UNLV defense plays give, take

RENO — Five takeaways. Zero points.

Somehow, UNLV managed that combination in Saturday’s 37-0 loss at UNR, its offense failing to take advantage of all those giveaways created by the defense.

If told beforehand UNLV would get five takeaways, linebacker C.J. Cox said, "I thought we’d win the game."

Not that it was a stellar night for the defense because the unit gave up 699 yards. But the defense didn’t have help from an offense that gained just 110 yards and completed one pass for eight yards.

UNLV’s defense was on the field for 35:39 and 92 plays. The Rebels’ offense had the ball for 53 plays.

"We’re not capitalizing," UNLV running back Dionza Bradford said. "We’re not finishing drives. Our defense can only hold their offense for so long."

■ NEW POSITION — Quinton Pointer, who had 33 career starts at cornerback, made his first appearance at safety.

He looked like he had played the position all his life.

Pointer made seven tackles, forced two fumbles, intercepted a pass, and broke up a pass.

When asked about the position switch, though, he sounded less than thrilled.

"It’s the position the coaches want me to play, and I’m playing" it, Pointer said.

So he likes cornerback more?

"It’s the position they want me to play, and I’m playing it," Pointer repeated.

■ GETTING HIS CHANCE — Bradford, a freshman, received his most extensive playing time when starter Tim Cornett went down in the first quarter with an undisclosed injury.

Bradford rushed for 79 yards on 18 carries.

■ TWO FOR ONE — Cody Fajar-do started at quarterback for UNR, but he was out of the game in the second quarter after two interceptions.

Tyler Lantrip, who started the first four games, relieved Fajardo and completed 18 of 29 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns.

The Wolf Pack strategy was designed for both quarterback to play, but UNR coaches never announced who would start and how playing time would be divvied up.

"We didn’t know what they were going to do, so we couldn’t necessarily game plan differently for the two quarterbacks," UNLV coach Bobby Hauck said. "Both those kids are pretty good players, and bring a different tempo to their offense in terms of what they do."

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2914. Follow him on Twitter: @markanderson65.

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