Air Force defense comes away with incredible tipped interception return for touchdown

The Air Force Falcons defense made an incredible play Saturday in a game against the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors

Hawaii was on the Falcons’ 4-yard line and looking to score to cut into the Air Force lead late in the game. Rainbow Warriors quarterback Cole McDonald threw a short pass to his left but it was tipped by Air Force safety Grant Theil almost immediately.

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Theil fell down as he tried to grasp the ball. He tipped it numerous times when it finally landed in the hands of Air Force cornerback Milton Bugg III. Bugg then returned the ball 95 yards for the Air Force score. It was Bugg’s third interception of the season.

“I thought [Theil] was going to catch it, of course, but coach Rud [defensive coordinator John Rudzinski] and coach [Chip] Vaughn always stress running to the ball,” Bugg told The Gazette.

He added: “My first time in the open field. Felt really good to do what I did with it.”

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Bugg’s play helped put Air Force up 56-26 and the team would go onto win the game by the same score.

Boise State wide receiver John Hightower tries to get control of a long pass, but Air Force defensive back Milton Bugg III, top, breaks up the play on Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, at Albertsons Stadium in Boise, Idaho. The host Broncos won, 30-19. (Darin Oswald/Idaho Statesman/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

Boise State wide receiver John Hightower tries to get control of a long pass, but Air Force defensive back Milton Bugg III, top, breaks up the play on Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, at Albertsons Stadium in Boise, Idaho. The host Broncos won, 30-19. (Darin Oswald/Idaho Statesman/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

Bugg added seven total tackles to his credit as well.

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Air Force improved to 7-5 overall and 3-1 in the Mountain West Conference with the win. Hawaii dropped to 4-3 overall and 1-2 in the conference.