Rice At Tulsa Highlights C-USA Games Galore
By Dan Harralson
If you enjoy Conference USA play, this is your weekend.
All 14 C-USA teams are in action Saturday and they are all in conference play. Lets take a look at the slate of C-USA games.
UTSA at Marshall: This is the only East vs. West game on the slate. Marshall is licking its chops offensively. The Herd have put up 1,166 passing yards and 777 yards on the ground. UTSA is right on par in giving up what Marshall is producing. The Roadrunners have given up 1,220 yards through the air and 793 rushing yards. Don't count out the UTSA passing offense though. UTSA has put up the most passing yards than any team in C-USA (1,452). That's nearly 300 more yards than second-place ECU.
FAU at UAB: UAB is sitting quietly at 1-3. The Blazers need this one to potentially go bowling. The UAB ground game should stand out in a statement game against FAU. FAU is giving up 216 yards on the ground on average, something that Garrick McGee likes to see in this matchup. UAB has two running backs in Darrin Reaves and Jordan Howard who are putting up solid numbers, especially against the level of competition that the Blazers have played.
ECU at MTSU: Middle Tennessee State as allowed the most passing yards in the conference (1,307). That won't sit well going against the ECU hurry-up passing attack. The Pirates already put up 1,452 yards through the air, which ranks second in C-USA. The Pirates begin their string conference road games (three of the next four).
North Texas at Tulane: This one's interesting. Both teams enter Saturday's matchup averaging 29 points apiece. The game is in New Orleans and North Texas is favored by a field goal. What gives? Both teams are struggling to defend the pass and North Texas is a little more efficient through the air. North Texas' passing game could be the difference.
Rice at Tulsa: This matchup is a tale of two teams. Rice lost the infamous Johnny Football suspension game and then lost to Houston. They have looked good in both losses and have two wins over Kansas and FAU. The defending C-USA champ, Tulsa (1-3), has struggled early. Rice must throw the ball and Tulsa must make big plays in their own passing game.
FIU at Southern Miss: Southern Miss needs this one. If they do not get a victory here to end their 16-game losing streak, it's going to be tough to snap until mid-November. FIU enters this matchup 0-4 as well. Look for the Golden Eagles to snap their winless streak Saturday.
La. Tech at UTEP: This may be the best C-USA game of the weekend. UTEP has put up a 35-point game and two 42-point games this season. La. Tech has not looked good at all this season with losses to North Carolina State, Tulane, Kansas and Army. Yet the Bulldogs are favored in El Paso. Keep an eye on this game Saturday night.