Freshman Jake Heaps threw four touchdown passes, connecting with Cody Hoffman on three scores, and finished with 264 yards passing to help Brigham Young beat overmatched Texas El Paso 52-24 on Saturday in the New Mexico Bowl at Albuquerque.
It capped a big turnaround for the Cougars (7-6), whose 1-4 start included a rare loss to in-state rival Utah State. At that point, BYU Coach Bronco Mendenhall told his team it would be a remarkable feat to reach a bowl game and win it.
Mission accomplished for the Cougars, who won five of their last seven regular-season games to become bowl-eligible. In the first game of college football's bowl season, Mendenhall's team showed just how far BYU came by dominating the Miners (6-7).
Coffman had eight catches for 137 yards, while Joshua Quezada ran for 101 yards and J.J. DiLuigi had 98 yards on the ground to help the Cougars in their final contest before they begin play as an independent in football next season.
Northern Illinois wins Humanitarian Bowl
Quarterback Chandler Harnish ran for two touchdown and threw for another, and Northern Illinois made interim Coach Tom Matukewicz a winner in his only game in charge in the uDrove Humanitarian Bowl at Boise, Idaho..
After failing on fourth down at the Fresno State 31 on their opening possession, the Huskies were not stopped. They scored the next seven times they touched the ball, getting touchdown runs of seven and 28 yards from Harnish, and a 22-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Skarb in the final minute of the first half to take a 23-10 lead.
Northern Illinois (11-3) earned a school-record 11th victory by settling a turbulent two-week stretch that started with a loss to Miami of Ohio in the Mid-American Conference title game, then was compounded 48 hours later by the departure of head coach Jerry Kill for Minnesota.
Running back Chad Spann ran for two touchdowns to take the national lead, for now, with 22 rushing TDs this season. Ryan Colburn threw two touchdown passes for Fresno State, but the Bulldogs (8-5) fell to 0-6 in bowl games against non- BCS teams since 1999.
Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen has been told by the university that he cannot return next season to complete the final year of his contract, according to officials familiar with the situation.
Friedgen has been asked to retire, but the coach — in his 10th season — resisted doing that, sources said Saturday afternoon. If he continued to decline to retire, Maryland would be left with the option of forcing him out and buying out the final season of his roughly $2-million-a-year contract with his alma mater.
David Nadeau's 32-yard field goal as time expired lifted Minnesota Duluth to a 20-17 victory over Delta State in the Division II national championship game at Florence, Ala.
Levell Coppage ran for 299 yards and three touchdowns, and Wisconsin Whitewater forced five turnovers and shut out Mount Union in the second half to win its second consecutive NCAA Division III football national championship, 31-21 on Saturday at Salem, Va.
The Warhawks completed their second straight 15-0 season, and won their third national championship in four years.