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FAU runs up, down and around the Hilltoppers, 34-15

Devin Singletary and Kerrith Whyte Jr. combined for over 300 rushing yards.

NCAA Football: Western Kentucky at Florida Atlantic Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

In what has been a banner career for Devin Singletary, Motor reached yet another milestone as he became the first FAU (5-5, 3-3) running back to surpass 4,000 career rushing yards in the 34-15 win over WKU (1-9, 0-6). Singletary rushed for 148 yards and two touchdowns. Singletary is now tied in 6th place with former Texas Longhorns RB Cedric Benson, with 64 career rushing touchdowns.

Motor’s stat line would normally be the best performance of the game, but it was his heir apparent Kerrith Whyte Jr. who stole the show, as Whyte rushed for a game-high 163 yards and two touchdowns with 7.7 yards per carry.

Though FAU won by 19 and scored 35 points, rest assured it was the defense that won the game. The defense continued their stellar play as they limited WKU to 351 total yards. They forced punts and three turnovers on downs. Shelton Lewis recorded FAU’s only turnover with a crucial interception in the first half. That INT became pivotal after De’Andre Johnson threw an interception in the red zone thanks to being hit during the throw.

FAU had four red zone trips in the first half but only scored 10 points. Whyte scored the game’s first points with an 8-yard TD run as FAU closed the opening quarter up 10-0 after Vladimir Rivas made a 30-yard FG. Earlier in the quarter Rivas missed a 29-yard field goal.

The game should have been a route by halftime but WKU’s ability to generate multiple red-zone stops kept them in the game. The Tops were only down 10-9 at halftime as Steven Duncan threw a TD pass to Mik’Quan Deane and Alex Rinella connected with 40-yard field goal as time expired to end the quarter on a 9-0 scoring run.

From that point on FAU dominated with a terrific rushing offense. Singletary had a 40-yard touchdown run in the third quarter and 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth to put the game out of reach.

Offensively the Owls were just... okay. Chris Robison received the start and played pretty well for the most part, going 17-of-21 for 231 yards. Johnson also played in a few series and was 3-of-4 for 30 yards with an INT. The fact neither really had to win the game speaks to how dominant the offensive line was in paving the way for Motor and Whyte, as the duo combined for 311 rushing yards and four touchdowns. With that said, holding penalties by the line stymied more than a couple drives.

Despite the less than stellar performance, a win is a win, as FAU needs just one more win to qualify for a bowl game.

Next up is a road trip to North Texas, as the Owls will play on Thursday night. For the Hilltoppers, the season continues to head in the wrong direction as they have now lost six in a row and will welcome the UTEP Miners to Bowling Green.