Utah State Aggies at Brigham Young Cougars
Friday, October 5, 2012, 10:15 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
LaVell Edwards Stadium – Provo, Utah
Opening Line: BYU -9
Current Line: BYU -7 (-105)
Opening Total: 44
Current Total: 45 1/2
Opening Money Line: BYU -275 / Utah St +245
Current Money Line: BYU -270 / Utah St +240
The Utah St Aggies are 4-1 this season and off to their best start since 1978. The Aggies have already picked off a win against big brother Utah this season and take aim at their other FBS in-state rival BYU Friday night in Provo. This will be the 82nd meeting between BYU and Utah St. The Cougars lead the series 44-34-3, including a 26-16-1 record in Provo. BYU won last year in Logan 27-24. The two schools are playing for the Old Wagon Wheel trophy, and Utah St can also claim the Beehive Boot with a win, given to the school that wins the series between Utah, Utah St, and BYU each year.
Utah St is 4-1 under coach Gary Andersen this season. The only loss came at Wisconsin 16-14. The Aggies have home wins over Southern Utah 34-3, 27-20 in overtime over Utah, at Colorado St 31-19, and last week at home 35-13 over UNLV. Utah St was a 21 point favorite at home over UNLV, and the total was 57.5. Neither team scored in the first quarter. UNLV took a 7-3 lead early in the second quarter, but the Aggies scored 17 straight points to take a 20-7 halftime lead. UNLV added two third quarter field goals to pull within 20-13, but the Rebels wouldn’t score for the rest of the game. The Aggies added 15 fourth quarter points, including a safety to make the final 35-13. The Aggies had 564 total yards including 424 passing yards from quarterback Chuckie Keeton. Keeton threw for 402 yards with 4 touchdowns and an interception. The Aggies had two turnovers and 9 penalties. UNLV had 305 total yards in the loss. The Aggies are 4-0-1 ATS this season and the total is 0-4.
On offense, Utah St is averaging 454.6 yards per game including 260.6 passing yards and 194 rushing yards. The Aggies are outscoring teams 28.2-14.2 this season. Utah St is -5 in turnovers this season. The Aggies are averaging 94 penalty yards per game and have allowed 8 sacks. Utah St is 34/79 on third and fourth down conversions, and 12/15 scoring in the red zone with 9 touchdowns. On defense the Aggies are allowing 280.8 yards per game, including 174.4 passing yards and 106.4 rushing yards. Utah St is in the top 25 nationally in all defensive categories, including scoring defense. The Aggies have forced 14 sacks this season. Utah St opponents are 26/90 on third and fourth down conversions and 9/13 scoring in the red zone with only 3 touchdowns.
Keeton has completed 105/154 passes (68.2%) for 1,281 yards with 11 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He is also the second leading rusher for the Aggies with 57 carries for 206 yards. Running back Kerwynn Williams is the leading rusher and receiver for the Aggies. He has 89 carries for 519 yards with 3 touchdowns, along with 18 catches, 262 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Joe Hill has 16 carries, 138 yards, and 4 touchdowns, along with 6 catches, 116 yards and a touchdown. Receiver Matt Austin has 15 catches, 238 yards and 3 touchdowns. Chuck Jacobs has 17 catches, 230 yards, and 3 touchdowns. Kellen Bartlett has 17 catches, 127 yards, and a touchdown.
BYU is 3-2 this season under coach Bronco Mendenhall. The Cougars have blowout home wins over Washington St 30-6, Weber St 45-13, and last week against Hawaii 47-0. Both losses are by a total of 4 points at Utah 24-21 and Boise St 7-6. The Cougars are 3-2 ATS and the total is 1-3 this season. In the Hawaii game last Friday, BYU was a 25.5 point favorite with a total of 49. BYU racked up 540 total yards including 396 rushing yards. Hawaii had 149 total yards including 41 rushing yards, and just 10 first downs. The Cougars forced 3 Warrior turnovers.
BYU is averaging 402 yards per game, including 204.2 passing yards with 197.8 rushing yards. The Cougars are outscoring teams 29.8-10 this season. BYU is -3 in turnover margin this season. The Cougars are averaging 78 penalty yards and have allowed 14 sacks this season. BYU is 38/83 on third and fourth down conversions, and 20/23 scoring in the red zone with 16 touchdowns. On defense, the Cougars are allowing 226.5 total yards per game, including 163.4 passing yards, and 63.2 rushing yards. BYU is in the top 11 in all defensive categories nationally, and is in the top 5 in total defense, against the run, and scoring defense. The Cougars have forced 17 sacks this season. BYU opponents are 22/87 on third and fourth down conversions, and 3/8 scoring in the red zone with 3 touchdowns.
BYU quarterback Riley Nelson has been battling back spasms all season. He missed the Hawaii game and is listed as doubtful for the Utah St game. He is 64/109 passing (58.7%) for 754 yards with 5 touchdowns and 5 interceptions. He also has 36 carries for 84 yards. If Nelson can’t go freshman Taysom Hill will get the start. He started the Hawaii game last week. Hill is 18/35 passing with 190 yards with 3 touchdowns and a touchdown. He is the leading rusher for the Cougars with 36 carries, 256 yards with 4 touchdowns. Running back Jamaal Williams has 33 carries, 238 yards, and 3 touchdowns, along with 3 catches for 33 yards. Running back Michael Alisa is out indefinitely with a forearm injury. He has 58 carries, 222 yards, and a touchdown. Receiver Cody Hoffman has 23 catches, 318 yards and 2 touchdowns. Kaneakua Friel has 15 catches, 195 yards, and 4 touchdowns.
Utah St is 4-0-1 ATS overall, 6-1-1 in Friday games, 8-2-1 in road games against teams with winning home records, 4-1 against teams with winning records, 15-5-1 in non-conference games, 23-8-2 after gaining more than 450 yards, 5-2 after passing for 280 yards or more, 4-10-1 after a cover, 1-3-1 in road games, and 2-6-1 after allowing less than 20 points. The Aggies are 4-0 ATS recently against BYU. The last 5 games in the series have gone under the total.
BYU is 7-0 ATS against teams with winning records, 7-1 after a cover, 6-1 in home games, after gaining more than 450 total yards, and on grass, 9-2 after rushing for more than 200 yards, in non-conference games, 4-1 after scoring more than 40 points, in Friday games, and after allowing 170 passing yards or less, 11-3 after allowing less than 275 yards, 16-5 after allowing less than 100 rushing yards, 12-4 after a straight up win, 19-7 overall, 8-3 after a win by 20 points or more, 5-2 in October games, 10-4 after allowing less than 20 points, and 8-17-1 against WAC teams. The home team is 6-2-1 in the last 9 in the Utah St-BYU series.
Both of these teams have very good defenses. Utah St is better on offense. BYU has been a completely different team at home. I think Utah St has a very good shot of pulling off the upset even on the road. I see a very low scoring game.
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