Greg Bell ran for 119 yards and two touchdowns to lead San Diego State to a 33-31 victory in triple overtime over Utah on Saturday in Carson, Calif.
Backup quarterback Lucas Johnson added 87 yards on eight carries. The Aztecs (3-0) totaled 204 rushing yards against the Utes (1-2), who led the Pac-12 in rushing defense each of the previous three seasons. Utah gave up 224 yards rushing to BYU last time out.
SDSU got the winning points on a trick play when Jesse Matthews threw a pass to Johnson for a successful two-point play.
Cameron Rising threw for 153 yards and three touchdowns to lead Utah. Rising added 46 yards on five carries.
The Utes did not get going on offense until late in the fourth quarter. Charlie Brewer threw for 104 yards and an interception before being replaced at quarterback by Rising late in the third quarter.
Rising led Utah to touchdowns on three straight drives, culminating in a 25-yard pass to Jaylen Dixon that knotted it up at 31-31 at the end of the first overtime.
Neither offense gained any traction in the first half. Utah totaled 89 yards while San Diego State mustered 79 yards. The two teams were a combined 1-of-16 on third down before halftime.
Utah finished with zero total yards in the first quarter. The Utes still jumped out to a 7-0 lead on the strength of an 80-yard punt return by Britain Covey.
The Aztecs tied it up 10-10 midway through the second quarter after Jordan Byrd returned a kickoff 100 yards.
San Diego State took over in the third quarter. The Aztecs covered 82 yards on their opening drive in the second half, running seven out of eight plays, and took a 17-10 lead on a 7-yard run from Bell. Then, Tayler Hawkins intercepted Brewer and returned it 34 yards, setting up Bell’s second 7-yard scoring run on the next play. It extended the Aztecs’ lead to 24-10 with 10:42 left in the third quarter.
Rising threw a 2-yard TD pass to Covey to help Utah cut it to 24-16 with 4:17 left. The Utes got the ball back after forcing a 3-and-out and drove down for another touchdown in the final seconds of regulation, tying it up on a 4-yard TD catch by Theo Howard with 16 seconds remaining.
–Field Level Media