Mike White threw for 316 yards and four touchdowns and Western Kentucky rolled to a 45-7 victory over North Texas on Saturday.
Western Kentucky (8-3, 6-1 C-USA) held the Mean Green (4-5, 2-4) to 232 total yards of offense, just 55 in the first half, and didn’t give up a score until the game was well out of reach.
The defending C-USA champion Hilltoppers won their fifth straight and control the race for the conference’s East Division title. The Hilltoppers can lock a spot in the conference championship game with a win at Marshall on Nov. 26.
White connected with Taywan Taylor in the first quarter for touchdown passes of 64 and 75 yards in the first six plays of the game.
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Taylor led with 166 yards receiving and three scores. Anthony Wales had 121 yards rushing and ran for a 3-yard TD to put Western Kentucky up 31-0 at the half.
Western Kentucky had 543 yards of offense for 7.3 yards per play.
Andrew Tucker ran for a 71-yard TD run in the third quarter to avoid the shutout for North Texas.
Alabama transfer Alec Morris stepped in for freshman quarterback Mason Fine when Fine fumbled off a sack in the second quarter. Morris was 14 of 26 for 108 yards passing with an interception.
WKU receiver Nicholas Norris had 66 yards receiving at halftime to reach 1,000 yards on the season. He joined Taylor (1,340 yards) as the first WKU wide receiver duo to have 1,000-yards receiving in the same season. Norris finished with 90 yards and two TDs.
North Texas lost its third straight and must win out to become bowl eligible under first-year coach Seth Littrell.
Western Kentucky will have a week off before wrapping up the regular season at struggling Marshall on Nov. 26. North Texas hosts Southern Mississippi next Saturday.
WKY—T.Taylor 64 pass from M.White (S. Simcox kick), 12:31
WKY—T.Taylor 75 pass from M.White (S. Simcox kick), 10:40
WKY—S.Simcox 24 FG, 6:22
WKY—N.Norris 33 pass from M.White (Simcox kick), 9:35
WKY—A.Wales 3 run, (Simcox kick), 0:27
WKY—N.Norris 24 pass from M.White (Simcox kick), 10:32
UNT—A.Tucker 71 run (T. Moore kick) 4:35
WKY—T.Taylor 4 pass from T. Ferguson (S. Simcox kick), 3:00
Time of Possession
RUSHING—UNT, Tucker 3-82, Ivery 5-29, Wyche 4-7; Morris 1-3; Shanbour 1-0; Gray 1(minus-1); Fine 5-(minus-5). W. Kentucky, Wales 18-121, Trigg 15-56, Baker 6-40, White 1-0; Taylor 1-(minus-3).
PASSING—UNT, Morris 14-26-1-108, Fine 3-6-0-9, Shanbour 0-1-0-0; W. Kentucky, M.White 14-25-0-31, T.Ferguson 3-6-0-13, Eckels 0-2-0-0.
RECEIVING—UNT, Robinson 2-31; Wyche 1-18; Goree 4-18; Smith 1-17; Ivery 3-11; Buyers 3-9; Smiley 1-8; Thompson 1-5. W. Kentucky, T.Taylor 6-166, Norris 5-90, L.Jackson 2-24, Jernighan 1-20; Trigg 1-11; Wales 1-0.
MISSED FIELD GOALS—North Texas, Moore; W.Kentucky, Simcox.