Short week, short memory.
That was Fresno State’s mantra heading into its road assignment against Utah State after its football loss at Wyoming on Oct. 7.
The Bulldogs turned the mantra into reality by rallying for a 37-32 victory over the Aggies on Friday. Now they have a bye week to get healthy before hosting UNLV (2-0 Mountain West, 5-1 overall) on Oct. 28.
“A short week. We were really banged up, but we found a way to win,” said Fresno State coach Jeff Tedford. “I am really proud of our kids and our staff.”
Short week. Short memory.
On to the next. pic.twitter.com/pSdWqhfsW1
— Fresno State Football 🏆 (@FresnoStateFB) October 12, 2023
Sherrod Runs Free
Malik Sherrod rushed for 129 yards and three touchdowns, including the go-ahead score in the fourth quarter for the Bulldogs (2-1, 6-1).
Utah State (3-4, 1-2), which trailed 28-17 heading into the final quarter, used Cooper Legas’ 43-yard scoring strike to Terrell Vaughn and Rahsul Faison’s 24-yard touchdown run to take a 32-31 lead with 4:42 remaining in the game.
Playing in place of the injured Mikey Keene, Logan Fife completed 22 of 39 passes for a career-high 291 yards and a touchdown for the Bulldogs. Sherrod did his damage on 23 carries, and Tre Watson caught five passes for 76 yards and two scores. One of Watson’s scoring receptions came on a 19-yard pass from wide receiver Jaelen Gill.
The Bulldogs defense, in particular, had to have a short memory Friday. Utah State gashed Fresno State for 568 yards and 30 first downs.
The Fresno State defense surrendered 363 passing yards and three TDs to Aggies QB Cooper Legas but also picked off two passes. The Bulldogs had trouble corraling wide receivers Jalen Royals and Terrell Vaugh. Royals finished with seven receptions for 125 yards and two TDs. Vaughn caught seven passes for 119 yards.
— Fresno State Football 🏆 (@FresnoStateFB) October 14, 2023
Tough Game Ahead vs. UNLV
UNLV has made a dramatic turnaround under first-year coach Barry Odom with an explosive offense that averages 37.5 points a game. The Rebels have won four straight after shredding Nevada, 45-27, on Saturday.
The defense, meanwhile, has forced 14 turnovers, the sixth-highest total in college football.
While Fresno State is off this week, UNLV will host Colorado State (1-1, 303) on Saturday at Allegiant Stadium.
Boise State Struggles
The Bulldogs have another home game coming up on Nov. 4 against struggling Boise State, which gave up 21 points in the fourth quarter and lost, 31-30, at Colorado State on Saturday.
Perennial power Boise State dropped to 2-1 and 3-4 overall, and some fans in Boise are calling for the Broncos to sack coach Andy Avalos.
“That’s a hard loss to swallow,” Avalos said after the Broncos blew the Colorado State game by giving up a 33-yard Hail Mary scoring pass as time expired.