Texas A&M @ No. 16 Utah
Not surprisingly, the 19th ranked team in the nation, manhandled an obviously weaker team on Thursday night. What surprised the nation, was the fact that it was the No. 19 Utah Utes who dominated the unranked Aggies from Texas A&M and moved up to No. 16 in the polls.. The Utes jumped out to a 27-7 lead by halftime and turned it into a 41-21 victory.
Utah proved to the nation that they deserved their first preseason top-25 ranking in school history behind five touchdowns from quarterback Alex Smith. Smith passed for 359 yards and three touchdowns on 21-of-29 passing, and rushed for 76 yards and two more touchdowns. He was by far the best player on the field and totaled 435 yards on the night.
Aggie quarterback Reggie McNeal led the way for Texas A&M. He went 14-of-35 passing for 210 yards, and rushed 13 times for 84 yards and two touchdowns. Utah (1-0) travels to Arizona (1-0) next week.
Washington State @ New Mexico
The Washington State Cougars’ defense intercepted two passes and a blocked punt in the fourth quarter, propelling them past New Mexico 21-17. Washington State quarterback Josh Swogger led the way going 24-of-38 for 240 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.
New Mexico lost despite getting good production from Cole McKamey who threw for 229 yards on 16 completions. Unfortunately, McKamey also threw three picks and failed to get a touchdown as turnovers killed New Mexico in a close game.
Lobos running back DonTrell Moore ran the ball 24 times for 167 yards and one touchdown. Next week the Lobos host Texas Tech (1-0).
Idaho State @ San Diego State
Although San Diego State beat Idaho State 38-21, a score that reflects a closer game than the one actually played, the Aztecs were dominant in their first game of the season. Aztec quarterback Matt Dlugolecki threw 16 passes for 233 yards and two touchdowns, but also tossed two interceptions.
Idaho State quarterback Mark Hetherington led the way, tossing 34 passes for 300 yards and two touchdowns, but also threw three interceptions.
SDSU running back Michael Franklin carried the ball 12 times for 101 yards and one touchdown. The Aztecs do not play again until Sept. 18 at No. 7 Michigan.
Appalachian State @ Wyoming
Wyoming gained 537 yards of offense, as they rolled past Appalachian State 53-7 in Laramie. Junior quarterback Corey Bramlet, little brother of last year’s starting quarterback Casey, led the Cowboys to victory, completing 16 passes for 239 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start.
Mountaineer quarterback Richie Williams tossed 16 passes for 200 yards and one touchdown, but also threw three interceptions. App. State only had 87 yards of offense in the first half as the Cowboy defense pitched a shutout through the third quarter.
Wyoming receiver Dustin Pleasant hauled in seven receptions for 140 yards and two touchdowns in the victory. Wyoming faces Texas A&M in College Station next week.
No. 14 California @ Air Force
Air Force kept up with the Golden Bears for the first half, but Cal took over, scoring five touchdowns and holding the Falcons scoreless in the second half. Running back J.J. Arrington led the Bears to victory, rushing 16 times for 181 yards and three touchdowns.
Shaun Carney, the first freshman to start at the quarterback position in the history of Air Force football, threw nine passes for 89 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Carney also led the Falcons in rushing with 75 yards on 18 carries.
Cal quarterback Aaron Rodgers tossed 11 passes for 208 yards and one touchdown as the Golden Bears moved up to No. 13 in the polls. The Falcons host Eastern Washington next Saturday.
Notre Dame @ BYU
BYU held off Notre Dame in Provo to send the Fighting Irish home with a 20-17 loss. Cougars’ quarterback Matt Berry threw one touchdown and one interception to go along with 167 yards as BYU jumped out to a 20-3 lead in the second half. Berry came into the game after BYU starter John Beck suffered an injury in the second quarter.
Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn threw 26 completions for 265 yards and one touchdown.
BYU wideout Todd Watkins had a big night, pulling in five passes for 115 yards. The Cougars travel to Stanford (1-0) next weekend.
UNLV @ No. 15 Tennessee
Tennessee made history Sunday in Knoxville when it started a freshman quarterback and replaced him with another freshman quarterback. The Volunteers rotated Erik Ainge and Brent Schaeffer through the game, and the duo combined to go 17-of-27 for 241 yards and three touchdowns to lead the 15th ranked Vols to a 42-17 win.
Ainge completed 10 passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns, while Schaeffer went seven of 10 for 123 yards and a touchdown. Schaeffer also ran seven times for 29 yards and one touchdown.
Running back Dominique Dorsey led the Rebels, rushing 18 times for 121 yards and one touchdown. UNLV travels to Madison next week to take on No. 22 Wisconsin (1-0).