Estimated read time: 17-18 minutes
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Score: (14) Utah 45, New Mexico 14
SALT LAKE CITY -- No. 14 Utah started a true freshman quarterback for the first time since 1982, and it paid off in a big way as Jordan Wynn led the Utes to a 45-14 victory over New Mexico.
Wynn threw for 297 yards, going 18 of 29 and throwing 2 touchdown passes. His favorite target, Jereme Brooks, finished the game with 6 catches for 135 yards, including a 69 yard touchdown in the first quarter.
The Utes (8-1, 5-0 MWC) rushing attack was solid, as both Eddie Wide and Sausan Shakerin both rushed for over 100 yards, the first time two running backs have eclipsed the 100 yard mark in a game since 2008 against Air Force. Wide, who finished with 145 yards, also broke a Utah record by rushing for over 100 yards in six straight games.
The Lobos (0-9, 0-5 MWC) scored in the first quarter with a 58 yard pass from Donovon Porterie to Ty Kirk, but couldn't get anything to work after that until backup quarterback B.R. Holbrook connected with Victor James from 15 yards out with 17 seconds left in the game.
Next up for the Utes: at TCU
Next up for the Lobos: vs. BYU
Time Remaining: 5:53 Fourth Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 45, New Mexico 7
On 4th down, Porterie is sacked by Chad Manis for a loss of 12 and a turnover on downs. Utah is a little over 7 minutes away from being 8-1. The Utes will have the ball on the Lobo 43 yard line. A bad snap goes over Cain's head and the Lobos recover all the way back on the Utah 35 yard line.
New Mexico switches quarterbacks, going with redshirt freshman B.R. Holbrook. Holbrook fumbles the snap on 4th and 1, and the Utes take over on downs from their own 31 yard line.
Time Remaining: 9:56 Fourth Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 45, New Mexico 7
The Utes march down to the Lobo 21 yard line but are unable to get points on the board as Phillips' 38 yard attempt is wide left. Before the Lobos take over, here is a quick stat - totals yards for the Lobos: 233, total yards for the Utes: 532.
On the Lobos third play of the drive, Porterie is intercepted by Ryan Lacy on the Lobo 37 yard line.
Terrance Cain replaces Wynn as the Utes quarterback. On the second play of the series, Sausan Shakerin takes the handoff from Cain for 26 yards down to the Lobo 8 yard line. Shak runs it in the next play, extending Utah's lead to 45-7. Shak's run puts him over 100 yards, making this the first time the Utes have had two running backs go over 100 yards since 2008 (against Air Force).
Time Remaining: 4:06 Third Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 38, New Mexico 7
Eddie Wide has just broken a Utah record, gaining over 100 yards in six straight games. He has done a tremendous job in carrying the Utes on his back after Matt Asiata went down in the Louisville game with an injury.
Utah's drive stalls at their own 41 yard line, and Sean Sellwood comes in for only his second punt of the day, and he pins the Lobos back on their own 6 yard line. Great punt.
Utah once again forces a Lobo 3 and out. New Mexico only has one first down in the second half. Utah will take over on the Lobo 35 yard line following a good punt return by DeVonte Christopher. On the first play, Eddie Wide takes the handoff 35 yards for the score, putting the Utes up 38-7. Utah's offense and defense are clicking on all cylinders here in the third quarter.
The Lobos manage another first down, but are again forced to punt. Nothing seems to be working for the Lobos tonight.
Time Remaining: 7:09 Third Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 31, New Mexico 7
Wide is back in the game for the Utes, and on the first play of the drive he picks up 31 yards on a counter run to the right. Brooks is Wynn's favorite target today, and once again they connect for a gain of 5 on third and 4 near midfield. The Utes run a reverse with DeVonte Christopher and Jereme Brooks, and Brooks turns on the jets to speed into the end zone from 29 yards out. The Utes now lead 31-7. The Utes went to the bag of tricks twice on that drive, with the other play being a direct snap pass from Shaky Smithson. Smithson had Luke Matthews open on the right sideline, but the pass was a little overthrown.
After the Lobos moved to midfield, Brandon Burton intercepts a Donovon Porterie pass, giving the Utes the ball on their own 19 yard line. That is Burton's first career interception.
Time Remaining: 11:26 Third Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 24, New Mexico 7
The Utes will be moving left to right to start the 2nd half. Jereme Brooks returns the kickoff to the Utah 37 yard line, setting the Utes up with great field position. Wynn hits Brooks on the first play for a gain of 16 to give the Utes a first and ten inside New Mexico territory. The next play, Wide picks up 14 yards on a counter run, but is slow to get up. He is able to walk off the field under his own power, but you have to imagine that his ankle injury has yet to fully heal. A few plays later, Wynn connects with Sausan Shakerin from 20 yards out on a screen pass to give the Utes a 24-7 lead. "Shak" showed great heart on the run after the catch, as it appeared he would be tackled inside the 5, but he drove his legs and carried Lobo defenders into the end zone for the score.
Ben Vroman's kickoff once again goes into the end zone for a touchback, giving the Lobos a first and ten on the 20. Utah's defense comes out fired up, forcing a quick Lobo three and out. Brandon Burton nearly intercepts Porterie on 2nd down, and Derrick Shelby comes up with a sack on 3rd down. Great defensive series for the Utes.
Score: (14) Utah 17, New Mexico 7
The storyline for the first half has to be Jordan Wynn getting the start for the Utes. Wynn was 13/20 for 233 yards and 1 TD in the half, but did throw 1 interception deep in New Mexico territory. The offense has shown signs that it can create big plays as Wynn hit Jereme Brooks for a big 69 yard touchdown pass in the first quarter.
What has to be a concern is the running game for the Utes, who only have 30 yards on 18 attempts. Eddie Wide only has 23 yards on 10 carries, while Sausan Shakerin has 16 yards on 4 carries. Expect the Utes to focus on the ground attack in the 2nd half.
Update on the Keys to the Game for Utah
- Quarterback play - Check. Jordan Wynn was 13/20 for 233 yards and a TD, leading the offense to 262 yards in the first half.
- Don't overlook the Lobos - Other than a 58 yard pass, the Utah defense has played well, holding the Lobos to only 1 score.
Keys to the Game for New Mexico
- Play like you have nothing to lose - No trick plays, no going for it on 4th down (the Utes have already attempted two 4th down conversions)
- Capitalize on mistakes - 1 interception by Emmanuel McPhearson, but it didn't lead to any points
Time Remaining: 0:53 Second Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 17, New Mexico 7
Let's see if Wynn can get the offense into the end zone with just over 3 minutes left in the half. Wynn has been terrific on the drive, completing a big 34 yard pass to Luke Matthews and a 23 pass to David Reed that sets the Utes up with a first and goal from the six with just over a minute left. The Utes can't punch it in though, and settle for a 24 yard field goal by Joe Phillips that extends their lead to 17-7.
Time Remaining: 3:26 Second Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 14, New Mexico 7
On the kickoff, New Mexico is penalized for a late hit, putting the Lobos back on their own 10 yard line. Porterie gets the Lobos moving, completing a 17 yard pass to Lucas Reed on a great playaction fake. Porterie, a senior, isn't getting much help from his receivers. Another great pass is dropped, forcing a 4th and 1 from their own 36 yard line. It appeared that the Lobos were going for it, but after they couldn't draw the Utes offsides, Porterie called a timeout and they will now punt. The Utes will start from their own 21 yard line following the 56 yard punt.
Time Remaining: 5:59 Second Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 14, New Mexico 7
Utah's defense holds the Lobos to only 1 first down, and the offense will take over on their own 19 yard line following the a good punt by Adam Miller.
Facing 2nd and 16, the Utes get a first down on a roughing the passer penalty against the Lobos. Mistakes like that are the difference in possibly winning a game and being 0-8 on the season. After the penalty, Jordan Wynn leads the Utes down to the 3 yard line, completing passes of 16, 17 and 6 yards on three consecutive plays. The Ute offense goes for it again on 4th down, and the pitch to Eddie Wide goes for two yards and a Utah first down inside the 1 yard line. Wide punches it in 2 plays later to give the Utes a 14-7 lead. That drive took over six and a half minutes off the clock.
Time Remaining: 1:07 First Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 7, New Mexico 7
It takes the Lobos just 2 plays to get back to midfield, as Daryl Jones caught an 11 yard pass and Kasey Carrier ran for a gain of 17. On 3rd and 17, Donovan Porterie connects with Ty Kirk for a 58 yard touchdown pass right in the middle of the field to tie the game up at 7.
On the Utes first play, Wynn hits John Peel for a gain of 26 yards. I like the way he is checking his receivers and that he isn't afraid to take shots down the field. On 4th and 2, Wynn's pass is intercepted by Emmanuel McPhearson, and the Utes once again lose a chance at points with great field position deep in an opponents territory. New Mexico will take over on their own 14 yard line.
Time Remaining: 5:52 First Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 7, New Mexico 0
New Mexico is already back at midfield after a nice 15 yard completion from Porterie to Ty Kirk. The Lobos are unable to convert a 3rd and 4 and Adam Miller comes in to punt. Utah will take over on their own 16 yard line. Both times the Utes have had the ball this game, it has been inside their own 20.
Eddie Wide fumbles the ball on his first carry, but the Utes are able to recover it for only a loss of 1. After another loss on a short pass to Sausan Shakerin, Wynn completes an 18 yard pass to Jereme Brooks for a Utah first down. Jordan then connects with Brooks again for 69 yards and a touchdown to put the Utes up 7-0. The Utes have been lacking the big plays in recent games, and what a way to get a stagnant offense moving than to hit the big play downfield. Great throw by Wynn.
Time Remaining: 9:55 First Quarter
Score: (14) Utah 0, New Mexico 0
New Mexico will start the game on their own 20 following the touchback on the kickoff. The Lobos will be moving south to north in Rice-Eccles. A great play on 3rd and long for the Lobos as Donovan Porterie connects with James Wright on the screen pass for a gain of 21 right in the middle of the Utah defense. The defense hold the Lobos near midfield, and Utah will start on offense on the 16 yard line after a 5 yard punt return by DeVonte Christopher.
Wynn completes 2 passes on his first offensive series of the game, but a bad snap puts the Utes in 3rd and 18 which they are unable to punt. Sellwood's punt goes out of bounds at the Lobo 27 yard line.
Update:I have just been told that Jordan Wynn will get the start for the Utes.
!(http://ksl.com/emedia/slc/20/2002/200252.gif)**Keys to the Game for Utah**
- Quarterback play - Whoever the Utes decide to start at quarterback, it will be key to get him on a roll early. If it is Terrance Cain, expect to see plenty of short passes to regain the confidence he lost in getting pulled in the Wyoming game. If it is Jordan Wynn, the Utes probably will take more shots downfield.
- Don't overlook the Lobos - Historically, the only MWC team with a winning record against the Utes since 2000 is New Mexico (4-5). The Lobos were the only MWC team to beat the Urban Meyer led Utes (2003).
Keys to the Game for New Mexico
- Play like you have nothing to lose - You're not going to a bowl game or playing for a conference championship. Throw everything you have at the Utes (trick plays) and you may be able to steal a victory
- Capitalize on mistakes - The Utes did a better job with ball security against Wyoming, but they have been relatively sloppy over the season as a whole. Any turnovers the Lobos can get will help.
Utah's passing offense (#64 NCAA, 214 YPG) vs New Mexico's pass defense (#105 NCAA, 252 YPG). This matchup is key because of the uncertainty at the QB position... will it be Terrance Cain or Jordan Wynn?
Jordan Wynn or Terrance Cain? That is one of the storylines of this game. Confidence is key to the success of a quarterback, and with Cain being pulled out of the Wyoming game, is his confidence shot? I think for this reason the Utes turn to freshman Jordan Wynn. He is more vocal than Cain, and that may the missing piece in the huddle as the Utes try to develop an offense that is struggling to put up points.
Eddie Wide is looking to make his way into the Utah record books by becoming the first Ute to record 6 straight 100 yard games. The Utes should be able to move the ball on the ground (Lobos are giving up 161 YPG), which should open up the defense enough for Jordan Wynn to find open receivers.
MY PREDICTION: Utah 34, New Mexico 10. Let me know what you think. Post your predictions/questions in the comment board.
Utah Miscellaneous Stats
- Running back Eddie Wide has tied a school record by rushing for 100 yards in five consecutive games. He netted a career-best 135 yards against Wyoming last week to become just the fourth player in the school's 116-year football history to rush for 100 yards in five straight games.
- Utah is 2-2 against New Mexico when the Utes are nationally ranked. A ranked Utah team lost to New Mexico in 1994 and 2003, and beat the Lobos in 2004 and 2008.
- Kyle Whittingham is 2-2 against New Mexico with the wins coming in the last two seasons.
- Utah's best quarter is the fourth, when the Utes have their most points (63) and have allowed the fewest (20)
- Utah ranks in the top 10 in the nation in two defensive categories this week: No. 5 in opponent third down conversions (27.8% on 32-of-115 attempts) and No. 7 in pass defense (159.2).
- Robert Johnson, a three-year starting free safety and preseason all-conference pick, is tied for fifth in the nation in interceptions per game (0.62) and total interceptions (5).
- Utah has won 21 of its last 22 games and 28 of its last 30 games.
- UNM has won two times in its last three trips to Utah.
- UNM has also dropped 8 consecutive conference games, 7 straight road games and 8 MWC road games in a row.
- The Lobos have a 7-40 record against nationally-ranked teams
- UNM's last win against a nationally-ranked team? 47-35 at No. 23 Utah on Oct. 25, 2003, the only conference loss for Urban Meyer in his two years as head coach of the Utes
- New Mexico is 2-2 against nationally-ranked Utah teams
- Fourteen times since 1946 a Lobo team has rallied from at least a 14-point deficit to win...four of the comebacks have come against Utah, more than any other opponent...the largest deficit overcome - 21 points matching a school record - occurred in Albuquerque in 2006... UNM trailed the Utes 24-3 with 3:27 left before halftime, but redshirt freshman Donovan Porterie rallied the Lobos to a 34-31 victory
- Sophomore DE Johnathan Rainey leads the MWC in tackles for loss with 12.5