Utes End Cougars' Bowl Hopes; 28-year non-losing streak
SALT LAKE -- The streak is over. After 28 straight non-losing seasons, college football's third longest non-losing season streak came to an end with a 13-6 loss at Utah on Saturday. With the loss, the Cougars ended the season with a 5-7 record, marking their first losing season since 1973. Not only did the loss end any hopes of a 29th straight winning season, but the defeat eliminated BYU from any chance of a post-season bowl invitation.
BYU kicker Matt Payne, the MWC Special Teams Player of the Week, came out strong for the Cougars, following up last week's exceptional performance by going two-for-two on field goals and gave the Cougars their only two scores of the game.
The Cougar offense struggled moving the ball for the second week in a row. Quarterback Matt Berry completed 12-of-21 passes for 159 yards and no touchdowns. Running back Marcus Whalen tallied just 14 yards on 9 carries, falling 82 yards short of 1,000 yards on the season.
On the Cougars' first offensive play of the game, Berry connected with wide receiver Rod Wilkerson on a 47-yard pass play that set up Payne's first field goal of the afternoon. Payne's 30-yard field goal capped a 5-play, 54-yard drive, giving BYU the early 3-0 lead.
Throughout the first quarter of play the BYU defense applied the pressure on the Utes and shut down their offense.
BYU linebacker Colby Bockwoldt came up with back-to-back tackles for losses to end the first quarter. Bockwoldt sacked Elliot for a nine-yard loss and the stopped running back Edwin Benton on the last play of the quarter for another nine-yard loss.
Bockwoldt's stops set up a third-and-28 for the Utes. A completion from Elliott to wide receive Josh Lyman set up a 41-yard field goal attempt by Bryan Borreson, but it sailed right to give the Cougars the ball back on their own 25-yard line.
Berry drove the Cougar down to the Utah 31-yard line in 11 plays including five first downs. When the drive stalled, Payne increased the BYU lead to 6-0 with a 48-yard field goal.
Following the kick off, the Utes took the ball 64 yards to the Cougars' 12-yard line. Facing fourth-and-two, Utah decided to go for it. Running back Brandon Warfield was chased down from behind the line of scrimmage by safety Joshua Brandon, snuffing the Utes' drive.
With the offense unable to move the ball, BYU was forced to punt. Three plays into the Utes' drive, cornerback Kip Nielson intercepted an Elliott pass on the Cougars' 39-yard line and returned it 50 yard to the Utes' 11-yard line.
Berry connected with Reno Mahe to give the Cougars' a first-and-goal at the Utah 1-yard line. With Lance Pendleton in at quarterback, the Cougars tried to score the first touchdown of the game off a quarterback keeper. But, despite replays that showed his knee was clearly down, Pendleton had the ball stripped on the goal line where the Utes recovered the ball, stealing the Cougars opportunity to increase the lead before half time.
The Utes failed to capitalize on the Cougar turnover, and BYU took a 6-0 lead into the locker room. It was the first time since Sept. 21, when Utah played Michigan that the Utes had been shut out in the first half. Additionally, the shutout marked the Cougars' second first-half shutout of the season.
Things didn't get much better for BYU in the third quarter as their first two offensive possessions went three-and-out.
The Utah offense finally got on the board with a 31-yard field goal on the team's first possession of the second half. The Utes scored again just over four minutes later on a four-yard touchdown run. Warfield's touchdown -- the only one of the game for either team -- capped an 8 play, 74yard drive to give Utah the 10-6 lead.
On the third play of the fourth quarter, Berry found Wilkerson once again for another big gain. This time the tandem connected for a 43-yard pass reception that gave the Cougars the ball on the Utah two-yard line.
Looking to take the lead, the Cougars turned the ball over again as Berry and Whalen fumbled the handoff exchange. Utah recovered. During an attempt to recover the ball, Berry suffered a sprained left shoulder and did not return for the remainder of the game.
The BYU defense stepped up again, forcing Utah to go three-and-out. Pendleton replaced Berry at quarterback and took over at the Utah 36-yard line. Facing third-and-ten, Pendleton's pass was intercepted by Utah's Sheldon Deckart, and gave the ball back to the Utes on their own 39-yard line.
Utah's offense would capitalize on the turnover, driving down field and scoring another field goal to increase the Ute lead to 13-6 with 7:09 left in the game.
BYU decided to go for it on a crucial fourth-and-one on its own 44-yard line, but Pendleton's pass fell incomplete, and the Cougars turned the ball over again on downs.
Pendleton was hurt on the play and did not return, watching the rest of the game on crutches.
When Utah put together a drive than ended up deep inside BYU territory, the Utes looked to drive the nail in to the coffin. Facing third-and-7 at the BYU 21-yard line, the BYU defense held and forced the Utes to bring on their field-goal unit. Borreson lined up for a game-clinching 33-yard field goal. As it sailed right, the Cougars realized they were still alive.
Bret Engemann came in for the Cougars on their last offensive possession of the game. Engemann kept BYU alive with a 26-yard completion to Mahe on fourth-and-8, however the Cougars' luck ran out after Engemann was sacked on fourth down. Utah took over and ran out the clock, beating the Cougars for the first time in Rice-Eccles Stadium since 1994.
Box Score (Final)
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score
----------------- -- -- -- -- -----
Brigham Young....... 3 3 0 0 - 6 Record: (5-7,2-5)
UTAH................ 0 0 10 3 - 13 Record: (5-6,3-4)
1st 09:34 BYU - PAYNE, Matt 30 yd field goal, 5-54 1:51, BYU 3 - UU 0
2nd 10:20 BYU - PAYNE, Matt 48 yd field goal, 10-44 3:53, BYU 6 - UU 0
3rd 07:50 UU - BORRESON, Bryan 31 yd field goal, 10-46 4:54, BYU 6 - UU 3
03:03 UU - WARFIELD, Brand 4 yd run (BORRESON, Bryan kick), 8-74 2:57,
BYU 6 - UU 10
4th 07:09 UU - BORRESON, Bryan 22 yd field goal, 10-57 3:52, BYU 6 - UU 13
FIRST DOWNS................... 13 25
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 23--2 53-175
PASSING YDS (NET)............. 237 164
Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 34-20-1 26-18-1
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 57-235 79-339
Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 0-0 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards............ 3-65 2-35
Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 0-0 2-41
Interception Returns-Yards.... 1-50 1-15
Punts (Number-Avg)............ 4-47.8 3-52.3
Fumbles-Lost.................. 3-2 2-0
Penalties-Yards............... 8-80 5-55
Possession Time............... 22:34 37:26
Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 3-31 5-25
RUSHING: Brigham Young-WHALEN, Marcus 9-14; PENDLETON, Lanc 5-4; BERRY, Matt
4-2; BROWN, Curtis 1-0; MAHE, Reno 1-minus 9; ENGEMANN, Bret 3-minus 19;
KEELE, Ryan 0-6. UTAH-WARFIELD, Brand 40-194; PALMER, Mark 2-9; BENTON,
Edwin 2-8; PEROULIS, J.R. 1-minus 1; TEAM 1-minus 4; HOUSTON, Devin 1-minus
8; ELLIOTT, Brett 6-minus 23.
PASSING: Brigham Young-BERRY, Matt 12-21-0-159; PENDLETON, Lanc 5-8-1-40;
ENGEMANN, Bret 3-5-0-38. UTAH-ELLIOTT, Brett 18-26-1-164.
RECEIVING: Brigham Young-MAHE, Reno 5-61; WILKERSON, Rod 3-97; NEAD, Spencer
3-27; WHALEN, Marcus 2-17; ANDERSON, Justi 2-12; CHRISTENSEN, To 2-12; ORD,
Andrew 1-10; REID, Gabriel 1-9; BROWN, Curtis 1-minus 8. UTAH-BENTON, Edwin
5-20; JACKSON, Paris 2-23; PALMER, Mark 2-22; WARFIELD, Brand 2-22; LYMAN,
Josh 2-21; HOUSTON, Devin 2-21; MILES, Larry 1-22; MOA, Ben 1-8; JACKSON,
INTERCEPTIONS: Brigham Young-NIELSEN, Kip 1-50. UTAH-DECKART, Sheldo 1-15.
FUMBLES: Brigham Young-WHALEN, Marcus 1-1; ENGEMANN, Bret 1-0; PENDLETON,
Lanc 1-1. UTAH-WARFIELD, Brand 1-0; ELLIOTT, Brett 1-0.
SACKS (UA-A): Brigham Young-NUA, Shaun 1-0; PILI, Ifo 1-0; BOCKWOLDT, Colb
1-0. UTAH-POWELL, Lewis 1-1; SAVAGE, Josh 1-0; REVILL, Dave 1-0; SAPE,
Lauvale 0-1; BAHR, Brooks 1-0.
TACKLES (UA-A): Brigham Young-FRANCISCO, Aaro 3-11; BOCKWOLDT, Colb 3-8;
NIELSEN, Kip 2-8; TANNER, Mike 1-8; BRANDON, Joshua 1-7; BURBIDGE, Jon 2-5;
GILFORD, Jernar 3-3; WALKENHORST, Pa 0-6; PILI, Ifo 2-3; MADSEN, Michael
1-4; DENNEY, John 1-4; COWART, Jeff 1-3; KEHL, Bryan 1-3; NUA, Shaun 2-1;
ATKINSON, Bryan 2-1; GUNDERSON, Ryan 0-3; BARNEY, Chad 2-0; MARQUARDT, Dani
0-2; MEIBOS, Jared 0-2; CARLSON, Brent 0-1; HERRING, Isaac 0-1; CHRISTENSEN,
Qu 0-1; FARRIS, Alex 0-1. UTAH-BAHR, Brooks 3-5; DECKART, Sheldo 4-3;
CROCKETT, D'Sha 2-4; REVILL, Dave 4-1; SAVAGE, Josh 1-4; WEIGHT, Cody 2-2;
KAUFUSI, Jason 1-3; PARKER, Arnold 2-1; POWELL, Lewis 2-1; SANDERS, Antwoi
1-2; HOLDCRAFT, Ray 1-2; LYMAN, Jeremy 2-0; BRAND, Ryan 1-1; FIFITA, Steve
0-2; POUHA, Sione 0-2; SMITH, Garrett 0-2; SAPE, Lauvale 0-1; LYMAN, Josh
0-1; BENTON, Edwin 0-1; SCALLEY, Morgan 0-1; WHITE, Anthony 0-1.
Stadium: Rice-Eccles Attendance: 45167
Kickoff time: 1:06 End of Game: 4:08 Total elapsed time: 3:02
Officials: Referee: Ken RIVERA; Umpire: Al CORY; Linesman: Mike MCCABE;
Line judge: Randy CAMPBELL; Back judge: Craig BATTAGLIA;
Field judge: Scott NOVAK; Side judge: Greg WILSON;
Temperature: 47 Wind: N @ 5 Weather: Partly Cloudy & Hazy