No. 20 Utah could only contain Stanford running back Bryce Love for so long.
The Utes kept Stanford’s star bottled up until the fourth quarter, when Love broke through for a 68-yard touchdown run and the go-ahead score in a 23-20 win to knock Utah from the ranks of the unbeaten.
Love kept his balance and darted to the end zone with just over 12 minutes left in the fourth quarter and Stanford holding on to a 16-13 lead.
While the lead was just a field goal before Love’s TD, Utah’s offense was sputtering. The Utes fumbled on a punt attempt to open the second half and mustered just a field goal and punt before Love’s touchdown. Afterwards, things got worse. On Utah’s next two possessions after Stanford went up 10, Troy Williams threw two interceptions.
Williams started Saturday in place of Tyler Huntley, who missed the game because of a shoulder injury. Huntley beat out the senior captain in the preseason.
Love finished with 20 carries for 152 yards and the touchdown. Quarterback Keller Chryst, who split time with K.J. Costello, provided the Cardinal’s other touchdown.
Stanford’s biggest concern might have popped up during Utah’s final drive of the game as the Utes tried for a miracle comeback. Linebacker Peter Kalambayi and defensive lineman Harrison Phillips were both ejected for targeting on the drive and their penalties mean they have to sit out the first half of next week’s game vs. Oregon.
Those two penalties kept Utah’s hopes alive. The drive turned into a touchdown that was capped by this incredible extra point that somehow went through the uprights after the snap was bobbled.
But Utah’s onside kick attempt was recovered by Stanford and two kneeldowns ended the game.
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