Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Air Force took advantage of three Rice fumbles to take a 14-7 lead into the locker room at the Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth.
Backup quarterback Kale Pearson rushed for a touchdown to cap off a scoring drive immediately after replacing starter Connor Dietz six minutes into the second quarter. Wes Cobb accounted for Air Force's other touchdown on the following possession, putting the Falcons on top by a score.
Pearson attempted one pass, completing it for a 15 yard gain, and rushed three times for ten yards in the half. Ty MacArthur is the team's leading rusher thus far, picking up 41 of Air Force's 141 yards on the ground.
Rice also made a change at quarterback in the second quarter after starter Taylor McHargue suffered an injury. Driphus Jackson took the reins and led the Owls deep into Air Force territory just before halftime, but his errant pitch in the direction of running back Turner Petersen resulted in a fumble, the team's third in the half.
Jackson rushed for 29 yards and threw for 32 after replacing McHargue, who was 6-of-8 for 31 yards and a touchdown through the air and accounted for 39 yards on the ground prior to the injury.