Falcons Can't Contain Collie as Cougars Roll to Win No. 10

All-America candidate Austin Collie totaled 172 all-purpose yards — including this grab for a 45-yard touchdown — to lead BYU to a 38-24 win at Air Force on Saturday. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)


Click to watch the video.


Click to watch the video.

USAFA -- All-America candidate Austin Collie continued his record-setting pace with 130 receiving yards and two touchdowns while quarterback Max Hall threw for 354 yards to lead No. 14 BYU to a 38-24 win at Air Force on Saturday.

With the victory the Cougars have achieved 10 wins for the third straight season. BYU improves to 10-1 overall and 6-1 in the Mountain West Conference while the Falcons fall to 8-3 and 5-2.

Collie, one of 10 receivers selected as a Biletnikoff Award finalist, totaled more than 100 receiving yards for the ninth straight game to extend his MWC record while setting the new conference mark for total 100-yard games overall at nine. With 1,315 receiving yards on the season, Collie is now BYU’s all-time single-season leader.

Collie was joined by tight end Dennis Pitta, who caught nine balls for 113 yards as the Cougars rolled up 354 passing yards among 480 yards of total offense. Air Force gained 323 yards on the ground and totaled 421 yards overall in the competitive contest.

“I was proud of our team, going on the road to win our 10th game and having a chance for a championship again,” said BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall, whose team is looking for a third straight MWC title this season. “We knew it would be a difficult football game and it turned out to be. (Air Force) plays hard and there is no quit in them. They battle.”

The game was full of momentum swings as both teams battled throughout. The Cougars put the only points of the first quarter on the board when Fui Vakapuna powered his way to the end zone from 11 yards out. The senior full back fought off Falcon tacklers to culminate the five-play, 57-yard drive.

BYU proved more effective in the opening quarter, gaining 121 yards on 13 plays while holding the Falcons to 63 yards on 15 offensive opportunities. Hall was a perfect 9-for-9 in the air for 97 yards in the first quarter, while linebacker David Nixon put an end to Air Force’s best scoring chance of the quarter by blocking Ryan Harrison’s 54-yard field-goal attempt with 1:21 left on the clock.

In the second quarter, Mitch Payne converted a 46-yard field goal to increase the BYU lead to 10-0 and give Air Force its second-largest deficit of the season. The Falcons, whose largest previous deficit was 13 points in a 33-27 loss to Navy, turned the momentum their way with back-to-back touchdowns on drives of 32 and 83 yards to claim the advantage at 14-10. BYU looked like it would reclaim the lead when Hall drove BYU to the Air Force 3-yard line with just 11 seconds to go in the half, but the Falcons kept the Cougars out of the end zone when defensive lineman Ryan Kemp deflected Hall’s pass into the awaiting arms of Falcon free safety Aaron Kirchoff for the interception.

In the third quarter the Cougars became the first team all year to score 21 points in a single quarter against the Falcons. Air Force, in fact, had gone the three previous games without giving up any second-half points before BYU outscored the Falcons 21-3 in the third. Running back Harvey Unga scored twice on runs 1 and 2 yards and Hall connected with Collie for a 6-yard touchdown.

The Falcons fought back in the fourth quarter with an 85-yard drive to pull within seven at 31-24 with 7:37 remaining. The Cougars, however, delivered the knockout blow minutes later when Hall connected with Collie for a 45-yard score to give BYU the final 38-24 margin.

Nixon led BYU in tackles with 10 while David Tafuna and Matt Ah You added nine apiece. Brandon Howard added an interception for the Cougars.

BYU has its chance to earn a third straight conference crown next week when it finishes the regular season at No. 7 Utah on Saturday in Salt Lake City. The game is a 4 p.m. kick televised nationally on The Mtn.

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Box Score (Final)

#14 BYU vs Air Force (Nov 15, 2008 at USAFA, Colo.)

Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score

----------------- -- -- -- -- -----

BYU................. 7 3 21 7 - 38 Record: (10-1,6-1)

Air Force........... 0 14 3 7 - 24 Record: (8-3,5-2)

Scoring Summary:

1st 07:41 BY - VAKAPUNA, Fui 11 yd run (PAYNE, Mitch kick), 5-57 2:13, BY 7 - AF 0

2nd 13:29 BY - PAYNE, Mitch 46 yd field goal, 8-36 2:52, BY 10 - AF 0

06:44 AF - CLARK, Asher 6 yd run (HARRISON, Ryan kick), 5-32 1:25, BY 10 - AF 7

01:55 AF - NEWELL, Todd 1 yd run (HARRISON, Ryan kick), 5-83 1:20, BY 10 - AF 14

3rd 10:58 BY - UNGA, Harvey 1 yd run (PAYNE, Mitch kick), 8-45 2:44, BY 17 - AF 14

09:44 BY - UNGA, Harvey 2 yd run (PAYNE, Mitch kick), 3-20 1:07, BY 24 - AF 14

05:15 BY - COLLIE, Austin 6 yd pass from HALL, Max (PAYNE, Mitch kick), 8-58 3:33, BY 31 - AF 14

00:56 AF - HARRISON, Ryan 34 yd field goal, 13-63 4:19, BY 31 - AF 17

4th 07:37 AF - TEW, Jared 19 yd run (HARRISON, Ryan kick), 7-85 2:40, BY 31 - AF 24

04:46 BY - COLLIE, Austin 45 yd pass from HALL, Max (PAYNE, Mitch kick), 8-91 2:44, BY 38 - AF 24

BY AF

FIRST DOWNS................... 32 21

RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 36-126 51-323

PASSING YDS (NET)............. 354 98

Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 37-28-1 20-12-1

TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 73-480 71-421

Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 0-0 1-0

Punt Returns-Yards............ 1-5 1-26

Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 4-79 3-36

Interception Returns-Yards.... 1-0 1-3

Punts (Number-Avg)............ 4-35.2 4-31.5

Fumbles-Lost.................. 1-1 2-1

Penalties-Yards............... 9-68 8-73

Possession Time............... 31:57 28:03

Third-Down Conversions........ 6 of 11 5 of 14

Fourth-Down Conversions....... 0 of 0 1 of 2

Red-Zone Scores-Chances....... 4-5 4-4

Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 0-0 3-32

RUSHING: BYU-UNGA, Harvey 19-88; VAKAPUNA, Fui 7-32; COLLIE, Austin 2-23;

TEAM 1-0; HALL, Max 7-minus 17. Air Force-NEWELL, Todd 21-116; JEFFERSON, Tim

12-75; HALDERMAN, Kyle 1-46; CLARK, Asher 10-28; WARZEKA, Jonath 3-26; TEW,

Jared 2-21; PAFFETT, Ty 2-11.

PASSING: BYU-HALL, Max 28-37-1-354. Air Force-JEFFERSON, Tim 12-20-1-98.

RECEIVING: BYU-PITTA, Dennis 9-113; COLLIE, Austin 7-130; GEORGE, Andrew

5-62; UNGA, Harvey 4-18; REED, Michael 2-23; VAKAPUNA, Fui 1-8. Air

Force-HALDERMAN, Kyle 3-17; FOGLER, Kevin 2-21; COUSINS, Josh 2-18; DEKKER,

Travis 2-13; PAFFETT, Ty 1-16; ROBINSON, Jaquo 1-7; NEWELL, Todd 1-6.

INTERCEPTIONS: BYU-HOWARD, Brandon 1-0. Air Force-KIRCHOFF, Aaron 1-3.

FUMBLES: BYU-HALL, Max 1-1. Air Force-CLARK, Asher 1-0; REMBERT, Reggie

1-1.

SACKS (UA-A): BYU-None. Air Force-ALTMAN, Hunter 1-0; LAMENDOLA, Ken 1-0;

THOMAS, Chris 1-0.

TACKLES (UA-A): BYU-NIXON, David 3-7; AH YOU, Matt 4-5; TAFUNA, David

4-5; JORGENSEN, Jan 5-2; FOWLER, Kellen 4-3; CLAWSON, Coleby 4-2; DENNEY, Brett

3-2; BAUMAN, Matt 1-4; RICH, Andrew 2-2; BRADLEY, Brando 3-0; HOWARD, Brandon

0-3; MORGAN, Blake 2-0; PUTNAM, Matt 2-0; ALISA, Michael 2-0; FOKETI, Mosese

1-0; MUEHLMANN, Chri 1-0; VAKAPUNA, Fui 1-0; KARIYA, Bryan 1-0; HUNTER, Shane

0-1. Air Force-THOMAS, Chris 11-6; LAMENDOLA, Ken 5-5; ALTMAN, Hunter 3-4;

KIRCHOFF, Aaron 5-1; MORRIS, Andre 2-4; WRIGHT, Anthony 2-4; REMBERT, Reggie

3-2; MOORE, Justin 3-2; PAULSON, Jake 1-3; YEAGER, Luke 1-3; KEMP, Ryan 1-2;

GARLAND, Ben 0-3; RIVERS, Kevin 1-0; FALGOUT, John 1-0; QUINTANA, Sean 1-0;

OFILI, Phillip 1-0; BRYANT, Clay 1-0; HALDERMAN, Kyle 0-1.

Tags: Results