to just 340.3 yards of total offense (217.3-passing, 123.0-rushing), while allowing its opponents to convert just 30.6 percent of its third downs (15-49) and average just 18.7 first downs per game.
UTAH STATE'S RECORD WHEN IT HAS A PLAYER RUSH FOR 100 YARDS
Utah State has had four 100-yard rushers this season and a 100-yard rusher 34 times in the last five years, a span of 60 games. Prior to its current run, USU produced a 100-yard rusher just 23 times in its previous eight seasons. Overall, USU has won 12 straight games when it has had a 100-yard rusher with its last loss coming against Ohio in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.
UTAH STATE COMING OFF BACK-TO-BACK BOWL APPEARANCES
Utah State played in consecutive bowl games for just the third time in school history in 2012 after appearing in each of the last two Famous Idaho Potato Bowls, including just its second-ever bowl win in 2012 as it defeated Toledo, 41-15. USU's only other bowl win was at the 1993 Las Vegas Bowl when it defeated Ball State, 42-33. USU has never played in three-straight bowl games.
UTAH STATE BOWL HISTORY
Following its 41-15 win against Toledo in the 2012 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Utah State now has a 2-6 bowl record all-time as it lost to San Jose State, 20-0, in the 1946 Raisin Bowl (Fresno, Calif.); lost to Pacific, 35-21, in the 1947 Grape Bowl (Lodi, Calif.); lost to New Mexico State, 20-13, in the 1960 Sun Bowl (El Paso, Texas); lost to Baylor, 24-9, in the 1961 Gotham Bowl (New York City); defeated Ball State, 42-33, in the 1993 Las Vegas Bowl II; lost to Cincinnati, 35-19, in the 1997 Humanitarian Bowl; and lost to Ohio, 24-23, in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, along with its win in 2012 against Toledo.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State is 6-0 this year when it rushes at least 40 times in a game and 0-4 when it has less than 40 rushing attempts in a game.
LAWSON NAMED MOUNTAIN WEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK FOLLOWING UNLV GAME
Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson has been named the Mountain West's Defensive Player of the Week following his performance in Utah State's 28-24 road win at UNLV on Nov. 9. Against the Rebels, Lawson recorded four tackles, including one for loss, to go along with two pass breakups and one interception. Lawson's interception was in the end zone early in the third quarter with the Rebels leading 17-14, while his tackle for loss was on a fake field goal in the second quarter. He also posted both of his pass breakups inside USU's 30 yard-line on UNLV's last drive of the game, including one in the end zone. Overall, it is the second time this year and second time in his career that Lawson has earned conference player of the week honors as he also won the award earlier this season following the Boise State (10/12) game.
DOUGHTY NAMED COLLEGE SPORTS MADNESS MOUNTAIN WEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior linebacker Jake Doughty was named the College Sports Madness Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week following his performance against UNLV as he recorded 11 tackles (7-solo, 4-assist) for his sixth double-digit tackle outing this year and 10th of his career. Doughty, who also tied his career-high with 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.0 sacks against the Rebels, was also named an honorable mention national linebacker of the week by College Football Performance Awards.
REYNOLDS AND VAN LEEUWEN BOTH RECORD 100-YARD RECEIVING GAMES AT UNLV
Senior wide receivers Travis Reynolds and Travis Van Leeuwen both recorded 100-yard receiving games in their last outing at UNLV as Reynolds had seven receptions for 129 yards, while Van Leeuwen had four catches for a career-high 112 yards. Overall, it is the first time USU has had two players with 100-yards receiving in the same game since wide receiver Chuck Jacobs (4-101) and running back Kerwynn Williams (7-147) accomplished the feat against UNLV on Sept. 29, 2012. The last time USU had two wide receivers notch 100-yard games in the same outing was against Weber State in 2001 with Kevin Curtis (10-252) and Gary Coleman (5-127).
REYNOLDS HAS THREE 100-YARD RECEIVING GAMES IN HIS LAST FOUR OUTINGS
Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds has recorded 100-yards receiving in each of his last two games and in three of his last four games overall as he had seven catches for 129 yards against UNLV, a career-high 152 receiving yards on a career-high tying eight receptions against Hawai'i, and five catches for 142 yards against Boise State. Overall, Reynolds is the first Aggie to record back-to-back 100-yard receiving games since Kevin Curtis had five-straight 100-yard receiving games to end the 2002 season. Furthermore, Reynolds' 152 receiving yards against Boise State are the most by an Aggie since Curtis had 177 receiving yards against Middle Tennessee in 2002. Reynolds also has four touchdown receptions this season and five in his career.
NATSON SCORES FIRST TWO CAREER RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS AGAINST UNLV
Sophomore wide receiver Bruce Natson scored his first two career rushing touchdowns in his last game at UNLV as he had a career-high eight carries for a career-best 61 yards, including a career-long rush of 16 yards, against the Rebels with touchdowns runs of 13 and 12 yards. Natson entered the game against UNLV with nine career rushing attempts for 49 yards. Natson also had three receptions for 40 yards and two punt returns for 12 yards in the game.
REYNOLDS HAS CAUGHT AT LEAST ONE PASS IN EACH OF HIS LAST 19 GAMES
Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds extended his streak of catching a pass to 19 games in a row during his last outing against UNLV as he caught seven passes for 129 yards. The last time Reynolds did not catch a pass in a game was at Wisconsin on Sept. 15, 2012. Overall, Reynolds' streak is the longest by an Aggie since tight end Kellen Bartlett (2008-12) caught at least one pass in the final 19 games of his career. Prior to Bartlett's streak, Stanley Morrison (2008-11) caught at least one pass in all 37 games he played in.
VIGIL RECORDS DOUBLE-DIGIT TACKLES FOR 11TH TIME IN HIS CAREER IN UNLV GAME
Junior linebacker Zach Vigil recorded 11 tackles in his last game against UNLV marking his sixth double-digit tackle outing this year and 11th of his career.
TEAM NOTABLES AGAINST UNLV
Utah State was 10-of-17 on third downs, marking the fourth time this season it has converted at least 10 first downs. Utah State was 0-4 during its last 24 games when trailing at the half, before rallying from a 17-14 halftime deficit.
PLAYER NOTABLES AGAINST UNLV
Freshman quarterback Darell Garretson threw his sixth touchdown pass of the season... Junior wide receiver Shaan Johnson caught his first career touchdown... Senior running back Joey DeMartino scored his 10th rushing touchdown of the season and the 11th of his career... Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson intercepted his fourth pass of the season and sixth of his career... Senior safety Maurice Alexander recorded 1.0 sacks to give him 2.5 sacks this year and 5.5 in his career.
DID YOU KNOW?
Freshman quarterback Darell Garretson has generated 18 first downs on 34 third-down plays during his three starts this season as he is 16-of-21 on third downs that are seven or more yards, with 12 of those 16 completions resulting in first downs. Garretson has also rushed six times on third down plays, resulting in four first downs.
DEMARTINO HAS RUSHED FOR 100 YARDS TWICE IN HIS LAST THREE GAMES
Senior running back Joey DeMartino recorded his second-straight 100-yard rushing game and the fourth of the season and his career two games ago against Hawai'i as he carried the ball a career-high 20 times for 104 yards (5.2 ypc) and scored one touchdown. Three games ago at New Mexico, DeMartino rushed for a career-high 144 yards on just 12 carries (12.0 ypc) and tied his career-high with three rushing touchdowns from 32, 38 and eight yards. DeMartino also caught a career-high three passes for a career-best 41 yards against the Lobos, including a career-long 21 yard reception for his first career receiving touchdown. DeMartino was also the first Aggie to score four touchdowns in a game (vs. UNM) since Robert Turbin did so against Colorado State in 2011. In his last game at UNLV, DeMartino rushed for 75 yards on 19 carries and scored one touchdown. Overall, DeMartino has 10 rushing touchdowns this year and 11 in his career.
AGGIE SAFETIES AMONG TOP TACKLERS IN MOUNTAIN WEST AT POSITION
Senior free safety Maurice Alexander is averaging 6.0 tackles per game and junior strong safety Brian Suite is averaging 4.9 tackles per game and the duo ranks first and third, respectively, for tackles among safeties in the Mountain West.
UTAH STATE HAS INTERCEPTED 11 PASSES IN ITS LAST SIX GAMES
After not intercepting a pass in each of its first four games of the season, Utah State has intercepted 11 passes in its last six games. At UNLV, senior cornerback Nevin Lawson intercepted a pass. Against Hawai'i, junior safeties Brian Suite and Frankie Sutera each intercepted a pass, along with sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell. Against Boise State, Lawson intercepted two passes, while Suite had one interception. Against BYU, senior cornerback Quinton Byrd intercepted a pass. And at San José State, senior safety Maurice Alexander, junior cornerback Jeremy Morris and Lawson each intercepted a pass.
UTAH STATE CONTINUES TO STOP THE RUN
Utah State continues to do a great job stopping the run this season as Boise State's Jay Ajayi (22-109) and UNLV's Tim Cornett (29-115) are the only running backs to rush for 100 yards against the Aggies, while USU has allowed just eight rushing touchdowns in 10 games this year.
UTAH STATE CONTINUES TO OUT-SCORE OPPONENTS IN THE FIRST HALF
Utah State has a 205-111 scoring advantage in the first 30 minutes of play this year, including a 68-23 first-half advantage in its last three games. Last season, USU had a 254-60 scoring advantage in the first half.
UTAH STATE AT THE HALF
Utah State has led at the half in 20 of its last 25 games dating back to 2011 and is 17-3 in those contests, including a 5-1 record this year. USU has also led or been tied at the end of the first quarter in 17 of its last 25 games and is 15-2 in those contest, but 1-4 during its last 25 games when trailing at the end of the first period and at the end of the first half.
UTAH STATE HAS HELD 20 OF LAST 26 OPPONENTS WITHOUT A FIRST QUARTER TOUCHDOWN
Utah State has not allowed a first quarter touchdown in 20 of its last 26 games dating back to the 2011 season as USU was the only Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) team in the nation not to allow a first quarter touchdown during the 2012 season. This year, USU has held four opponents (Weber State, San José State, New Mexico, Hawai'i) without a first quarter touchdown. Furthermore, USU has held four opponents this year (Weber State, San José State, New Mexico, Hawai'i) and 14 of its last 23 opponents without a first-half touchdown, while four of those 23 opponents have been held scoreless in the first-half.
UTAH STATE'S 2013 SENIOR CLASS IS THE WINNINGEST GROUP OF PLAYERS IN SCHOOL HISTORY
With its 28-24 win at UNLV, Utah State's senior class now has 28 wins over the last four years (2010-13) to rank first all-time in school history. The previous school record for wins by a senior class was 26 set in 1962 and 2012.
UTAH STATE FOLLOWING A BYE
Utah State has won each of its last two and three of its last five games overall following a bye.
UTAH STATE OFFENSIVE NOTABLE
Utah State has recorded at least 500 yards of total offense four times this year and in nine of its last 16 games dating back to last season. USU has also passed for at least 300 yards four times this year and in seven of its last 15 games dating back to last season.
Senior defensive end Connor Williams (Kanata, Ontario, Canada/Holy Trinity HS) is one of just 32 players from Canada currently playing college football at the FBS level. Overall, USU is one of just 18 FBS teams with a Canadian player on its roster.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State has thrown a total of just five interceptions thus far in 2013 to rank fourth in the Mountain West and 13th in the nation. Freshman quarterback Darell Garretson has thrown three interceptions in 107 attempts, junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton threw two picks in 196 attempts, and junior quarterback Craig Harrison has not thrown a pick in 65 attempts.
REYNOLDS RANKS 26TH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN RECEIVING YARDS
Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds has 1,162 career receiving yards on 86 career receptions (13.5 ypc) to rank 26th all-time in school history. Reynolds is now just 10 yards shy of tying Fred Fernandes (1979-83) for 25th-place with 1,172 career receiving yards, 19 yards shy of tying Mike Lee (1992-93) for 24th-place with 1,181 career receiving yards, 79 yards shy of tying Steve Smith for 23rd-place with 1,241 career receiving yards, 91 yards shy of tying Matt Austin (2010-12) for 22nd-place with 1,248 career receiving yards, 93 yards shy of tying Chris Cooley (2000-03) for 21st-place with 1,255 career receiving yards, 95 yards shy of tying Jimmy Bryant (1977-78) for 20th-place with 1,257 career receiving yards, and 165 yards shy of tying Craig Clark (1971-73) for 19th-place with 1,327 career receiving yards. Overall, Reynolds is one of just 31 players in school history to record 1,000 career receiving yards. The school record for career receiving yards is 2,943 set by Kendal Smith (1985-88).
VAN LEEUWEN RANKS 28TH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN RECEIVING YARDS
Senior wide receiver Travis Van Leeuwen became the 31st player in school history to record 1,000 career receiving yards in his last game at UNLV as he now has 81 receptions for 1,069 career receiving yards (13.2 ypr) to rank 28th all-time in school history. Van Leeuwen is now 87 yards shy of tying Eric McPherson (1980-82) for 27th-place with 1,156 career receiving yards. The school record for career receiving yards is 2,943 set by Kendal Smith (1985-88).
DOUGHTY RANKS 19TH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN TACKLES
Senior linebacker Jake Doughty has recorded 265 tackles (91-solo, 174-assist) during his career to rank 19th all-time in school history. Doughty is now 10 tackles shy of tying Paul Igobeli (2006-09) for 18th-place all-time at USU with 275 tackles. The school record for tackles is 446 set by Bobby Wagner (2008-11) and Del Lyles (1988-91).
DEMARTINO CLOSING IN ON 1,000 CAREER RUSHING YARDS
Senior running back Joey DeMartino has rushed 154 times for 942 yards (6.1 ypc) during his Aggie career and is now just 58 rushing yards shy of becoming the 26th player in school history to rush for 1,000 career yards. Buddy Allen (1958-59) currently ranks 25th all-time at USU with 1,068 career rushing yards and DeMartino is 126 yards shy of tying Allen. The school record for career rushing yards is 3,933 set by Abu Wilson (1992-96).
FACKRELL RANKS TIED FOR NINTH ALL-TIME IN CAREER INTERCEPTION RETURN YARDS
Sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell has intercepted four passes in his Utah State career and has returned those four interceptions for 125 yards, which ranks tied for ninth all-time in school history along with Rob Fuhriman (1972-74). Fackrell is also the only linebacker among USU's top 10 career leaders in this category.
DIAZ RANKS TIED FOR SECOND ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGE
Junior placekicker Nick Diaz is 22-of-29 (.759) on field goals during his Utah State career and that percentage of 75.9 percent ranks tied for second all-time in school history along with Doug Beach (1990-92). The school record for field goal percentage is 84.6 percent set by Russ Moody (1988-89) as he was 22-of-26 on field goal attempts during his career.
DIAZ RANKS TIED FOR EIGHTH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN FIELD GOALS MADE
Junior placekicker Nick Diaz is 22-of-29 (.759) in field goals during his Utah State career and those 22 career field goals made rank tied for eighth all-time in school history along with Dane Kidman (1999-2002), Doug Beach (1990-92) and Russ Moody (1988-89). Diaz is now four made field goals shy of tying Al Knapp (1973-74) for seventh all-time with 26 made field goals. The school record for made field goals in a career is 59 set by Brad Bohn (1997-2000). Diaz is also one field goal attempt shy of tying James Murphy (1966-67) for 10th all-time in school history in that category with 30, and the school record for field goal attempts is 89 set by Brad Bohn (1997-2000).
DIAZ RANKS TIED FOR THIRD ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN PAT PERCENTAGE
Junior placekicker Nick Diaz is 82-of-83 on extra points during his Aggie career and his career PAT percentage of 98.8 percent ranks tied for third all-time in school history along with Peter Caldwell (2007-10), while his 82 extra points made rank fourth all-time and his 83 extra point attempts rank fifth all-time at USU. Senior placekicker Josh Thompson is 70-of-72 on career extra points and that career percentage of .972 ranks fifth all-time at USU, while his 70 extra points made ranks sixth and his 72 extra point attempts ranks seventh. The school record for extra points made is 107 set by Brad Bohn (1997-2000), and Bohn also holds the school record for extra point attempts with 119.
AGGIES IN OVERTIME
With its 48-41 overtime win at No. 19 Louisiana Tech on Nov. 17, 2012, Utah State improved to 6-4 all-time in overtime, including winning each of its last three. All-time, USU is 4-2 in single-overtime games, 2-1 in double-overtime games, and 0-1 in triple overtime games.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State freshman quarterback Darell Garretson is from the same high school (Chandler (Ariz.) HS) as UCLA sophomore quarterback Brett Hundley. Also, Garretson's grandfather, Darell Garretson, was a referee in the National Basketball Association, while his uncle Rick Garretson is currently a referee in the National Basketball Association.
DEMARTINO CLOSING IN ON 1,000 RUSHING YARDS FOR A SINGLE-SEASON
Senior running back Joey DeMartino has rushed for 785 yards on 125 attempts (6.3 ypc) thus far in 2013 and is 215 yards shy of becoming just the 17th player in school history to rush for 1,000 yards in a single-season. Overall, USU has had a 1,000 yard rusher in each of the last two seasons as Kerwynn Williams rushed for 1,512 yards in 2012 and Robert Turbin rushed for 1,517 yards in 2011, while Turbin also rushed for 1,296 yards in 2009 giving USU a 1,000-yard rusher in three of the last four years. All-time, USU has only had back-to-back-to-back 1,000 yard rushers twice in school history from 1973-75 and again from 1999-2001. In 1973, Archie Gibson rushed for 1,150 yards, while Louie Giammona had 1,534 rushing yards in 1974 and 1,454 rushing yards in 1975. In 1999, Demario Brown rushed for a single-season school record 1,534 yards, while Emmett White rushed for 1,322 yards in 2000 and 1,361 yards in 2001.
REYNOLDS CLOSING IN ON 1,000 RECEIVING YARDS FOR A SINGLE-SEASON
Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds has caught 49 passes for 818 yards (16.7 ypr) thus far in 2013 and is 182 receiving yards shy of becoming just the 12th player in school history to record 1,000 receiving yards in a single-season and the first since Kevin Curtis (2001-02) had back-to-back 1,000 yard receiving seasons with a school record 1,531 yards in 2001 and 1,258 yards in 2002.
DEMARTINO RANKS TIED FOR FIFTH ALL-TIME IN YARDS PER CARRY FOR A SINGLE SEASON
Senior running back Joey DeMartino has carried the ball 125 times for 785 yards thus far in 2013 for an average of 6.3 yards per attempt, which ranks tied for fifth all-time in school history for a single-season along with Tom Larscheid (1961) and Robert Turbin (2009). The school record for rushing yards per attempt for a single season is 8.4 set by Tom Larscheid in 1960.
DOUGHTY RECORDS 100-PLUS TACKLES IN BACK-TO-BACK SEASONS
Senior linebacker Jake Doughty has recorded 108 tackles (31-solo, 77-assist) thus far in 2013 marking the 59th time in school history that a player has recorded 100 or more tackles in a single-season. Overall, Doughty is 30 tackles shy of entering USU's single-season top 10. Doughty concluded the 2012 season with 109 tackles and is one of just 14 players in school history to record multiple season with at least 100 tackles. Aggies with three seasons of 100-plus tackles include Bobby Wagner (2008-11), Jesse Busta (1999-2002), Brent Passey (1997-2000) and Del Lyles (1988-91), while Aggies with two seasons of 100-plus tackles includes Jake Hutton (2005-08), Blake Eagal (1997-2000), Tony D'Amato (1997-98), Johndale Carty (1995-98), David Gill (1993-96), Jermaine Younger (1990-93), Al Smith (1984-86), James Jenkins (1983-85), Chuck Detwiler (1966-68) and Doughty.
VIGIL CLOSING IN ON 100 TACKLES FOR THE SEASON
Junior linebacker Zach Vigil currently has 92 tackles thus far in 2013 and is just eight tackles shy of marking the 60th time in school history that a USU player has recorded 100 tackles in a season. Vigil concluded the 2012 season with 105 tackles and with eight more tackles would become just the 15th player in school history to record 100 or more tackles multiple times during a career.
DIAZ RANKS SECOND IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN SINGLE-SEASON PAT'S MADE AND ATTEMPTED
Junior placekicker Nick Diaz is currently 42-of-43 on extra points this season to rank second all-time in school history in both categories for a single season. Current senior placekicker Josh Thompson holds the single-season school records for extra points made (57) and attempted (58) set during the 2011 season. Diaz's extra point percentage of .977 this year is currently ninth all-time in school history for a single-season.
DIAZ RANKS TIED FOR NINTH IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN SINGLE-SEASON FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGE
Junior placekicker Nick Diaz is 12-of-16 (.750) on field goals thus far in 2013 and that 75.0 percentage ranks tied for ninth all-time at USU for a single-season along with Micah Knorr (1994), Sean Jones (1992) and Steve Steinke (1978). Diaz is also two made field goals shy of entering the single-season top 10 and tying for eighth with Dane Kidman (2002), Brad Bohn (2000) and Doug Beach (1999) at 14 made field goals, and is four field goal attempts shy of tying Bohn (2000), Micah Knorr (1994) and Dene Garner (1985) for ninth all-time with 20 attempts.
GARRETSON SETS FRESHMAN SCHOOL RECORD FOR PASSING YARDS AGAINST HAWAI'I
Freshman quarterback Darell Garretson had a career-game against Hawai'i as he set the freshman school record for passing yards with 370 as he was 28-of-41 passing with three touchdowns, all of which are career-highs, to go along with one interception. He also rushed six times for 22 yards against UH. Garretson's 370 passing yards against Hawai'i are also the most by an Aggie quarterback this year and ranks as the 20th-most in a single-game in school history. The previous freshman record for passing yards was held by Brett Stevens who threw for 340 yards against Fresno State in 1985. Overall, Garretson is the first Aggie true freshman to start at quarterback since Chuckie Keeton started his first ever USU game at defending national champion Auburn in 2011. Furthermore, Garretson is the first USU true freshman to win his initial start (at New Mexico on Oct. 19) since Riley Nelson helped USU to a 13-12 win against Fresno State on Oct. 7, 2006.
FACKRELL RANKS 10TH ALL-TIME IN SINGLE SEASON INTERCEPTION RETURN YARDS
Sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell currently ranks 10th all-time at Utah State in interception return yards for a single-season following his 99-yard interception return for a touchdown against Hawai'i (11/2). The single-season school record for interception return yards is 193 set by Henry King in 1965.
UTAH STATE RANKS 27TH IN THE NATION IN SCORING OFFENSE
Utah State is averaging 35.9 points per game to rank fourth in the Mountain West and 27th in the nation. USU also ranks fifth in the MW and 26th in the nation in total offense (466.7 ypg), fourth in the MW and 30th in the nation in completion percentage (.639), third in the MW and 31st in the nation in passing efficiency (145.7), sixth in the MW and 34th in the nation in passing offense (268.5 ypg), fifth in the MW and 35th in the nation in rushing offense (198.2 ypg), and fifth in the MW and tied for 48th in the nation in sacks allowed (1.7 pg).
UTAH STATE RANKS 17TH IN THE NATION IN SCORING DEFENSE
Utah State's defense is allowing just 19.4 points per game to rank first in the Mountain West and 17th in the nation. USU also ranks first in the MW and 19th in the nation in passing efficiency defense (115.0), first in the MW and 20th in the nation in total defense (348.2 ypg), first in the MW and 20th in the nation in rushing defense (127.3 ypg), first in the MW and 44th in the nation in passing defense (220.9 ypg), and fourth in the MW and tied for 52nd in the nation in sacks (2.1 pg).
UTAH STATE RANKS TIED FOR 31ST IN THE NATION IN TURNOVER MARGIN
Utah State currently ranks second in the Mountain West and tied for 31st in the nation with a turnover margin of plus 0.60 as it has 19 takeaways and 13 turnovers on the season. USU also ranks fourth in the MW and 38th in the nation in kickoff returns (22.9 ypr), fourth in the MW and 67th in the nation in punt returns (8.0 ypr), and ninth in the MW and 55th in the nation in net punting (37.4 ypk).
UTAH STATE RANKS FIRST IN THE NATION IN PUNT RETURN DEFENSE
Utah State ranks first in the nation in punt return defense as it is allowing -0.50 yard per punt return. USU also ranks first in the Mountain West and 13th in the nation in kickoff return defense as it is allowing 18.06 yards per kick return.
UTAH STATE'S DEFENSE RANKS 10TH IN THE NATION IN THIRD DOWN CONVERSIONS
Utah State's defense is limiting its opponents to just 52 first downs on 164 third-down attempts (.317) to rank first in the Mountain West and 10th in the nation. In 2012, USU held its opponents to just 32.9 percent conversions (73-of-222) on third downs.
UTAH STATE RANKS 19TH IN THE NATION IN THIRD DOWN EFFICIENCY
Utah State has converted 82-of-166 third downs (.494) to rank second in the Mountain West and 19th in the nation. In 2012, USU converted 45.3 percent of its third downs (82-of-181).
UTAH STATE RANKS EIGHTH IN THE NATION IN FORCING THREE-AND-OUTS
Utah State ranks eighth in the nation in forcing three-and-outs on the year as it has forced 53 three-and-outs on 121 drives, which averages out to 43.8 percent of the time and 5.89 per game.
UTAH STATE RANKS TIED FOR 22ND IN THE NATION IN RED ZONE OFFENSE
Utah State is 41-for-46 (.891) on red zone opportunities to rank fifth in the Mountain West and tied for 22nd nationally. Overall, USU has scored 32 touchdowns and converted 9-of-12 field goals in the red zone, while turning it over on downs once, having two field goals blocked, and having the half end once.
UTAH STATE RANKS TIED FOR 25TH IN THE NATION IN RED ZONE DEFENSE
Utah State has allowed 25-of-33 (.758) red zone opportunities to rank first in the Mountain West and tied for 25th nationally. Overall, USU has allowed only 14 touchdowns on 33 trips into the red zone (.424), while its opponents have converted 11-of-11 field goals, while forcing four turnovers and taking the ball over on downs three times and having the half end once.
MORE NATIONAL RANKINGS FOR UTAH STATE
Utah State is averaging 24.5 first downs per game to rank fifth in the Mountain West and 25th in the nation after averaging 20.9 first downs per game in 2012. USU also ranks third in the MW and 19th in the nation with an average of 7.3 tackles for loss per game, and fifth in the MW and 29th in the nation with its 13 turnovers lost.
UTAH STATE PLAYERS IN THE MOUNTAIN WEST AND NATIONAL RANKINGS
Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson ranks first in the Mountain West and third in the nation in passes defended (1.7 pg), and tied for third in the MW and tied for 22nd in the nation in interceptions (0.40 pg). Senior linebacker Jake Doughty ranks third in the MW and seventh in the nation in tackles (10.8 pg). Junior linebacker Zach Vigil ranks fifth in the MW and tied for 33rd in the nation in tackles (9.0 pg), tied for fourth in the MW and tied for 49th in the nation in fumbles recovered (0.20 pg), and tied for eighth in the MW in fumbles forced (0.20 pg). Sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell ranks tied for eighth in the MW in tackles for loss (1.00 pg), tied for eighth in the MW in fumbles forced (0.20 pg), 10th in the MW in sacks (0.40 pg), and 28th in the MW in tackles (6.6 pg). Senior running back Joey DeMartino ranks fifth in the MW and 34th in the nation in rushing touchdowns (1.0 pg), eighth in the MW and 60th in the nation in rushing (78.5 ypg), and 10th in the MW in scoring (6.6 ppg). Senior safety Maurice Alexander ranks tied for eighth in the MW in fumbles forced (0.20 pg) and 32nd in the MW in tackles (6.0 pg). Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds ranks sixth in the MW and 39th in the nation in receiving (81.8 ypg). Senior cornerback Tay Glover-Wright ranks sixth in the MW and 49th in the nation in kickoff returns (23.1 ypr). Sophomore wide receiver Bruce Natson ranks fourth in the MW and 36th in the nation in punt returns (8.4 ypr). Junior placekicker Nick Diaz ranks tied for third in the MW and tied for 39th in the nation in field goals (1.20 pg), sixth in the MW in extra point percentage (97.7), sixth in the MW and 61st in the nation in field goal percentage (75.0), and eighth in the MW and 55th in the nation in scoring (7.8 ppg). And junior punter Jaron Bentrude ranks 11th in the MW and 85th in the nation in punting (39.4 yak).
KEETON RANKS FIRST ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN COMPLETION PERCENTAGE
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton is 517-of-777 passing during his Utah State career with a completion percentage of 66.5 percent, which ranks first all-time in school history. Keith Myers (1976-77) ranks second all-time at 60.7 percent.
KEETON RANKS SECOND ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN TOUCHDOWN PASSES
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton ranks second all-time in school history with 56 touchdown passes and is just four touchdown passes shy of tying the school record of 60 touchdown passes set by Jose Fuentes (1999-2002).
KEETON RANKS THIRD ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN TOTAL OFFENSE
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton has 7,114 yards of total offense (5,961-passing, 1,153-rushing) in his career to rank third all-time in school history. The school record for total offense is 8,791 yards by Jose Fuentes (1999-2002) and Keeton is now 982 yards of total offense shy of tying Diondre Borel (2007-10) for second-place with 8,096 yards of total offense.
KEETON RANKS TIED FOR SECOND ALL-TIME AT UTAH STATE IN COMPLETIONS
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton ranks tied for second all-time at Utah State with 517 career completions along with Diondre Borel (2007-10). The school record is 704 completions set by Jose Fuentes (1999-2002).
KEETON RANKS SIXTH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN PASSING YARDS
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton has thrown for 5,961 yards to rank sixth all-time in school history and is now 112 yards shy of tying Eric Hipple (1976-79) for fifth-place with 6,073 passing yards, 144 yards shy of tying Brent Snyder (1987-88) for fourth-place with 6,105 passing yards, and 265 yards shy of tying Tony Adams (1970-72) for third-place with 6,226 passing yards. The school record for passing yards is 9,168 set by Jose Fuentes (1999-2002).
KEETON RANKS SEVENTH ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN PASSING ATTEMPTS
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton has attempted 777 passes during his career to rank seventh all-time in school history and is now 52 pass attempts shy of tying Anthony Calvillo (1992-93) for sixth-place with 829 career pass attempts. The school record for pass attempts is 1,270 set by Jose Fuentes (1999-2002).
KEETON RANKS 21ST ALL-TIME IN SCHOOL HISTORY IN RUSHING
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton has rushed for 1,153 yards (252 carries, 4.6 ypc) during his Aggie career to rank 21st all-time in school history. Keeton is now 40 yards shy of tying current USU offensive graduate assistant David Fiefia for 20th-place with 1,193 yards rushing. The school record for rushing yards is 3,933 set by Abu Wilson (1992, 1994-96). Overall, Keeton is just the 25th player in school history to rush for 1,000 career yards and just the second quarterback along with Diondre Borel (2007-10) who holds the school record with 1,398 yards by a quarterback.
KEETON'S 18 TOUCHDOWN PASSES RANKS TIED FOR NINTH IN SCHOOL HISTORY FOR A SEASON
Junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton threw 18 touchdown passes in 2013 to rank tied for ninth all-time at USU, while his completion percentage of 69.4 percent ranks first all-time. Keeton set numerous single-season school records in 2012 including touchdown passes (27), passing yards (3,373), total offense (3,992), completion percentage (.676) and completions (275), while ranking seventh in passing attempts (407). The previous school record for touchdown passes was 24 set by Jose Fuentes in 2001. Fuentes also had the previous school record for passing yards of 3,268 set in 2002 and completions of 260 set in 2001. The previous record for total offense was 3,343 yards set by Diondre Borel in 2009, while Leon Jackson III held the previous school record for completion percentage at 65.4 percent set in 2007.
A LOOK AT COLORADO STATE
Colorado State is 6-5 overall and 4-2 in Mountain West play following its 66-42 road win at New Mexico last weekend. Offensively, CSU is lead by sophomore running back Kapri Bibbs who has rushed for 1,439 yards on 220 carries (130.8 ypg/6.5 ypc) with 25 touchdowns. Junior quarterback Garrett Grayson is 224-of-355 passing for 2,785 yards (253.2 ypg) with 18 touchdowns and eight interceptions, and freshman wide receiver Rashard Higgins has 53 receptions for 648 yards (58.9 ypg/12.2 ypr) with four touchdowns. Defensively, junior linebacker Max Morgan leads the team with 99 tackles (58-solo, 41-assist), while fellow junior linebacker Aaron Davis has 95 tackles (54-solo, 41-assist). As a team, Colorado State is averaging 36.5 points and 471.1 yards of total offense per game (256.3-passing, 214.8-rushing) and allowing 31.5 points and 450.5 yards of total offense per game (298.4-passing, 152.1-rushing). Overall, CSU returns 17 starters (O-9, D-8) and 43 lettermen from last year's team that went 4-8 overall and finished in a tie for sixth-place in the Mountain West with a 3-5 mark. Jim McElwain is 10-13 in his second year as the Rams head coach.
UTAH STATE-COLORADO STATE SERIES HISTORY
Utah State is 31-36-2 all-time against Colorado State, including a 16-19-1 record at home. USU won the last meeting between the two teams, 31-19, a year ago in Fort Collins. Prior to that win, CSU won the previous four games played in the series including a 35-34 double-overtime win in Logan on Sept. 24, 2011. The last time Utah State defeated Colorado State at home was on Sept. 22, 1979 by a final score of 24-0. The first-ever game played in the series was in 1902 with CSU winning in Logan, 24-5.
AGGIES AND RAMS HAVE STORIED HISTORY
Utah State and Colorado State have a storied history dating back to the early 1900s as both schools were members of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) from 1916-37 and later members of the Mountain States/Skyline Conference from 1938-61 for a total of 47 years as league foes. As members of the RMAC, USU won league championships in 1921 and 1936, and later won league titles in the Mountain States/Skyline Conference in 1946, 1960 and 1961. CSU won team championships in the RMAC in 1915, 1916, 1919, 1920, 1925, 1927, 1933 and 1934, and in the Mountain States Conference in 1955. Overall, the Aggies and Rams faced each other in every season from 1911-1979 except in 1912, 1918, 1921, 1943-44 (war), and 1968, even after CSU joined the Western Athletic Conference in 1968. After 1979, the two teams didn't play again until 1994.
UTAH STATE-COLORADO STATE SERIES THIRD-MOST PLAYED IN SCHOOL HISTORY
Utah State and Colorado State will be meeting for the 70th time in series history this weekend in what is the third-most played rivalry in school history. USU's most played rivalry is Utah (111), followed by Brigham Young (83), Colorado State (69) and Wyoming (63).
TOP AGGIE PERFORMERS VERSUS COLORADO STATE
Rushing Yards: Louie Giammona (1975), 242
Passing Yards: Eric Hipple (1977), 296
Receiving Yards: Wesley Garnett (1969), 139
UTAH STATE CONNECTIONS WITH COLORADO STATE
Utah State has one player on its active roster from the state of Colorado in senior linebacker Terrell Thompson (Aurora, Colo./Eaglecrest HS). CSU offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Dave Baldwin spent three years as Utah State's offensive coordinator (2009-11). CSU tight ends coach Art Valero spent three years as Utah State's assistant head coach and offensive line coach (1995-97). Aggie wide receivers coach Jovon Bouknight is a native of nearby Denver, and was an outstanding quarterback at Manual High School in Denver, before playing at Wyoming.
UTAH STATE VERSUS THE STATE OF COLORADO
Utah State is 66-71-6 (.483) all-time against teams from the state of Colorado with a 31-36-2 record against Colorado State, a 13-19-3 record against Denver, a 6-11-1 record against Colorado, a 7-0 record against Western State, a 5-4 record against Colorado Mines, a 3-0 record against Colorado College, and a 1-1 record against Air Force.
Matt Wells VERSUS COLORADO STATE
Matt Wells will be facing Colorado State for the first time as a head coach and for the fifth time overall as he faced the Rams once as an assistant coach at USU in 2012, and three times as an assistant at New Mexico (2007-08, 2010).
FROM THE RECORD BOOKS
Utah State limited Colorado State to 90 yards of total offense in 1961 in a 49-3 win in Fort Collins, while rushing for 389 yards, the most in series history by a USU team. USU also held the Rams to one passing yard in a 10-7 loss at home in 1976.
Utah State has 59 players in its program from the state of Utah, while Colorado State has 46 players on its roster from the state of Colorado.
UTAH STATE HAS BLOCKED EIGHT KICKS IN THE LAST TWO YEARS
Utah State redshirt freshman cornerback Devin Centers has blocked two punts this year in games against BYU and Boise State, giving USU eight blocked kicks during the last two years as the Aggies had two blocked punts, three blocked field goals and one blocked extra point in 2012. Current Aggies who blocked kicks a year ago include junior linebacker Zach Vigil, senior defensive lineman Paul Piukala, sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell, senior cornerback Tay Glover-Wright, and sophomore defensive tackle Jordan Nielsen who blocked two kicks.
FACKRELL NAMED MOUNTAIN WEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK FOLLOWING HAWAI'I GAME
Sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell was named the Mountain West's Defensive Player of the Week on Nov. 4, along with being named the College Football Performance Awards National Linebacker of the Week and College Sports Madness' Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week following the Hawai'i game as he posted 9.0 tackles, including 0.5 for loss, and returned an interception 99 yards for his first career defensive touchdown. That 99 yard interception return by Fackrell ranks as the third-longest in Utah State and Mountain West history. Overall, it was Fackrell's first interception this year and fourth of his career. For his career, Fackrell has now been named the Western Athletic Conference and Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week three times after winning the WAC award twice during his freshman season a year ago.
NATSON NAMED MOUNTAIN WEST SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Sophomore wide receiver Bruce Natson was named the Mountain West Special Teams Player of the Week on Oct. 21 following his career night at New Mexico as he returned a career-high five punts for a career-best 102 yards, including his first career touchdown on a 65-yard punt return just before the half to give USU a 31-3 halftime advantage. Natson, who also had punt returns of 15, 11 and nine yards against the Lobos, is the first Aggie to return a punt for a touchdown since 2007 when Kevin Robinson returned a 70-yard punt for a score against Nevada.
LAWSON NAMED MOUNTAIN WEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson was named the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 14 following a career-night against Boise State as he intercepted a career-high two passes and returned one 65 yards for his first career touchdown. Lawson also had a career-high five passes defended against the Broncos with three pass breakups and two interceptions to go along with a career-high tying nine tackles, which included one tackle for loss. That pick six by Lawson is the first by an Aggie since Will Davis returned an interception 59 yards for a touchdown against Idaho in 2012. Furthermore, Lawson's two interceptions are the most in a single game by a USU player since Robert Watts and Antonio Taylor both intercepted two passes at UNLV on Sept. 25, 2004.
FACKRELL HAS SCORED AN OFFENSIVE AND DEFENSIVE TOUCHDOWN IN 2013
Sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell has now scored an offensive and defensive touchdown this season following his 99-yard interception return for a score against Hawai'i. Fackrell also had an offensive touchdown on a 4-yard pass from junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton against Weber State on his first career reception. Overall, Fackrell is the first Aggie to score an offensive and defensive touchdown in the same season since 1964 when Earsell Mackbee had four receiving touchdowns and two interception returns for touchdown in the same season.
UTAH STATE PLAYING SIX HOME GAMES IN 2013
Utah State's 2013 schedule marks the fourth-straight season, the fifth time in the last six years, and the sixth time in the last 17 years that it will play six home games. Overall, the Aggies have had six home games on the slate a total of only just 10 times: 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2008, 1998, 1996, 1995, 1978, 1952.
AGGIES IN NOVEMBER
Utah State is playing three home games in the month of November for just the fifth time in school history along with the 1935, 1974 and 1978 teams, while the 1972 team played a school record four home games in November.
Utah State junior long snapper Nate Needham will celebrate his 25th birthday on Saturday, Nov. 23 when USU hosts Colorado State.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State has started three different quarterbacks this year in juniors Chuckie Keeton and Craig Harrison, along with freshman Darell Garreston, which ranks tied for the second-most quarterbacks started in the nation along with Hawai'i, Nevada, Temple, Western Kentucky and West Virginia. Air Force leads the nation in most quarterbacks started with four. Of those seven schools who have started at least three quarterbacks this year, Utah State and Western Kentucky have the best record at 6-4, while West Virginia is 4-7, Nevada is 4-7, Air Force is 2-8, Temple is 1-9 and Hawai'i is 0-10.
LAST MEETING VS. COLORADO STATE
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Senior running back Kerwynn Williams rushed for a career-high 205 yards and scored two touchdowns to lead Utah State to a 31-19 road win against Colorado State here on Sept. 22, 20012 at Hughes Stadium.
Utah State continued its stellar play on defense as it has now out-scored its opponents, 51-0, in the first quarter this year after leading 10-0 following the first 15 minutes against the Rams, and has not allowed a first-half touchdown as the Aggies have a 65-9 scoring advantage in the first-half this year.
With the win, Utah State improves to 3-1, which is its best start to a season since the 1978 team won its first five games of the year. USU also snapped a four-game losing streak to CSU as the series is now 36-31-2 in favor of the Rams. Overall, USU has now won eight of its last 10 games dating back to 2011, including four of its last five on the road.
Williams, who recorded his second-career 100-yard rushing game and his first this year, carried the ball a career-high 21 times highlighted by a career-long 58-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. Overall, Williams now has 10 career rushing touchdowns after his first-career multi-touchdown game.
Utah State finished the game with 440 yards of total offense (262-rushing, 178-passing) and had 24 first downs that translated into possessing the ball for 31:04 of the game. USU also converted a season-best 10 third downs on 17 attempts.
Williams scored Utah State's first touchdown of the game with 9:52 to play in the first quarter on a 26-yard run to cap an 8-play, 77-yard drive. Junior placekicker Josh Thompson made the score 10-0 later in the first-quarter on a 20-yard field goal after the Aggies' 9-play, 45-yard drive stalled at the 1-yardline.
Utah State extended its lead to 17-0 in the second quarter as sophomore quarterback Chuckie Keeton connected with senior wide receiver Matt Austin for a 1-yard touchdown pass on fourth down. Overall, USU's scoring drive covered 85 yards in 19 plays and took 7:46 off the clock. For USU, those 19 plays were the most in a drive since at least the 2004 season, according to available records. The drive was also its longest in terms of possession time since 2007.
Colorado State scored back-to-back field goals in the third quarter to get within 17-6 before Williams extended the Aggies advantage on his 58-yard scoring run. CSU scored its first touchdown of the game early in the fourth quarter, but failed on its two-point conversion to make the score 24-12.
Utah State's final touchdown of the night came on a 15-yard run by sophomore running back Joe Hill, his fourth rushing touchdown of the season, to up USU's advantage to 31-12 midway through the fourth quarter. The Rams added another touchdown with 1:43 to play on a 29-yard pass play to make the final score, 31-19.
Defensively, Utah State was led by senior safety McKade Brady who tied his season-high with 10 tackles for his fifth-career double-figure tackle outing. Sophomore linebacker Zach Vigil added seven tackles and had career-highs with three tackles for loss and two sacks, while senior cornerback Will Davis had three pass breakups to go along with four tackles.
Colorado State finished the game with 331 yards of total offense (224-passing, 107-rushing), most of which came in the second half as USU limited the Rams to just four first-half first downs and just 61 yards on 27 plays in the first half.
LAST MEETING VS. COLORADO STATE IN LOGAN
LOGAN, Utah - Junior running back Robert Turbin scored a career-high four rushing touchdowns, including a 25-yard burst in the second overtime to bring Utah State within one, but he was stopped on his two-point conversion and USU dropped a heartbreaker to Colorado State, 35-34, on Sept. 24, 2011 in front of 22,599 Homecoming fans.
Utah State, who had four turnovers on the night including two muffed punts, falls to 1-2 on the season with the loss and Colorado State improves to 3-1 with the win.
Utah State appeared to be on its way to a fourth-quarter win as it lead 21-13 with just over two minutes remaining and Colorado State punting, but the Aggies muffed the punt and the Rams recovered the ball at Utah State's 15-yardline. Four plays later, CSU's Chris Nwoke scored on a 1-yard rush and quarterback Pete Thomas hit Crockett Gillmore for the two-point conversion with 36 seconds to play, sending the game into overtime.
Both teams registered touchdowns in the first overtime as Utah State scored first on a 9-yard run from Turbin, but Colorado State answered on a touchdown pass from Thomas to Gillmore.
In the second overtime, Colorado State had the ball first and scored on a two-yard run from Nwoke. USU quickly answered as Turbin scored his fourth touchdown of the night on the first play of the drive from 25 yards out. Utah State then decided to go for the two-point conversion and the win as freshman quarterback Chuckie Keeton's pass to senior wide receiver Matt Austin was incomplete, but CSU was called for pass interference. With the ball moved from the three to the one-and-half following the penalty, Turbin rushed left but was stopped short of the goal.
Turbin finished the night with 115 yards on 24 carries and Utah State ended the game with 281 rushing yards on 52 carries. Senior running back Michael Smith added 77 rushing yards on nine carries, including a 51-yard scamper in the second quarter highlighting a 3-play, 68-yard drive that was capped off with a 14-yard run from junior running back Kerwynn Williams for the Aggies first score of the night. Keeton was 9-of-15 passing for 86 yards and added 44 yards on the ground on 13 carries as Utah State finished the game with 367 total yards.
Senior linebacker Bobby Wagner finished the game with 17 tackles, while fellow senior linebacker Kyle Gallagher added 10 stops. Senior defensive end Levi Koskan added two sacks, and senior safety Alfred Bowden registered the team's first turnover of the year with a fumble recovery.
Colorado State, who won the time of possession battle 34:19 to 25:41, had 232 yards of total offense as it rushed for 168 yards and passed for 108.
Colorado State also won the turnover battle as it forced USU into four miscues and committed just one of its own, a fumble in the fourth quarter that resulted in an eight-play, 27-yard drive that Turbin capped with a one-yard run to give the home team a 21-13 advantage.
UTAH STATE WEEKLY PLAYER HONORS
Sept. 7 (W, 52-20 at Air Force)
Chuckie Keeton - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Quarterback of the Week; Davey O'Brien Quarterback Award Honorable Mention Honors; one of eight Manning Award Stars of the Week, Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award National Player of the Week.
Zach Vigil - College Sports Madness Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week.
Sept. 14 (W, 70-6 vs. Weber State)
Joey DeMartino - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Running Back of the Week.
Chuckie Keeton - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Quarterback of the Week.
D.J. Tialavea - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Tight End of the Week.
Sept. 21 (L, 14-17 at USC)
Kyler Fackrell - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Linebacker of the Week.
Sept. 27 (W, 40-12 at San José State)
Nick Diaz - College Football Performance Awards National Specialist of the Week; one of three Lou Groza Award Stars of the Week.
Kyler Fackrell - College Sports Madness Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week.
Oct. 4 (L, 31-14 vs. BYU)
Keegan Andersen - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Tight End of the Week.
Oct. 12 (L, 34-23 vs. Boise State)
Nevin Lawson - Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week.
Oct. 19 (W, 45-10 at New Mexico)
Bruce Natson - Mountain West Special Teams Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards Punt Returner of the Week.
Joey DeMartino - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Running Back of the Week.
Nov. 2 (W, 47-10 vs. Hawai'i)
Kyler Fackrell - Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week; College Sports Madness Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards National Linebacker of the Week.
Nick Diaz - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Placekicker of the Week.
Jake Thompson - College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Specialist of the Week.
Nov. 9 (W, 28-24 at UNLV)
Nevin Lawson - Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week.
Jake Doughty - College Sports Madness Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week; College Football Performance Awards Honorable Mention National Linebacker of the Week.
RUNNING BACK UNIVERSITY
Utah State is the only school in the nation who has had three running backs selected in the NFL Draft during the last two seasons as Robert Turbin (Seattle, 4/111) and Michael Smith (Tampa Bay, 7/212) were both chosen in 2012, while Kerywnn Williams (Indianapolis, 7/230) was selected in 2013. Linebacker Bobby Wagner (Seattle, 2/47) was also taken in the 2012 NFL Draft and cornerback Will Davis (Miami, 3/93) was selected in 2013 giving Utah State five NFL Draft picks during the past two years.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH
There are nine Division I schools that are located in cities with an elevation of at least 4,000 feet about sea level and Utah State ranks sixth on the list with an elevation of 4,710 feet. USU is the fifth-highest Mountain West Conference school. This season the Aggies will play at three other locations on the list (Air Force, New Mexico and Utah), giving USU nine games this season at 4,000 feet above sea level.
School Location ElevationUTAH STATE ACCOMPLISHMENTS IN 2012
1. Wyoming Laramie, Wyo. 7,220 2. Air Force Colorado Springs, Colo. 6,620 3. Colorado Boulder, Colo. 5,360 4. Colorado State Fort Collins, Colo. 5,190 5. New Mexico Albuquerque, N.M. 5,100 6. UTAH STATE LOGAN, UTAH 4,710 7. BYU Provo, Utah 4,630 8. Nevada Reno, Nev. 4,610 9. Utah Salt Lake City, Utah 4,357
Utah State had its best season in school history in 2012 as it set the single-season school record for wins with 11, bettering the 1960 and 1961 teams that won nine games. USU also set a single-season school record with its six home wins, bettering the 1931, 1935 and 1972 teams that all won five home games. USU went 6-0 at home in 2012 for its first undefeated home season since 1982 (4-0) and just its fourth in the 45 years of play at Romney Stadium along with the 1968 (4-0) and 1972 (5-0) teams. USU also posted the school's first-ever 6-0 conference mark and won six league games for just the second time in school history joining the 1936 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) Championship team that went 6-0-1 in league play. USU also recorded its first ever road win against a ranked opponent when it posted a 48-41 overtime victory at then No. 19 Louisiana Tech. USU also appeared in the Associated Press (AP) poll in four-straight weeks in 2012 for the first time in school history, not to mention being ranked in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll and Bowl Championship Series (BCS) Standings for the first time ever. And finally, USU finished the 2012 season nationally ranked - 16th in the AP poll, 18th in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll and 22nd in the BCS Standings - for just the third time in school history joining the 1961 team that finished the year ranked 10th nationally in both the AP and United Press International (UPI) polls and the 1972 team that finished 19th in the UPI poll.
A LOOK AT UTAH STATE
Utah State returns 18 starters (O-8, D-7, S-3) and 49 letterwinners (O-23, D-22, S-4) from last year's team that finished with a 11-2 record and won the Western Athletic Conference with a perfect 6-0 mark. USU ended its season with a 41-15 win against Toledo in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl and was ranked 16th nationally by the Associated Press. Highlighting Utah State's returners is senior center Tyler Larsen who is a two-time first-team all-WAC honoree. Joining Larsen as returning all-conference players from 2012 are senior linebacker Jake Doughty (first-team), sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell (first-team), junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton (first-team), senior offensive tackle Eric Schultz (first-team), senior cornerback Nevin Lawson (second-team), senior offensive guard Jamie Markosian (second-team), sophomore defensive tackle Jordan Nielsen (second-team), junior linebacker Zach Vigil (second-team) and senior defensive tackle Connor Williams (honorable-mention). Along with the players mentioned above, USU also returns four other starters on offense (WR-Travis Reynolds; TE-D.J. Tialavea; OT-Kevin Whimpey; OG-Kyle Whimpey), two other starters on defense (NG-Elvis Kamana-Matagi; S-Brian Suite) and three special teams starters (PK/H-Jaron Bentrude; PK-Nick Diaz; LS-Nate Needham).
WHAT UTAH STATE MUST REPLACE FROM 2012
Utah State lost seven players who earned all-WAC honors in 2012 as cornerback Will Davis, defensive tackle Al Lapuaho and running back Kerwynn Williams all earned first-team honors, wide receiver Matt Austin and safety McKade Brady earned second-team honors, and tight end Kellen Bartlett and wide receiver Chuck Jacobs earned honorable mention honors. Davis also earned third-team All-American honors from CBSSports.com, fourth-team All-American honors from Phil Steele, and honorable mention All-American honors from SI.com. Williams was also an honorable mention All-American by SI.com. Other starters lost include punter Tyler Bennett.
AGGIES WHO ARE MARRIED AND HAVE BEEN ON MISSIONS
Utah State has 12 players on its team who are married (Clayton Christensen, Craig Harrison, Tyler Larsen, Logan Malohifo'ou, Jeff Manning, Nate Needham, AJ Pataiali'i, Bridger Peck, Joe Summers, Josh Thompson, Kevin Whimpey, Kyle Whimpey), while 24 Aggies have served a two-year LDS Church Mission (Ricky Ali'ifua, Jarom Baldomero, Eric Bernston, Brock Bird, Jordan Brown, Clayton Christensen, Jefferson Court, Dayton DeLoach, Jarom Ioane, Derek Keller, B.J. Larsen, Logan Malohifo'ou, Jeff Manning, Alex Marsaw, Nate Needham, Travis Parrish, Eric Schultz, Brayden Stembride, Joe Summers, Brandon Taukeiaho, Tyler Weese, Kevin Whimpey, Kyle Whimpey and Daniel Wray).
Utah State had 21 football players earn academic all-WAC honors during the 2012-13 academic year, which ranked first in the WAC. Over the past four years, USU has had 87 players earn academic all-WAC honors and 94 players have graduated from Utah State University.
AGGIES IN THE NFL
Eight former Utah State football players are currently on NFL rosters including Jarrett Bush (Green Bay), Will Davis (Miami), Chuck Jacobs (San Francisco), Curtis Marsh (Philadelphia), Donald Penn (Tampa Bay), Robert Turbin (Seattle), Bobby Wagner (Seattle), and Kerwynn Williams (San Diego).
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State was one of just 13 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) schools to win 10 or more football games and 20-plus basketball games during the 2012-13 academic year as the Aggies went 11-2 on the gridiron and 21-10 on the hardwood. Other FBS schools in the 20-10 club include Alabama, Boise State, Cincinnati, Florida, Kansas State, Kent State, Louisville, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oregon and UCF.
HEAD COACH Matt Wells
Aggie alumnus Matt Wells was named Utah State's 27th head football coach on Dec. 20, 2012 after serving as the team's offensive coordinator in 2012, and quarterbacks coach and recruiting coordinator in 2011.
The 39-year old Wells, who is now the 11th-youngest head coach at the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) level, replaces Gary Andersen who accepted the head coaching position at the University of Wisconsin. Dating back to 1919, Wells is just the second Utah State graduate to be appointed its head football coach joining Chris Pella who graduated from USU in 1965 and coached the Aggies from 1983-85.
Wells, a former Aggie quarterback and three-year letterwinner from 1994-96, was a member of two conference championship teams as a student-athlete as he was a redshirt freshman in 1993 when Utah State tied for first in the Big West Conference and defeated Ball State, 42-33, in the Las Vegas Bowl for its first-ever bowl win. As a senior in 1996, Wells helped USU to another share of the Big West Conference title.
Wells has spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach at Utah State, including serving as the team's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach during the 2012 campaign. In 2011, Wells coached USU's quarterbacks and was the team's recruiting coordinator.
Utah State concluded its most successful season in school history in 2012 as it went 11-2 and set school records for wins (11) and home wins (6), while being nationally ranked in the Associated Press poll for three-straight weeks for the first time in school history. USU also won its first outright conference championship since 1936 during the 2012 campaign and just its third in school history joining the 1921 and 1936 teams that both won Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference titles. All-time, Utah State has won or shared 11 league championships.
During his two years at Utah State, Wells has been part of a Utah State team that went to back-to-back bowl games for just the third time in school history, while posting an 18-8 record. Furthermore, USU's 41-15 win against Toledo in the 2012 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl was the school's second-ever bowl victory.
As offensive coordinator this past season, Wells directed an Aggie offense that set single-season school records for total points (454), total offense (6,108 yards), completions (285) and total yards per game (469.8), while ranking second in points per game (34.9) and total passing yards (3,445).
Nationally, Utah State's 2012 offense ranked second in the Western Athletic Conference and 23rd in the country in total offense (469.8 ypg), second in the WAC and 18th in the nation in passing efficiency (153.21), second in the WAC and 25th in the nation in rushing offense (204.8 ypg), third in the WAC and 31st in the nation in sacks allowed (1.38 pg), third in the WAC and 33rd in the nation in scoring offense (34.9 ppg), and third in the WAC and 39th in the nation in passing offense (265.0 ypg).
Under Wells, Utah State finished the 2012 season scoring 38 or more points in each of its final seven games, bettering the previous school record of 38-plus points in three-straight games accomplished six times and most recently in 2000.
Utah State also finished the 2012 season winning its final seven games, which is tied for the fourth-longest active winning streak in the nation and tied for the third-longest winning streak in school history.
In 2012, Wells coached current Aggie junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton who earned first-team all-WAC honors after setting single-season school records for touchdown passes (27), passing yards (3,373), completion percentage (.676), completions (275) and total offense (3,992 yards). Keeton also earned WAC Offensive Player of the Week honors four times in 2012, which is a single-season school record.
As the quarterbacks coach in 2011, Wells helped Utah State's offense establish then-school records for total offense (5,945 yards), rushing yards (3,675), total points (437) and total touchdowns (60).
Under Wells' tutelage during his first two seasons at Utah State, Keeton has emerged as one of the top quarterbacks in the nation and currently ranks first in school history in career completion percentage (.656), fourth in career touchdown passes (38), seventh in career total offense (5,485 yards), and ninth in career passing yards (4,573) and completions (381).
In 2012, Utah State had four offensive players earn first-team all-conference honors, while two others were named to the league's second-team.
Utah State, who officially joined the Mountain West Conference on July 1, 2013, will return 18 starters (8-offense, 7-defense, 3-special teams) and 49 letterwinners (23-offense, 22-defense, 4-special teams) from a group that has won 16 of its last 19 games.
Wells, who has been a part of six bowl teams and two conference championships during his coaching career, came to Utah State after two coaching stints at New Mexico, serving as the Lobos' wide receivers and kickoff return unit coach in 2010 and its wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator from 2007 to 2008. In 2009, Wells served as the quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator at Louisville.
Prior to his first stint at New Mexico, Wells spent five years (2002-06) as the tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator at Tulsa and five years at the U.S. Naval Academy (1997-2001) as its quarterbacks coach, fullbacks coach and wide receivers coach, while also serving as the junior varsity head coach and offensive coordinator for three years.
Wells, a native of Sallisaw, Okla., received his bachelor's degree in business marketing from Utah State in 1996, graduating cum laude. He and his wife Jen have two daughters, Jadyn (10) and Ella (7), and one son Wyatt (4). His brother, Luke, is Utah State's co-offensive coordinator, tight ends coach, and recruiting coordinator.
RECAPPING THE UNLV GAME
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Sophomore wide receiver Bruce Natson had two rushing touchdowns, including the game-winner with 3:56 to play, and Utah State's defense held UNLV out of the end zone with four-straight incomplete passes from the USU 16-yardline in the final minute to cap a hard-fought 28-24 road win on Nov. 9, 2013.
With the win, Utah State improves to 6-4 on the season including a 5-1 mark in the Mountain West, to become bowl eligible for the third-straight year as the Aggies have never played in three-straight bowl games. UNLV falls to 5-5 overall and 3-3 in league play with the loss.
Natson finished the game with a career-high eight rushes for a career-best 61 yards, including two touchdown runs, to go along with three receptions for 40 yards.
Senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds recorded his third 100-yard receiving game in his last four outings as he finished with seven receptions for 129 yards, while fellow senior wide receiver Travis Van Leeuwen added a career-best 112 receiving yards on four receptions.
Freshman quarterback Darell Garretson improved to 3-0 as USU's starter and finished 17-of-29 passing for 298 yards to go along with one touchdown, while senior running back Joey DeMartino added 75 rushing yards on 19 carries and his 10th rushing touchdown of the year.
The linebacker tandem of senior Jake Doughty and junior Zach Vigil each recorded 11 tackles, as Doughty added a career-high tying 2.5 tackles for loss. Senior cornerback Nevin Lawson added four tackles and three passes defended, including his fourth interception of the season and the sixth of his career in the end zone early in the third quarter.
Utah State finished the game with 441 yards of total offense (298 passing, 143 rushing) as compared to 402 yards of total offense for UNLV (252 passing, 150 rushing).
UNLV scored first on a 10-yard pass from Caleb Herring to Marcus Sullivan with 8:23 to play in the opening quarter following a Garretson fumble near midfield.
Utah State got on the board on its first play of the second quarter as Garretson threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Shaan Johnson to cap a 13-play, 52 yard drive.
Following a 29-yard field goal by UNLV, Natson scored his first career rushing touchdown from 13-yards out to give the visitors its first lead of the game with 11:16 to play in the half. Tim Cornett then scored his only touchdown of the night on a 4-yard run with 3:10 left in the half to give the Rebels a 17-14 advantage at the break.
UNLV appeared ready to extend its lead to 10 points early in the third quarter before Lawson intercepted Herring in the end zone and USU eventually regained the lead at 21-17 on a 1-yard run by DeMartino late in the same period.
UNLV reclaimed the lead early in the fourth quarter as it drove 79 yards in 15 plays and took 7:10 off the clock as Herring threw his second touchdown pass of the night, this time to Maika Mataele from 4-yards out.
Utah State's final scoring drive covered 82 yards in 11 plays and was capped by Natson's second touchdown rush of the night on a 12 yard scamper to give USU the 28-24 lead.
UNLV's final drive of the game began at its own 18 and eventually got the ball to the USU 16 before throwing four-straight incomplete passes in the end zone to end the game. During its last drive, UNLV ran 16 plays and went 66 yards in 3:38.
Cornett led the Rebels with 115 rushing yards on 29 carries, while Herring was 17-of-39 passing for 252 yards with two touchdowns and one interception.
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