Usually when a team makes a big comeback it is the passing game that really revs up the offense. In the Utes case, however, it was running back Brandon Warfield that did a lot of the damage on the ground. Warfield was able to get on track early in the second half on his way to 36 carries for 181 yards and three touchdowns.
After the Utes first touchdown in the second a costly missed extra point made it 21-6. After a missed field goal the Utes got a short field to work with when Corey Dobbs recovered a fumble at the Aggie 18 leading to a Warfield six yard touchdown run to make it 21-13.
The Aggies surrendered three fumbles in the second half and their offense really struggled overall in the second stanza compared to the first thanks to the Utes defense. Still, a 28 yard touchdown run by Courtney Lewis with 13:07 remaining in the fourth quarter made it look like the Aggies were back in control at 28-13.
As Lee Corso would say, not so fast my friend!
The Utes came back once again with another Warfield touchdown from one yard out to help make it 28-20 with 6:13 to go in the game.
The Utes final drive had several big plays including two third down conversations and one fourth down conversion as the clock ran down. Then Utes quarterback Brett Elliott hit wide receiver John Madsen for a 45 yard touchdown with a mere six seconds left on the clock to set up a two point conversion try for the tie.
Elliott was stopped short of the goal line at the two on the conversion and that was it. But the Utes proved their worth to everyone, including myself, that they can and will play with anyone. This team will have some magic in them throughout the football season. I'll never doubt that about an Urban Meyer coached football team.
BIG PLAYS AND KEY PERFORMERS The Aggies did not really get their running game going. Excluding an 80 yard end-around by Murphy the Aggies only managed 143 yards on 37 carries. But the big plays in the Aggies also had the 28 yard touchdown scamper by Lewis that has to be a sore spot for the Utes. A 50 yard completion to Murphy after a fumble by Elliott also lead to a one yard dive by fullback Keith Joseph for a touchdown.
Lewis lead the Aggies ground game with 16 carries for 100 yards.
Aggies quarterback Reggie McNeal was 12-18 for 145 yards.
A lot of credit needs to be given to the Utes offensive linemen who did a nice job against a talented Aggie front seven.
The Utes lead A&M in time of possession 37:23 to 22:37. It just goes to show what big plays on offense did for the Aggies despite the time of possession difference.
The Utes had 12 penalties for 70 yards compared to just seven for 53 yards against the Aggies.
Despite fumbling nine times the Utes only lost three. The Aggies fumbled five times and lost three as well.