Following the Cougars' sixth straight victory of the season - a 24-20 win over New Mexico - No. 13 BYU (6-0, 2-0) will return to Provo to take on co-MWC leader Air Force (4-1, 2-0) on Saturday, Oct. 20. Game time is scheduled for 3:45 p.m. (MT) and will be broadcast to a national television audience on ESPN2. The game will mark the Cougars 77th homecoming game since 1922. The Cougars have posted a record of 36-18 (.667) since the 1947 Homecoming contest - a 27-12 win over Utah State.
The BYU-Air Force Series (The 22nd Meeting)
Saturday's game will mark the 22nd meeting between the two teams, dating back to Nov. 24, 1956. The Cougars started the rivalry off with four straight wins before the Falcons recorded their first win in 1982 - a 39-38 win in the first-ever game at the newly expanded Cougar Stadium. BYU retaliated by posting 12 straight victories, spanning the 1983-1994 seasons. The Falcons have faired well against the Cougars as of late, winning three of the last four games, including a 31-23 victory in Colorado Springs last season. BYU last defeated Air Force in Provo during the 1999 season, holding on for a 27-20 victory. The Cougars own a 17-4 record in the rivalry, including a mark of 7-1 in Provo.
Saturday's game will be broadcast live on ESPN2 to a national television audience, beginning at 3:45 p.m. (MT). The game will mark only the second national television broadcast for the Cougars this season. Pam Ward will call the action, while Dean Blevins will lend expert analysis, with Heather Cox reporting from the sidelines. Cox, a resident of Boise, Idaho, served as the color analyst at both NCAA National Championship victories for the BYU men's volleyball team (1999, 2001).
Security at Edwards Stadium
In light of recent events, BYU will maintain and enforce all existing stadium safety guidelines, particularly the rules regarding bringing large containers or coolers to the game. Coolers and large containers will not be permitted, while other items, such as large bags, are subject to search. The FAA will also enforce a three-mile, 3,000-foot no-fly-zone. Aircraft violating the three-mile zone, or flying lower than 3,000 feet above the stadium is subject to strict penalties.
Scouting the Falcons
The Falcons improved to 4-1, 2-0 on the season with a 24-13 win over Wyoming on Saturday. However, after committing 10 penalties for 102 yards, the score may have been a lot worse. Two Air Force touchdowns were called back due to uncharacteristic penalties by the normally disciplined Air Force squad. The Falcons managed to overcome the penalties thanks in part to quarterback Keith Boyea, who ran for a career-high 196 yards and threw for 168 yards and one touchdown. Although Wyoming posted an impressive 189 yards rushing, the Air Force defense hold the Cowboys to just three points in the second half and forced two turnovers, including a key interception in the fourth quarter. Boyea leads the team in rushing, passing and scoring, posting 111.0 yards rushing, 122.8 yards passing and 8.8 points per game. Ryan Flemming leads the Air Force receiving corps with 13 receptions for 201 yards on the season, averaging 40.2 yards per game. The Falcons average 256.2 rushing yards per game, while allowing its opponents just 183 yards per contest.
Cougars Continue to Climb National Polls
Following the Cougars' 24-20 victory over New Mexico on Saturday, BYU climbed to No. 13 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, from No. 17 last week. BYU remained at No. 18 in the Associated Press top-25 poll for the second straight week. The Cougars' 13th-place rankings marks the highest BYU has been ranked in either poll since climbing to No. 12 after defeating San Diego State, 30-7, on Nov. 6, 1999. After entering both polls on Sept. 9, following a 44-16 win at Cal, the Cougars climbed to No. 20 in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll on Sept. 23. The Sept. 9 polls marks the first time BYU had been ranked nationally since the final game of the 1999 season - a 21-3 loss to Marshall in the Motor City Bowl. BYU entered the Motor City Bowl ranked 25th in the coaches poll, while it had dropped from the AP poll on Nov. 21. Nov. 14, 1999 marked the last time BYU was ranked in both the AP and ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls. BYU was ranked 19th in each poll that week, but dropped out of the AP poll and fell to 25th in the coaches poll on Nov. 21. BYU has now been ranked in the Top-20 or Top-25 polls in 22 of the last 26 years. The only years in which BYU has never been ranked during the season since 1976 were 1978,1987, 1998 and 2000. The Cougars are just one of seven teams in this week's polls with a record of 6-0 or better.
Week USAToday/ESPN AP
Aug. 26 NR NR
Sept. 2 NR NR
Sept. 9 25th 24th
Sept. 16 No Polls No Polls
Sept. 23 20th 20th
Oct. 7 17th 18th
Oct. 14 13th 18th
Cougars Sneak by New Mexico, Remain Undefeated
Without teammate Luke Staley, Brandon Doman led the No. 17 Cougars to another Mountain West Conference come-from-behind road victory, defeating the New Mexico, 24-20, to remain undefeated on the season. Similar to the UNLV game two weeks ago, the Cougars (6-0, 2-0) found themselves down three points late in the game. BYU again faced a fourth down situation, but this time it was fourth-and eleven. Doman ran the option behind some key blocks on the right side of the line and took the ball for a first down to keep the drive alive. On the next play, Doman rolled right and threw off balance into the end zone where Andrew Ord came down with the touchdown catch. Matt Payne connected on the PAT to give the Cougars a four-point lead. With Brian McDonald-Ashford sidelined with a knee injury, and Luke Staley out while the University investigates his academic eligibility status, Ned Stearns started in place of Staley, finishing the game with 18 rushes for a career high72 yards. Doman tried to make up for Staley's absence through the air, finishing the game 22-of-41 for 258 yards passing, three touchdowns and no interceptions. He also rushed for 37 yards. New Mexico ran a ball-control offense throughout the game, forcing the Cougars' defense to be on the field extensively. But just like the defense has done all year, the Cougars made the plays when they had to. After the go-ahead touchdown, Jernaro Gilford intercepted an errant Casey Kelly pass, his second interception of the game. Aaron Francisco also made an interception earlier in the game.
Staley to Play Against Air Force
After sitting out the Cougars' game at New Mexico, junior running back Luke Staley will return to the lineup on Saturday against Air Force. Prior to last week, Staley was named the Mountain West Conference Offensive Player of the Week after recording his first 200-yard rushing game and his fourth career 100-yard game against Utah State. The 6-foot-2, 218-pound running back totaled a career-high 207 yards rushing on 23 carries, averaging 9.0 yards per touch. Staley also picked up 44 yards receiving on four receptions, a team season-high 49-yard kick return and threw one pass for 11 yards. On the night, Staley totaled an astounding 300 all-purpose yards. His 200-yard rushing performance marked the first time a BYU back has rushed for more than 200 yards since Ronney Jenkins posted 250 yards against San Jose State in 1998. He tied the BYU individual single-game record with five touchdowns on the night, including four rushing TDs. Staley also tied the BYU individual single-game record with 30 points. Staley has produced 32 career touchdowns, tying him with Lakei Heimuli and Waymon Hamilton for second on the all-time BYU touchdown list. With eight games remaining, Staley has already posted a career-high 12 touchdowns on the season. With his first-quarter touchdown against the Aggies, Staley has produced at least one touchdown in 17 of the 24 games he has played over his career, including multiple-scoring games in nine different outings. After posting 207 yards against a USU defense, Staley ranks 14th nationally, averaging 119.4 yards per game and averages a hefty 8.9 yards per carry. The Tualatin, Ore., native ranks third nationally with a 14.40 points-per-game average. Staley also ranks ninth in all-purpose yards, averaging 176.20 yards per contest.
BYU CAREER TOUCHDOWN LIST
Player Years TDs Rushing Receiving
Jamal Willis 1991-94 40 35 5
Luke Staley 1999-Present 32 26 6
Lakei Heimuli 1984-86 32 30 2
Waymon Hamilton 1981-83 32 29 3
Eric Drage 1990-93 29 0 29
Ronney Jenkins 1996,98 29 24 5
BYU SINGLE-SEASON TOUCHDOWN LIST
Player Year TDs Rushing Receiving
Waymon Hamilton 1981 16 14 2
Ronney Jenkins 1998 15 13 2
Clay Brown 1980 15 0 15
Roy Oliverson 1951 15 n/a n/a
Ronney Jenkins 1996 14 11 3
Jamal Willis 1994 14 12 2
Luke Staley* 2001 12 9 3
With seven regular-season games remaining, Staley is on pace to not only break the BYU career touchdown record, but could also break the single-season record as well. Staley is on pace to finish the season with over 19 touchdowns. For his career Staley is projected to score a record 58 touchdowns (1.3 TDs per game). Staley is also on pace for his first 1,000-yard season at BYU. Averaging 119.4 yards per game, Staley could eclipse the single-season rushing record with over 1,500 yards on the season. The Cougars have not had a 1,000-yard rusher since 1998. BYU has produced only five running backs (and six seasons) with 1,000-yard seasons since 1952. (Jamal Willis twice eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark.)
Cougars Aim For Single-Season Scoring Record
Through the first six games of the season, BYU has produced 279 points, averaging a nation's best 46.5 points per game. However, during the 1980 season, BYU posted a record 325 points over a mid-season six-game stretch. With seven games remaining, BYU is on pace to break the current single-season scoring record set in 1980. BYU chalked up 606 points that year, averaging 46.6 points per contest.
A Look At The Rivalries
Since 1922, BYU has maintained several long-standing rivalries. Saturday's game against New Mexico marked the 51st meeting between the two schools, ranking as the fifth longest rivalry in school history. BYU will face each of its oldest rivals during the 2001 season. The Cougars own a winning record against four of the five rivals. Following is a look at the Cougars' five oldest rivalries:
School No. Games Series Record First Game Last Game
Utah 76 Utah leads, 45-27-4 Oct. 14, 1922 Nov. 24, 2000
Utah State 75 BYU leads, 39-33-3 Oct. 7, 1922 Oct. 5, 2001
Wyoming 67 BYU leads, 35-29-3 Nov. 14, 1922 Oct. 26, 2000
Colorado St. 59 BYU leads, 31-25-3 Nov. 25, 1922 Nov. 2, 2000
New Mexico 51 BYU leads, 38-12-1 Nov. 17, 1951 Oct. 13, 2001
Off To A Great Start
The Cougars 24-20 win over New Mexico on Saturday gave BYU its sixth straight win of the season, marking the best single-season start since 1984. (BYU went undefeated in 1984, winning the National Championship with a 13-0 record.) BYU's Gary Crowton became the first head coach in BYU football history to win the first six games of his career. With the Cougars' victory over Utah State, the former Louisiana Tech head coach has posted a 27-13 career coaching record. With BYU's 52-7 win over Nevada, Crowton became the first BYU coach to win the first two games of his career at BYU since G. Ott Romney won his first two games in 1928. Romney went on to post a 3-3-1 record in his first season. After winning the first game of his career, defeating Kansas, 32-9, former head coach LaVell Edwards lost to Utah State in his second game, 42-19. With a 35-point victory over Tulane to kickoff the Gary Crowton era, the Cougars are 6-7 in the opening game of a coach's tenure at BYU.
Red Zone Review
The Cougars have scored on 28-of-30 trips to the Red Zone (.933), including six of seven trips inside the Red Zone against Utah State and two-for-two against New Mexico. The Cougars' seven trips to the Red Zone against the Aggies marked a season-high. The USU game also marked the third time this season BYU has scored six different times inside the Red Zone. Prior to a BYU fumble on the eight-yard line against UNLV, the Cougars were a perfect 20-for-20 inside the Red Zone. 24 of the Cougars' 27 Red Zone scoring drives have been touchdowns, while four have been field goals. The BYU defense has held its opponents to just 18-of-24 Red Zone scores on the season.
Fast Times at BYU
On the season, BYU has produced nine scoring drives of under 1:00 or less, including scoring drives of :27 and :45 against Utah State. The Cougars began the 2001 campaign with a season-high four scoring drives under 1:00 against Tulane. The quickest drive came in the Cal game, ending the second quarter on a two-play, :14 second drive. Equally impressive, the Cougars have 22 scoring drives of under 2:00. Against Tulane, BYU produced a season-high six scoring drives under 2:00. BYU closed out the second quarter (against the Green Wave) with four straight scoring drives of :55, :47, :46 and :33. A week later, the Cougars posted five scoring drives of 1:58 or less. Against Cal, the Cougars posted five scoring drives of 1:50 or less, including two scoring drives under 1:00. On the Cougars' six scoring drives against Cal, two totaled three plays or less. On the season, BYU has totaled 18 scoring drives of five plays or less. The Cougars are averaging 6.0 plays per scoring drive.
THE STREAK IS STILL ALIVE ... 330 Games And Counting
With Matt Payne's 33-yard field goal in the first quarter at New Mexico, BYU extended its NCAA record streak to 330 games without being shutout. BYU was last shutout during the 1975 season (Sept. 27, 1975 vs. Arizona State). The Cougars have only one player on its 2001 roster who was alive the last time BYU was shutout. Offensive lineman Aaron McCubbins was just two days old.
Another Streak of Note
Dating back to last season, BYU has won a total of eight straight games, marking the eighth longest winning streak in the country. Oklahoma leads the nation with 18 straight wins, followed by Miami with 14.
Cougars Re-Schedule Mississippi State, Switch Hawai'i
In cooperation with the University of Hawai'i and Mississippi State University, BYU announced last week it has re-scheduled its contest against Mississippi State for Saturday, Dec. 1. The game, originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 15, was postponed after the terrorist attacks on the United States. In order to play the Bulldogs on Dec. 1, Hawai'i generously agreed to switch its game with BYU from Dec. 1 to Saturday, Dec. 8. The SEC announced it would re-schedule the SEC Championship game from Dec. 1 to Dec. 8, allowing for games scheduled to be played on Sept. 15, to be played on Dec. 1. With this move, BYU and Mississippi State were able to re-schedule, only after Hawai'i had agreed to play BYU on Dec. 8, as opposed to Dec. 1.
Natural Born Winners ... 27 Seasons And Counting
After a magical fourth-quarter, come-from behind victory over Utah, 34-27, to end the 2000 season, BYU posted a 6-6 record, marking the 27th straight season without a losing record for the Cougars. BYU has not had a losing season since posting a 5-6 mark in 1973-former head coach LaVell Edward's second season as head coach. The Cougars' streak of 27 straight seasons ranks 11th all-time at the NCAA Division I-A level and is currently the third longest non-losing streak in the nation. (Nebraska leads with an impressive 39 straight seasons without a losing record.) With six wins already on the season and seven more games to play, BYU needs just one more win to ensure a 28th straight non-losing season. The Cougars also need one more win to become eligible for a postseason bowl invitation. The MWC has tie-ins to three post-season bowl games.
Compare The Stats
STATS BYU AFA
Scoring 279 138
Points Per Game 46.5 27.6
First Downs 158 107
Rushing yardage 1,407 1,281
Average Per Game 234.5 256.2
Rushing TDs 21 15
Passing Yardage 1,824 669
Att-Comp-Int 215-141-2 97-48-2
Average Per Game 304.0 133.8
Passing TDs 17 3
Total Offense 3,196 1,950
Total Plays 446 386
Average Per Game 532.7 390.0
Kick Returns: #-yards 20-469 9-150
Punt Returns: #-yards 25-272 12-129
INT Returns: #-yards 10-127 6-21
Kick Return Average 23.5 16.7
Punt Return Average 10.9 10.8
INT Return Average 12.7 3.5
Fumbles-lost 19-4 12-5
Penalties-yards 42-381 31-275
Punts-yards 20-793 31-1,158
Time of possession/game 28:26 32:09
3rd-down Conversions 31/78 36/83
4th-down Conversions 11/13 7/7
Sacks by-yards 18-127 9-58
Touchdowns 38 18
Field Goals-Attempts 5-10 4-5
PAT-Attempts 34-37 16-16
Attendance 236,334 128,945
Average Attendance 47,267 42,982
Pick A Receiver; Any Receiver
Throughout the 2001 season, the Cougars have used 18 different receivers, including a season-high 12 different receivers against Nevada. The BYU receiving corps has accounted for 1,824 of the Cougars'3,196 (57.1 percent) total yards on the season, including a season high 389 yards against Nevada. Reno Mahe ranks 18th nationally and leads all BYU receivers with 40 receptions for 439 yards and two touchdowns. The Cougars rank 10th in the nation in passing offense, averaging 304.0 yards per game. Eight different receivers have over 100 yards on the season, while only six receivers have 10 or more receptions. Luke Staley and tight end Spencer Nead are tied with three touchdown receptions to lead all BYU receivers. Mahe, Mike Rigell and Rod Wilkerson each have two.
In The Trenches
The experienced BYU offensive line, which includes three seniors and two juniors-all of which started last season, weighs in at a beefy 1,479 pounds, averaging 295.8 pounds per man. The O-line will be squaring off against an Air Force defensive line (three seniors) that tip the scales at an average 271.7 pounds per man. On defense, the Cougars' line (two seniors, a junior and a sophomore) weighs in at 279.5 pounds per man, while the Falcons' offensive line (five seniors) average 275.0 pounds per man. Four of the Cougars' five starting offensive lineman received All-Conference honors last season, including Aaron McCubbins, Dustin Rykert, Jason Scukanec and Ben Archibald. The BYU offensive line has allowed just six sacks on the season. The BYU defense has produced 18 sacks, while the Air Force defense has tallied nine sacks over five games.
"Turnover" a New Leaf
With no turnovers against Nevada and Cal, BYU had played back-to-back games without a turnover for the first time since 1994. Entering the UNLV game, BYU had only one turnover on the season. Against UNLV, the Cougars had a season-high three fumbles and one interception. Against Utah State, BYU had just one turnover. That performance was followed by a no-turnover performance by the Cougars against New Mexico. On the other side of the ball the BYU defense has forced 13 turnovers, including 10 interceptions and three fumbles. The Cougars forced three turnovers against Cal, converting all three turnovers into 21 points. Against UNLV, BYU converted three turnovers into six points, while the Rebels racked up 24 points on turnovers. Against Utah State, both interceptions were converted into points for the Cougars. Last season the Cougars had a -9 turnover margin, allowing 29 turnovers, while forcing just 20. BYU is 24-1 in games since 1981 in which it did not allow a turnover. (The only loss was to Washington in 1996.) BYU has never gone three straight games without a turnover. The Cougars rank 197th nationally in turnover margin, averaging +1.17 per game.
The Crowton File
Gary Crowton, a native of Orem, Utah, takes over a BYU program that has been under the direction of college football's sixth all-time winningest coach, LaVell Edwards. Edwards took over the program in 1972, coaching the Cougars to a 257-101-3 (.716) record. Crowton, 44, comes to BYU with a long and proven list of coaching accomplishments. Prior to serving the past two seasons as the offensive coordinator with the NFL's Chicago Bears, where his offense ranked third in the NFL in passing yardage during the 1999 season, Crowton was head coach at Louisiana Tech from 1996-1998. There he guided the Bulldogs to a 21-13 (.618) record over three seasons, including a 9-2 mark in 1997. Competing as an independent for three straight years, Louisiana Tech recorded wins over the likes of Mississippi State, Cal and Alabama. Using its Crowton-designed, high-powered offense, the program also recorded impressive wins by scoring 50-or-more points against eight different opponents, including games of 60-or-more points in five different games. Crowton's offense ranked third in the nation, both in passing and total offense, while the Bulldogs racked up 12,746 yards passing in three years, an average of 4,249 yards per season. The prolific Tech offense also produced 115 touchdown receptions, averaging 38.3 TDs per season. Under Crowton, Louisiana Tech engineered 22 different 300-yard passing games, including a school-record 10, 300-yard outings during the 1998 season. In 1998, Crowton's final season at Louisiana Tech, the Bulldogs combined for a school-record 4,943 yards passing. Crowton's coaching career actually began in 1982 as a student assistant under Edwards at BYU. While at BYU he worked with current Seattle Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren and future NFL Hall of Famer, Steve Young. From BYU, Crowton moved on to Snow College in Ephraim, Utah, where he coached from 1983-86. While at Snow College, Crowton moved from defensive backs coach to offensive coordinator. Under his offensive leadership, the Badgers won the National Junior College Athletic Association National Championship in 1985. From Snow College, Crowton moved to Western Illinois for one season, before taking over as the offensive coordinator at New Hampshire. In 1991, Crowton was hired as the quarterbacks coach at Boston College under head coach Tom Coughlin. There he helped develop quarterback Glenn Foley as a candidate for the Heisman Trophy. After three successful seasons with the Eagles, Crowton was hired as the co-offensive coordinator at Georgia Tech, where his offense led the Yellow Jackets to a No. 21 national ranking in his first and only season in Atlanta. In 1995, Crowton was hired as the offensive coordinator at Louisiana Tech, where he would become the head coach the following season. Crowton, who is the first-ever head football coach at BYU to serve an LDS Church mission, is married to the former Maren Peterson of Bountiful, Utah. The couple was married on August 3, 1985. The Crowtons have six children. NOTEABLE: Crowton is the first coach in BYU history to start his career 5-0 with the Cougars ... In only his fourth year as a Division-IA coach, Crowton recorded his 25th career victory - a 35-31 victory over future Hall of Fame coach John Robinson and the UNLV Rebels.
BYU launched a national award campaign for quarterback Brandon Doman this week as it readies to play at UNLV on Saturday. (Designed by Dave Broberg / photos by Mark Philbrick)
In only his eighth career start (vs. New Mexico), senior quarterback Brandon Doman became the first BYU signal caller since Robbie Bosco in 1984 to win his first eight games as a starter. Doman led BYU to back-to-back wins to close out the 2000 season and has guided the Cougars to six straight wins to open the 2001 season - the Cougars best start since the 1984 season. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound senior has paced the Cougars to a national-leading 46.50 points per game this season, posting 312.33 yards of total offense per game, which ranks fourth in the country. His passing efficiency (162.34) ranks sixth in the nation. Click HERE for the Domanator Update.
LaVell Edwards Stadium
On November 18, 2001, Cougar Stadium was forever changed, honoring the man who built BYU's football tradition from the ground up. President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints, Gordon B. Hinckley, announced the historic name change prior to Edwards'final home game (vs. New Mexico). Now known as LaVell Edwards Stadium; Home of the BYU Cougars, the stadium has been home to more than 112 games since it was expanded to 65,000 seats in 1982. BYU has produced a 93-22 record in the Stadium since the 1982 season, including a 37-13 victory over New Mexico in Edwards'final game in the stadium. Fittingly, Edwards retired with a perfect record (1-0) in LaVell Edwards Stadium. Since 1972, BYU has posted an impressive 135-22 (.860) record in Provo. The Cougars have won five straight in Provo, dating back to 2000.
Edwards Stadium Sees First Sellout
Since Cougar Stadium was renamed to LaVell Edwards Stadium at the end of the 2000 season, BYU played host to its first-ever sell out in Edwards Stadium on Oct. 5. 65,396 fans attended the in-state rivalry, cheering the Cougars to a 54-34 victory. The sell out actually marks the first sellout in the stadium since the season finale (vs. Utah) in 1999. The Utah State game's attendance ranks tied for 42nd all-time at the stadium. The record is 66,247 (vs. Notre Dame) on Oct. 16, 1993. BYU has had 54 sell-out crowds at Edwards Stadium since 1982 -- the year the stadium was expanded to 65,000. The Cougars have an all-time record of 42-12 (.778) in Edwards Stadium when playing in front of a sell-out crowd.
Reno Mahe - The Biggest Little Receiver in the MWC
BYU's Reno Mahe wasted little time making an impression in his return to Division-I football. Mahe, after breaking two bones in his foot in the first week of Fall Camp, led the BYU aerial attack, racking up 96 yards on 12 receptions against Tulane. Mahe's 12 receptions marked the first time a BYUreceiver has had 10 (or more) receptions in a single game since the 1997 season. In the first quarter against Tulane, Mahe also racked up a 55-yard run on a reverse to the left sideline. The run marked Mahe's second-longest run as a Cougar. As a freshman (in 1998) Mahe posted a 57-yard run. Mahe's last game as a Cougar was on Dec. 31, 1998 against Tulane in the Liberty Bowl. Against Nevada, Mahe cracked the 100-yard barrier, registering 103 yards on six completions, including a 12-yard touchdown reception from Brandon Doman for his first touchdown as a Cougar since the 1998 season. Against Cal, Mahe led BYU for the third straight week, recording 64 yards on six receptions and one touchdown reception. The Doman-Mahe trend continued against UNLV when the combo teamed up for a team-leading seven receptions for 65 yards. Once again Mahe was the receiver of choice against Utah State, collecting five receptions for 90 yards. Against New Mexico, Mahe had four receptions for 21 yards. Mahe ranks 18th in the nation with an average 6.67 receptions per game. He has tallied 40 receptions for 439 yards on the season.
Fans Donate Over $13,000 for Disaster Relief Fund
In a combined effort between Brigham Young University, the United Way and the Red Cross, volunteers from BYUSA and the Red Cross collected donations from fans at the BYU-Utah State game for the Disaster Relief Fund. The fund-raising effort raised over $13,875. The University, United Way and Red Cross wish to extend a heart-felt expression of gratitude to all those who contributed.
Dating back to 1980, the Cougars have appeared on national television an average three times per season, including last year's single-season record six national television appearances. Since its first national television appearance in 1974, BYU has posted a 43-28-2 (.603) while playing on national television, including a 23-15 mark on ABC and a 27-16-2 mark on ESPN. Current assistant coach Robbie Bosco led the Cougars to a 20-14 win over Pittsburgh in the first live ESPN College Football broadcast in 1984.
Paper Or Plastic
After six games, BYU has allowed just six sacks on the season. Nevada got to Brandon Doman in the first quarter for the first sack allowed on the season. UNLV picked up two more sacks against the Cougars. BYU has only allowed sacks in four of the six games it has played this season. In the first six games last season, BYU had already given up 27 sacks, including five against Air Force and four more against Syracuse. During the 2000 season, BYUallowed 36 sacks, averaging 3.0 per game. However, the BYU offensive line did not allow a sack in back-to-back games, including the Colorado State and New Mexico games and allowed just one sack against Wyoming as the line began to gel. On the defensive side of the ball, BYU has already sacked its opponent 18 times, including a season- high five sacks against Cal. In the 2000 season, the Cougars had 16 sacks after six games. Senior defensive end Ryan Denney ranks second in the MWC with six sacks on the season, averaging .92 sacks per game. Denney has twice produced two sacks in a game this season, including the Tulane and Cal games. Senior Brett Keisel recorded two of his three sacks this season against Utah State.
Fourth-And-Go For It!
After going 3-for-3 on fourth-down conversions against Utah State, the Cougars went 3-for-4 on fourth-down attempts at New Mexico, improving their season average to .846 (11-of-13). Three of those fourth-down conversions have gone for touchdowns, including Luke Staley's 37-yard touchdown run on a fourth-and-three in the third quarter against Utah State. Against New Mexico, Brandon Doman converted a crucial fourth-and-11 situation that led to an eventual go-ahead touchdown.
BYU running back Luke Staley did not play in Saturday's game against New Mexico. Staley was withheld from competition while the University looks into issues that may affect his eligibility.
Senior running back Ned Stearns was listed as the starter in place of Staley, marking his first-ever career start. He finished the game with a game-high 72 yards on 18 carries, averaging 4.0 yards per carry.
Freshman kicker Matt Payne's 33-yard field goal at the 11:18 mark of the first quarter extended BYU's NCAA-leading streak to 330 games without being shutout. The Cougars were last shutout Sept. 17, 1975 (vs. Arizona State).
Freshman Aaron Francisco recorded his first career interception at the 5:53 mark of the first quarter , ending a threatening 12-play 48-yard New Mexico drive. The interception was the Cougars'eighth of the year.
BYU cornerback Jernaro Gilford recorded two interceptions on the day, including a key grab with just over two minutes left in the game. Gilford has a team-leading four interceptions on the season, including interceptions in the last three games. The Cougars have had at least one interception in each game they have played this season.
BYU remained deadly in the Red Zone, scoring both times they crossed the Lobos' 20-yard line. In the first half, the Cougars converted a field goal and in the second half BYU scored a touchdown inside the Red Zone. BYU is now 28-of-30 (.933) inside the Red Zone this season.
Stearns'three-yard run at the 6:14 mark of the second quarter converted a fourth-and-one situation, marking the seventh straight fourth-down conversion for the Cougars and the tenth fourth-down conversion on the season.
The Cougars are now 11-13 on fourth-down conversions this season. BYU was pe fect for the game until the Cougars failed on a fourth down attempt in the third qua ter. Three plays later, Rodney Wilkerson converted a fourth-and-three situation into a 28-yard touchdown reception, marking the eighth straight fourth-down conversion on the season. After missing a fourth-down attempt in the third quarter, Doman came up with the biggest fourth-down conversion of the season, overcoming a fourth-and- 11 situation late in the fourth quarter.
The Cougars'10 points at the half marked the lowest first-half point total of the season. BYU's previous season low was 21 points (vs. Utah State and Cal). Today's game also marked only the second time this season BYU did not hold the lead at the half.