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Big Five Matchups

Utah State vs. BYU

Friday, Oct. 3, 7 p.m. MSTCougar Stadium, Provo

TV: Possible live broadcast on KSL-TV is pending NCAA approval; tape-delayed Saturday at 9 p.m. on KBYU-TV.

Radio: KSL 1160-AM, KISN AM-570, KVNU AM-610

BYU (2-1, 1-0 WAC)

Ranked No. 24 AP, USA Today/ESPN

Looking ahead: Oct. 11 at Rice

Notebook: The Cougars are coming off a devastating loss - Monday night's death of cornerback Terrence Harvey in an automobile accident. How will Y. respond to the tragedy this week and in coming weeks?

Watch for: Brian McKenzie has averaged 105 rushing yards the past two weeks . . . Omarr Morgan makes his 1997 debut after a three-game suspension.

Series: 35-33-3 BYU. Last meeting: 1996: 45-17, BYU.

Series notes: Utah State hasn't won in Provo since 1978 . . . BYU and USU had played 49 years straight from 1946 to 1995, when the two teams didn't meet . . . The Cougars and Aggies take another year off in 1998, as Utah State begged out to start a four-year home-and-home series with Oregon State.

Utah State (2-2)

Looking ahead: Oct. 11 at Oregon State

Notebook: The Aggies have won only three of the past 21 meetings vs. the Cougars . . . The last Aggie win in Provo was 24-7 in 1978 . . . John L. Smith's teams are 6-0 coming off a bye week.

Watch for: Can the Aggies reduce their mistakes, particularly penalties (134 yards per game)? . . . Will the Aggie offense finally come alive this week? . . . Can the Aggie defense (11th in the country) stop BYU's offense?

Sick Bay: DB Kevin Simmons is out with a torn thigh muscle. His replacement, Craig Miller, hurt his hamstring last week but should play this week. Demario Brown, who hurt his knee in the Utah game, suffered a groin pull against New Mexico but is expected to play.

Utah vs. Fresno State

Thursday, Oct. 2, 6 p.m. MDT

Bulldog Stadium, Fresno, Calif.


Radio: KALL-AM 910 (and Utah Sports Network stations)

Utah (3-1 overall, 2-0 WAC)

Looking ahead: Host Southern Methodist, Oct. 11

Notebook: Utah has never won at Fresno (0-2). Fresno State gave coach Ron McBride his first loss (1990). WR Daniel Jones ranks 8th in NCAA receiving yards per game (117.85); QB Jonathan Crosswhite ranks 9th-NCAA in pass-efficiency rating (160.25).

Watch for: An offensive-line shuffle, should there be more injuries. Starters should be Darren Walker at center, Jay Link and Josh Cochran at tackles and Nate Sybrowsky and Danny Davis at guards.

Sick bay: Out - OG Luis Park (season-ending medial collateral knee ligament tear), Jason Hooks (arthroscopic knee surgery Aug. 22), FS Brandon Dart (torn ACL). Doubtful - OG Todd Jackson (foot sprain), DE John Frank (groin-area sprain). Questionable - DT Richard Seals (ankle sprain). Probable - OG Nate Sybrowsky (ankle sprain), OG Hema Katoa (ankle sprain).

Fresno State (1-3 overall, 0-0 WAC)

Conference: WAC - Pacific Division

Nickname: Bulldogs

Coach: Pat Hill

Looking ahead: At Hawaii Oct. 11

Notebook: It's the WAC debut for new coach Pat Hill, a former Ute assistant who brought in 52 first-year players on a 103-man roster.

Watch for: Soph QB Billy Volek has exceeded expectations, completing 59 percent of his passes.

Sick bay: Not available

Last meeting: Utah won 45-17

Series: Tied 3-3

Weber State vs. Northern Arizona

Saturday, 8 p.m. MDT

Stewart Stadium, Ogden

TV: Fox Northwest Radio: KSOS AM-800

Weber State (2-2)

Looking ahead: Oct. 11 at Cal State Northridge

Notebook: The Wildcats are 2-0 at home this year . . . Coach Dave Arslanian is looking for his 50th career victory, which would tie him with his father, Sark, for most wins.

Watch for: QB Steve Buck to continue his improvement after completing 23 of 41 passes for 326 yards.

Sick Bay: Backup TE Ryan Prince broke a bone in his left foot and will likely miss the rest of the season.

Northern Arizona (3-1)

Conference: Big Sky

Nickname: Lumberjacks

Ranking: 4th USA Today, 5th Sports Network

Looking ahead: Oct. 11 Montana State

Notebook: Even though Montana is No. 1 in the nation, the Lumberjacks were picked to win the Big Sky this year . . . The Lumberjacks' only loss was to Div. I New Mexico.

Watch for: RB Kino Carson has started the past two games and run for 243 yards and three TDs.

Sick Bay: TE Ryan Weske (jaw), WR Ricky Pearsall (back) and TE Ray Flores (knee) are all probable for this week.

Series: 18-15 WSU; Last meeting: 1996, NAU 59-45.

Western Illinois vs. Southern Utah

Saturday, Oct. 4, 1 p.m. MST

Eccles Coliseum, Cedar City

Radio: KBRE-FM, Cedar City

SUU (4-1)

Looking ahead: Oct. 11, bye; Oct. 18, at Idaho State

Notebook: Thunderbirds hope strong showing against ranked Leathernecks puts them into the Division I-AA polls.

Watch for: Brook Madsen has rushed for 497 yards the past four games, while Joe DuPaix has broken the 100-yard mark the past two games.

Western Illinois (3-1)

Ranked No. 9 in Div. I-AA polls

Conference: Gateway

Nickname: Leathernecks

Notebook: Like SUU (ranked No. 2 in Div. I-AA rushing), 12th-ranked Western Illinois boasts a strong rushing attack that averages 243.5 yards a game.

Watch for: Tailback Aaron Stekcer is the third-ranked rusher in the nation, averaging 145.3 yards a game.

Series: First meeting.