CFB: Hall ties Detmer, No. 22 BYU tops New Mexico 24-19
AP Sports Writer
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Max Hall passed for two touchdowns and got his 29th win at BYU to match Heisman Trophy winner Ty Detmer's school record, and the No. 22 Cougars survived a sloppy fourth quarter to beat winless New Mexico 24-19 today.
The Cougars (8-2, 5-1 Mountain West) held off a focused effort by the Lobos (0-10, 0-6), who were desperate to give fans something good to talk about after a tough season that has been worsened by first-year coach Mike Locksley's problems off the field.
New Mexico made a game of it with 4:07 remaining when Donovan Porterie's 20-yard TD pass to Victor James finished a drive that started in BYU territory after an ugly 30-yard punt by BYU's Riley Stephenson. Bryan Kariya fumbled on BYU's next possession, but the Lobos turned it over on downs at midfield.
New Mexico dropped its 14th in a row, the second longest losing streak in school history, and will remember this one for 10 points that never reached the scoreboard because of kicking game mistakes.
Kicker James Aho whacked the uprights three times — on field goal attempts of 35 and 42 yards and on a PAT try, all in the second half. He also had a 46-yard field goal attempt blocked by BYU's Andrew Rich just before halftime.
Hall, meanwhile, completed 21 of 33 attempts for 314 yards passing with one interception. He connected with Andrew George on a 27-yard TD pass late in the first half and found Luke Ashworth for a 13-yard scoring strike on the final play of the third quarter — just enough cushion, as it turned out.
The Cougars improved to 6-0 on the road this season and coach Bronco Mendenhall is 5-0 against New Mexico, where he was defensive coordinator from 1998-2002.
The Lobos came out ready to make news for something other than Locksley's altercation with an assistant coach and the university's subsequent investigation.
New Mexico led 7-0 lead after the game's opening drive, with Porterie's 3-yard run capping an 80-yard march. BYU answered when Manase Tonga scored on a 1-yard dive, Mitch Payne kicked a 42-yard field goal and Hall threw the TD to George as the Cougars went ahead 17-7 at halftime.
But the Lobos battled back, getting to 17-13 on their first possession of the second half when Porterie beat BYU's blitz for a 26-yard TD play to Darryl Jones. And New Mexico's defense played tough against a BYU offense that came in averaging 36.5 points per game.
Porterie finished 28 of 44 for 272 yards and two TDs.