Mountain West Football Press Release Week No. 14

Nov. 26, 2012


MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL WEEK 14 SCHEDULE

Boise State 15/25 Boise State at Nevada*
Saturday, Dec. 1 | 12:30 p.m. PT
Mackay Stadium (29,993) | Reno, Nev.
TV: ABC
Series: BSU - 25-13 | Last meeting: 2011, BSU 30-10
Nevada
*Conference game.


South Alabama South Alabama at Hawai`i
Saturday, Dec. 1 | 6 p.m. HT
Aloha Stadium (50,000) | Honolulu, Hawaii
TV: Oceanic PPV / TWCSN / ROOT SPORTS
Series:  First meeting
Hawai`i

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WEEK 14 AT A GLANCE
The 2012 regular season concludes on Saturday, Dec. 1, with two contests on tap, both of which will both be televised nationally. The Conference slate wraps up at 12:30 p.m. PT as No. 15/25 Boise State visits Nevada. ABC will broadcast the contest. In non-conference action, Hawai`i entertains Sun Belt foe South Alabama at 6 p.m. HT on Oceanic PPV / Time Warner Cable SportsNet / ROOT SPORTS.

FRESNO STATE AND SAN DIEGO STATE CLAIM SHARES OF THE MW CROWN; BOISE STATE SEEKS A TRI-CHAMPIONSHIP
Fresno State (7-1) and San Diego State (7-1) each claimed a share of the 2012 Mountain West championship on Saturday, as the Bulldogs secured a 48-15 victory over Air Force and the Aztecs downed Wyoming, 42-28. In its inaugural season as a MW member, Fresno State captured the title under first-year head coach Tim DeRuyter. It is the Bulldogs' first conference championship since 1999. San Diego State claimed its first-ever MW football championship and the Aztecs' first league crown since 1998.

No. 15/25 Boise State (6-1) enters its final Conference contest at Nevada seeking a share of the MW title. There has only been one previous season in which multiple champions were crowned in the Mountain West. In the league's inaugural season of 1999, BYU, Colorado State and Utah shared the Conference crown with identical 5-2 records in MW play.

The 2012 season marks the first time in nine years that the Mountain West champion will have at least one Conference loss. The last time an MW champion did not go undefeated through the league slate came in 2003, when Utah captured the title with a 6-1 mark.

BRONCOS CLIMB IN NATIONAL RANKINGS
Boise State, which was idle in Week 13, earned 479 points in this week's USA Today/Coaches' Top 25 to climb seven spots from No. 22 to No. 15. The Broncos have been ranked in 71 of the previous 75 Coaches' polls. BSU also received 817 votes in the Harris Interactive Poll to rise from No. 21 to No. 17, while moving up two positions to No. 20 in this week's BCS Standings. The Broncos have appeared in 42 of the last 44 BCS Standings. A team from the Mountain West has been included in 40 of the last 42 BCS Standings, dating back to Nov. 18, 2007. BSU also returned to the Associated Press Top 25, after receiving 145 votes to come in at 25th. Fresno State and San Diego State are also earning votes from the Coaches' panel, Harris voters and AP rankings.

FIVE MW TEAMS BOWL ELIGIBLE FOR EIGHTH STRAIGHT YEAR
Five Mountain West teams, including Boise State (9-2), Fresno State (9-3), San Diego State (9-3), Nevada (7-4) and Air Force (6-6) have earned bowl eligibility. The Mountain West has boasted five bowl-eligible teams in each of the past eight seasons and nine times overall. Since its inception in 1999, the MW has earned 51 bowl bids and holds a 31-20 (.608) all-time record. Over the last eight seasons, the Mountain West has captured the Bowl Challenge Cup four times and owns the best win percentage in bowl games among the 11 FBS conferences with a 24-12 mark (.667). The Mountain West is the only conference to win the trophy four times since the award's inception in 2002-03.

SAN DIEGO STATE TO FACE BYU IN POINSETTIA BOWL
San Diego State (9-3) has accepted an invitation to play BYU in the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl. Kickoff at Qualcomm Stadium is set for 5 p.m. PT on Thursday, Dec. 20. ESPN will broadcast the contest. SDSU will be playing in its third consecutive bowl game for the first time in school history. Two seasons ago, San Diego State defeated Navy, 35-14, in the Poinsettia Bowl for the school's first bowl victory since 1969. Last year, the Aztecs lost to Louisiana, 32-30, on a last-second field goal at the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. This year's bowl will mark the 36th meeting between the Aztecs and the Cougars (7-5), and first since 2010.

NEVADA SLATED TO COMPETE IN GILDAN NEW MEXICO BOWL
Nevada (7-4) has accepted an invitation to the seventh-annual Gildan New Mexico Bowl to be played on Saturday, Dec. 15. The game, which should pit the Wolf Pack against an opponent from the Pac-12, will kick off the FBS postseason. Action gets underway at 11 a.m. MT at University Stadium on the University of New Mexico campus and will be televised by ESPN. This marks Nevada's eighth-straight bowl appearance and its second trip to the Gildan New Mexico Bowl (2007).

FALCONS ACCEPT BELL HELICOPTER ARMED FORCES BOWL BID
Upon conclusion of its 21-7 victory over Hawai`i on Nov. 17, Air Force (6-6) accepted a bid to play in the 2012 Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. The Falcons will be making a school-record sixth-straight postseason appearance, and their fourth trip in six years to the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl (2007-09). Air Force will face a Conference USA opponent on Saturday, Dec. 29 at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas. Kickoff is slated for 10:45 a.m. CT and the game will be broadcast on ESPN.

SIX 1,000-YARD RUSHERS FOR FIRST TIME IN MW HISTORY
For the first time in Conference history, six Mountain West running backs have eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark, including Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson (1,564), New Mexico's Kasey Carrier (1,469), Fresno State's Robbie Rouse (1,468), San Diego State's Adam Muema (1,355), UNLV's Tim Cornett (1,232) and Air Force's Cody Getz (1,213). The six 1,000-yard rushers breaks the previous MW single-season record of five, which was set in 2001 (BYU's Luke Staley, San Diego State's Larry Ned, Utah's Dameon Hunter, Air Force's Keith Boyea and UNLV's Joe Haro). The Mountain West could have two more reach the 1,000-yard mark before the end of the season, as Boise State RB D.J. Harper currently has 935 rushing yards and Nevada QB Cody Fajardo has 900.

TAKING IT TO THE HOUSE
The Mountain West has recorded a league-record 20 interception return touchdowns on the year. The previous high of 17 pick sixes was set during the 2006 campaign. Five MW teams, including Fresno State (6), Colorado State (3), San Diego State (3), Boise State (2) and New Mexico (2), are included in the group of 40 FBS teams that have recorded multiple interception return touchdowns in 2012. The Mountain West is one of five FBS conferences (SEC, Big 12, Big Ten, C-USA), to have five teams with multiple INT return TDs.

BULLDOGS ARE PICK OF THE LITTER
Fresno State has 20 total interceptions in its inaugural campaign as a MW member, including a program-record six interception returns for touchdowns in 2012. The Bulldogs lead the MW and are tied for third nationally in total interceptions, while their six interception return TDs tie SMU for the most by any FBS team this season and tie the Mountain West's single-season record, originally set by Utah in 2006.

Phillip Thomas leads the MW and nation with eight total interceptions, establishing a new MW record for the most in a single season. The previous record of seven picks was shared by UNLV's Kevin Thomas (2001), Utah's Eric Weddle (2006), Air Force's Anthony Wright (2009) and San Diego State's Larry Parker (2011). Thomas also has three pick sixes to lead all FBS players and tie the MW single-season record of three (UNLV's Kevin Thomas in 2001 and Utah's Andre Dyson in 2000).

Fresno State's 20 interceptions this season tie with Air Force (2009) as the third-most in a single season in MW history. The 2005 TCU squad holds the all-time record with 24, followed by BYU (21 in 2001). The Bulldogs' 324 interception return yards in 2012 rank fourth on the league's single-season chart. UNLV holds the record with 352 INT return yards in 2001, followed by Utah (335 in 2008) and BYU (329 in 2001).

TRIO OF MW QUARTERBACKS RANK IN TOP 20 FOR TOTAL OFFENSE
The Mountain West is one of four leagues (Big 12, SEC, WAC) in the FBS with at least three players on the NCAA's top 20 list for total offense. Nevada sophomore QB Cody Fajardo ranks 11th nationally, averaging 322.70 total yards per game, including 232.7 passing yards and 90.0 rushing yards. Fresno State junior QB Derek Carr is averaging 315.33 total yards per game, including 311.8 passing yards and 3.5 rushing yards, to rank 12th. Wyoming sophomore Brett Smith ranks 16th with an average of 308.50 total yards per game, including 283.7 passing yards and 24.8 rushing yards.

FAJARDO, SMITH HIT 3,000-YARD MARK IN TOTAL YARDAGE
Nevada's Cody Fajardo and Wyoming's Brett Smith are two of six sophomore signal callers in MW history to register at least 3,000 yards of total offense in a single season. Below is a list of the top six:

MOST TOTAL YARDS OFFENSE BY A SOPHOMORE QUARTERBACK
Rk. Player, Team Total Yards Season
1. Max Hall, BYU 3,862 2007
2. Brian Johnson, Utah 3,370 2005
3. Cody Fajardo, Nevada 3,227 2012
4. Casey Bramlet, Wyoming 3,088 2001
5. Brett Smith, Wyoming 3,085 2012
6. Kevin O'Connell, QB, San Diego State 3,065 2005

FRESNO STATE'S CARR ETCHES NAME INTO MW RECORD BOOK
Fresno State junior quarterback Derek Carr completed 28-of-32 passes for 452 yards and four touchdowns against Air Force, marking his third 400-yard passing performance of the 2012 campaign after passing for 536 yards vs. San Diego State on Sept. 29 and 416 yards at New Mexico on Oct. 27. That surpasses the previous MW record of two, shared by BYU's John Beck (2006), San Diego State's Adam Hall (2002) and BYU's Kevin Feterik (1999). Carr's three 400-yard passing games this season is also tied with Beck for second place on the league's career chart. San Diego State's Ryan Lindley holds the record with four 400-yard passing games from 2008-11.

Carr's performance against the Falcons helped the junior establish single-season Conference records for MW-only games in the following categories:

  • Most Passing Attempts: 319 (previous record: 315, BYU's John Beck in 2005)
  • Most Pass Completions: 219 (previous record: 203, BYU's John Beck in 2005)
  • Most Passing Yards: 2,679 (previous record: 2,538, BYU's John Beck in 2005).
  • Most Passing Touchdowns: 27 (previous record: 24, shared by Boise State's Kellen Moore (2011) and BYU's John Beck (2006).

Overall, Carr has 3,742 passing yards and 36 passing touchdowns this season. His 36 passing TDs trail only Boise State's Kellen Moore for the most by a MW player in a single season. Moore connected on a league-record 43 touchdown passes in 2011.

After finishing his sophomore season in 2011 with 3,544 passing yards, Carr joins Trent Dilfer (1992, 1993) as the second Bulldog QB to throw for over 3,000 yards twice in a career. Carr has 7,398 career passing yards, becoming the sixth quarterback at Fresno State to eclipse the 7,000-yard mark.

3,000 PASSING YARDS/1,000 RUSHING YARDS
Fresno State junior QB Derek Carr and senior RB Robbie Rouse became the 11th MW tandem to combine for 3,000 passing and 1,000 rushing yards in a single season in league history. Carr has thrown for 3,742 yards, becoming the 19th quarterback in MW history to pass for 3,000 yards in a single season. Rouse, the Bulldogs' all-time leading rusher, has amassed 1,468 yards on the ground this year. Below is a look at the teammates who have reached the 3,000 passing/1,000 rushing yards single-season milestone over the 14-year history of the Mountain West:

Year Players, Team Yards Total
2012 Derek Carr/Robbie Rouse, Fresno State 3,742/1,468 5,210
2011 Kellen Moore/Doug Martin, Boise State 3,194/1,039 4,233
2010 Ryan Lindley/Ronnie Hillman, San Diego State 3,554/1,304 4,858
2009 Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU 3,368/1,016 4,384
2008 Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU 3,629/1,061 4,690
2007 Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU 3,848/1,227 5,075
2007 Donovan Porterie/Rodney Ferguson, New Mexico 3,006/1,177 4,183
2006 John Beck/Curtis Brown, BYU 3,885/1,010 5,895
2005 John Beck/Curtis Brown, BYU 3,709/1,123 4,822
2005 Justin Holland/Kyle Bell, Colorado State 3,185/1,288 4,473
2001 Brandon Doman/Luke Staley, BYU 3,542/1,582 5,124

3,000 PASSING/1,000 RECEIVING/1,000 RUSHING YARDS
With this season's performances by Derek Carr, Davante Adams and Robbie Rouse, Fresno State becomes the fourth MW team to combine for a 3,000-passer, 1,000-yard receiver and 1,000-yard rusher in a single season. Below is a look at the teammates who have reached this particular milestone over the 14-year history of the Mountain West:

Year Team Players Yards Total
2012 Fresno State Derek Carr, QB
Davante Adams, WR
Robbie Rouse, RB
3,742
1,168
1,468
6,378
2010 San Diego State Ryan Lindley, QB
Vincent Brown, WR
DeMarco Sampson, WR
Ronnie Hillman, RB
3,554
1,187
1,175
1,304
7,220
2008 BYU Max Hall, QB
Austin Collie, WR
Dennis Pitta, TE
Harvey Unga, RB
3,957
1,538
1,083
1,131
7,710
2007 New Mexico Donovan Porterie, QB
Travis Brown, WR
Marcus Smith, WR
Rodney Ferguson, RB
3,006
1,031
1,125
1,177
6,339

MOUNTAIN WEST ON THE RUN
The Mountain West is one of two FBS leagues (Big Ten) with multiple teams in the top 10 nationally for rushing offense, and is the only conference to tout three of the top 10 rushing programs this season. Air Force ranks second with 328.75 rushing yards per game, followed by New Mexico with 301.23 (fifth) and Nevada with 263.00 (seventh) rushing yards, respectively.

Five Mountain West players rank among the top 20 of the nation's leading rushers, including three in the top 15. The group is led by Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson, who ranks second on the NCAA's rushing chart this year with 142.18 yards per game. New Mexico's Kasey Carrier has a 122.42 average to rank 12th nationally, while Fresno State's Robbie Rouse averages 122.33 rushing yards per game to rank 12th. San Diego State's Adam Muema ranks 17th nationally with 112.92 yards per game, while Air Force's Cody Getz is 19th nationally at 110.27 rushing yards per game. The Mountain West is one of two FBS conferences (MAC) with five of the nation's top 20 rushers this season.

Seven MW players have recorded at least five 100-yard rushing games in 2012, including Fresno State's Rouse (9), Nevada's Jefferson (8), UNLV's Tim Cornett (8), New Mexico's Carrier (7), Air Force's Getz (6), San Diego State's Muema (6) and Boise State's D.J. Harper (5). That marks the first time in league history that seven players have topped the century mark in rushing yardage in at least five games in a single season. The MW single-season record of nine 100-yard rushing games is shared by four players (BYU's Luke Staley-2001; Colorado State's Cecil Sapp-2002; New Mexico's DonTrell Moore-2003 and San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman-2011).

100-YARD PERFORMANCES IN 2012 BY MOUNTAIN WEST'S LEADING RUSHERS
Yards Player, Cl., Team Opponent Date
123
115
144
135
124
120
102
261
106
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State
vs. Weber State
at Oregon
vs. Colorado
at Tulsa
at Colorado State
at New Mexico
vs. Hawai`i
at Nevada
vs. Air Force
Sept. 1
Sept. 8
Sept. 15
Sept. 22
Oct. 6
Oct. 27
Nov. 3
Nov. 10
Nov. 24
147
135
247
170
178
185
108
128
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada
at California
vs. South Florida
vs. Northwestern State
at Hawai`i
at Texas State
at UNLV
vs. San Diego State
at New Mexico
Sept. 1
Sept. 8
Sept. 15
Sept. 22
Sept. 29
Oct. 13
Oct. 20
Nov. 17
137
141
114
111
129
127
107
102
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
Tim Cornett, Jr., UNLV
vs. Minnesota
vs. Northern Arizona
vs. Air Force
at Louisiana Tech
vs. Nevada
at San Diego State
vs. New Mexico
at Colorado State
Aug. 30
Sept. 8
Sept. 22
Oct. 6
Oct. 13
Oct. 27
Nov. 3
Nov. 10
129
191
161
338
136
109
145
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
Kasey Carrier, Jr., New Mexico
at New Mexico State
vs. Texas State
at Hawai`i
at Air Force
vs. Fresno State
vs. Wyoming
vs. Nevada
Sept. 22
Oct. 6
Oct. 13
Oct. 20
Oct. 27
Nov. 10
Nov. 17
218
130
113
222
204
125
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
Cody Getz, Sr., Air Force
vs. Idaho State
at Michigan
at UNLV
vs. Colorado State
vs. Navy
vs. Hawai`i
Sept. 1
Sept. 8
Sept. 22
Sept. 29
Oct. 6
Nov. 16
124
202
105
143
127
255
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
Adam Muema, So., San Diego State
vs. North Dakota
vs. San Jose State
vs. Colorado State
vs. UNLV
at Boise State
at Wyoming
Sept. 15
Sept. 22
Oct. 13
Oct. 27
Nov. 3
Nov. 24
162
112
122
105
107
D.J. Harper, Sr., Boise State
D.J. Harper, Sr., Boise State
D.J. Harper, Sr., Boise State
D.J. Harper, Sr., Boise State
D.J. Harper, Sr., Boise State
vs. Miami (Ohio)
vs. BYU
vs. Fresno State
at Wyoming
vs. Colorado State
Sept. 15
Sept. 20
Oct. 13
Oct. 17
Nov. 17

ROUSE AMONG FBS ACTIVE CAREER RUSHING LEADERS
Fresno State senior RB Robbie Rouse has 4,625 career rushing yards, which is the third-highest among active players in the FBS. He is one of three active players in the FBS (Wisconsin's Montee Ball, Temple's Montel Harris) to reach the 4,600-yard benchmark.

NCAA ACTIVE CAREER RUSHING LEADERS
Rk. Player, Cl., Team Yards Career 100-Yard Games
1. Montee Ball, Sr., Wisconsin 4,838 24
2. Montel Harris, Sr., Temple* 4,789 27
3. Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State 4,625 21
4. Denard Robinson, Sr., Michigan 4,395 19
5. Johnathan Franklin, Sr., UCLA 4,175 17
6. Stepfan Taylor, Sr., Stanford 4,134 20
7. Zach Line, Sr., SMU 4,114 21
*Harris' rushing yardage is from his four seasons at Boston College (2008-11). He received a medical redshirt in 2011 and transferred to Temple over the summer.

With 137 all-purpose yards vs. Air Force on Nov. 24, Rouse moved into fourth place on the league's list for most all-purpose yards by a senior with 1,874. Below is a look at the top five:

MOST ALL-PURPOSE YARDS BY A SENIOR
Rk. Player, Team Total Yards Season
1. Chad Hall, Air Force 2,683 2007
2. Devin Moore, Wyoming 2,008 2008
3. Doug Martin, Boise State 1,892 2011
4. Robbie Rouse, Fresno State 1,874 2012
5. Curtis Brown, BYU 1,864 2006

Rouse now has 5,390 all-purpose yards in his four years at Fresno State. He joins Bernard Berrian (5,826 from 1999-03) as only the second Bulldog in program history to gain over 5,000 career all-purpose yards.

NEVADA'S JEFFERSON RUSHING UP THE CHARTS
Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson carried the ball 23 times for 108 yards at New Mexico on Nov. 17 to vault into the top five in several MW single-season rushing lists:

MOST RUSHING ATTEMPTS IN A SINGLE-SEASON
Rk. Player, Cl., Team Rushing Attempts Season
1. Cecil Sapp, Sr., Colorado State 347 2002
2. Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada 313 2012
3. Ronnie Hillman, So., San Diego State 311 2011
  Larry Ned, Sr., San Diego State 311 2001
5. Gartrell Johnson, Sr., Colorado State 292 2007

MOST RUSHING YARDS IN A SINGLE-SEASON
Rk. Player, Cl., Team Rushing Yards Season
1. Ronnie Hillman, So., San Diego State 1,711 2011
2. Cecil Sapp, Sr., Colorado State 1,601 2002
3. Luke Staley, Jr., BYU 1,582 2001
4. Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada 1,564 2012
5. Larry Ned, Sr., San Diego State 1,549 2001

MOST RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS IN A SINGLE-SEASON
Rk. Player, Cl., Team Rushing TDs Season
1. Luke Staley, Jr., RB, BYU 24 2001
2. Chance Harridge, Jr., QB, Air Force 22 2002
3. Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., RB, Nevada 20 2012
4. Ronnie Hillman, So., RB, San Diego State 19 2011
  DonTrell Moore, So., RB, New Mexico 19 2003

Jefferson is one of five players in the FBS this season with at least 1,600 rushing yards. Jefferson was the first to reach the 1,000-yard mark nationally, accomplishing the feat in Week 7 to become the Wolf Pack's fastest back to reach the 1,000-yard mark and surpassing the previous record of eight games, set by Vai Taua in 2010.

Jefferson also moved into third place on the league's all-time list for most all-purpose yardage by a junior. He sits 373 yards shy of the MW junior class record held by BYU's Austin Collie (2,112 yards in 2008):

MOST ALL-PURPOSE YARDS BY A JUNIOR
Rk. Player, Team All-Purpose Yards Season
1. Austin Collie, BYU 2,112 2008
2. Luke Staley, BYU 2,018 2001
3. Stefphon Jefferson, Nevada 1,739 2012
4. Jovon Bouknight, Wyoming 1,680 2004
5. Dominique Dorsey, UNLV 1,638 2004

WYOMING's SMITH MAKING THE CONNECTION
Wyoming's Brett Smith has not thrown an interception in four consecutive games. Overall, the sophomore QB has not been picked off in 174 consecutive pass attempts dating back to Oct. 20, 2012, a streak that ranks as the second-best in Mountain West and Cowboy history behind former QB Casey Bramlet. Below is a look at the top five streaks in MW history for consecutive pass attempts without an interception:

CONSECUTIVE PASS ATTEMPTS WITHOUT AN INTERCEPTION
Rk. Player, Cl., Team No. Dates
1. Casey Bramlet, Wyoming 178 8/30/03 to 9/27/03
2. Brett Smith, Wyoming 174 10/20/12 to Present
3. Omar Clayton, UNLV 173 10/27/07 to 9/27/08
4. Charlie Peterson, BYU 164 9/14/00 to 10/26/00
5. Jeff Ballard, TCU 154 10/28/06 to 12/19/06

RETURNS ON INVESTMENT
The Mountain West is one of five FBS conferences (ACC, Big 12, C-USA, Sun Belt) with at least three of the nation's top 25 kickoff returners in 2012. New Mexico's Chase Clayton ranks sixth nationally with 30.40 yards per return, while Hawai`i's Mike Edwards ranks seventh with 30.38 yards per return. San Diego State's Colin Lockett is 23rd with 26.71 yards per return.

The Mountain West has logged seven kickoff return touchdowns in 2012, which is the second-most in a single season since the Conference's inception in 1999. MW teams have combined for at least seven kickoff return touchdowns in back-to-back seasons. Last year, Mountain West players combined for a league-record nine kick return TDs.

Edwards, Lockett and New Mexico's Chase Clayton are three of 10 players in the FBS with multiple kick return TDs on the year, making the Mountain West the only league with three players to have multiple kickoff return TDs. Edwards' three kickoff return touchdowns also established a MW single-season record, eclipsing the previous mark held by Clayton (2012), Lockett (2012), TCU's Greg McCoy (2011) and Cory Rodgers (2005). This year marks the first since the league's inception that three MW players have recorded multiple kickoff return touchdowns in the same season.

Edwards is also now tied with McCoy and San Diego State's Lockett for most kick return TDs in a career (three). Edwards is one of two MW players (Air Force's Jonathan Warzeka in 2009 and 2010) to register two 100-yard kick return TDs, and the only player to do so in a single season. Overall, he has 1,215 kick return yards in 2012, which sets a new MW single-season record. The previous mark of 1,165 kick return yards was held by UNLV's Deante' Purvis (2009).

Hawai`i has three kick return touchdowns in 2012, tying the 2005 TCU squad for most kick return touchdowns by a MW team in a single season. Two of those kick return TDs have come in Conference play, which establishes a new MW single-season record. The previous record of one was accomplished by several teams, most recently by San Diego State, TCU and UNLV in 2011.

The Warriors have 1,488 kick return yards in 2012, which ranks as the fourth-highest kick return yardage in a single season in MW history. UNLV holds the top two spots with a league-record 1,719 kick return yards in 2010, followed by 1,685 in 2011. New Mexico ranks third with 1,648 kick return yards in 2010.

ATTACKING THE SACK
The Mountain West is the only conference in the FBS with three teams ranked in the top 15 nationally for fewest sacks allowed. The MW is led by Air Force, which is allowing just .50 sacks per game to tie with North Texas for first nationally. Boise State is tied with Rutgers for sixth nationally, as the Broncos have allowed an average of 0.73 sacks per game. New Mexico rounds out the group with a 0.92 sacks-allowed average to tie for 14th (Georgia Tech, North Carolina).

FIVE MW TEAMS HAVE 13+ FUMBLE RECOVERIES IN 2012
Five Mountain West teams rank in the top 22 nationally for fumble recoveries, led by Boise State, which has 16 fumble recoveries to tie with six other squads for first in the country. Colorado State, New Mexico and Wyoming are three of 11 teams tied for 11th in the FBS with 14 fumble recoveries apiece on the year, while Fresno State is one of nine teams with 13 fumble recoveries to tie for 22nd. The Mountain West is one of three FBS conferences (C-USA, Pac-12) to have five teams with 13 or more fumble recoveries in 2012.

THIRD DOWN'S A CHARM
Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 10 nationally for third-down conversions, led by Nevada, who ranks fourth in the FBS with a 52.73 success rate (87-of-165). Air Force is eighth in the country, converting on 50.29 percent (88-of-175), and San Diego State ranks ninth with an average of 49.40 (82-of-166). The MW is the only league in the FBS with three of the country's top 10 teams in third-down conversions.

FRESHMEN PHENOMS
UNLV QB Nick Sherry is fourth among all freshmen in the FBS in total passing yards (2,544) and passing yards per game (212.00). Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M leads all freshmen in both categories (3,419 total passing yards and 284.92 passing yards per game) and UCLA's Brett Hundley is second in both sets of stats (3,234 total passing yards and 269.50 per-game average).

Sherry became the sixth freshman quarterback in MW history to throw for over 2,000 yards. Below is a look at the MW's all-time freshmen passing leaders:

Rk. Player, Team Passing Yards Season
1. Pete Thomas, Colorado State 2,662 2010
2. Ryan Lindley, San Diego State 2,653 2008
3. Brett Smith, Wyoming 2,622 2011
4. Nick Sherry, UNLV 2,544 2012
5. Andy Dalton, TCU 2,459 2007

Fresno State WR Devante Adams ranks 11th in the nation, leads the MW and all freshmen in the FBS with an average of 97.33 receiving yards per game. Adams set a new MW record for most receiving yards by a freshman and is the first freshman in league history to eclipse the 1,000-yard receiving mark. Below is a look at the MW's all-time freshmen receiving leaders:

Rk. Player, Team Receiving Yards Season
1. Davante Adams, Fresno State 1,168 2012
2. Ryan Wolfe, UNLV 911 2006
3. Deon Long, New Mexico 809 2011
4. Austin Collie, BYU 771 2004
5. Ryan McGuffey, Wyoming 696 2000

Colorado State LB Cory James ranks tied for 42nd nationally and tied for second among freshmen in the FBS with 7.5 sacks. TCU LB Devonte Fields leads all freshmen with 9.0.


MW FOOTBALL TRENDS - WEEK 13

  • Of the Mountain West's 30 touchdowns in Week 13, 15 were scored in the air and another 13 were rushing TDs. Hawai`i's John Hardy-Tuliau posted the first defensive score of his career on a 38-yard interception return in the second quarter vs. UNLV. It was UH's second defensive touchdown of the year and its first pick six since Richard Torres reached the end zone on a 49-yard interception return at Louisiana Tech on Oct. 11, 2011. Fellow Warrior Scott Harding scored his first career touchdown on a 69-yard punt return in the fourth quarter. It was Hawai`i's first punt return TD since Michael Washington's 80-yarder vs. Northern Colorado on Sept. 1, 2007.

  • Hawai`i has two punt return TDs on the year to tie for the third-most in a single season in MW history. Utah holds the all-time record of three punt returns TDs, accomplished twice (1999 and 2010).

  • Three MW squads, including Colorado State, Fresno State and Hawai`i, recorded touchdowns on the opening drive of their respective games. Colorado State and Fresno State each reached the end zone on their respective opening drives for the fourth time this season. Hawai`i posted points on its opening possession in back-to-back outings. The Warriors did not score on an opening drive in the first nine games of the season.

  • Two Mountain teams gained at least 564 total offensive yards last week, led by Fresno State, which totaled 603 yards against Air Force. The Bulldogs broke the 600-yard mark for the fourth time this season (665 vs. Colorado, Sept. 15; 646 vs. San Diego State, Sept. 29; 600 at New Mexico, Oct. 27). San Diego State racked up 564 total yards at Wyoming, marking the third time this season (533 vs. North Dakota, Sept. 15; 506 vs. UNLV, Oct. 27) that the Aztecs reached the 500-yard mark.

  • Two MW teams tallied at least 254 yards on the ground in Week 13, led by San Diego State with a school-record 400 rushing yards at Wyoming, marking the most by the Aztecs since recording 430 rushing yards vs. Pacific on Sept. 14, 1991. Air Force totaled 254 yards on the ground at Fresno State. The Falcons have reached the 250-yard rushing mark in three straight games and nine times in 2012.

  • SDSU enters the postseason with 2,750 rushing yards this season, eclipsing the previous single-season high of 2,476 yards in 13 games, set by the 1991 squad.

  • Three MW players ran for at least 100 yards in Week 13, led by San Diego State's Adam Muema with a career-high 255 rushing yards and four touchdowns on 26 carries at Wyoming. Muema's 255 yards were the ninth-most in a single game by an Aztec and are the most since Larry Ned had a 285-yard outing against Eastern Illinois on Oct. 6, 2001. Colorado State's Donnell Alexander netted 112 yards and one TD on 24 rushes against New Mexico, marking his third 100-yard performance of the season. Fresno State's Robbie Rouse picked up 106 yards on 25 carries, bringing his career total to 20 100-yard outings, including nine in 2012 which tie the MW record for the most 100-yard rushing games in a single season. The record is shared by four others, including San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman (2011), New Mexico's DonTrell Moore (2003), Colorado State's Cecil Sapp (2002) and BYU's Luke Staley (2001).

  • San Diego State's Muema became the ninth player in program history to record two 200-yard rushing outings in the same season, after collecting 202 yards on the ground vs. San Jose State on Sept. 22. Muema became the second MW player this season with multiple 200-yard games, joining Air Force's Cody Getz (3). Muema also became the seventh player in league history to record multiple 200-yard rushing games in a single season, joining Getz, San Diego State's Larry Ned (3 in 2001), Colorado State's Chris Nwoke (2 in 2011), San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman (2 in 2010), Air Force's Chad Hall (2 in 2007) and San Diego State's Lynell Hamilton (2 in 2003).

  • Alexander's 112-yard effort for Colorado State marked the fifth consecutive game in which the Rams have produced a 100-yard rusher. The last time CSU had a streak of five straight contests with a 100-yard rushing performance was from Sept. 7 - Oct. 12, 2002.

  • With 59 rushing yards at Colorado State, New Mexico's Kasey Carrier brought his season total to 1,469 yards on the ground for sole possession of the Lobos' single-season rushing record. DonTrell Moore held UNM's previous best mark after rushing for 1,450 yards in 2003.

  • Two MW players tallied multiple rushing touchdowns in Week 13, led by San Diego State's Adam Muema with a career-best four rushing TDs at Wyoming. Muema's performance tied for the fifth-most in a game in program history and he became the third MW player to record at least four rushing touchdowns in a single-game this season, joining Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson (6 at Hawai`i, Sept. 22) and New Mexico's Kasey Carrier (4 vs. Texas State, Oct. 6). Wyoming quarterback Brett Smith tallied a pair of rushing TDs against the Aztecs. Smith now has six career games with multiple rushing touchdowns, including two in 2012 (2 vs. Boise State, Oct. 27).

  • UNM's Kasey Carrier reached the end zone on a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter at Colorado State to mark his 15th TD of the season. Carrier ranks second on the Lobos' single-season rushing TD list behind DonTrell Moore, who had 19 rushing touchdowns in 2003.

  • Fresno State's Robbie Rouse has 37 rushing TDs in his career, which is the second-most in school history. With a postseason appearance left on Fresno State's schedule, Rouse needs three to become Fresno State's all-time leader in rushing TDs. Former Bulldog Ryan Mathews holds the record, after scoring 39 rushing touchdowns from 2007-09.

  • San Diego State has recorded multiple rushing TDs in nine outings this season. The Aztecs have at least one rushing touchdown in 20 consecutive games, dating back to Oct. 8, 2011, which is a school record in the Division I era (since 1969). The previous high was 19, set from Nov. 25, 1989 - Oct. 12, 1991.

  • Five MW quarterbacks passed for over 200 yards last week, led by Fresno State's Derek Carr, who threw for 452 yards and four touchdowns on 28-of-32 attempts against Air Force. Wyoming's Brett Smith connected on 19-of-35 passes for 254 yards and two TDs against San Diego State, while Colorado State's Conner Smith amassed 254 passing yards and a pair of touchdowns on 19-of-26 attempts vs. New Mexico. New Mexico's B.R. Holbrook was successful on 12-of-21 attempts for 205 passing yards and one touchdown against the Rams, while Hawai`i's Sean Schroeder collected 201 passing yards and one TD on 13-of-24 throws vs. UNLV.

  • Carr's .875 completion percentage (28-of-32) for Fresno State on Saturday set a MW junior class record, surpassing Colorado State's Caleb Hanie, who completed 20-of-23 passes (.870) against Colorado on Sept. 9, 2006. Carr's performance ranks as the third-best in a single game overall in MW history. TCU's Andy Dalton holds the record with a .913 (21-of-23) completion percentage against Baylor on Sept. 18, 2010, followed by BYU's Max Hall with a .909 (20-of-22) clip at Wyoming on Nov. 7, 2009.

  • Fresno State's Carr is one of only four quarterbacks in the nation (Louisiana Tech's Colby Cameron, Penn State's Matt McGloin and West Virginia's Geno Smith) that has thrown for over 3,000 yards and only five interceptions this season.

  • Wyoming sophomore signal caller Brett Smith has passed for more than 200 yards in eight outings this season and 15 times in his career. He has also thrown for at least one TD in 21 of 23 career appearances. Smith has 5,453 career passing yards in two seasons. He is just the seventh Cowboy QB to pass for 5,000 or more yards.

  • Wyoming' Smith has accounted for 1,275 passing yards over the last four games, and has tossed 13 TDs.

  • With 133 passing yards at New Mexico on Nov. 17, Nevada sophomore QB Cody Fajardo went over the 4,000-yard mark in career passing yards. He has amassed 4,034 passing yards in less than two seasons for the Wolf Pack.

  • Four MW quarterbacks connected on multiple touchdown passes in Week 13, led by Fresno State's Derek Carr with four passing TDs vs. Air Force. Carr has connected on four or more touchdown passes in six appearances this season. Colorado State's Conner Smith, San Diego State's Adam Dingwell and Wyoming's Brett Smith also recorded a pair of passing touchdowns in their respective outings.

  • Wyoming's Smith has thrown 27 touchdown passes this season to rank second all-time in Cowboy single-season history. The Wyoming single-season record for TD passes is 33, set by Josh Wallwork in 1996.

  • Air Force's Connor Dietz is the Falcons' career leader in pass interception avoidance. The senior has thrown just four picks in 168 career attempts for a percentage of .024. The previous record of .029 was previously set by Mike Thiessen from 1998-2000).

  • Four MW players recorded 100-yard receiving efforts on Saturday, led by Wyoming's Robert Herron, who had 10 catches for a career-best 187 yards and two touchdowns against San Diego State. Fresno State's Isaiah Burse totaled 158 yards and one TD on seven receptions vs. Air Force to mark his third career 100-yard game and second of the season. Fellow Bulldog Davante Adams had nine receptions for 141 yards and two touchdowns, bringing his season total to five 100-yard receiving games to tie for the fifth-most in a single-season by a Fresno State player. Colorado State's Joe Hansley recorded a career-high 102 yards and two TDs on five catches against New Mexico.

  • Four MW players, including Colorado State's Joe Hansley, Fresno State's Davante Adams and Marcel Jensen and Wyoming's Robert Herron, each recorded two receiving touchdowns in their respective outings. Adams has collected a pair of TDs in four separate occasions. Herron collected multiple TDs for the third time this season, while Hansley and Jensen each recorded their career first multiple-touchdown performances.

  • Hansley is the first Colorado State player with multiple receiving TDs in a game since Lou Greenwood had two vs. San Jose State on Oct. 1, 2011.

  • Fresno State's Davante Adams has collected 13 touchdown receptions in his first collegiate campaign, which ranks as the third-most in a single season in MW history. Boise State's Tyler Shoemaker holds the MW record with 16 receiving TDs in 2011, followed by BYU's Austin Collie with 15 in 2008. Adams is the seventh Bulldog to catch at least 10 touchdowns in a season and is the first since Jalen Saunders had 12 in the 2011 campaign. The redshirt freshman now has a TD catch in seven straight games, which ties for the second-longest stretch in school history.

  • The offensive lines of Colorado State, New Mexico and San Diego State did not allow their opponents to record a quarterback sack in their respective games. New Mexico's offensive line did not allow a sack for the third straight week and fourth time this year. Colorado State did not give up a sack for the second time this season (vs. Hawai`i on Oct. 27). San Diego State held an opponent without a sack for the first time since a Nov. 26, 2011 outing at UNLV.

  • Boise State was successful on 5-of-6 (.833) tries in the red zone against Colorado State on Sat., Nov. 17. In the last seven games, the Broncos have converted on 30-of-32 (.909) red-zone opportunities.

  • Hawai`i held UNLV to 37 yards on the ground on Saturday, the fewest allowed by the Warriors since holding Colorado to 17 rushing yards on Sept. 3, 2011. UH also limited the Rebels to their lowest rushing output since Nov. 6, 2010, when UNLV gained just 22 yards against BYU.

  • Colorado State limited New Mexico to 137 rushing yards to bring an end to the Lobos' string of 300-yard rushing games. The Lobos had compiled 300 or more yards on the ground in nine straight contests and 10 times this season, marking the most 300-yard rushing performances in a single season for the program.

  • Five MW teams in action last week recorded at least one sack, including four squads that recorded multiple-sack outings. San Diego State registered six sacks at Wyoming, the most by the Aztecs since posting six sacks against Washington State on Sept. 17, 2011. Fresno State, Hawai`i and UNLV each posted three quarterback sacks apiece in their respective contests, while Air Force rounded out the group with one sack at Fresno State.

  • Two MW players collected 2.0 quarterback sacks in Week 13. San Diego State's Everett Beed posted the first two sacks of his career at Wyoming, while UNLV's Sonny Sanitoa recorded his first career multiple-sack outing at Hawai`i.

  • Boise State, which was idle in Week 13, has recorded at least one pick in six of its last seven outings.

  • Nine MW players were credited with at least 10 tackles in Week 12, Four players, including Fresno State's Travis Brown, New Mexico's Matt Raymer and Wyoming's Siaosi Hala'api'api and Chad Reese, each tallied 12 total tackles apiece in their respective contests. New Mexico's Freddy Young and Wyoming's Marqueston Huff each contributed 11 stops, while Air Force's Chris Miller, San Diego State's Jake Fely, and Wyoming's Korey Jones rounded out the group with 10 tackles apiece.

  • Three MW players collected 2.0 tackles for loss last weekend, including Colorado State's Shaquil Barrett, San Diego State's Everett Beed and UNLV's Sonny Sanitoa.

  • Wyoming's Ghaali Muhammad recovered his fourth fumble of the season against San Diego State. His four fumble recoveries is tied with seven others for second in the FBS and rank as the fifth-most in a single season in MW history. The league record of five is shared by four individuals, including Air Force's Marchello Graddy (2003), UNLV's John Andrews (2003), San Diego State's Kirk Morrison (2002) and BYU's Hans Olsen (2000).

  • Boise State's defense has not allowed an opposing offense to score in the first half in eight of its last nine games. The Broncos have posted first-half shutouts in six outings this year (vs. BYU, at New Mexico, at Southern Miss, vs. Fresno State, vs. UNLV, vs. Colorado State). Opponents have recorded just 40 first-half points against Boise State this season, an average of 3.64 points per game.

  • San Diego State has scored at least 30 points in seven of its last 10 games and in 13 of its last 17 appearances.

  • Colorado State completed the 2012 regular season with a 4-8 overall record, the program's best mark since finishing the 2008 campaign at 7-6 en route to the Gildan New Mexico Bowl.

  • CSU has posted three straight home wins for the first time since 2008 (23-20 vs. Sacramento State on Sept. 6, 28-25 vs. Houston on Sept. 20, 41-28 vs. UNLV on Oct. 4). The Rams have also won three consecutive MW contests at home for the first time since 2005 (41-23 vs. Air Force on Sept. 29, 21-17 vs. Utah on Oct. 8, 39-31 vs. Wyoming on Oct. 22).

  • Of New Mexico's six losses to close out the 2012 regular season, four came by seven points or less. The Lobos finished the year with a 4-9 overall mark, which is the program's best record since completing the 2008 regular season with a 4-8 record.

  • Fresno State is the only MW team this season to complete its home slate with an undefeated record. The Bulldogs finished the regular season with a 6-0 mark in home games.

  • San Diego State is riding a seven-game win streak, its longest stretch in a single-season since winning seven straight games from Nov. 15, 1980 - Oct. 10, 1987. SDSU has outscored its opponents, 244-135, during the current win streak.

  • The Aztecs have nine victories on the season, marking the first time SDSU has won nine regular-season contests since the 1977 squad posted a 10-1 record.

  • SDSU has secured its third consecutive season with at least eight wins. The last time the Aztecs posted eight or more wins in three straight campaigns was a six-year stretch from 1972-77.

  • Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 20 nationally in turnover margin, led by Boise State, which ranks fourth with a 1.55 turnover margin in 11 games played. Fresno State is tied with Florida and Mississippi State for fifth in the FBS with a margin of 1.42, while New Mexico is 17th at 0.85. The MW is one of two conferences (SEC) with two of the top five teams in turnover margin, as well as one of four leagues (SEC, Big Ten, MAC) with at least three teams in the top 20.

  • The Mountain West is one of three FBS leagues (SEC, Big Ten) with multiple teams in the top 10 for pass efficiency defense. Boise State is third with a rating of 98.01, while Fresno State is eighth at 100.02.

  • Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 15 nationally in pass defense. Boise State leads all MW teams, as the Broncos are allowing just 159.82 yards per game to rank fourth among all FBS teams. Fresno State ranks fifth nationally at 163.42 yards allowed per game, while Hawai`i is 15th at 185.91 yards allowed per game. The MW is one of two leagues (Big Ten) with two of the top five pass defenses in the country, as well as one of three conferences (Big Ten, SEC) with at least three of the top 15 in that category.

  • Nevada's Khalid Wooten is averaging 16.36 yards per punt return to rank second among all FBS players this season.

  • Colorado State's Pete Kontodiakos averaged 46.47 yards per punt to establish a new single-season record for the Rams. The previous high of 46.09 yards per punt was set by Mike Deutsch in 1976. Kontodiakos' career average is 43.79 yards per punt, which ranks second all-time at Colorado State behind Jimmy Kaylor (44.0 yards per punt from 2004-07).


MW FOOTBALL BY THE NUMBERS
3 Fresno State has forced at least three turnovers in seven games this season.
4 Colorado State recorded four defensive scores this season, the most by the Rams since 2007.
5 Boise State has had at least five non-offensive touchdowns in each of the last five seasons.
6 The Mountain West is the only league in the FBS with six of the nation's top 25 in first-year starters. Hawai`i leads all teams with 31 first-time starters this season, followed by fellow MW member Air Force with 24. Colorado State is tied for sixth nationally with 18 first-time starters, while Wyoming is tied for 16th nationally with 16 first-year starters. Nevada and San Diego State each have 15 first-time starters to tie for 21st nationally.
6 Fresno State is one of two teams in the nation (SMU) with six interception return TDs on the year, while Colorado State and San Diego State are tied for sixth nationally (Arizona State, LSU, Purdue) with three pick sixes apiece.
7 Fresno State's Robbie Rouse has only lost seven fumbles in the 990 times he has touched the ball in his career (885 rushes, 105 receptions).
10 Fresno State has tallied at least one interception in 10 consecutive contests, which is the nation's longest active streak.
10 With one regular-season game remaining before the postseason, Boise State is attempting to become the only FBS team to have 10 or more wins in each of the last seven seasons (2006-12).
13 MW players have scored 13 fumble recovery TDs this season, establishing a new league record. The previous high of 12 fumble returns for touchdowns was set during the 2003 campaign.
16 BSU is one of seven FBS programs (Louisiana Tech, Maryland, Middle Tennessee, Missouri, Northwestern, San Jose State) with 16 fumble recoveries on the year.
18 Colorado State and Fresno State are two of three teams in the FBS (Marshall) to have at least 18 different players score touchdowns in 2012.
20 Boise State has forced 20 fumbles in 2012, which ranks as the second-most in a single season in MW history. UNLV holds the MW single-season record with 23 forced fumbles in 2003.
20 Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson has 20 rushing TDs in 2012, which are the third-most in a single season in MW history. BYU's Luke Staley holds the MW record for must rushing TDs in a season with 24, followed by Air Force's Chance Harridge (2002) with 22.
21 New Mexico collected 21 quarterback sacks this season, after recording a total of 10 in 2011.
21 Fresno State has posted at least 21 points in the first quarter in four consecutive home games and five of six games at Bulldog Stadium this year.
30 Nevada has scored at least 30 points in each of its first 11 outings as a member of the Mountain West.
33 Mountain West teams have combined for 33 defensive touchdowns in 2012, including 20 interception returns and 13 fumble recoveries.
34 New Mexico recorded 34 rushing touchdowns on the season. The Lobos finished the 2011 campaign with 10 rushing TDs total. UNM's 34 rushing TDs ranks second all-time on the program's single-season list.
36 Fresno State's Derek Carr is one of five quarterbacks in the FBS to have at least 36 passing touchdowns on the year.
38 With six catches for 34 yards at New Mexico on Nov. 17, Nevada's Brandon Wimberly extended his streak of consecutive games with at least one reception to 38 straight (all 38 of his career).