Jordan Love passed for 359 yards and four touchdowns and also rushed for another score as Utah State tied its school record with its 11th win of the season with a 52-13 victory over North Texas in the New Mexico Bowl on Saturday afternoon in Albuquerque, N.M.
Utah State (11-2), which lost head coach Matt Wells to Texas Tech five days after a season-ending 33-24 loss at Boise State, also broke the Mountain West record for points in a season (604) set by BYU in 2001. The Aggies, who finished with a 556-313 edge in total yards, scored 618 points.
Love, who tied the Mountain West record by being named the conference’s Offensive Player of the Week five times this season, was named the MVP of the contest. He completed 21 of 43 passes, including a 72-yard touchdown pass to Aaren Vaughns on the third play of the game to give the Aggies a 7-0 lead, the 21st play of 40 or more yards this season for Utah State.
North Texas (9-4) tied it on a 2-yard run by DeAndre Torrey later in the quarter but Utah State rolled off 31 consecutive points en route to a 38-7 halftime lead and never looked back.
Vaughns caught two passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns and Jalen Greene, who had six catches for 151 yards, and Ron’quavion Tarver also caught touchdown passes. Gerold Bright rushed for 103 yards on 16 carries including touchdown runs of 26 and 3 yards.
Utah State’s defense intercepted four passes, including a pair of interceptions by cornerback D.J. Williams, to move past Ohio State and Syracuse (30) into the national lead in turnovers forced with 32.
North Texas quarterback Mason Fine, the Conference USA Offensive Player of the Year the last two seasons, pulled his left hamstring on a scramble midway through the first quarter and completed 8 of 12 passes for 59 yards and no touchdowns before departing early in the second quarter.
—Field Level Media