Fans are usually treated to a lot of offense in the annual Red-White Football Game; however, it was the defense that scored the only touchdown in today's game (Marcus Williams returned an interception 99 yards for a touchdown), leading to a 12-0 win for the White team. Many key starters and back ups did not appear in the game, including Siaosi Aiono, Kenneth Scott, Devontae Booker, J.J. Dielman, Tim Patrick, Reginald Porter, Jared Norris, Filipo Mokofisi, Salesi Uhatafe, Justin Thomas, Gionni Paul, Dominique Hatfield, Hunter Dimick, Jason Whittingham, Travis Wilson and Kendal Thompson. Only redshirt sophomore Conner Manning (Red team) and redshirt freshman Donovan Isom (White team) appeared at quarterback in the game.
"We mostly played the 2's, 3's and 4's to give them an opportunity to play in game-like conditions," said Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham. "It gave a chance for them to show what they could do and it was good entertainment for the fans."
This allowed several players who are either back ups or are battling for a starting spot to step up and make a statement. Whittingham singled out junior defensive back Brian Allen, junior defensive end Kylie Fitts, senior defensive end Jason Fanaika, freshman wide receive)Raelon Singleton, and sophomore defensive back Boobie Hobbs as players who performed well today. Allen was credited with six tackles, two tackles for loss (totaling four yards) to go with an interception and a pass breakup, while Fitts also broke up a pass from his defensive end spot for the White squad. Fanaika led the Red team defense with a team-high six tackles, which included 1.5 tackles for loss totaling four yards. Singleton had three receptions for 20 yards on the Red offense, while Hobbs posted two tackles and a pass breakup for the Red defense.
"It was a good clean game without a lot of penalties or turnovers," Whittingham said. "Five guys really stood out and did some good things: Brian Allen, Kylie Fitts, Jason Fanaika, Raelon Singleton and Boobie Hobbs."
The White offense out gained the Red offense in the game 162 to 150 total yards. The White team focused on their ground game, rushing for 147 yards on the day, with three different players going for at least 40 yards. Andrew Fletcher had eight attempts for a team-high 50 yards, Monte Seabrook rushed 11 times for 47 yards and quarterback Donovan Isom carried 11 times for 42 yards.
The Red team gained most of their yard through the air behind the arm of Manning. He finished with 96 yards passing. Both quarterbacks struggled with inaccuracy and turnovers on the day though. Manning finished 16-for-33 for 96 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions. Isom finished 7-for-15 for 15 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.
Wide receiver Jameson Field (Red team) led the game with 44 receiving yards on six receptions and had the game long reception of 24 yards. For the White team, wide receiver Delshawn McClellon led the team with eight receiving yards on two receptions. Fletcher's 50 rushing yards for the White team were the game high. Isom had the longest rush of the day for 17 yards. Tani Leha'uli led the Red team in rushing with 40 yards on 14 carries.
Allen, Williams, and Sunia Tauteoli all recorded interceptions for the White team, with Williams returning his 99 yards on the last play of the game for the lone touchdown on the day. On the Red team, Jawuan Mathis had an interception. Evan Eggiman had a game-high eight tackles (six solo) for the White team, while Fanaika led the Red team with six tackles (four solo).
Kicker Andy Phillips was 2-for-3 on the day, making field goals from 38 and 53 yards and missing from 55 yards for the White team. Punter Tom Hackett punted for both teams and averaged 41.0 yards on four attempts with two downed inside the 20-yard line.