AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (AP) — Chuckie Keeton spotted openings in passing lanes all around him, and when he decided where to throw, the result often showed up on the scoreboard.
Keeton matched his own school record by throwing for five touchdowns, including three in the third quarter, as Utah State routed Air Force 52-20 Saturday to give Aggies coach Matt Wells his first win in the school's Mountain West Conference debut.
"It's a great feeling, first of all, to get Coach Wells' first win and knowing it's our first Mountain West win is incredible as well," Keeton said. "We're extremely happy, especially coming off the loss (to rival Utah) last week. So this is a lot of momentum that we needed. It's going to be a fun season."
Keeton completed 32 of 40 for 360 yards passing, the fifth time in seven games he has thrown for at least 300 yards dating to last season. Keeton also threw for five touchdowns as a freshman in a 63-19 win over Wyoming in 2011.
"There's definitely some matchups we looked for today," Keeton said. "Our receivers did a great job of getting some separation and the guys up front did a great job. I was the benefactor of that."
Each of Keeton's scoring passes went to a different receiver. He started by completing a 30-yard touchdown to Travis Van Leeuwen. He then added a 23-yarder to Ronald Butler, 20-yarder to Joe Hill, 36-yarder to Travis Reynolds and finally a 1-yard scoring pass to Keegan Andersen.
"I feel like our offense was firing on all cylinders," Reynolds said. "It's always fun, with a lot of receivers getting touches. Chuckie was spreading the love around."
Joe Hill and Joey DeMartino each added short touchdown runs for Utah State (1-1, 1-0 Mountain West), which made the move to the new conference from the Western Athletic Conference.
Jaleel Awini had a rough outing in his first career start at quarterback for Air Force (1-1, 0-1), and also was victimized by several drops by his receivers.