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LIVE GAME BLOG: UNLV’s slide continues with 37-0 blanking at UNR

Fremont Cannon stays in Reno for seventh straight year as Rebels’ offense hits rock bottom

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Sam Morris

UNLV quarterback Caleb Herring is taken down for a loss by UNR defensive back Duke Williams during the first half of their game Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011, at Mackay Stadium in Reno.

Updated Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011 | 7:06 p.m.

UNLV vs. UNR Football

UNR fans celebrate after a game against UNLV on aturday, Oct. 8, 2011, at Mackay Stadium in Reno. UNR won the game 37-0 to extend its winning streak over UNLV to seven. Launch slideshow »

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Coming off of the Southern Utah loss and a bye, how do you expect UNLV to respond at rival UNR?

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Final, UNR wins, 37-0

RENO — Mark it as another low point for the UNLV football program.

Not only were the Rebels shut out for the first time in the Bobby Hauck Era, but it came at the hands of their biggest rival and on a day where they had golden opportunities to do damage early.

UNLV forced five UNR turnovers in a 37-0 loss at Mackay Stadium on Saturday afternoon, including two in the first quarter, but didn't convert any of them into points. The Rebels' run offense sputtered until late in the third quarter, and sophomore quarterback Caleb Herring didn't complete his first pass until there was 4:17 left in the game.

UNR began blowing up midway through the second quarterback when senior quarterback Tyler Lantrip replaced freshman Cody Fajardo, and he ultimately ended the day with 370 yards through the air and three touchdown passes. Senior receiver Rishard Matthews had 10 catches for 221 yards as the UNR offense found a flow in the second half and blew the doors off of the Rebels' defense.

Herring had one completion, which set a school record for the fewest in a game. He made poor-looking throws much of the afternoon, held onto the ball too long several times and only targeted star senior receiver Phillip Payne twice.

UNLV drops to 1-4 on the season and will be back on the road next weekend at Wyoming. The Rebels are now 0-10 all-time on the road under Hauck.

Stay tuned to lasvegassun.com/rebels for full postgame coverage.

End of Third Quarter, UNR leads, 23-0

RENO — It's all but official now that it's just going to be another one of those days on the road for the UNLV football program.

The Rebels are about to drop to 1-4 this season and 0-10 all-time on the road under Bobby Hauck, as UNR's 23-0 lead through three quarters is about as lopsided as they come.

Caleb Herring still has yet to complete a pass (0-for-10), and while the run game has picked up a bit, it's not nearly enough to do any damage against a UNR defense that is clearly blood-thirsty today.

On the other side, UNLV's defense is wearing down against the run as the game gets into the closing stages. Stefphon Jefferson, starting in place of the injured Mike Ball, has 100 yards off of 17 carries, while UNR as a team has 209 yards the old-fashioned way.

The only two questions remaining now are how badly UNR coach Chris Ault wants to run it up on his biggest rival and whether UNLV will score a point at all before leaving Mackay Stadium.

Either way, this officially kills off just about any chance UNLV had left of getting some buzz back surrounding its football program before basketball season gets going. UNLV is showing that it still just can't get the job done on the road, and after this has to turn around immediately for a trip to face Wyoming next weekend.

Halftime, UNR leads, 20-0

RENO — UNLV's offensive struggles could only last for so long before the defense began to give a little more, and mid-way through the second half, the levee broke, apparently for good.

Senior Tyler Lantrip replaced freshman Cody Fajardo at quarterback for UNR, and on his first play, he found star receiver Rishard Matthews on a little 8-yard hitch route. Matthews spun off of a bad tackle and turned it into a 90-yard touchdown play.

In less than a full quarter of work, Lantrip is 8-of-13 for 205 yards and two TDs, while Matthews has seven catches for 146 yards.

The Wolf Pack have a commanding 20-0 halftime lead on the Rebels and are well on their way to claiming the Fremont Cannon for the seventh straight year.

UNLV's defense had a great first 20 minutes of the game, forcing three turnovers, but the offense has been a major disappointment. So far, the Rebels have zero net passing yards and only 48 on the ground. Sophomore Caleb Herring's slump is only getting worse, as he's 0-for-6 with a pick, and he's only targeted star senior receiver Phillip Payne once so far.

You have to believe that UNR is looking to keep it going on offense after a frustrating four-game run to start the season. Don't expect them to let off of the pedal anytime soon.

Meanwhile, it's going to be interesting to see what UNLV tries here on offense. Can the offensive line finally get some push off of the snap? Does Bobby Hauck bring junior backup quarterback Sean Reilly in for some work?

Either way, the fact is that UNLV had a chance to grab this game by the horns in the first quarter, and they're simply not a good enough team to let that opportunity go by and expect it to come around again.

End of First Quarter, UNR leads, 3-0

RENO — On the plus side, UNLV's defense is remaining stingy coming off of two strong performances. So far, the Rebels have forced two UNR fumbles, giving their offense two possessions starting in plus territory.

Unfortunately, the Rebels' offense hasn't been able to capitalize on those opportunities at all.

UNLV forced fumbles on UNR's first two possessions of the game. After the initial cough-up, the Rebels went three-and-out and had to punt. The Wolf Pack then fumbled the ball away inside its own 20, but three plays later, Caleb Herring was picked off throwing a fade route to Phillip Payne on the right side of the end zone. Isaiah Frey defended it beautifully and set up the game's first score.

UNR took the ball all the way to the UNLV 12, where former Rebels walk-on Allen Hardison banged through a 29-yard field goal.

So far, UNLV has zero yards of total offense across from UNR's 126. The Pack is being stymied, though, by a Rebels defense that is tackling well and not blowing assignments.

As for UNR first-time starting quarterback Cody Fajardo, it's been a decent start so far. He's eight-of-9 for 54 yards, with 22 yards on the ground.

UNLV's run game is what needs to improve immediately. UNR is loading up against it up front, and so far, the Rebels have zero net yards on seven attempts. Also, it might help if the UNLV offense is able to give the defense a bit of a breather, as that unit is carrying the water so far.

Pregame

RENO — You might not find a better home atmosphere anywhere in the country in support of a 1-3 football team than here in Reno.

Why? Well, it's because these fans have waited since last November's shocker here at Mackay Stadium over then-No. 3 Boise State to see their team live on its home turf.

It's pretty much a fact that, despite its rough start and brutal opening schedule, UNR is pumped for this one and will show it early. On the other hand, it's anyone's guess which UNLV team will show up when these two kick off at 4:05 p.m.

Honestly, I'm done guessing. Each week, I've tried to guess which UNLV team would be on display, and in each of those four weeks, I've been wrong.

My prediction for today is a 38-20 UNR victory, giving them the Fremont Cannon for the seventh straight season.

Of course, that's far from a given. If UNLV is going to hang around and have a shot at this one, here are today's three keys for the Rebels.

1) UNLV has to run the ball, plain and simple. They got away from the run game far too often against Southern Utah, when it should have been their strength against an overmatched defensive front. Also, no matter who starts at quarterback for UNR, it can help keep a potentially dangerous offense off of the field.

2) The defense has been relatively stout in the Rebels' last two games, allowing only 84 rushing yards and 30 points. They've also forced six turnovers in those two outings combined. UNR's offense has looked both great and awful at different points this season. If UNLV can continue to rush the passer like it has of late, it will help an improving secondary greatly.

3) Frankly, they're going to need a little luck. They're going to need something to go wrong for UNR. Not sure what that is, but it almost has to happen. UNLV is 0-9 away from Sam Boyd Stadium under Bobby Hauck, and turning that trend around won't be easy. UNLV might have to be both luck and good to accomplish that.

I'll be checking in here periodically throughout the games with updates, and you can also connect with me on twitter at @ryanmgreene. Also, don't forget the #UNLV and #unlvmbb tags on your in-game tweets to join the conversation below.

Talk to you after kickoff.

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Previous Discussion: 35 comments so far…

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  1. Game is on ESPN3 Also! You can view everywhere! http://espn.go.com/watchespn/index/_/sou...

  2. How about the great broadcast through our wonderful, overpriced, low quality cable company?

  3. Time to quit coddling Bobby Hauck. I know you think he is a great guy, but HS football coaching talent doesn't get it at the D-1 level. they definitely need to fire him. What is in the mind of Herring. Does he think he gets a 20 yard bonus for seeing how long he can hold the ball in the pocket? just maybe if the coaching staff, cough, cough, would put him on a 3 second timer to make a decision, he wouldn't look like a Pop warner QB. this is the worse coaching and QB in the history of UNLV. Hauck like his QB can't make a decision, like trying another QB. His coaching will kill the motivation of the D in the 2nd half just like it did against Utah HS that beat us. if Hauck is such a great coach, why can't he understand that a QB change might keep the D in the game longer? I can't see anyone except Hauck thinking herring is the man. 21 Total yards. Total Joke. Fire them all!!!

  4. Herring is stealing money(in the form of a scholarship)from UNLV. He can't be the best quarterback on the roster. He single handedly threw the game to SUU and sure is doing a heck of a job in Reno right now. Reilly, Barnhill, Sherry. Please make a change.

  5. I won't wait on greene. Emailing livengood right now. ###FAIL

  6. Trust me, he hasn't been coddled. Fact is he's in the early stages of Year Two after taking over a program that, whether you want to believe it or not, was in brutal shape when he came in. I'm not making excuses for him, but I don't think his feet need to be held to the fire yet. I think if it's still like this in Year Three, though, there's no more room for error. Just my opinion.

  7. Ryan - do you really believe that with Herring behind center there will be a difference next year? He's not going to have better receivers than Payne/Johnson. The line COULD improve but even when he has time he still looks lost and confused.

  8. Who knows, it might not be Herring at QB next year if he continues to trend downwards like this. They're very high on freshman Nick Sherry, who is the QB of the future. His time might come sooner than later. Lots can change before then. I said to start this season that I still felt UNLV was a year away from turning a corner. Appears I was at least right about that much.

  9. Thanks for replying.It better not be Caleb the rest of This year is he continues this. Especially if Nick is the future.

  10. Sorry, but the lack of coaching skills is very apparent. No imagination offense, zero screens, draws,. no stretching the field. This has got to be a D coordinators dream against a zero imagination staff. I would be willing to bet UNLV doesn't win 15 games total in hauck's career. besides UNLV won't be able to keep funding football when 2,000 fans show up for the last 3 years. Yes, he is being coddled. Giving an extension to a guy who has never performed at D-1 and has won 3 games smacks of desparation and the mediocrity this town expects of the football tem. I have lived here 50 years and this is the worse the program has been.

    Also Ryan I don't buy the program was in bad shape when he took over. He ran off several Sanford players that could have made an impact prior to his 1st year and then lost a bunch of decent players that transfered out because he was playing them out of position or jsust ran them off. He must of learned that from Lon Kruger. Remember the kid from Notre Dame HS recruited as a LB, moved to TE when Hauck got here, and then moved to FB, then left the program. What about Malo, he gets hurt and Hauck yanks his scholly. Right the program is in bad shape because of what he did, no one else to blame. Sanford actually won 5 games the year he was fired., not that I liked him. Hauck is better person, but a worse coach.

    I am not looking at just the score when judging Hauck, but the fact that offensively you either a run up the middle, or B throw the ball out of bounds, demonstrates a total lack of D-1 football skills. D-2 it works, but this is not even close unless you're UNLV. He has already lost the momentum of getting local recruits by the teams showing last year and after this year no decent local will play for UNLV. Let alone anyone else. The only thing Hauck does is say the right things. Coaching wise he is a total fail, and I have the stats to back what I am saying up, while you are just riding on the bandwagon. Every JC recruit Hauck recruited has been a fail except for Almendinger-Wilder, which just shows you the desparation as the only kids he can get to commit are non qualifiers.

  11. JahReb ... Haven't made a single excuse for them all year. Clearly you haven't been following. They should be more competitive than this. That's not being ignored at all.

  12. If you think Hauck didn't include a program in a brutal situation, you haven't been paying attention over the years. And if you think Sanford was going to take them to a bowl game with THAT 13-game schedule last season (would have had to win seven), then, well, don't know what to say to you.

  13. There is also a lack of explanation as to what happened to many players that were juniors last year that mysteriously disappeared? It seems that this staff hasn't sold anyone on their program. I just want someone to explain to me how Hauck is going to improve this team? Through recruiting? What recruit in their right mind would play for a coach who let's a QB continue to look this bad over the entire year? You can see it in the players eyes the zero confidence they have in herring. The receivers just walk away and stay away from him. Even in the Hawaii game he looked mediocre. No one will come to this program, time to move on now, instead of letting Hauck flush it down the toilet. the peole controlling the program are two donors that like Hauck and made large donations, that is why he got the contract extension. No other program in the country would accept that. He should have been awarded an extension based on performance, not excuses.

  14. Listen Ryan, it only takes 2 yaers to sign 50 recruits. These are his players now. unfortunately many of those recruits never played or will play a down for UNLV. Not Hauck's fault. He recruited them. 50 recruits is enough. two years is enough time to show improvement. the plan is to play easier teams in the future so we will win games and dupe recruits into coming. That worked real good against a DII school. can't wait to go 2-9 against lousier competition. JRob was here and won in 2 years. Hoke won in 2 years at SDSU. It doesn't take a lifetime to see if he can recruit or coach. No signs of life at UNLV Football. Bury it before it takes BB down with it.

  15. It amazes me. Anyone want to know why UNLV football has become so pathetic. The excuses.

  16. Herring has went from being cautious with the ball, but making somewhat decent throws to stinking on ice. I don't think Ryan or anyone on either paper's staff coddles Hauck, by the way. I do believe that three years is the right answer. Remember back to Coach Robinson's first couple of years, and that was with future NFL talent.

  17. @ryan green are you telling us you have faith in bobby hauck?Remember when unlv first hired bobby,and all those montana fans came a posted all those bad comments about coach hauck!told us good luck with him and how there glad he's gone.Well im starting to see why now....If you knew better you would do better...huh

  18. Ive been in vegas for 12 years now,made unlv my home team,and I must say this is the lowest ive ever seen from unlv football..This is the worst.ive been around for what like 3 coaching changes.This one is the worst I can see no upside.I say give hauck one more year if there is no turnaround next year.Hauck has to go......

  19. Boy, was that awful. Number 8 was the worst QB I've ever seen in college. Would be second string at Foothills. The defense was exhausted with all the 3 and outs. They really tried, however.

    Gonna' be a long 3-1/2 years. Why do they even bother to play FB here? Boy, Hawaii must be rancid awful...

  20. Louis_G...I remember Robinson's 2nd season. The team was 8-5 and beat Arkansas in the Vegas bowl. I'll agree with you though that Herring stinks. Joke of a quarterback. Needs to start riding the pine.

  21. tysuave, Not saying that I don't. But the jury is definitely still out. Not gonna call for his job after 18 games. That would be irresponsible. If they don't turn a corner in Year Three, though, like I said earlier, the heat will be on and there's no ifs, ands or buts about it. I do think, though, that some things have to change for this program to be successful under him. What they are, who knows? But what they're doing right now isn't working because the results are so brutally inconsistent.

  22. As far-fetched as this sounds, they could bring Clausen back from defense and start him at QB next week and he would do better than 1-14. Were the other QBs hurt, or being disciplined, anything? Anything?! Please tell me there was some reason for his persistence with something that obviously wasn't working. And I apparently missed something else, Cornett?

  23. I think it's time to either get rid of UNLV's football program all togheter or build them the on campus stadium. If UNLV is going to keep this program going they're going to have to invest in this team and help them draw some better recruits and fan base. And the way to start with that would be to build a new stadium. Nobody wants to play football in Vegas for a team that sucks, has never had a history of being a winning program, is known as a basktetball school, and has a piece of crap stadium located in the middle of nowhere. If they don't build this stadium for the football team they may as well just get rid of the team. Look at the facilities for the bball program. They are some of the best in the country. With the T&M, Cox Pavillion, and now the Mendenhall Center UNLV has the facilities to compete with most major programs. Meanwhile the football team has to drive 30 minutes across town to a stadium in a dirt lot. The football program as it is right now is an embarrassment to the university and the city. I can't think that they bring in much money for the school either. If UNLV had even a decent football program to match the basketball team then they might have had a chance to get an invite to a BCS conference. But because they suck at football they will never get an invite.

    The team had a total of 110 yds tonight and gave up 699, yes that's right, 699 yds on defense. 1 yard away from 700 yds!!! Herring was 1/14 for 8 total yds passing. And that's coming off of a two week break where they had plenty of time to prepare after getting their assess handed to the by and FCS team.

  24. Can't wait to see what Boise State does to this team. Boise St dominated UNR and UNR absolutely dominated UNLV. I predict Boise St 72 UNLV -10. Yes that's right, UNLV will actually score negative points against BSU.

  25. Special teams looked good (minus the field goal squad)

  26. UNLV football fan, I feel for you. As a life-long Montana fan, I suffered through the Hauck years myself, along with a lot of other fans who deserved better. Yes, MT had a winning record under Hauck, but the numbers don't tell the real story. Under Hauck's "leadership," MT won the games they were supposed to win; but when the pressure was on, they folded every time: because Hauck folded every time. We lost 3 FCS Championships under Hauck, and each loss was utterly predictable. One close-up of Hauck on the side lines, and you knew you were going to lose. The man exuded nervousness. His facial expressions and body language radiated bewilderment and lack of confidence. That is an inexcusable demeanor for a head coach to have: it has a toxic effect on the impressionable young men he is supposed to inspire and lead. Never mind Hauck's ability (or inability) with respect to the X's and O's of the sport. He fails in the most crucial category of all: the unteachable art of leadership. A man who cannot inspire and lead other men has no business coaching football, at any level.

    I seriously wonder if UNLV's A.D. did due diligence before hiring Hauck. Anyone who did the research would know that Montana's record was not an accurate indicator of Hauck's coaching ability. MT had won two national championships (under coaches Don Reed and Joe Glenn) before the Hauck era began. When Hauck was hired, MT was one of the most vaunted FCS programs in the nation: the program was able to recruit top talent on the basis of its reputation alone. The truth is, MT won DESPITE having Bobby Hauck for a head coach. They won because of the talent the school was able to attract on the basis of a winning tradition that was established by previous coaches, not by coach Hauck. Hauck himself eroded the core of that winning tradition, leaving MT football in worse shape than he found it.

    Those responsible for hiring Hauck (and for extending his contract) do not want to admit how poor their judgment has been. Thus it will be up to UNLV football fans to mount a grass-roots effort to find a new coach if they want to have a winning program again. But it's unlikely such a thing will ever happen. Because if there's one thing a Montana fan can tell you, it's this: having Bobby Hauck around has the strange effect of making you never want to care about football again for as long as you live.

  27. The worst performance ever by UNLV's offense overshadowed what was a fairly decent outing by the Special Teams and Defense. I can't recall a time where Sanford's D's ever created that many Turnovers. Unfortunately the offense didn't give them anytime to rest and got zilch off of those 5 turnovers. Hauck has done better with the Defense than Sanford ever could have done but the offense is making up for all the progress by being awful. Bring back Clausen.

  28. Just heard that Hauck will pass out the playbooks during the next bye week.

  29. BobbyG - Does that list include Herring? Pretty sure I could take a hit from him and pop right up. Only problem is that I'd have to give him fifteen chances to hit me once(1-14). OUCH!

  30. Wow. Gotta admire BobbyG's post, in which he uses an indignant and sarcastic tone to criticize people for being indignant and sarcastic. It's almost as if he's asking us to question his grasp on the concept of irony. A bold strategm, indeed.

  31. I am going to change my user name after tonight. I have never been so embarrassed of the program. It amazes me how the media in this town keep coddling Hauck and making excuses. The RJ and the Sun have been in love with Hauck since he was hired.
    There is NO possible excuse for allowing a game to occur with one ONE completion for 8 yards.
    Here is the simple truth: Hauck has proven himself unable to handle the job as a D1 coach. I understand where Jahreb is coming from, it seems that there is alot of "it's a young program," "he's still new", etc. etc. etc. here.

  32. TV coverage was as much of a mess as the UNLV offense. Who was doing the Color for the game? He did not play for UNLV, pro career that no one has ever heard of - why is he relevant and a part of a broadcast? Let alone Timmy who can never get away from Las Vegas while not even living here, not at any games - at least Ken Korach would be a local with UNLV tie ins that people can actually handle in a blowout loss. Like nails on a chalk board - cant we act like a major program and do things right with people who follow UNLV who live here? That may lead to BYU Dave, that could be the downside. Would be happy to see Gorman put on the UNLV jerseys next week where an effort of local stars could represent this university better than what has happened against Southern Utah and Reno.

  33. I'm as frustrated as anybody, but some of you guys are tough critics.

    Programs are not rebuilt overnight. As a matter of fact , one of the first things Coaach Hauck said when he got hired was that it wasn't going to happen overnight.

    You can get mad all you want at the QB, but he simply doesn't have time in the pocket. Yes, he still makes bonehead plays, but how many of those were rushed?

    By the way , who is UNLV going to hire anyway? Lane Kiffen? The school doesn't have funding for any else other than someone like Coach Hauck.

  34. Don't feel bad UNLV.....look at the bright side, you finished in SECOND yesterday.

  35. After reading these comments, I am somewhat confused...it seems that some of the posters are somehow blaming Ryan Greene and the rest of the 'local media' for contributing to the problems with the UNLV football program. What do you actually expect him to do, publicly blast and disparage the program? This will accomplish...what? Isn't it their job to REPORT what's going on? Should diplomacy be thrown out the window in order for Ryan to 'hold Hauck's feet to the fire?' To what end? What could that possibly actually accomplish? Shouldn't Livengood be doing that?