The Cougars took down the Idaho State Bengals 42-10 on Saturday, Nov. 16, at LaVell Edwards Stadium in their final home game of the season with former BYU great Jamaal Williams in attendance. The Cougar-Bengal matchup saw the return of BYU quarterback Zach Wilson, who was injured on Sept. 28 in the Cougars’ loss against Toledo.
Both the Cougars and the Bengals struggled to get the offense going during their first several possessions. BYU scored first courtesy of defensive back Austin Lee, who returned Bengal quarterback Matt Struck’s interception for 26 yards to earn the Cougars their first touchdown. The Cougars scored again with a 12-yard run by Micah Simon, giving the Cougars a 14-0 lead early in the second quarter.
The Bengals answered on their next drive, kicking a 27-yard field goal to bring the score to 14-3. BYU scored touchdowns on its next two possessions with a 16-yard run by Sione Finau and a 26-yard pass to Talon Shumway. A missed field goal by the Cougars just before the end of the second quarter left the score at 28-3 going into halftime.
The third quarter saw the remainder of the game’s scoring as BYU scored two touchdowns during its first two possessions. A series of passes to Simon and runs by Sione Finau brought the Cougars close to the Idaho State goal line, where Talon Shumway ran for three yards to earn the first of the two touchdowns. On Idaho State’s following possession, defensive back Dayan Ghanwoloku intercepted Struck’s pass, bringing the Cougars to the Idaho State 26 yard line. BYU capitalized on the field possession with a 21-yard run by Wilson and rush play by Khyiris Tonga into the end zone to bring the score to 42-3. The Bengals scored on their next possession with a 54-yard run by Malaki Rango to bring the score to 42-10. Neither team scored during the fourth quarter as the Cougars ran down the clock.
The win solidified BYU’s bowl eligibility and BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe officially accepted an invitation to the 2019 Hawaii Bowl on Dec. 24. BYU will play Hawaii or an opponent from the either Mountain West Conference or the American Athletic Conference. After the announcement, the Cougars honored their senior players.