BYU
Air Force
38 - 24 Final
  for this game

Hall, BYU come from behind to topple Air Force

Nov 16, 2008 - 6:45 AM COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (Ticker) -- The Mountain West Conference championship may be decided a week from now when Brigham Young visits seventh-ranked Utah.

But the 14th-ranked Cougars had to get through Air Force first. Thanks to some second-half heroics from Max Hall, BYU kept its conference title hopes alive.

Hall and Austin Collie hooked up for two second-half touchdowns as BYU rallied to defeat the Falcons, 38-24, on Saturday.

"This particular team isn't as clean as the previous two teams," BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said. "It wouldn't do a head coach any good to jump up and down and make all kinds of emotional comments or actions, because this team is still learning and growing. Amazingly, there's 10 wins to show for it, and that's a credit to their heart and their grit and competitive will, because it's not the cleanest-playing football team playing right now."

Now the Cougars get prepared for the game that has been marked on the calendar all year - their season-ending grudge match with undefeated Utah. BYU, which has won the last two meetings with Utah, has a chance to spoil the Utes' chances at a second BCS bowl berth when the teams meet next Saturday.

The Cougars erased a 14-10 halftime deficit with touchdowns on their first three second-half possessions to take a commanding lead. But the Falcons (8-3, 5-2 Mountain West) pulled to within a touchdown on Jared Tew's 19-yard touchdown rush in the fourth quarter.

However, Hall answered once again - after maneuvering out of a bit of trouble first. The Falcons pinned the Cougars back on their own 10-yard line. But facing a 3rd-and-8, Hall narrowly avoided a sack near the goal line, stepped up and hit Dennis Pitta for 13 yards and a first down.

A few plays later, Hall went back to his favorite target for the death blow, hitting a streaking Collie down the right sideline for a 45-yard touchdown that gave the Cougars (10-1, 6-1) a two-touchdown cushion.

In the process, Hall broke the Mountain West's single-season record with his 34th touchdown pass, surpassing the mark fellow BYU quarterback Brandon Doman set in 2001.

Collie also scored a touchdown off a direct snap, running 15 yards,

"Obviously, it is something that we have been practicing, that we have been scripting," Collie said. "It was just a carryover from the first of the season when I was Max's backup. I love it. Any chance I can get the ball in my hands, I like it."

Air Force freshman quarterback Tim Jefferson tried to rally the Falcons late, completing five straight passes to cross into Cougar territory before being intercepted in the end zone to essentially put the game on ice. The loss snapped Air Force's five-game winning streak.

After a hot start to the game for the Cougars, who jumped out to a 10-0 lead and blocked a 53-yard field goal attempt, Hall and his high-powered offense hit a stumbling block in the second quarter as the Falcons charged back. The junior quarterback was intercepted at the goal line near the end of the half as Air Force held a 14-10 advantage at the break.

"I just basically told the team that we are a lot better than this, that we are one of the best teams in the nation and we need to start playing like it," Collie said. "I think these past couple of games we have kind of walked out there like zombies and haven't really had that much emotion."

But all was well in the third quarter, as Harvey Unga rushed for a pair of touchdowns to put BYU back in control.

"Harvey did a great job, and when you're considering he had two stingers and didn't practice until Thursday. He wasn't soft," Mendenhall said. "He played physical and I was proud of him."

Hall completed 28-of-37 passes for 356 yards, while Collie hauled in seven passes for 130 yards.

Air Force fullback Todd Newell led the way with 116 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries, while Jefferson added 72 yards on the ground and 98 through the air.

"When you play these guys, you're never going to be flawless, but there are certain games you have to be pretty darn close to it," Air Force coach Troy Calhoun said. "We didn't come up with very many stops, had the short punt and the fumble on the kickoff return."








  • NCAAF FINAL
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BYU (16) 7 3 21 7 38
    AIR FORCE 0 14 3 7 24 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BYU - TD, FUI VAKAPUNA 11 YD RUN (MITCH
    PAYNE KICK), 7:19. BYU 7-0
    2ND QUARTER: BYU - FG, MITCH PAYNE 46 YD, 1:31. BYU
    10-0
    AIR FORCE - TD, ASHER CLARK 6 YD RUN (RYAN
    HARRISON KICK), 8:16. BYU 1

    Nov 15 6:49 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 38
    AIR FORCE 24 2:31 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    BYU(9) 38, Air Force 24  4th - 2:31Nov 15 6:42 PM
  • 30
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 29 roots

    BYU(9) 38, Air Force 24  4th - 2:31Nov 15 6:42 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 31
    AIR FORCE 24 5:08 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    BYU(9) 31, Air Force 24  4th - 5:08Nov 15 6:32 PM
  • 59
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    RUWTbot Added 29 roots (Close Finish)

    BYU(9) 31, Air Force 24  4th - 5:08Nov 15 6:32 PM


  • NCAAF END, 3RD QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BYU (16) 7 3 21 31
    AIR FORCE 0 14 3 17 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BYU - TD, FUI VAKAPUNA 11 YD RUN (MITCH
    PAYNE KICK), 7:19. BYU 7-0
    2ND QUARTER: BYU - FG, MITCH PAYNE 46 YD, 1:31. BYU
    10-0
    AIR FORCE - TD, ASHER CLARK 6 YD RUN (RYAN
    HARRISON KI

    BYU(9) 31, Air Force 17  End of 3rdNov 15 6:05 PM
  • 30
    roots
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    BYU(9) 24, Air Force 14  3rd - 8:48Nov 15 6:02 PM
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    BYU(9) 24, Air Force 14  3rd - 8:48Nov 15 5:48 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 24
    AIR FORCE 14 8:48 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    BYU(9) 24, Air Force 14  3rd - 8:48Nov 15 5:46 PM
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    BYU(9) 24, Air Force 14  3rd - 8:48Nov 15 5:46 PM
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    BYU(9) 10, Air Force 14  HalfNov 15 5:07 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BYU (16) 7 3 10
    AIR FORCE 0 14 14 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BYU - TD, FUI VAKAPUNA 11 YD RUN (MITCH
    PAYNE KICK), 7:19. BYU 7-0
    2ND QUARTER: BYU - FG, MITCH PAYNE 46 YD, 1:31. BYU
    10-0
    AIR FORCE - TD, ASHER CLARK 6 YD RUN (RYAN
    HARRISON KICK), 8:1

    BYU(9) 10, Air Force 14  HalfNov 15 5:00 PM
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    BYU(9) 10, Air Force 14  HalfNov 15 5:00 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 10
    AIR FORCE 7 5:37 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    BYU(9) 10, Air Force 7  2nd - 5:37Nov 15 4:38 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 10
    AIR FORCE 0 10:32 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    BYU(9) 10, Air Force 0  2nd - 10:32Nov 15 4:23 PM


  • NCAAF END, 1ST QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    BYU (16) 7 7
    AIR FORCE 0 0 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BYU - TD, FUI VAKAPUNA 11 YD RUN (MITCH
    PAYNE KICK), 7:19. BYU 7-0

    Nov 15 4:09 PM


  • NCAAF
    BYU (16) 7
    AIR FORCE 0 1:21 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    BYU(9) 7, Air Force 0  1st - 1:21Nov 15 4:06 PM
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    BYU(9) vs. Air ForceNov 15 9:59 AM
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