OGDEN — Catching the game-winning touchdown with less than a minute left usually constitutes a good game for a receiver.
Weber State's Tim Toone disagrees.
It was a surprising sight to see Toone doing up-downs after the Wildcats finished with conditioning at the end of their light workout on Monday. The exercise is reserved for players who are charged with "loafing" — as Toone puts it — in the team's previous game, and it is held with their teammates and coaches surrounding them in a circle.
Toone hauled in a 38-yard touchdown pass from Cameron Higgins with 17 seconds left in Weber State's dramatic 36-29 win over Portland State on Saturday.
The winning score wasn't enough to make Toone feel satisfied with his effort.
"I just was not playing like I usually do, so I had to go in there (the up-down circle)," Toone said. "I felt like I didn't block and do all that I needed to do, all the little things that count. Maybe if I would have blocked a little more, some big plays would have sprung and we wouldn't have been in that situation (to need a last-minute touchdown)."
There certainly wasn't anyone else in the up-down circle that had eight catches for 135 yards and two touchdowns as Toone did against Portland State. It was a sign of leadership by setting an example from Toone, who leads the Big Sky with an average of 7.5 catches per game and is second in receiving yards with 398.
Toone has a school-record 23 career touchdown receptions, and that number is the 12th best in Big Sky history. Toone needs just 27 more receiving yards to pass Wade Orton as the Wildcats' all-time leader and 104 more to reach 3,000.
MUTCHER RETURNS: Weber State center Kyle Mutcher returned to action against Portland State for the first time since the team's season-opener. He had suffered some cartilage damage in one of his shoulders in a game against Wyoming.
It took a few plays for the all-conference center to shake off the rust, but he eventually settled in and played well against the Vikings.
"It was too long on the sidelines," Mutcher said. "I haven't been there for a long time. I had to knock the rust off early in the game, but I came back around. It just feels good to play."
WSU coach Ron McBride said it was good to have Mutcher back in the lineup because he stabilizes the offensive line. His return became even more important when lineman Jared Wilcox suffered a leg injury. Wilcox will be out for at least six weeks. Caleb Turner will replace Wilcox in the lineup and make his first collegiate start against Montana State on Saturday.
PAYBACK FOR CATS: Weber State's last-minute win over Portland State may have been payback from the football gods for the team's disappointing loss to Colorado State earlier this season.
The Wildcats were in position to beat the Rams before fumbling a snap in the final seconds of the game, which cost the 'Cats a chance at a potential game-winning, chip-shot field goal.
They made sure that didn't happen again against the Vikings, with Higgins making a gutsy game-winning throw to Toone on a fourth-and-3 play.
"I'd rather have the win over Portland State than Colorado State because it means more," McBride said.
STAYING PUT: Weber State stayed at No. 11 in both the FCS Coaches Poll and in The Sports Network's top 25 this week.
- Gordon Hayward's buzzer-beater extends Jazz...
- Empey evaluates BYU's O-line; recruit Haws to...
- Doug Robinson: Peyton Manning sells out for...
- Morning links: BYU, Virginia fans share...
- BYU football hires former player Jack Damuni...
- Dick Harmon: Time running out for Dave Rose's...
- Jazz notes: What happens when Joe Ingles...
- Morning links: Former BYU DB Robertson Daniel...
- Cold-shooting BYU loses stunner to... 67
- Doug Robinson: Peyton Manning sells out... 43
- Morning links: BYU, Virginia fans share... 42
- Nick Emery's freshman season at BYU... 39
- Dick Harmon: BYU's Sitake wants former... 39
- Dick Harmon: BYU's Harvey Unga to... 33
- Utah football: Delshawn McClellon... 26
- Cougars regrouping, going back on the... 25