​​Top 5 Rebel Wins In The Battle For The Fremont Cannon Since 2000

UNLV and UNR at the line of scrimmage pre-snap on Nov. 24, 2018. UNLV defeated Reno 34-29 in a come from behind victory. Photo by Scarlet & Gray Free Press Archives.

In a rivalry that has been around since 1969, the Reno Wolf Pack and the UNLV Rebels have engaged in heated battles on the gridiron since the Rebels football program was created in 1968. 

The battle has produced highly entertaining matchups and some of the fiercest competition in the Mountain West Conference. 

Most recently, the Rebels took down the Wolf Pack in a nail-biter, winning 27-22 in UNLV Football’s new home of Allegiant Stadium and reclaiming the Fremont Cannon, allowing them to turn the cannon from dark blue to scarlet and gray. 

The highly anticipated matchup is on Oct. 14 at 2 p.m. at Mackay Stadium in Reno, Nevada; with the Wolf Pack looking to avenge the loss from last year at their house, the Scarlet & Gray Free Press takes a look back on the best Fremont Cannon victories by the Rebels since the year 2000.

No. 5 – UNLV vs. UNR  21-17, Oct. 5, 2002

Chronologically, the first close win for the Rebels in the 2000s was against the Wolf Pack at old Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

With this win coming so early in the season, it gave the Rebels much hope for a great season to come. 

Led by Rebel quarterback Jason Thomas and wide receiver Larry Croom, UNLV mounted a late drive in the fourth quarter capped off by a 45-yard catch by Croom to take the 21-17 lead with just over five minutes remaining, and the defense held the Wolf Pack the rest of the way. 

Thomas finished the game with 262 total yards and two touchdowns, and Croom finished with 19 yards rushing and six receptions for 114 yards, as well as recording both Rebel touchdowns.

No. 4 – UNLV vs. UNR  27-22, Oct. 26, 2013

In a game that took place on the road for the Rebels in Mackay Stadium, it was a highly contested matchup where the Rebels were able to pull out a victory over their rivals.

The Wolf Pack started off with the early lead as they were able to connect on two field goal attempts to make it a 6-0 game, but the Rebel offense rallied back as they took a 7-6 lead and only trailed 16-14 at the half. 

Their was not much more scoring until the fourth quarter of this game as the Rebels jumped on top of the Wolf Pack early in the fourth with two touchodwns to give them a 27-16 lead that they would hold onto for the rest of the game winning 27-22. 

The Rebels were lead by quarterback Caled Herring along with running back Tim Cornett and wide receiver Devante Davis. 

Herring finished with 126 yards passing and a touchdown, but the ones that stole the show were the skill players of Cornett and Davis who both finished with over 100 yards from scrimmage. 

No. 3 – UNLV vs. UNR  23-17, Oct. 3, 2015

In what was the first Mountain West matchup of the 2015 season for these two teams they squared off in Reno, Nevada the Rebels locked down a tight win on the road. 

This game was the tale of two halves as UNLV jumped out to an early 13-0 lead after the first half of play. 

When the second half began it was the Wolf Pack who came out firing and mae it close at 13-10 before the end of the thrids quarter, but after a lackluster quarter of play they found their rhythm back in the fourth extending the lead to 20-10 and the defense while still giving up points held onto the win. 

Reno battled back to make the score 20-17 but in the final minutes of the fourth quarter it was Rebel kicker Nicolai Bornand who made a 45-yard field goal to ice the game away. 

The standout from this game for the Rebels was running back Keith Whitley who willed the Rebels through the ground attack to the vicotry with 80 yards on 16 carries along with a touchdown to go with his performance. 

No. 2 – UNLV vs. UNR  34-29, Nov. 24, 2018

As we move into the year 2018, the Rebels would take this victory at home in comeback fashion over the Wolf Pack in one of the most devastating losses UNR had suffered in this era. 

The Wolf Pack jumped out to a massive 23-0 lead before halftime, and it looked as if a route would surely result from this meeting between these two teams. 

However, it was right before halftime when the Rebels found some life with three touchdowns in the final eight minutes of play in the second quarter, making it a slight 23-21 lead for the Wolf Pack. 

However, this would not be the case for long as Reno attempted to extend their lead but never found the back of the end-zone again as the Rebel defense held them to just two field goals in the second half of play. 

The UNLV offense had quite the opposite occur as they continued to find openings and eventually won in a shootout 34-29.

Quarterback Armani Rodgers led the Rebels to the victory as he had a combined five touchdowns, taking two of them in on his own two feet and 221 total yards.

No. 1 – UNLV vs. UNR  27-22, Nov. 26, 2022

The most recent win in the rivalry occurred for the first time inside the walls of Allegiant stadium, home of the Las Vegas Raiders and the UNLV Rebels. 

In what was expected to be a close matchup, it held true as the Rebels were looking to peel away the Fremont Cannon from the Wolf Packs’ grasp as they had won just the year before. 

The game started off in UNR’s favor as they hopped out to a 13-0 lead, but this would be short-lived as the Rebels began to climb slowly back into the matchup and eventually took the lead 27-16 at the beginning of the fourth quarter. 

The Wolf Pack did not go down quietly however as they battled back with an opportunity to win the game with seconds remaining on the clock inside the Rebel five-yard-line, but the UNLV defense held strongs as they reclaimed the cannon on their own turf. 

The Rebels were led by quarterback Harrison Bailey who threw for over 200 yards and two touchdowns and running back Aiden Robbins who had 84 yards on the ground on 20 carries. 

The Rebels now move forward on the road for the next chapter in these two teams’ histories as the Rebels attempt to stop the Wolf Pack from trying to strip the scarlet and gray off the Fremont Cannon once again. To catch the action, tune into the Silver State Sports & Entertainment Network at 2 p.m. on Oct. 14. 


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