Texas A&M started slow, trailing UTEP 7-2 early and by a slim 9-7 after one quarter. but the Aggies took advantage of 3 Miner turnovers to score 27 second quarter points and take a 36-7 halftime lead, then cruised to a 57-7 win
UTEP received the opening kickoff and picked up a first down on two runs by Aaron Jones before the Aggie defense tackled Jones for losses on three successive plays. Facing 4th-and-19 from their 12-yard line, a UTEP punt was blocked by Aggie defensive back Floyd Raven and the ball went through the endzone for a safety to give Texas A&M a 2-0 lead at the 11:26 mark in the first quarter.
Texas A&M went 3-and-out on their first possession and a short punt gave UTEP the ball at their 27-yard line. UTEP marched 73 yards in 9 plays, and Aaron Jones scored on a 4-yard run to give the Miners a surprising 7-2 lead with 5:39 left in the first quarter.
It took the Aggies just 4 plays and 63 seconds to regain the lead when Johnny Manziel threw a 44-yard touchdown pass to Travis Labhart to take a 9-7 lead.
UTEP and Texas A&M exchanged punts until early in the second quarter when the Aggies mounted a 5-play, 63-yard scoring drive. After a 23-yard run by Ben Malena and a 23-yard pass completion from Johnny Manziel to Malcome Kennedy to the Miner 1-yard line, Tra Carson bulled his way into the endzone for a touchdown. The Aggies extra pouit attempt was unsuccessful due to a bad hold, leaving Texas A&M with a 15-7 lead.
On the first play of the ensuing Miner possession, a Blaire Sullivan pass attempt was intercepted by Aggie cornerback DeVante Harris and Harris returned the interception to the UTEP 32-yard line. It took Texas A&M just 3 plays to take advantage of the turnover, with Johnny Manziel throwing a 15-yard touchdown pass to Malcome Kennedy to extend the Aggie lead to 22-7 with 8:32 left in the second quarter.
UTEP drove to the Aggie 47-yard line, where facing a 3rd-and-15, the Miners threw a screen pass to Jordan Leslie but Texas A&M linebacker Darian Claiborne forced a fumble that was recovered by Aggie defensive back Noel Ellis at the UTEP 49-yard line. Johnny Manziel led the Aggies to another touchdown in 6 plays, with Manziel scoring on a 10-yard scramble to give the Aggies a 29-7 lead with 3:07 left in the first half.
The next UTEP possession ended when Aggie safety Howard Matthews intercepted a Blaire Sullivan pass and returned it to the UTEP 28-yard line. After an 11-yard Johnny Manziel scramble, Manziel throw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Travis Labhart to extend the Texas A&M lead to 36-7 with 1:09 to go in the half and UTEP ran out the clock to take it to the locker room.
At the half, Texas A&M led in total yards, 246 to 138, and in first downs, 12 to 6.
Texas A&M received the second half kickoff, and in under two minures opened up a 43-7 lead on a 49-yard Johnny Manziel touchdown scramble.
After Texas A&M forced another UTEP punt, Johnny Manziel was sacked twice before connecting with Laquvionte Gonzalez for a 57-yard pass completion, then Manziel threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to Mike Evans to give the Aggies a 50-7 lead with 7:39 left in the third quarter.
That was to be the end of Johnny Manziel's night, completing 16 of 24 passes for 273 yards and 4 TDs and rushing for 67 yards and 2 TDs on 7 carries.
After Aggie return man LaQuvionte Gonzalez fumbled a UTEP punt, the Miners looked to be threatening a score when with a 1st-and-10 at the Aggie 14-yard line a Blaire Sullivan pass was intercepted in the endzone by Aggie safety Howard Matthews and Matthews returned it to the 24-yard line.
True freshman Kenny Hill came on at quarterback for Texas A&M and led the Aggies on a 6-play, 74-yard scoring drive, with Trey Williams scoring on a 14-yard run to give Texas A&M a 57-7 lead with 2:05 to go in the third quarter.
From that point both UTEP and Texas A&M pretty much just ran out the clock as the Aggies win in a rout to improve to 7-2 for the season.
Texas A&M rolled up 564 yards of offense, 330 passing and 234 rushing, while holding UTEP to 198 total yards and forcing 4 Miner turnovers.
Travis Labhart had 4 catches for 83 yards and 2 TDs, Malcome Kennedy 4 catches for 63 yards and 1 TDs, and Mike Evans 4 catches for 46 yards and 1 TD. Brandon Williams rushed for 59 yards on 5 carries and Ben Malena added 45 yards on 4 carries.
For UTEP, Blaire Sullivan completed just 9 of 17 passes for 71 yards with 3 interceptions.
Of significant concern for the Aggies going forward, big back Tra Carson was injured early in the fourth quarter and had to be stretchered from the field.
Texas A&M (7-2, 3-2 SEC) now gets ready to host Mississippi State in a nationally televised broadcast on CBS next Saturday afternoon.