Kedon Slovis rushed for two touchdowns and BYU’s defense allowed just 185 total yards as the Cougars earned a 14-0 victory over Sam Houston State in Provo, Utah, on Saturday night in the season opener for both teams.
Slovis, who transferred from Pitt on Christmas Eve of last year, completed 20 of 33 passes for 145 yards, going over the 10,000-yard mark for his collegiate career. Freshman running back LJ Martin supplied 91 yards on 16 rushes, all after halftime.
The Cougars led just 7-0 as the fourth quarter started before Slovis capped an 11-play, 55-yard drive with a 1-yard sneak 11 seconds into the period. It came shortly after Jakob Robinson made a diving interception of a Keegan Shoemaker pass. The play survived a replay review.
Playing their first game as an FBS member, the Bearkats limited BYU to 257 total yards but couldn’t pull off the upset because their offense struggled all night. They managed just 11 first downs and punted 10 times.
Shoemaker completed 18 of 33 passes for 147 yards with three interceptions. Sam Houston State managed only 38 yards on 24 rushes with no attempt longer than 8 yards.
BYU started the game in an expected manner. It scored on its first possession, cashing in on a short field as Slovis finished a 50-yard drive with a 5-yard touchdown run just 4:21 into the opening quarter.
What happened from there probably wasn’t on most bingo cards. The Cougars managed only 59 yards on their next eight possessions, thanks to a combination of good Sam Houston defense and some untimely penalties.
However, BYU never trailed because the Bearkats simply couldn’t sustain drives. Sam Houston State had one great chance in the third quarter after sniffing out a fake punt and starting at the Cougars 20. A pass interference call put the ball at the 5, but Robinson came up with an interception in the end zone.
The Bearkats went just 2-for-14 on third-down conversions.
–Field Level Media