On October 24, 2020, the Rebels showed up for game day against the Aztecs wearing their white helmets, which they haven’t worn in a game for their 53-year football history.
The Aztecs started their home game strong with Tanner Brown’s kickoff for 65 yards. With six minutes left in the first quarter, they scored a touchdown with a pass from Carson Baker to Ethan Dedeaux. The extra-point kick by Matt Araiza was good giving them the lead of 0-7.
UNLV got their first turnover of the season by recovering a muffed punt by SDSU in the first quarter.
By the second quarter, the Rebels were still not calmed down allowing the Azrecs to keep adding to their lead. The Aztecs were able to score two more touchdowns by Chance Bell and Greg Bell followed by two field goals by Matt Araiza, leaving the halftime score 0-27.
In the first half of the game, new head Coach Marcus Arroyo played sophomore quarterback Kenyon Oblad and sophomore transfer from TCU signal-caller Justin Rogers. The two quarterbacks shared snaps as part of the game plan and both completed half of their four pass attempts.
Going in the second half, Coach Arroyo benched Oblad and Rogers and played senior quarterback Max Gilliam, who saw the field for the first time since 2018. The Rebels were able to calm down in the second half as Max Gilliam completed a four yard pass to Steve Jenkins six minutes into the third quarter giving the Rebels their first touchdown of the game and season. Daniel Gutierrez missed the extra-point adding only six points t0 the scoreboard (6-27).
The rest of the game ended with some back and forth plays and the Aztecs scored another touchdown in the fourth quarter with a fourteen yard run by Chance Bell and a good kick from Matt Araiza. The game ended with a final score of 6-34.
“This is one step into a journey that I am looking forward to and the guys are. We didn’t get what we wanted tonight, but I think we are going to learn from this and I think there are a lot of things that our culture organically will learn from. There’s a lot of things we need to clean up. I’m excited to get back home and back into a setting where we can learn from this and get back on the practice field and get some more reps under us everywhere,” Coach Arroyo stated during the post-game press conference.
The Rebels started their 2020 season off to a rocky start, but next week they open a home game against their rivals UNR Wolf Pack for a historic first appearance in their home at Allegiant Stadium. The kickoff for the game is at 7:30pm PT and will be shown nationally by FS1.