Nov 15, 2003
By DOUG ALDEN
AP Sports Writer
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Alex Smith passed for 296 yards and two touchdowns andran for three scores to lead Utah past Wyoming 47-17 Saturday, giving the Utesat least a share of the Mountain West Conference title.
Converted tight end Ben Moa ran for 125 yards for Utah (8-2, 5-1), which had548 yards of offense and could win its first outright league championship since1957 by beating Brigham Young next week in Provo.
After allowing Casey Bramlet to complete his first nine passes for Wyoming(4-6, 2-3), the Ute defense regrouped and all but shut down the Cowboys, whichhad been averaging 366.4 yards per game.
Wyoming finished with 332 total yards, gaining just 70 in the second halfand not crossing midfield until the final play of the game. Bramlet completed18 of 29 passes for 257 yards.
Smith was 17-of-26 and ran 15 times for 76 yards as the Utes continued torun the ball well without leading rusher Brandon Warfield, who has missed thelast two games while recovering from a knee injury.
Coach Urban Meyer inserted Moa in the backfield two weeks ago against AirForce and Moa scored three touchdowns and threw a two-point conversion for thewin as the Utes beat the Falcons 45-43 in triple overtime.
Moa didn't score Saturday, but showed his versatility again with 22 carriesand went over the 100-yard mark with a 9-yard run with in the fourth quarter.
Smith got pulled with about 5? minutes left in the fourth for Lance Rice.The senior backup ran for a 1-yard touchdown in his final home game atRice-Eccles Stadium, which is partially named for Rice's grandfather and Utedonor, Bob Rice.
After an even first half, the Utes scored on their first five possessions inthe second half to beat the Cowboys for the fourth straight time.
Bryan Borreson broke a 17-all tie with a 42-yard field goal early in thethird quarter, then after a punt and interference penalty on the coverage Utahgot the ball back at the Wyoming 38. Smith scored on a 15-yard run with 9:35left, scored on a 7-yard run on the Utes' next possession then hit Steve Savoywith a 34-yard touchdown pass less than a minute into the fourth quarter to putUtah up 40-17. Smith and Savoy also connected on a 45-yard TD pass in thesecond quarter.
Smith scored on a 4-yard run early in the first quarter after Wyomingshanked a punt that set up the Utes at the Cowboy 30.
Wyoming came right back, marching 82 yards - all on five straight passes byBramlet to tie the score at 7-all on a 13-yard catch by Javon Bouknight, thentook a brief lead on a 35-yard field goal by Deric Yaussi.