It’s not just hard for opponents to win at Utah’s Rice-Eccles Stadium. Lately, it’s hard for them to score there.
The seventh-ranked Utes, who beat UCLA 49-3 on Saturday, have not allowed a touchdown over the last 14 quarters at home. Their last three opponents in Salt Lake City were outscored 105-6.
Through 10 games, defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley’s charges have held five teams under 10 points and four without a touchdown. The Utes’ average of 11.3 points per game allowed ranks fourth in the nation.
“Really good players,” coach Kyle Whittingham said. “The front four is, I’m biased, but I think is the best in the country. Linebackers are active and tough and making plays. Secondary is covering. Morgan Scalley is getting them in the right spots and right locations and his staff is doing a great job with fundamentals and technique. You just add that all together and it’s a pretty good defense.”
Utah has won 10 straight games at home, the longest home win streak since rolling off 21 in a row between 2007-10.
The 46-point win over UCLA was the Utes’ largest margin of victory in a Pac-12 game since they joined the conference in 2011.
UCLA’s 50 rushing yards were its fewest since 2016, and the three points were its fewest since losing 50-0 to Southern California in 2011.
MAKING A HABIT OF ROUTS
With its 56-21 win at Rutgers, second-ranked Ohio State became the second team in 100 years to win its first 10 games by 24 or more points. The other team with that distinction was Nebraska in 1971. The Cornhuskers’ streak ended in the 11th game, the 35-31 Game of the Century win at Oklahoma.
Ohio State plays what figures to be its toughest game to date this week at home against No. 9 Penn State.
ZANE DOES IT AGAIN
Air Force’s Zane Lewis returned an interception 99 yards for a touchdown against Colorado State. He tied his own school record. Last year he ran back an interception 99 yards against Nevada.
FIRST RUSHING TD ALLOWED
It took until the 10th game, but Georgia finally allowed a touchdown rushing. Auburn quarterback Bo Nix scored on a 2-yard run in the fourth quarter of the Bulldogs’ 21-14 win. No team has finished a season having allowed fewer than three touchdowns rushing in a season in the last 10 years.
THE 200 CLUB
Northwestern freshman Evan Hull had the top rushing performance of the week in his first start. He ran 24 times for 220 yards and four touchdowns against Massachusetts.
Mississippi’s John Rhys Plumlee ran 21 times for 212 yards and four TDs to set school rushing records for a freshman and quarterback. Plumlee was the first quarterback to run for 200 yards against the No. 1 team in The Associated Press poll since Texas’ Vince Young did it against USC in the 2006 Rose Bowl.
Army’s Kelvin Hopkins Jr., who replaced an injured Jabari Laws late in the first quarter, carried 16 times for a career-high 208 yards against VMI.
Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor ran 25 times for 204 yards against Nebraska. It was the third straight year Taylor went for more than 200 against the Cornhuskers. He increased his career total to 5,634 yards and passed two-time Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin of Ohio State for second place on the Big Ten’s all-time rushing list.
Ohio State leads the nation in four categories: scoring (51.5 ppg), scoring defense (9.8 ppg), pass defense (126 ypg) and total defense (216.4 ypg). Other team leaders are Navy in rushing (349.3 ypg), Washington State in passing (441.8 ypg), Oklahoma in total offense (581.1 ypg) and Utah in rushing defense (55.4 ypg).
Individual leaders are Oklahoma State’s Chuba Hubbard in rushing (172.6 ypg), Washington State’s Anthony Gordon in passing (431.4 ypg) and Arkansas State’s Omar Bayless in receiving (126.2 ypg).
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