Nevada’s Trevor Insley would prefer to forget that the game in which he broke the NCAA Division I-A career-receiving record was a losing cause for his team.
Insley, a senior from San Clemente, caught 14 passes for 253 yards Saturday in the Wolf Pack’s 42-33 Big West Conference loss to Idaho. Twelve of his receptions, including two touchdown grabs, came in the second half after he suffered a mild concussion returning a punt in the first quarter.
He now has 4,660 yards for his four-year career, surpassing the NCAA record of 4,518 yards by Wyoming’s Marcus Harris from 1993-96. His 113 catches and 1,715 yards this season both are tops in the nation, and his 14 receptions Saturday move him to 277 for his career, third on the NCAA list behind Nevada’s Geoff Noisy, the former Irvine High standout who had 295 receptions from 1995-98, and Louisiana Tech’s Troy Edwards (280 from 1996-98).
“Of course I’m happy about breaking the record,” said Insley, still woozy from his concussion, “but unfortunately we didn’t win. I guess it’s something I’ll look back on after the season, or a few years down the road.”
Insley said he didn’t even remember the remainder of the first half after his injury, which came with 4:51 remaining in the first quarter.
“All I know is that I was returning a punt,” he said. “I saw two guys coming at me and I dove ahead. I don’t know what happened after that.
“I went in for one series in the second quarter, but I was confused in the huddle and [coaches and doctors] thought it best that I sit out. But I was able to get my head back to play in the second half.”
Nevada trailed, 19-0, at the half, but Insley caught scoring passes of 11 and 31 yards from David Neill as the Wolf Pack four times crept to within one touchdown. The 31-yarder came on a fourth-and-goal play with 4:28 remaining in the game to bring Nevada within 40-33.
“I remember him from two years ago, and I’m thinking before this game, looking at the stats, that this can’t be the same guy,” Vandal Coach Chris Tormey said.
“Well, he is. I can’t believe how good he is. What an incredible performance. He almost beat us by himself.”