Utah Rides Shelley, Defense In Comeback Win Over BYU
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – After trailing by 20 points at halftime, the Utes had to rely on their defense and running back Armand Shyne to score 28 unanswered and beat BYU 35-27 for the eighth straight time.
Utah was held scoreless in the first half but managed to outscore the Cougars 35-7 in the second half and pick up the win.
With their eyes on the Pac-12 Championship game on November 30, the Utes possibly overlooked BYU in the first half.
Defense Made Big Plays
It took Utah 33 minutes for Utah to finally score some points as defensive back Julian Blackmon started the Utes impressive run by returning an interception 27-yards for a touchdown.
BYU had seven offensive drives in the second half. They scored one touchdown, punted the ball three times and turned the ball over on downs twice. All were led by key plays from Utah’s defense. Linebacker Chase Hansen was huge for the Utes as he collected 13 total tackles, including 10 solo take-downs and three tackles-for-loss. Former BYU linebacker Francis Bernard added 8 tackles against his old team. The Utes had three sacks on BYU quarterback Zach Wilson from Bradlee Anae, Leki Fotu and Pita Tonga.
Utah looked to the redshirt freshman as they made their ferocious comeback as he finished with 141 passing yards and two total touchdowns, one passing and one rushing. He sealed the win for the Utes late in the fourth quarter with a 33-yard touchdown run with 1:43 left in the game.
“He doesn’t seem to be bothered by anything. He is really poised,” said Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham about Shelley after the game. “He has a short memory,” he added.