Brown provided the team a much-needed boost as the Zips struggled to put the Falcons away on several opportunities, turning the ball over three times and giving up 181 yards in the running game.
The victory came at a cost. Zips running back Warren Ball, who received a medical redshirt after missing most of last season with an injury, broke his ankle in the first half and will miss the rest of the season.
UA's offense soldiered on without him. The Zips rushed for 178 yards with Van Edwards leading the way with 70 yards on 14 carries and a touchdown.
Quarterback Thomas Woodson completed 13-of-24 pass attempts for 168 yards and two touchdowns, including a 43-yard strike to wide receiver Austin Wolf (three receptions, 68 yards, TD).
Falcons quarterback James Morgan, subbing for injured starter Jarret Doege, completed 17-of-28 pass attempts for 163 yards and two touchdowns. Falcons running back Josh Cleveland led all rushers with 94 yards on 20 carries
Things started well for the Zips.
UA middle linebacker Andrew Hauser forced a fumble after a reception by the Falcons' Scott Miller at Bowling Green's 35. Defensive back Alvin Davis scooped it up and returned it to the 19. Six plays later, Woodson hit A.J. Coney with a 4-yard touchdown pass and the Zips led 7-0 after the extra point.
Bowling Green, which had trouble running the ball during the nonconference schedule, had some success against the Zips, rushing for more than 100 in the half. That helped the Falcons make up for the loss of their starting quarterback and helped them keep up with the Zips, trailing 20-13 at halftime.