WSU Falls to BYU in Season Opener, 30-6
Aug. 30, 2012
PROVO, Utah (AP) - Riley Nelson threw for two touchdowns and third-string quarterback Taysom Hill added another on his first collegiate pass as Brigham Young beat Washington State 30-6 on Thursday night to spoil Mike Leach's return to coaching.
Washington State finished with 224 yards total offense.
Washington State came out passing as expected, with Tuel starting 8 of 9. But his 10th pass was intercepted by Uona Kaveinga, and the momentum shifted to BYU before a "white-out" crowd.
It was Leach's coaching debut for WSU, coaching against his alma mater.
Leach never played football at BYU, but he gained inspiration for his spread passing attack from LaVell Edwards, for whom BYU's stadium is named.
At one point in pre-game interviews, Leach said his team looked more like BYU of old than BYU.
Not on Thursday.
The BYU Cougars rolled up 426 yards offense, nearly twice that of Washington State.
Andrew Furney's 47-yard field goal put Washington State on the board with 10:42 left in the second quarter and he added a 41-yarder just before halftime after a TD pass to Marquess Wilson was nullified by holding.
BYU found one way to keep Leach's offense off the field - long drives. BYU's three first-half scoring drives were all 10 plays or longer, the third going for 16 and capped by Riley Stephenson's 28-yard field goal.
BYU's defense, meanwhile, played up to its billing, holding Washington State to just 3 yards rushing in the first half, and limiting Tuel to 108 yards passing.
On the other sideline, Leach wasn't having much fun.
The Air Raid attack had served him well at Texas Tech, where he was 84-43 with 10 bowl appearances. It went nowhere. The last time a Leach team failed to score a touchdown was in Texas Tech's 12-3 loss to TCU on Sept. 16, 2006.
Official Website of Washington State University Athletics | Bohler Athletic Complex | PO Box 641602 Pullman, WA 99164-1602 | 1.800.GO.COUGS