Terrance Cain passed for 286 yards and two touchdowns in his Utah debut and the 19th-ranked Utes extended the nation’s longest winning streak by beating Utah State 35-17 on Thursday night.
Matt Asiata ran for a career-best 156 yards and two touchdowns as the Utes won their 15th in a row, beating longtime Utah assistant Gary Andersen in his first game as Utah State’s coach. Utah has won the past 12 in the rivalry.
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The Aggies kept the score close by forcing three turnovers and getting a 96-yard touchdown run by Robert Turbin, but overall Utah was in control most of the night. Utah State was 0 for 12 on third down and finished with 342 yards.
Turbin ran for 148 yards and his touchdown run in the fourth quarter accounted for nearly a third of the Aggies’ offensive total. Diondre Borel finished 10 for 26 for 121 yards for Utah State.
Cain, a junior college transfer, was making his first start for Utah and finished 20 for 30 with one interception.
Utah kept the pass plays simple for Cain and he was on target from the beginning, completing his first seven. He got a lot of help from Asiata, who wore down the Aggies with 36 carries in his second career 100-yard rushing game. Asiata, whose previous career high was 116 yards against Air Force last year, scored on runs of 1 and 2 yards.
Two of Cain’s first three throws went for touchdowns on nice plays by the receivers. Cain’s second career pass was a short slant to David Reed, who broke up the middle for a 65-yard touchdown. On the next series, Cain threw another slant to John Peel, who bowled over a couple of Aggies at the goal line to give the Utes a 14-3 lead.
Turbin answered quickly for the Aggies, taking a carry up the middle and rumbling almost the entire length of the field for a touchdown to get the Aggies within 14-10 just 17 seconds after Peel’s score. Turbin needed to make just one cut at the line, then had a clear path to the end zone and set a school record on the run.
The Aggies stopped the Utes on three straight plays from the 1-yard line, but went nowhere after getting the ball back and Matt Martinez smothered Peter Caldwell’s punt and the ball rolled out the back on the end zone for a safety to put Utah up 23-10.
Utah State pulled within 26-17 on a late touchdown, set up by James Brindley’s interception and 20-yard line return to the 4-yard line. Borel scored on a 2-yard run with 51 seconds.
Utah’s defense added a second safety on fumble late in the fourth quarter.