EL PASO, Texas — Brandon Dawkins scored six touchdowns — three passing and three rushing — to lead Arizona to a 63-16 win over UTEP on Friday night.
Dawkins, who played only one series in the fourth quarter, threw for 155 yards on 18-of-22 passing and ran for 143 yards on 13 carries.
Arizona came into the game as a 25-point favorite, but struggled in the first quarter against winless UTEP before scoring 28 unanswered points.
The Wildcats (2-1) scored on the first play of the second quarter when Dawkins found freshman J.J. Taylor for 2-yard TD on fourth-and-goal, capping a 12-play, 78-yard drive. Dawkins connected with Shun Brown on a 36-yard touchdown pass followed by a 5-yard Dawkins TD run three minutes later to push the lead to 28-0.
After UTEP (0-3) scored on a pass from Zack Greenlee to Tyler Batson with 2:50 remaining in the half, Dawkins scored his fourth touchdown on a 3-yard run as the Wildcats scored 35 second-quarter points to take a 35-9 lead.
It was the first points allowed by the Wildcats in three quarters after holding Houston scoreless in the second half last week.
Arizona continued its offensive onslaught in the third, scoring two more touchdowns — on Dawkins’ 13-yard run and Bryce Wolma’s catch.
UTEP scored its lone second-half touchdown on Mark Torrez’s 6-yard run in the third and Arizona closed with 21 unanswered points.
Arizona: How young are the Wildcats? Arizona has played 24 freshmen, including 14 true freshmen, in the first three games.
UTEP: The Miners, out of Conference USA, began the season with three straight losses for the first time since 2008. UTEP has now lost 13 straight to Arizona.
Arizona: The Wildcats host Pac-12 South rival Utah next Friday in the conference opener for both teams.
UTEP: The Miners will play at New Mexico State on Sept. 22.