NO. 12 AGGIES ROLL TO
57-7 WIN OVER UTEP
 

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Johnny Manziel didn't like the way Texas A&M's offense was playing early on Saturday night against UTEP, so he called an impromptu meeting on the sidelines to get the unit back on track.

The Heisman Trophy winner's speech worked.

57 - 7
Kyle Field • College Station
Attendance: 87,126 • Temperature: 59˚
Boxscore: HTML  |  PDF

1 2 3 4  
UTEP   (1-7) 7 0 0 0 7
A&M   (7-2) 9 27 21 0 57
 Stats at a Glance
UTEP A&M
First Downs 10 25
Rushes-Yards 44-127 30-234
Passing Yards 71 330
Passing C-A-I 9-17-3 21-30-0
Total Yards 198 564
Fumbles 3-1 5-1
Interceptions 0-0 3-42
Punts 9-36.8 5-47.2
3rd Downs 4-15 2-8
4th Downs 0-0 1-1
Sacks 2-9 2-9
TOP 36:06 23:54
 Individual Leaders
RUSHING
UTEP - Aaron Jones 22 carries, 62 yards, TD
A&M - Johnny Manziel 7 carries, 67 yards, 2 TD
PASSING
UTEP - Blaire Sullivan 9-17, 71 yards, 3 INT
A&M - Johnny Manziel 16-24, 273 yards, 4 TD
RECEIVING
UTEP - Malcolm Trail 3 catches, 31 yards
A&M - Travis Labhart 4 catches, 83 yards, 2 TD
DEFENSE
UTEP - Demarcus Kizzie 8 tackles
A&M - Darian Claiborne 12 tackles

Manziel threw four touchdown passes and ran for two more scores in less than three quarters to lead No. 12 Texas A&M to a lopsided 57-7 win over UTEP.

The Aggies trailed by five points early before scoring 55 straight to cruise to the victory against the overmatched Miners, losers of six straight.

''He just made a great leadership speech,'' receiver Travis Labhart said. ''Told us to get back to doing what we do.''

Manziel threw touchdown passes of 44, 15, 17 and 26 yards and had TD runs of 10 and 49 yards before putting on his baseball cap with 7:39 left in the third quarter.

''We started uncharacteristically slow for whatever reason,'' Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said. ''We were just a little bit off the first couple of series ... but we kicked it into gear.''

The Miners were done in by four turnovers, including two interceptions by A&M's Howard Matthews.

''Second quarter the turnovers really killed us,'' UTEP coach Sean Kugler said. ''Really put our defense in a tough spot.''

UTEP's Blaire Sullivan was making his first start with Jameill Showers, a transfer from A&M, out with a shoulder injury. Sullivan threw for 71 yards with three interceptions.

The Aggies finished with 564 total yards for their eighth straight game with at least 500 yards.

Manziel had with 273 yards passing and 67 yards rushing. Two of his touchdown passes went to Labhart, a former walk-on who had four receptions for 83 yards.

Sumlin was encouraged by another solid performance by his defense after the unit struggled for most of the year. He was especially pleased by the turnovers the group forced.

''Anytime you do that you're starting to get some confidence,'' he said. ''We've been able to rotate a lot of different guys over the last two weeks and get some energy.''

The Aggies were up 36-7 at halftime and picked up where they left off in the third quarter. Manziel zigzagged down the field with a bevy of defenders trailing him on a 49-yard touchdown run to push the lead to 43-7.

Manziel connected with Mike Evans for a 26-yard touchdown later in the third to make it 50-7 and end Manziel's night. A 57-yard reception by LaQuvionte Gonzalez the play before set up the score.

Texas A&M's Floyd Raven blocked a punt on UTEP's first possession that rolled out of the back of the end zone for a safety to make it 2-0. It was A&M's first blocked punt for a safety since 2008.

The Miners forced a three-and-out on A&M's first drive to end a streak of seven straight games with a touchdown on the first possession for the Aggies. It was only the second time since coach Kevin Sumlin took over for the 2012 season that the Aggies went three plays and punted on the game's first possession.

UTEP took a 7-2 lead when Aaron Jones ran 4 yards for a touchdown on the ensuing drive.

Manziel and the Aggies got going after that, taking the lead on a 44-yard touchdown reception by Labhart. Labhart was wide open on the play and waltzed into the end zone untouched to make it 9-7.

Tra Carson's 1-yard touchdown run extended the lead to 15-7. Drew Kaser's run failed after the touchdown.

De'Vante Harris gave A&M the ball right back when he intercepted Sullivan on the next play.

''We fed off each other the whole night,'' Harris said. ''Had people making plays. We gelled and all just played with good emotion.''

Manziel's 50th career touchdown pass came when he found Malcome Kennedy on a 15-yard score that left A&M up 22-7.

UTEP's Leslie Jordan fumbled on the next possession and Darian Claiborne recovered for the Aggies. Manziel dived headfirst into the end zone at the end of a 10-yard run to give A&M a 29-7 lead.

UTEP's turnover woes continued on the next drive when Sullivan was intercepted by Matthews. The Aggies cashed in on the miscue two plays later when Manziel found Labhart ridiculously open again on a 17-yard touchdown reception to leave them up 36-7 at halftime.

Freshman Kenny Hill took over when Manziel went to the bench and he led a drive that ended with a 14-yard touchdown run by Trey Williams that made it 57-7.

Carson was injured and taken off the field on a stretcher in the fourth quarter, but Sumlin said after the game that he was OK. He was hurt when he was tackled on a carry and fumbled the ball. He was sitting up and moving his arms and legs right after it happened before lying down on his back on the ground.

Trainers tended to him for a couple of minutes before a stretcher was brought onto the field and he was strapped to it and taken off the field.

Sumlin said Carson was complaining of neck pain so he was placed on the stretcher as a precaution. X-rays were negative and he was not taken to the hospital and remained at the stadium with the team after the game.

''All signs point to it being nothing very serious,'' Sumlin said.

 

 

 

Post-Game Notes

ABOUT THE WIN...

  • It was the 699th victory in program history. The Aggies will seek to become the 18th team in FBS history to reach 700 victories.
  • The Aggies improve to 7-2 overall.
  • A&M eclipsed the 50-point mark for the ninth time in 22 games under Coach Sumlin, including four times in 2013.

#JOHNNYREPEAT

  • Defending Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel accounted for six touchdowns with four passing TDs and two rushing scores. He completed 16-of-24 passes for 273 yards and rushed for 67 yards on seven carries before exiting the game in the third quarter.
  • Manziel’s six TDs matched his career high for TD responsibility.
  • It was the ninth time that Manziel has generated at least three passing TDs and at least one rushing TD in a game.
  • It was his eighth game with two or more rushing and passing TDs in a game.
  • His third-quarter 49-yard TD run was the team’s longest rush of the season.
  • It was the 19th time in 22 career games that Manziel generated 300 or more total yards.
  • Manziel passed Kevin Murray for sole possession of No. 2 in career touchdowns with 54. He’s chasing Jerrod Johnson’s record of 67 touchdowns from 2007-10.

EVANS MATCHES FULLER

  • Sophomore Biletnikoff Award candidate Mike Evans matched Jeff Fuller’s school record for season receiving TDs in just nine games with his 12th TD grab of the season.
  • Evans finished the night with four catches for 46 yards with one touchdown.
  • His TD catch was a 26-yarder from Johnny Manziel, marking the 20th time in 22 games that Evans has at least one 20-yard catch.

OFFENSIVE NOTABLES ...

  • With 57 points vs. UTEP, the Aggies have now scored 40 or more points in 12 straight games, which is the longest active streak in the FBS.
  • The Aggies generated 564 yards against UTEP, marking the eighth straight game with 500 or more total yards, which is the longest active streak in FBS.
  • It was A&M’s 21st straight game with 400 or more yards, which is the nation’s second-longest streak.
  • The Aggies eclipsed the 400-point plateau for season points scored in the ninth game of the season for the second straight year. It’s the fifth straight season and the ninth time in program history that the Aggies have hit 400 points in a season.
  • The Aggies current pace of total offense (582.6) is ahead of the school record of 558.5 set last season. The Aggies have 5,243 yards through nine games.

ANOTHER STRONG DEFENSIVE EFFORT

  • The Aggies held UTEP to 198 yards of total offense, the first time they’ve held an opponent under 200 yards since limiting Kansas to 197 in a 61-7 win on Nov. 19, 2011.
  • The Aggies held UTEP to 71 passing yards, the first time they have held an opponent under 100 yards since limiting LSU to 97 yards on Oct. 20, 2012. That game also marked the last time A&M had three INTs in a game. The 71 passing yards was the fewest by an A&M opponent since the Aggies limited Army to 4 yards on Sept. 27, 2008.
  • After forcing 11 turnovers in the first seven games, the Aggies have forced eight turnovers in the last two games, including three INTs and one fumble against UTEP.

NOTABLES ...

  • Floyd Raven’s punt block on UTEP’s opening offensive was the Aggies’ first since K.J. Williams blocked one against Texas in 2008. The blocked boot rolled through the endzone for a safety, which was the first scored by the Aggies since Oklahoma State ran out the back of the endzone to protect their 2011 victory at Kyle Field.
  • The safety caused by Raven’s block put the Aggies on the scoreboard first for the eighth straight game and for the 21st time in 22 games under head coach Kevin Sumlin.
  • The Aggies had a three-and-out on their opening offensive series, breaking a streak of seven games with a TD on their first drive of the game. It was A&M’s first three-and-out on the opening offensive series in 19 games.
  • The Aggie defense forced a punt (blocked by Raven) on UTEP’s opening series. It marked the 15 times that the Aggies have forced a punt, a turnover or a turnover on downs in 22 games with Mark Snyder as defensive coordinator.
  • Senior WR Travis Labhart had a career-high two touchdowns.

12TH MAN, POLO, CAPTAINS, COIN TOSS

  • For the ninth straight game, sophomore defensive back Sam Moeller was the 12th Man.
  • Wearing the #90 jersey in memory of fallen teammate Polo Manukainiu was redshirt freshman Tyrone Taylor (normally wears #50). Manukainiu died in a tragic car accident last summer.
  • The Aggies’ team captain representatives at the coin toss were seniors Ben Malena, Toney Hurd Jr. and Jake Matthews and junior Mike Evans. UTEP won the toss and elected to receive.
Post-Game Quotes

Selected Texas A&M Post-Game Quotes

TEXAS A&M HEAD COACH KEVIN SUMLIN

On the status of Tra Carson…
“Latest update is that he’s not in the hospital, he was in the training room, sitting up, and going home. As of now he won’t be in the hospital tonight. He had feeling and X-Rays were negative. Really precautionary measures out there any time you have a player complaining about something in his neck. He was in pain out there, which at first you think is a bad situation but that’s a lot better than not having feeling or numbness or anything like that. We’ll see where he is, but all signs right now point to nothing very serious and not nearly as bad as it looked at the beginning.”

 

On the play of the defense…
“We’re playing a lot of guys, and I think any time you’re doing that, starting to get some confidence, playing a lot of people, we’ve been able to rotate a lot of guys the last couple games, and get some energy. We’ve gotten through the last two weeks without Alonzo Williams, which we wanted to get through tonight without Cedric Ogbuehi and Alonzo they probably could have played, but we’re trying to get them through another week, as we get back in league play, hopefully, we’ll be at full strength again.”

 

On Johnny Manziel’s 49-yard touchdown run and the Texas A&M offense…
“Running down the middle of the field, I just watched the highlight of it. It’s good for him, he’s always been capable of that, the last couple of weeks, with him not practicing until Friday before the game, there was a different game plan for him. We started uncharacteristically slow for whatever reason, we were just a little bit off the first couple of series, the balls were just a little bit off, we dropped the ball, we weren’t as sharp as we usually are. We kicked it into gear, and the message was to come out in the second half and play like we did in the second quarter, and I think our guys responded both offensively and defensively.”

 

On the play of true freshmen Darian Claiborne and Isaiah Golden…
“It’s been extremely crucial. When you sit there and got a true freshman mike linebacker and a true freshman nose guard, you worry a little bit. The opponent reads the program too, there’s no hiding that. They’re going to try to figure out where they are. Those guys know that, and it’s been valuable. With Darian really going since Arkansas and Isaiah Golden going really the last couple of weeks getting a lot of playing time. Like I said, that’s only going to help us because they’re getting better every week. I think their confidence level is going up, and we’re going to need that, because we’re back into league play, we got a pretty good stretch here of three good football teams that will challenge not just those guys, but challenge our whole football team. It’s good that those guys have been in the fire and I think a little bit more confidence at this point.”

 

 

SOPHOMORE DB DE’VANTE HARRIS

On his interception…

“We were in a cover two. Toney Hurd was playing over the top of the corner route and I just baited the quarterback into hitting the hitch route. He threw it kind of low and it just fell into my hands, so nothing special, just a pick.

 

On the defensive performance…

“We fed off of each other the whole night. We flew around, made plays, Coach Snyder was giving it to us. We gelled together and just played really good football.”

 

JUNIOR DL GAVIN STANSBURY

On defensive takeaways…

“It’s all about effort. Everybody is swarming to the ball. I said last week that everyone is bringing their full energy to the team, plating with more excitement. We’re all just on board, and it’s going to carry on for the rest of the season.”

 

On defensive improvements…

“We’ve been having great practices the last few weeks. Also, I think it has to do with confidence. You have to have confidence in yourself and in your team to have a great game. Like I said, great practices the past few weeks and it’s been a great turnaround for us.”

SENIOR WR TRAVIS LABHART

On Tra Carson…

“I haven’t heard anything yet. I think a lot was precautionary. You have to do that when its neck injury or head, you just don’t want to make it worse. He seemed fine from what I’ve heard, but prayers out to him.”

On field sound…

“It was very quiet. I thought the same thing. I’m just trying to pray for him and his family and I’m hoping he is okay. Tra is one of the toughest guys I know so if he goes down and stays on the ground, it’s probably something that is legitimate. Prayers up for him and I hope he is okay.”

On gaining momentum…

“Johnny called us over as a unit, the whole offensive team, and just gave a great leadership speech. We were very lackadaisical for a little bit. I think he did a good job of assuming the leadership role and taking charge and letting us know that we needed to pick up what we were doing.”

On coverage…

“We knew they were going to be a man team. Honestly they did a really good job of disguising and rolling to some cover three, just kind of back and forth. We had a good game plan going in. We felt like our receiving corps could make plays down the field and it kind of just happened to fall that way tonight.”

On Mike Evans…

“Mike is obviously one of the best receivers in the nation if not the best. They just missed on a couple plays, it was close and they will want to polish that up. Mike and Johnny will definitely, I know for a fact, will want to polish that up. It just kind of happened that way; the way they were rolling coverage is, Malcome and I were both having some success in the slot. That corner route seemed to be open and their rolling coverage just panned out that way.”

On wind factor…

“That’s [punt return] as not good. The wind was blowing, but I just need to see that. The punter was a little bit sporadic. For ‘Quiv’ [LaQuivionte Gonzalez], he ball just got blown over his head and I don’t think he was quite ready for it. On mine, I thought I was camped out underneath it, and I just misjudged it. I got my hands on it and virtually caught it then it just fell out of my hands. Johnny seemed to be piercing the wind and it didn’t seem to affect it. Other than wind-chill, it was a little chilly, but I don’t think it affected our air attack.”

SENIOR RB BEN MALENA

On Tra Carson…

“It was kind of scary. He is a very vital part to our team not only running the ball but as a key contributor on special teams. I just talked to him in the locker room and he is fine. He was walking around, and talking with everybody. They just wanted to keep him down and cart him off the field for precautionary reasons.”

On gaining momentum…

“We got off to a slow start, and that’s not something we want to do and things weren’t clicking with throwing the ball. We started running the ball a little bit and got things going and we started putting up points.”

On running game…

“I think we did pretty well. It’s a luxury having four talented running backs and it really keeps all of us fresh. We all share the ball and every time all four of us get the ball we are going to contribute.”


On going forward…

“It’s really good from a defensive standpoint only giving up seven points. From an offensive standpoint, putting up the points that we did was good and we understand that we are going back into league play.  Going up against Mississippi State is going to be a very fun game, especially for the seniors. We will be playing on senior night, the last time playing on Kyle Field and we will be ready.”

Selected UTEP Post-Game Quotes

UTEP HEAD COACH SEAN KUGLER

"Second-quarter turnovers really killed us. It put our defense in a tough spot. Up to that point, I thought our defense was competing well. Blaire is real competitive. He made some poor throws he wishes he could have back. He made a couple of plays with his legs, and some nice throws. Sometimes his decision-making needs to be a little better. You can't turn the ball over against any opponent, but especially not against a quality opponent like Texas A&M. They are going to take advantage of it, and convert every single time. I have no concerns that Jameill won't come back stronger and better than ever. He is a quality kid. The people here at Texas A&M loved him and I can see why. He is a great kid and we love having him in our program. It hurts us not having him as our starting quarterback."

JUNIOR LB ANTHONY PUENTE

"Everybody was fired up at the beginning of this game. This environment is a good environment to play in. We found out a little bit about ourselves. We came out strong but weren't able to execute all four quarters. I like what I saw from our young guys."

FRESHMAN SAFETY DEVIN COCKRELL

"We were fired up coming in. We thought we had a chance to come in and compete through four quarters. A&M had some great field positions, so our backs were against the wall. We sat a goal for [Mike Evans] to not set the record, and we did that."

SOPHOMORE QB BLAIRE SULLIVAN

"Overall, it was not what I expected, and not what we expected as team. We have a lot to learn from this game, and move on for the rest of the season. A&M didn't have any disguises that we haven't seen. There were just a lot of mental mistakes on my part, and I can do better. We got some confidence on the first drive. We were running the ball well, and we had a few opportunities to pass the ball. Jameill helped me prepare for the atmosphere throughout the week."