Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Houston 38, Tulsa 24

The Coogs went on the road last Saturday and came back home with their first conference win of the season.

The Good: Quarterback Greg Ward, Jr had his best game of the year, accounting for an astounding 455 yards in total offense. He completed 22 of 38 passes for 273 yards and he also rushed 20 times for 182 yards and 3 touchdowns. This performance was enough to earn him a helmet sticker on ESPN's College Football Final as well as some Heisman-related love from FOX's Stewart Mandel. Running back Kenneth Farrow, meanwhile rushed 19 times for 159 yards and two touchdowns. The Cougar defense had five sacks, seven tackles for loss and forced two turnovers as they held the Golden Hurricane to their lowest point total of the season. Finally, the Cougars only had 3 penalties for the entire game.

The Bad: The Cougar offense was clearly not playing at its best. As good a game as Ward had, he could not find any receivers in the endzone. Receiver Stephen Dunbar fumbled a reception for Houston's only turnover. The Cougars failed to convert on fourth-down three times and were barely 50% on third-down conversions. Twice, the Cougars made it into Tulsa's red zone and came away with no points.

The Ugly: Special teams are going to cost the Cougars a game if they don't improve. Kyle Bullard missed two field goals, and punter Logan Piper put the Cougar defense in bad positions twice: once on a shanked 24yard punt, and once on an ill-advised fake punt attempt that was smothered by Tulsa. 

What it means: Once again, the Cougars play less-than-perfect football on the road but still manage to come up with a win. They are now 4-0.

Next up is a nationally-televised home game against SMU tomorrow night.

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