By JOHN COON, Associated Press
LOGAN, Utah (AP) – Tyler Allgeier ran for a career-high 218 yards and three touchdowns to help No.13 BYU beat Utah State 34-20 on Friday night.
BYU (5-0) defeated Utah State (3-2) for the second consecutive time in the Battle for the Old Wagon Wheel rivalry series.
Baylor Romney threw for 187 yards and one touchdown on 15 of 19 passes in the first half, but was injured when his head hit the grass hard just before half-time. He missed the second half. He made his second straight start with Jaren Hall sidelined with a rib injury.
“He obviously couldn’t come back and play the game,” BYU coach Kalani Sitake said. “We had to protect him and keep him safe. “
Third-string quarterback Jacob Conover led the offense after halftime. The freshman threw for 45 yards on 5 of 9 passes on his college debut.
It was the first football game Conover had played in 3.5 years.
“It was a moment that I prepared myself for,” Conover said. “When it happened, I got a few butterflies. It was my first college game. But it was a moment that I had been preparing for, for a long time.
Logan Bonner pitched for 276 yards and two touchdowns for the Aggies. Bonner left with eight minutes to go due to a knee injury.
The Aggies finished with 22 rushing yards – breaking a 16-game streak with at least 100 rushing yards.
“It won the game for them,” Utah State coach Blake Anderson said. “They controlled the line of scrimmage for the most part.”
The Cougars scored in their first four practices and averaged 9.1 yards per game before halftime. Romney completed his first eight passes and Allgeier nearly eclipsed the 100 rushing yards before halftime.
The Cougars took a 7-0 lead after Allgeier took a hit and burst onto the sideline for a 22-yard rush. Malik Moore intercepted Bonner’s pass at BYU 26 to prepare for the scoring. Allgeier escaped and ran 59 yards for his second scoring run in the second quarter, increasing the lead to 24-10.
Allgeier’s second touchdown helped BYU regain some momentum after Justin McGriff landed a 21-yard reception to cap an 18-play, 75-yard drive for Utah State that took 7 and a half minutes from delay and reduced the Cougars’ lead. half.
Bonner connected with Tompkins on a 28-yard strike to reduce him to 27-20. The Cougars hit back when Allgeier ran for 67 yards to set up his own one-meter dive two plays later, giving BYU a 34-20 lead with 8:40 remaining.
State of Utah: Failure to generate an on-going attack doomed the Aggies. Utah State has totaled a season low in rushing yards and averaged 0.6 yards per carry.
BYU: Romney’s injury before half-time took a bit of wind for BYU on offense. The Cougars were aggressive and moved the chains with ease in the first half. They became more conservative and hit three straight shots in the third quarter before getting back on track behind Allgeier’s run.
BYU hasn’t dragged this season, although all five of the opponents have so far had all five of them coming close to a point at some point in the game before securing a victory.
In five games, the Cougars win by an average margin of 9.8 points per game.
“We come out warm and confident,” said BYU linebacker Ben Bywater. “There are pros and cons for both. You want to be in tough situations so you can bounce back. But I’m proud of our guys. For us, not hanging out is something we have to hold our heads up to. “
Hall missed his second straight game after injuring his ribs during BYU’s last practice against Arizona State. The red-shirted sophomore trained with the squad during the week, but ultimately wasn’t in shape for Friday’s game.
The Cougars hope to get Hall back when they face Boise State in eight days.
“Jaren is near,” Sitake said. “He trained, but we didn’t feel like he was good enough yet. And we felt like Baylor had a better week of training. We’re just trying to feel it and figure out what’s best for the player, number one, and then what’s good for our team. “
“They were a little bigger and stronger than us today, but it won’t last. We will recruit our tail, grow our tail, and make it a stinky battle every year. This is the one we will not forget. –USU coach Blake Anderson vows to make the rivalry with BYU more competitive in future meetings.
BYU could push for a Top 10 ranking depending on what happens to the teams ahead of the Cougars on Saturday.
State of Utah: at UNLV October 16.
BYU: Welcomes Boise State on October 9.
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