No. 21 Utah Football Falls 26-17 At BYU
PROVO, Utah – The No. 21 University of Utah Football program fell to the BYU Cougars 26-17 in Provo on Saturday night, ending a nine-game winning streak for the Utes in the series.
The Utah offense struggled in the game with turnovers and three-and-outs plaguing the team early on, allowing BYU to hold the momentum for the majority of the evening.
The Utes produced 340 yards of total offense that included 147 yards through the air from quarterback Charlie Brewer, adding a season-high 193 yards on the ground that was propelled by a career-high from running back Micah Bernard. Despite the career-high outings, the Utes were only able to convert 15 first downs in the game with BYU countering at 21.
In the first eight minutes of the game, Utah committed two turnovers and a three-and-out on offense, allowing the BYU crowd to take over. Despite the lack of offensive rhythm, Utah's defense was able to step up and step in, holding BYU to 23 yards of total offense heading into BYU's final drive with the Cougars able to convert on a 37-yard field goal in the first quarter to send Utah into the second with a 3-0 deficit.
The Cougars made quick work of things to start the second quarter, finding the end zone on a four-yard passing touchdown with 10:37 on the clock, extending their lead to 10-0 after one offensive drive. The Utes bounced back though, with Brant Kuithe putting Utah on the board after Brewer threw a line-drive through the middle of the BYU defense for a 20-yard score to make it 10-7.
The Utah defense kept the momentum going, forcing a quick three-and-out with Britain Covey doing Britain Covey things, returning the punt 35 yards to the BYU 50. Unfortunately for Utah, they were unable to convert on a fourth down attempt a few plays later with the Cougars taking advantage on their next drive with a two-yard rushing score to make it 16-7 heading into halftime.
Utah's offense was unable to find the end zone in the third quarter with BYU capitalizing with just 38 seconds remaining on the clock. The Utes were held to just three first downs in the third quarter with BYU scoring its third touchdown of the game on a four-yard passing play to give them a 23-7 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
With a huge gain of 50 yards from Bernard to end the third quarter, the Utes started the fourth with a career-long 47-yard field goal from Jadon Redding to make it 23-10. Bernard continued to push the offense in the fourth quarter, accounting for 41 of Utah's 55 yards on its next scoring drive with the Long Beach, Calif., native punching in a 22-yard touchdown to cut the BYU lead to six points with 9:31 on the clock.
BYU would start on its own 25-yard-line with 9:31 to go in the game, recording four first downs to extend the drive, eventually kicking a field goal with 3:17 remaining to give them a 26-17 lead. The Utes would get a first down on the second play of their next drive, but would be unable to convert another as BYU regained possession to run out the clock for the win.
Brewer finished the game 15-of-26 passing (1 TD, 1 INT) for 147 yards, adding four rushes for 20 yards. Bernard was solid for the Utah offense tonight, rushing for a career-best 146 yards on 12 carries which included a career-long 50-yard rush.
Bernard also led the Utes in receptions with a career-high four (18 yds), while Kuithe added three catches for 36 yards and a 20-yard touchdown.
On defense, Devin Lloyd recorded a career-high 13 tackles (0.5 TFL), his third straight game in double-digits, adding a pass breakup. Nephi Sewell also finished with his fourth-career game in double-digits, adding a career-high tying 11 stops (2.5 TFL) with a forced fumble.
Freshman Micah Bernard had a career-night against the Cougars, rushing for 146 yards on 12 carries (1 TD), averaging 12.2 yards per carry. His 12.2 average ranks fourth all-time in single-game average yards per rush and is the most yards per carry in a game with a minimum of eight rushes since Darnell Arceneaux averaged 14.38 yards per rush against UTEP in 1998.
- Charlie Brewer surpassed 10,000 career passing yards in the game (10,080), making him one of just two current FBS QBs to achieve the 10,000 yards mark (Bailey Zappe, WKU).
- Micah Bernard wrapped up the game with a career-high 146 rushing yards against BYU, the second player for the Utes this season to rush for over 100 yards (Tavion Thomas, 107 yards vs. Weber State). It is the first time since 2018 that the Utes have had two different players rush for 100+ yards in a season (Zack Moss, six times; Armand Shyne, 1 time).
- Devin Lloyd finished the game with a career-high 13 tackles, beating his previous career-high of 12 that he set against Weber State in the season-opener. It was his third-straight double-digit tackle game and his fifth in the last seven, dating back to the season-opener in 2020. He has averaged 10.4 tackles per game during that span.
- Dalton Kincaid has five catches this season, all going for 10-or-more yards, including two for 30+ (37 at BYU, 36 vs. Weber State). Of his five catches, four have been for first downs.
- Brant Kuithe caught his eighth-career touchdown pass tonight against BYU, bringing down a 20-yard pass from Charlie Brewer in the second quarter. He finished with three catches for 36 yards, his 16th straight game with at least one reception and his 18th career game with at least three receptions total.
Utah remains on the road for the second week in a row, traveling to Carson, Calif., to take on the San Diego State Aztecs in Dignity Health Sports Park on Saturday, Sept. 18. The game will kick off at 5 p.m. MT on CBS Sports Network.