Sept. 5, 2010
Final Stats |
GAME NOTES: No. 12 Wisconsin at UNLV
Sept. 4, 2010, at Sam Boyd Stadium, Las Vegas, NV
The Bobby Hauck Era opened at UNLV with the Rebels meeting Wisconsin met for the ninth time in history. After a 41-21 win, the Badgers now lead the series 7-2.
The Rebels opened a season at home vs. a ranked opponent for only the third time in history (No. 19 BYU in 1982 and No. 25 Wisconsin in 2002) and fell to 5-27 all-time vs. ranked teams.
Wisconsin scored two offensive touchdowns in the first eight minutes on Saturday after having scored only three vs. UNLV in the previous 14 quarters of play dating back to 2002.
Cornerback Will Chandler got UNLV on the scoreboard with a 19-yard interception return for a touchdown in the first quarter. It was the first career pick for the junior and marked the second consecutive game the Rebels scored on a “pick six” (Terrance Lee took one back 40 yards in the season finale win over San Diego State on Nov. 28, 2009).
UNLV freshman kicker Nolan Kohorst made all three of extra points in his debut. Kohorst, a product of Green Valley High School located right down the road from Sam Boyd Stadium, was the first place-kicker signed to a scholarship out of high school since 2003. He missed his only field goal attempt, which came from 48 yards out.
Chandler’s 82-yard fumble return in the second quarter was the third-longest in UNLV history (100 by Kevin Thomas at Baylor in 1999 and 84 by Amar Brisco at Wyoming in 1997).
Clausen’s ensuing 16-yard touchdown pass to Phillip Payne, which made the halftime score 17-14 UW, was Clausen’s 10th career scoring pass. Payne’s TD was the 15th of his career (12th in the red zone). The junior ranks eighth in school history and needs just two more to break into the program’s top five.
At the beginning of the third quarter, UNLV allowed a fumble return for a touchdown for the first time since San Diego State’s Antwan Applewhite took one back 36 yards on Nov. 20, 2004, which put the Badgers ahead 24-14.
The attendance of 31,107 marked the 12th-largest home crowd in UNLV football history.
Omar Clayton came off the bench in the third quarter and eventually led the Rebels in passing yards with 82 and in rushing with 59 yards on nine carries.
True freshman Irshad Stolden came in the game in the fourth quarter and his first catch as a Rebel was a nine-yard touchdown thrown by Omar Clayton.
Also making his first Rebel catch was Tate Knutson. The senior from Alaska hauled in two passes from Clayton in the final quarter for a total of 18 yards.
Freshman tailback Tim Cornett also had an impressive debut off the bench as the Texan ran for 36 yards on just three carries, including a 27-yarder that was the longest run of the night for either team.
Senior linebacker Ronnie Paulo turned in a game-high 11 total tackles while senior safety Alex De Giacomo finished right behind with 10.
UNLV saw its four-game winning streak in season openers snapped and dropped to 22-21 all-time in opening games (17-7 when those took place at home).
The Rebels fell to 2-9 all-time vs. Big 10 Conference opponents in what was the first of four straight season openers vs. the league. UNLV is scheduled to open 2011 at Wisconsin, host Minnesota in 2012 and travel to Minnesota in 2013.
These same two schools will meet again this year on the basketball court as Wisconsin travels to play the Runnin’ Rebels on November 20.