BYU, USU football: Aggies from 2010 game remember win over Cougars (16 items)
Familiarity didn’t do it for Eric Schultz.
“Even being from Washington, I grew up in a fairly Mormon community and everyone seemed to like BYU. I never have liked BYU, so it’s big for me,” Schultz said. “It’s an exciting week for everyone here at Utah State. Everyone gets amped for this game – and I do, too.”
The Connell, Wash., native has been motivated in an Aggie uniform several times now. An offensive lineman, Schultz has blocked in Provo the past two seasons for his quarterback Chuckie Keeton. His team has lost by a combined six points in two contests.
He also was on the sidelines on Oct. 1, 2010, while Keeton, a high school senior at the time, was watching from the stands. That night, the Aggies compiled 242 rushing yards as USU stomped BYU, 31-16, for its first win over the Cougars since 1993.
Joey DeMartino said the victory provided “one of the greatest feelings in his life.”
Tyler Larsen said it was “absolutely crazy” to make history.
Safety Cameron Sanders said “words can’t describe” what it meant to get “weight off of (their) shoulders.”
Keeton has said the win, with its boisterous fans sensing a rising program, helped convince him to commit to take his talents to Logan.
Schultz, DeMartino, Larsen and Sanders all played key roles in that ESPN-televised win. Ten other seniors and two juniors preparing for BYU’s return to Cache Valley Friday were also on the field that night. Will they replicate the magic of an evening found earlier in their careers?
Here's a look at the players on USU's roster that were in Logan in 2010 when USU last beat BYU.
Rhett Wilkinson is a project manager for UtahPolicy.com and hails the true-blooded Aggies from Utah. The co-founder of magazine Aggie BluePrint.com, he's been an intern for the Deseret News and other publications. email@example.com | @wilklogan
1 of 16. TYLER LARSEN
Larsen said the Aggies’ efforts against the Cougars the past two seasons were as strong as in 2010, but it was BYU that made an extra play. In 2011, QB Riley Nelson connected with Marcus Mathews on a tipped pass with 11 seconds remaining, and last year, a missed field goal from Utah State's Josh Thompson proved the difference in a defensive bout.
“The bottom line is who makes more plays at the end, but we played great from a team standpoint,” Larsen said, emphasizing the 2010 win and 2011 loss. “We want to direct their play. Their defense is about the same and their offense has changed, but the bottom line is that we have got to make one more play.”
Sounds like a man in charge. That shouldn’t be a surprise: even as a freshman, the Salt Lake City native made all the blocking calls for the Aggie offense.
2 of 16. JOEY DEMARTINO
“I didn’t have much of a role, but it was good to get my plays in there,” he said modestly. “Players were not giving up on plays and Diondre was scrambling, finding a way to get open. We were definitely scoring in the red zone and talking care of the football.”
In five trips to the red zone, the Aggies scored four touchdowns fumbled just once in 59 carries.
The San Diego native played in 11 games in 2010 (one start). He redshirted in 2011 before playing in just seven games in 2012, mostly on special teams. With 345 rushing yards (7.3 ypc) so far this season, some have said he’s experienced a football revival.
3 of 16. NICK DIAZ
After Thompson’s well-publicized late-game struggles, Diaz was the Aggies’ place-kicker for the final seven games of the season. He made 10-of-13 field goals and all 40 extra points attempt, which are eighth and first all-time at USU, respectively. He was named the WAC’s Special Teams Player of the Week after just the second game following Thompson’s miss at BYU.
However, Diaz’s doinked attempt at USC invoked memories among many Aggie fans of Thompson’s misses last year at Wisconsin and BYU. In fact, the distance (37 yards) was the same.
4 of 16. QUINTON BYRD
5 of 16. JAKE DOUGHTY
Since, the linebacker played in all 13 games in 2011 before making a leap last season when he led USU in tackles and earned first-team all-WAC honors.