Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Houston 59, UTSA 28

The Coogs improved to 4-0 on the season last Saturday with a win over the Texas - San Antonio Roadrunners in the Alamodome. The game was actually closer than the score suggests. Both teams were tied 21-21 at halftime and Houston was clinging to a three-point lead late in the third quarter when the Roadrunners attempted a field goal that was blocked and returned 78 yards by Brandon Wilson for a Cougar touchdown. That changed the game's momentum, and the Roadrunners self-destructed in the fourth quarter, turning the ball over five times and allowing the Coogs to score 28 unanswered points.

The Good: In addition to the blocked field goal returned for a TD, the Cougar defense forced five turnovers - four interceptions, one of which was returned 96 yards for a touchdown, and a fumble - in a fourth quarter that saw the wheels come completely off what up until that point was a competent UTSA offense. The Cougar offense, for its part, did not cough up the ball at all, and true freshman quarterback John O'Korn had a good afternoon, going 24-of-36 for 312 yards and four touchdowns. Receiver Deontay Greenberry caught nine passes for 149 yards and a score.

The Bad: Up until his meltdown in the fourth quarter, UTSA quarterback Eric Soza was slicing up the Cougar secondary, finishing the day with 29 completions on 40 attempts for 316 yards and two touchdowns. The UH receiving corps inexcusably dropped two sure touchdown passes when the game was still close. And ten Cougar penalties for 73 yards is entirely too many.

What it means: you get the feeling that had a few things gone differently - if, for example, that field goal had not been blocked and returned for a touchdown, or if the Roadrunners had connected on a trick play a couple of plays earlier (Sosa, who handed off the ball and then ran out to receive, was wide open and would have scored a touchdown had the pass been just a bit longer) - the outcome of this game could have completely different. As it was, however, the young Roadrunners panicked late in the game, and allowed the Coogs to run away with a victory on the road.

The Cougars now get another week off, and then host Memphis at BBVA Compass Stadium on October 12.

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