Live coverage: BYU leads Navy 48-3 after three third-quarter scores
SALT LAKE CITY — BYU and Navy have the national college football stage all to themselves on Labor Day night.
With the novel coronavirus pandemic shaking up the 2020 college football season, the Cougars and Midshipmen are meeting for a Monday night matchup to open the year. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. MDT, and the game will be televised on ESPN.
Follow along with the action in our live coverage below.
The Midshipmen finally got on the board just before the end of the third, as Bijan Nichols hit a 48-yard field goal to cap a nice drive for Navy.
For the Cougars, the backups are taking over. Baylor Romney is on his second drive at quarterback, and BYU has substitutions in all across the board.
Jake Oldroyd’s second field goal of the game — a 34-yarder — has the Cougars up 48 points in the blowout. BYU has scored on all three of its possessions in the second half.
At this point, the Cougars have five times the offensive yards of Navy — 500 to 100.
BYU’s second possession of the second half was another quick score. This time, the Cougars went 80 yards on four plays and Tyler Allgeier capped the possession with a 17-yard touchdown run, his second of the night.
BYU now has 467 yards of total offense to 100 for Navy.
Navy had a promising drive end in Cougar territory, as Chaz Ah You and Payton Wilgar stopped Mark Walker for a 2-yard gain on a fourth-and-4 play at the BYU 22. The Midshipmen got the drive jumpstarted by a 31-yard run from Perry Olsen, but the Cougars made the impressive stop four plays later.
BYU scores again to start the third quarter, and this one comes via the air as Zach Wilson hit Gunner Romney for a 45-yard pass where Romney broke a tackle and broke free for the long score.
That was a quick score, as the Cougars drove 83 yards on four plays and took 1:55 off the clock to open the second half with another touchdown.
BYU’s dominant first half was capped by Lopini Katoa’s third touchdown of the game, a driving 1-yard run with eight seconds until the half. It was set up by a 19-yard pass from Zach Wilson to Neil Pau’u to the Navy 1 on the play before.
The Cougars are overpowering the Midshipmen on both sides of the ball, as the BYU offense has 304 yards off total offense through one half, scoring 17 points on three successful red-zone drives. Navy, meanwhile, has just 48 yards of total offense and has gone just 1 of 7 on third downs.
The Cougars stopped Navy on a fourth-and-short near midfield, then ate up clock while driving for an 11-play, 43-yard scoring possession that ended with a Jake Oldroyd 22-yard field goal.
BYU has nearly 200 more yards of total offense than Navy, with a 243-44 edge, with five minutes to go in the first half.
The Cougars built another long drive on the ground, but this time, the score came through the air, as Lopini Katoa scored for the second time tonight on a 15-yard pass from Zach Wilson just a minute and a half into the second quarter.
That capped an eight-play, 89-yard drive for BYU, and the Cougars offense is rolling, with 200 total yards. BYU has converted all three of its third-down attempts.
The Cougars have owned this game through one quarter, putting up 147 yards of total offense to just 21 for the Midshipmen. Navy couldn’t capitalize on BYU’s one turnover, and the Cougar defense has allowed the home team to convert just 1 of 5 third-down conversions through the first 15 minutes.
BYU has its first mistake, as quarterback Zach Wilson was intercepted by Evan Fochtman at the Cougar 42, and he returned the pick to the BYU 33.
Navy couldn’t capitalize, though, at it lost 15 yards on the next play when Midshipmen quarterback Chance Warren was sacked by Isaiah Kaufusi and lost the ball. Navy recovered at the BYU 48, but couldn’t convert a first down.
BYU’s had two possessions and two rushing touchdowns.
The second comes courtesy of Lopini Katoa, who scored on a 39-yard touchdown to cap a three-play, 52-yard drive. Right now, BYU has rushed for 100 yards on the ground on just seven rushing attempts for a 14.3 per-carry average.
Navy, conversely, has just eight rushing yards through its first two possessions.
The Cougars strike first, as Tyler Allgeier hit the outside for a 34-yard touchdown run to cap a seven-play, 74-yard drive that took 2:49 off the block on BYU’s opening drive of 2020.
The Cougars twice converted third downs on the drive and picked up 59 yards on the ground.
Former BYU tight end Chad Lewis, the father-in-law of senior Matt Bushman — who’s out for the year with an Achilles injury — shared a photo of the two of them taking in today’s game:
Another former Cougar, Kansas City Chiefs safety Daniel Sorensen — who recently received his Super Bowl LIV ring — gave a shoutout to BYU on Twitter:
Deseret News BYU beat writer Jay Drew reported that one of BYU’s backup quarterbacks, Jaren Hall, is at the stadium but is not wearing his uniform:
Former BYU quarterback Taysom Hill, now in his fourth season with the New Orleans Saints, sent his support for the Cougars on social media:
BYU will be wearing the all-white jerseys, with royal accent trim:
Drew provides a look inside the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, venue for tonight’s game:
So, too, does Church News reporter Jason Swensen:
Both teams arrive for the game:
BYU arrived in T-shirts that read “We Are One” on the front and “Love One Another” on the back:
Also from around the Twitterverse: