Photo courtesy of Houston Athletics
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (Sports Network) -
EAST CAROLINA: The Pirates (5-4, 4-1) had their two-game winning streak snapped as they were defeated, 56-28, by Navy at home. ECU allowed the Midshipmen to rush for 512 yards and six touchdowns. Coming into the contest, the Pirates had surrendered just 986 rushing yards in eight games. After back- to-back 300-yard passing performances, Shane Carden went 19-of-29 for 194 yards with a touchdown and interception. Vintavious Cooper paced the offense with 121 yards and a score on 18 carries. The Pirates return to conference play this weekend when they host Houston.
HOUSTON: The Cougars (4-4, 3-1) bounced back from their first C-USA loss by jumping out to a big lead and hanging on for a 45-35 victory over Texas-El Paso. Houston led 35-7 at halftime after a few big plays from Charles Sims, who finished with 119 yards and three TDs on 12 carries. The program is now 7-0 all-time when Sims gained 100 yards or more. David Piland went 16-of-30 for 174 yards and two touchdowns while Larry McDuffey tallied three receptions for 61 yards and a score. The Cougars' defensive unit was charged by D.J. Hayden, who contributed two interceptions and a defensive touchdown. Houston forced six total turnovers as a team and recorded five sacks. The Cougars leave Texas for the first time since Sept. 15 this weekend to take on East Carolina.
MARSHALL: The Thundering Herd (3-5, 2-2) finally had their high-powered offense shut down as they were beaten 54-17 by UCF at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Marshall's scoring output of 17 points and 364 yards of total offense were both season lows. Rakeem Cato still produced 298 yards and two TDs on 35-62 passing despite the team's struggles. Tommy Shuler led the receiving corps with eight catches for 54 yards. The Herd's special teams unit has some work to do after allowing two kickoff returns to go for touchdowns. Marshall will try to rebound this weekend when it hosts Memphis.
MEMPHIS: The Tigers (1-7, 1-3) lost by a significant margin for the third game in a row as they were demolished, 44-13, at SMU. Memphis struggled offensively once again, amassing only 202 yards of total offense in the contest. Jacob Karam went 8-of-17 for 85 yards, making it three times the team's starting quarterback has been held under 100 passing yards this season. Brandon Hayes gained a team-high 55 rushing yards and scored his first career touchdown. Memphis stays on the road this weekend when it heads to Huntington to square off with Marshall.
RICE: The Owls (3-6, 1-4) picked up their first win in league play and won for the second time in three outings as they downed Southern Miss, 44-17 at home. Taylor McHargue completed 7-of-12 attempts for 80 yards in a touchdown before leaving in the third quarter with an injury. Driphus Jackson stepped in and went 4-of-6 for 92 yards and two TDs. Turner Peterson racked up 136 yards and a score on 19 carries and also made a touchdown grab. The Owls have another winnable game on the horizon as they head to New Orleans to play Tulane.
SMU: The Mustangs (4-4, 3-1) dominated an opponent for the second week in a row by completing a 44-13 rout of the Memphis Tigers. SMU gained 487 yards of total offense and held Memphis to only 202 yards. Graham Gilbert threw for 353 yards and produced three total TDs while Zach Line gained 127 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries. Darius Johnson made nine receptions for a season-high 141 yards. SMU has a tough test this weekend when it heads to Orlando to face UCF, which is one of just two C-USA teams left without a loss in league action.
SOUTHERN MISS: The Golden Eagles (0-8, 0-4) turned the ball over five times in their 44-17 loss to Rice in Houston. Southern Miss is still winless through eight games in its season as reigning C-USA champions. USM started Arsenio Favor to become the only team in the FBS to start four different QBs this season. Favor's first start was forgettable as he was benched in the third quarter after throwing two interceptions on 10-of-22 passing. Cole Weeks stepped in and went 4-f-9 for 76 yards with an interception. USM aims for its first win of the season this Saturday when its welcomes UAB to Hattiesburg.
TEXAS-EL PASO: The Miners (2-7, 1-4) were unable to overcome a 35-7 halftime deficit and fell, 45-35, to Houston at Robertson Stadium. UTEP turned it over six total times as it lost for the fifth time in six outings. Nick Lamaison was picked off four times and managed only 76 yards on 8-of-18 passing. Blair Sullivan and Carson Meger both saw action under center for UTEP as well. Sullivan went 6-of-10 for 105 yards and two touchdowns, while Meger completed 5- of-8 attempts for 42 yards. Mike Edwards grabbed a team-high six catches for 55 yards and two touchdowns while Jordan Leslie made four receptions for 95 yards and a score. Nathan Jeffery had a productive game on the ground with 137 yards and two touchdowns on 33 carries. UTEP has a bye week to prepare for its Nov. 10 battle at UCF.
TULANE: The Green Wave (2-6, 2-2) picked up their second win in their last three outings by outgunning UAB, 55-45, in a shootout at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The teams combined for 1,241 yards of total offense and both scored on all six of their red zone opportunities. Tulane crushed its previous season-high of 440 yards of total offense by racking up 619 yards. The 55 points scored doubled the team's previous season-high of 27. Ryan Griffin went 34- of-42 for 466 yards and five touchdowns, Ryan Grant made six receptions for 184 yards and two scores, and Xavier Rush tallied 126 yards and two TDs on eight catches. Orleans Darkwa gained 74 yards on 20 carries and scored two touchdowns as well. Tulane stays at home in New Orleans this Saturday when it hosts Rice for C-USA action.
TULSA: The Golden Hurricane (7-1, 5-0) took their seven-game winning streak into the bye week. They will take a break from C-USA action this week to face Tyler Wilson and the Arkansas Razorbacks.
UAB: The Blazers (1-7, 0-4) failed to pick up their first C-USA win as they came up short and lost, 55-45, to Tulane. UAB suffered its third loss in a row despite amassing a season-high 622 yards of total offense. The Blazers allowed Tulane to pick up 619 yards, which is the most by any opponent this season. Austin Brown completed 26-of-52 passes for 409 yards with three TDs and the same number of INTs. Darrin Reaves tallied 166 yards and three TDs on 21 carries. UAB will try to bounce back on Saturday when it visits Southern Miss.
UCF: The Knights (6-2, 4-0) picked up their fourth win in a row with a convincing, 54-17, road victory over Marshall. UCF held the conference's top offense to season-lows in points and total offense and Quincy McDuffie returned two kickoffs for touchdowns to power the rout. No other player had returned two kickoffs for a touchdown in the same game in C-USA history. Latavius Murray rushed for 156 yards and three TDs and also made a catch for six points as well. Blake Bortles went 15-of-21 for 277 yards with two TDs and two INTs. UCF returns to Orlando to host SMU this Saturday.