OGDEN, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – It was a little more difficult than anticipated, but the Weber State football team can finally claim its first ever outright Big Sky Conference championship.
The Wildcats came from behind to knock off Idaho State, 20-15, to finish their abbreviated spring season undefeated at 5-0. This is Weber State’s fourth straight Big Sky title, but its first outright championship.
“We keep them close,” said head coach Jay Hill. “I don’t know why we do that, but we do. I’m proud of the players, the coaches. The first outright conference championship in school history is a big deal.”
Daniel Wright, Jr. scored on a 5-yard touchdown run to give Weber State the lead with two minutes left in the game. Mark Collins then sealed the victory with a game-clinching interception.
Bronson Barron completed 15 of 24 passes for 258 yards, while Dontae McMillan rushed for 90 yards on 21 carries and a touchdown for Weber State.
Ty MacPherson led the Wildcats with four catches for 108 yards. Justin Malone added three catches for 63 yards and a touchdown.
After a scoreless first quarterback McMillan gave the Wildcats a 7-3 lead in the second quarter with a 2-yard touchdown run.
It was 7-6 in the fourth quarter when Barron found Malone over the middle for a 35-yard score to give the Wildcats a 14-6 lead.
But the Bengals, who lost to Weber State in the season opener, 49-21, battled back. A 10-yard touchdown pass from Tyler Vander Waal to Christian Frederickson and a 23-yard field goal by Kevin Ryan put Idaho State on top, 15-14.
But Barron led the game-winning drive in the final minutes as Weber State pulled out the victory at Stewart Stadium.
The Wildcats did not go overboard in its conference title celebration, looking forward to a strong run in the playoffs.
“Maybe they didn’t throw a big humongous celebration like they did the first conference championship because they’ve come to the point where they expect it, and that’s a good thing,” Hill said. “Now we need to take the next step and we’ve got to make a little bit more noise in the playoffs.”
Weber State (5-0) will be off next week before opening the FCS playoffs in two weeks at home.