Coach: Seth Littrell
North Texas Players to watch:
Senior LB E.J. Ejiya (6-3/230)
Ejiya ranks fourth nationally in tackles for loss with 23.0 and leads the Mean Green in sacks with 9.0, which ranks fourth in C-USA. His 113 total tackles are also fourth most in the conference.
* Junior QB Mason Fine (5-11/180)
Fine was name CUSA Offensive Player of the Year for the 2nd year in a row. He was also a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien and Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Awards. He was on watch lists for the Manning and Walter Camp Awards. He was voted 2nd Team All-CUSA.
**Sophomore RB DeAndre Torrey (5-7/186)
Torrey has been a touchdown machine for the Mean Green and ranks sixth in FBS in total touchdowns with 17. He is averaging 5.9 yards per carry, with 161 attempts for 942 yards and 14 rushing scores, while also providing a dynamic presence as a receiver out of the backfield.
*Junior WR Rico Bussey, Jr. (6-2/208)
Bussey, Jr. leads the Mean Green in every major receiving category and is among the nation’s most productive receivers.
Senior CB Kemon Hall (5-11/190)
Hall ranks third in FBS in passes defended (1.7 per game) and has posted five interceptions, two of which he has brought back for touchdowns
Senior CB Nate Brooks (6-0/192)
Brooks has 61 tackles, 3.0 of which are for loss, nine pass break-ups, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and a quarterback hurry in 12 starts. Brooks has helped lead a ball-hawking group for North Texas, who have totaled 17 interceptions, which ranks fifth in FBS.
*Junior DE LaDarius Hamilton (6-3/256)
Hamilton has been a force from his defensive end position for the Mean Green and is second on the team in sacks with 6.5 and 10.0 tackles for loss.
Senior PK Cole Hedlund (5-10/166)
Hedlund was a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award and is 19 of 22 on field goals, including a perfect 2 of 2 from 50-plus yards.
Interim Coach: Frank Maile
Utah State Players to watch:
*Junior TE Dax Raymond (6-5/245)
Despite missing four games this year with a broken hand, Raymond earned honorable mention all-Mountain West honors after catching 25 passes for 335 yards (13.4 ypc) and two touchdowns. For his career, he has caught 70 passes for 863 yards (12.3 ypc) and three TDs.
**Sophomore LB David Woodward (6-2/230)
The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Woodward started all 11 games he played in — ranking first in the Mountain West and 10th in the nation with 124 tackles (11.3 pg). He is also fifth in the conference in tackles for loss with 12.5 (1.1 pg) and ninth in sacks with 5.0.
**Sophomore WR/RS Savon Scarver (5-11/185)
Scarver has returned 21 kickoffs for 719 yards, including four returns of 50-or-more yards. His two kickoff returns for touchdowns (100 yards vs. New Mexico State and 96 yards at Wyoming) rank as the second-most in a single-season in school history, behind Kevin Robinson (three in 2007).
**Sophomore QB Jordan Love (6-4/220)
Sophomore QB Jordan Love is 11th in the nation in points responsible for with 204 (17.0 pg); ninth in the nation in passing touchdowns with 28 (2.3 pg); 12th in the nation in passing efficiency (159.9); 21st in the nation in completion percentage (.658);18th in the nation in passing (267.3 ypg); 27th in the nation in completions (20.5 pg), and fifth in the MW and 28th in the nation in total offense (272.3 ypg).
New Mexico Bowl Presented by Progressive
Utah State 52, North Texas 13