Utah State football: Aggies forced to regroup again

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 13 2015 5:38 p.m. MDT

BYU'sHebron Fangupo is pushed back as he reached for USU's QB Chuckie Keeton as the Cougars used a last-minute comeback to win.     (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News) BYU'sHebron Fangupo is pushed back as he reached for USU's QB Chuckie Keeton as the Cougars used a last-minute comeback to win. (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)

PROVO — Just when it looked like Utah State had finally turned the proverbial corner and had finally gotten over the late game blues, the Aggies are left trying to figure out what went wrong and what needed to change — again.

"I wish I had an answer for that," senior linebacker Bobby Wagner said. "We just need to make plays."

The Aggies made plays. They got a crucial fumble recovery with just under four minutes left, a play they had not made in previous heartbreakers against Auburn and Colorado State. Then even after the offense sputtered on a three and out drive, the much maligned Aggie special teams downed a punt at the four-yard line and it left BYU needing a miracle. The Cougars got that miracle in the form of former Aggie quarterback Riley Nelson leading the Cougars down the field for the last second touchdown, a perfect storm of worst case scenarios for aggies fans.

Now Utah State is in a position that is becoming all too familiar to them.

Trying to bounce back after yet another heart-breaking loss to try and salvage the season before it is too late.

"Got no choice," running back Robert Turbin said when asked how the Aggies could bounce back again. "College football you only get 12 regular season games. We can't throw in the towel. We can still win the WAC. We can go 8-0 for the rest of the season and make it to a bowl game and win it. There is still work left to do."

Gary Andersen echoed the statements and despite the hardest stretch of football he has been through in his years as a coach and a player there is still plenty of opportunity for success.

"Difficult game obviously. Again. "Andersen said. "We couldn't execute when we had to have it.

"Everything is still there for these kids," Andersen added. "We didn't go into the season saying we were going to be national champions. I like their eyes. There weren't many dry ones after tonight. I don't sense players being scared, if anything, maybe we are pressing too hard."

Andersen believes there is still a lot of belief in the locker room and the kids can bounce back, but to a man, they are all unsure of how exactly to make that happen.

"We need a win," Turbin said. "We have to come back and try and beat Wyoming at home. We win that game and then we have a little momentum going into Fresno State and everyone is feeling better."

Utah State will get back to work Monday morning looking to find whatever the missing piece is that will turn the page for a team that is only a few plays away from being undefeated.

"We should be 4-0 but were not," Turbin said. "I've never seen a group of players put in so much time. Nobody used to stay after practice and do extra work, now everybody does… To put in all that work and we just can't find a way to win. We just have to keep our chins up."

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