No. 14 Utah looks to avenge loss last season to San Diego St

Sep 15, 2022, 12:13 PM | Updated: 12:18 pm
Utah tight end Brant Kuithe (80) walks off the field following NCAA college football game against S...

Utah tight end Brant Kuithe (80) walks off the field following NCAA college football game against Southern Utah Saturday, Sept. 10, 2022, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

San Diego State (1-1) at No. 14 Utah (1-1), Saturday, 10 p.m. ET (ESPN2)

Line: Utah by 20 1/2, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Series record: Utah leads 17-13-1.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

The Utes have a chance to win game No. 300 against Mountain West teams by beating the Aztecs. Utah was a member of the league before joining the Pac-12 in 2011. Since that switch, the Utes have gone 28-4 in nonconference games during the regular season. One of those losses was last year to the Aztecs in a three-overtime thriller (33-31). San Diego State lost to Arizona in the opener and bounced back last weekend by beating Idaho State, 38-7. Utah had a similar bounce-back, losing at Florida before routing Southern Utah 73-7 in a home opener. Utah boasts a 79-25 home mark under coach Kyle Whittingham.

KEY MATCHUP

Led by defensive tackle Junior Tafuna, the Utes held Southern Utah to just 85 total yards. That’s the sixth-fewest in program history. They also held the Thunderbirds to only four first downs. Tafuna played a big role with three tackles and an interception. The Aztecs enter the game averaging 360 total yards.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

SDSU: Wide receiver Jesse Matthews. The former walk-on sits 13th in school history in catches (134) and checks in at 26th in yards receiving (1,643).

Utah: Tight end Dalton Kincaid, who had seven catches for 107 yards and two scores against Southern Utah. Kincaid was nominated for the league’s offensive player of the week honors. He’s just another target at tight end for the Utes, who already have Brant Kuithe.

FACTS & FIGURES

The Aztecs are 0-4 against Utah when the Utes are ranked (2004, ’08, ’09, ’10). … San Diego State is 7-3 versus teams from the Pac-12 since 2016. … The Aztecs are 53-2 the last 55 times the team has rushed for 200 or more yards. … On defense, the Aztecs have a 65-3 mark since 2011 when the opposing team scores 17 or less points. In addition, the Aztecs have won 16 of their last 17 games when they forced two or more turnovers. … Utah has a nine-game winning streak at Rice-Eccles Stadium. … Utah kicker Jordan Noyes received a nomination for the league’s special teams player of the week award for going 10-for-10 on extra-points and hitting a 26-yard field goal.

___

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No. 14 Utah looks to avenge loss last season to San Diego St