UNLV
Utah
21 - 42 Final
  for this game

Johnson, Utah avenge bad loss with big second half

Sep 7, 2008 - 5:29 AM SALT LAKE CITY (Ticker) -- Brian Johnson and Utah turned it on in the second half to avenge one of their worst losses from last season.

Johnson threw two touchdowns and ran for another as the 23rd-ranked Utes used a big third quarter to post a 42-21 victory over Nevada-Las Vegas on Saturday in the Mountain West Conference opener for both teams.

Johnson completed 15-of-24 passes for 183 yards with an interception. He ran six times for 80 yards - including a 56-yard score.

Running back Matt Asiata ran for a TD and threw another for Utah (2-0, 1-0 MWC), which scored 21 points in the third to avenge last season's 27-0 loss to UNLV. The loss was amplified by the fact that the Runnin' Rebels lost their final eight games.

"We all remember what happened last year in Vegas but we tried to make this more about us than about them," Johnson said. "We just wanted to come and demonstrate the way we know how to play football."

It did not look as though the Utes deserved their first national ranking in four years early, though.

UNLV (1-1, 0-1) seemed primed to pull off another upset, as Frank Summers ran for a pair of scores in the first half as the teams played to a 14-14 tie.

However, the second half was an entirely different story. David Reed took the opening kickoff 49 yards and five plays later, Johnson hit Freddie Brown for a 32-yard TD and a 21-14 lead.

Utah's defense forced a three-and-out, and John Peel returned a punt 25 yards to the UNLV 26, setting up a 15-yard TD run on a reverse by Reed less than four minutes later.

The rout was on when Johnson capped a nine-play, 59-yard drive with an 8-yard TD pass to Colt Sampson for a 35-14 lead with 3:26 left in the period. Asiata tossed a 32-yard touchdown to Jereme Brooks to make it a 28-point game with 13:13 left in the fourth.

"I don't know why it took us to wake up until the second half offensively," Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham said. "We were fortunate to be tied at halftime."

"We came out with the energy and the fight we needed in the second half," defensive end Paul Kruger said. "We were flying around and made the plays we should have been making in the first half."

The Runnin' Rebels made it look easy early on. Summers capped an 11-play, 80-yard drive with a 3-yard score with 9:41 left in the first.

Summers' second TD run of the game - a 3-yard plunge - put UNLV up,14-7, with 5:01 left until halftime. Utah tied it at 14-14, when Asiata scored from two yards out on a direct snap with 51 seconds left.

Omar Clayton completed 19-of-30 passes for 159 yards and a TD for UNLV, which converted 6-of-15 third downs. He hooked up with Kyle Watson for a 10-yard score with 6:16 remaining. The Runnin' Rebels were held to just 83 yards in the second half, and fell to 2-12 vs. Utah.

UNLV coach Mike Sanford gave his explanation for the poor second-half showing, saying, "I think in the second half we resorted to some of our old habits."

A big problem was the running game that was so efficient in the first half, was non-existent the rest of the way.

Summers was bottled up in the second half after running for 82 yards in the first two quarters. Summers, who ran for 190 yards and three total TDs in last season's win, finished with 87 yards on 23 carries.

"I don't know if they changed the schemes or anything. It was just night and day between the first half and the second half for us," Summers said. "No excuses. Hats off to the Utes. They played a great second half."








  • ** CONFIRMED **
    NCAAF
    UNLV 21
    UTAH (23) 42 FINAL

    Sep 6 11:16 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UNLV
    PHILLIP PAYNE 10 YD PASS FROM OMAR CLAYTON
    (KYLE WATSON KICK)
    UNLV 21
    UTAH (22) 42 6:13 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    UNLV 21, Utah(22) 42  4th - 6:13Sep 6 11:06 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    JEREME BROOKS 32 YD PASS FROM BRIAN JOHNSON
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 42 13:33 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 42  4th - 13:33Sep 6 10:44 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    COLT SAMPSON 8 YD PASS FROM BRIAN JOHNSON
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 35 3:20 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 35  3rd - 3:20Sep 6 10:30 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    DAVID REED 15 YD RUN
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 28 8:45 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 28  3rd - 8:45Sep 6 10:17 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    FREDDIE BROWN 32 YD PASS FROM BRIAN JOHNSON
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 21 12:11 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 21  3rd - 12:11Sep 6 10:07 PM
  • 20
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 27 roots

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 21  3rd - 12:11Sep 6 10:07 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    UNLV 7 7 14
    UTAH (22) 0 14 14 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: UNLV - TD, FRANK SUMMERS 1 YD RUN (KYLE
    WATSON KICK), 5:11. UNLV 7-0
    2ND QUARTER: UTAH - TD, BRIAN JOHNSON 56 YD RUN (LOUIE
    SAKODA KICK), 6:52. UNLV 7-7
    UNLV - TD, FRANK SUMMERS 3 YD RUN (KYLE
    WATSON

    Sep 6 9:42 PM
  • 47
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 27 roots (Upset)

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 14  HalfSep 6 9:42 PM
  • 20
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 14  2nd - 0:51Sep 6 9:40 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    MATT ASIATA 3 YD RUN
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 14 0:51 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 14  2nd - 0:51Sep 6 9:29 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UNLV
    FRANK SUMMERS 3 YD RUN
    (KYLE WATSON KICK)
    UNLV 14
    UTAH (22) 7 5:01 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    UNLV 14, Utah(22) 7  2nd - 5:01Sep 6 9:16 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UTAH
    BRIAN JOHNSON 56 YD RUN
    (LOUIE SAKODA KICK)
    UNLV 7
    UTAH (22) 7 8:08 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    UNLV 7, Utah(22) 7  2nd - 8:08Sep 6 9:06 PM


  • NCAAF END, 1ST QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    UNLV 7 7
    UTAH (22) 0 0 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: UNLV - TD, FRANK SUMMERS 1 YD RUN (KYLE
    WATSON KICK), 5:11. UNLV 7-0

    Sep 6 8:41 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD UNLV
    FRANK SUMMERS 1 YD RUN
    (KYLE WATSON KICK)
    UNLV 7
    UTAH (22) 0 9:49 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    UNLV 7, Utah(22) 0  1st - 9:49Sep 6 8:16 PM
  • 15
    roots
    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    UNLV vs. Utah(22)Sep 6 12:24 PM
  • 10
    roots
    coolguy Added 5 roots

    UNLV vs. Utah(22)Sep 5 11:35 PM
  • 5
    roots
    LordFuego Added 5 roots

    UNLV vs. Utah(22)Sep 5 5:49 PM