(Las Vegas, NV) One of the better matchups in the 2016 edition of the college bowl season takes place in Las Vegas Saturday as the Houston Cougars (9-3) face the San Diego State Aztecs (10-2) at Sam Boyd Stadium in the 25th edition of the Las Vegas Bowl. Major Applewhite will get his first opportunity to coach the team after being named the head coach after Tom Herman left to take the head-coaching job at Texas. Meanwhile, Rocky Long led his Aztecs to the Mountain West Conference title for the third time in his six years at San Diego State.
The game features two powerhouse offenses and two offensive stars to keep an eye on. For Houston, Quarterback Greg Ward Jr. averaged over 300 yards passing per game leading the Cougars to the fourth best offense in the nation with nearly 350 yards per game. Aztecs running back Donnel Pumphrey rushed for 2018 yards this season, averaging 6.1 yards per carry. Currently second, he has a chance to break the all-time NCAA FBS rushing record of 6290 yards in his final college game.
The game will be broadcast on ABC-TV at 3:30 PM ET with Brent Musburger calling the play-by-play for the seventh time in his career. Jesse Palmer will handle the color and Kaylee Hartung will be the sideline reporter.
Don Henderson and Doug Miles on Sports Talk. Topics include: Charlie Strong coming to USF, other college coaching moves, Army/Navy game, NFL Week 14, baseball, hockey and more. Guest: Sports Talk Host Rich “Spitz” Spedaliere”.
(Tampa, FL) Quinton Flowers and Marlon Mack combined for over 300 yards rushing and 4 touchdowns to lead the USF Bulls to a 48-31 victory over UCF Saturday afternoon at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. The Bulls notched a program record 10th win and 7th in the American Athletic Conference.
The Bulls overcame a 7-0 early deficit to their cross-I4 rival UCF Knights (6-6, 4-4) when running back Marlon Mack broke a tackle and scampered down the sideline 43 yards to tie the game at 7-7.
Juwuan Brown gave the Bulls a lead they would never relinquish when he picked up a Jawon Hamilton fumble at the UCF 22-yard line and rumbled in for the score putting USF up 14-7 late in the first quarter.
Marlon Mack tallied his second touchdown of the game on a spectacular 56-yard run, breaking at least four tackles on the way to the end zone. Mack would finish the day with 155 yards on 20 carries. The Bulls took a 24-14 lead into halftime.
Quarterback Quinton Flowers opened the third quarter in style with a 62-yard touchdown romp, breaking teammate Marlon Mack’s single season rushing he set last year of over 1600 yards. Flowers had 152 yard rushing on 20 carries. He also completed 17 of 26 passes for 152 yards.
UCF would pull to within seven points late in the third quarter, but USF linebacker Auggie Sanchez’ interception led to Flowers second running touchdown of the game and the Bulls never looked back.
Head Coach Willie Taggart’s post game comments are available in the attached video below.
Temple defeated East Carolina Saturday night to win the east division in the AAC and will play Navy in the conference champtionship game next Saturday at noon in Annapolis. USF will await bowl offers to determine where they will play next.
USF honored 18 seniors today playing in their final home game. Six members of the senior class were recruited from the Tampa Bay area.
Today’s win was the 10th of the season for USF, setting a record for the Bulls football program. USF’s road win last week over SMU was a school’s best 4th of the season.
Coming into today’s game, the Bulls have a nation-leading streak of 15 games scoring at least 30 points.
The Bulls offense has the nation’s 7th ranked total offense averaging 516.2 yards per game and 43.2 points per game. The Bulls average 286.4 yards rushing per game, good for 6th in the nation.
USF beat UCF 44-4 last season in Orlando, FL.
USF needed a Temple loss tonight to East Carolina to earn a spot in next Saturday’s (12/3) AAC Conference Championship game to be played in Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Temple’s win over East Carolina Saturday night sets up the conference title game between Temple and Navy in Annapolis. ABC or ESPN will televise the game beginning at noon ET.
Uniform Shuffle: The Bulls wore their all green uniforms with gold numbers, green helmets with gold Bulls logo.
Today’s game was broadcast nationally on CBS Sports Network.
(Tampa, FL) Quinton Flowers ran for three touchdowns and passed for two more to lead the USF Bulls to a 42-27 American Athletic Conference victory over the UConn Huskies Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. Despite four turnovers for the Bulls, the win keeps USF (6-1, 3-0) undefeated in the AAC and in first place in the East Division.
“We can play better”, Bulls Head Coach Willie Taggart, said. “We had 4 turnovers and still won the game.”
Trailing 17-14 early in the third quarter, USF rallied with four touchdowns the rest of the way to secure bowl eligibility and maintain the top spot in its division.
Quarterback Quinton Flowers gave the Bulls its first lead when he zig-zagged his way to a 54-yard touchdown run on the Bulls second play on offense.
“It was like watching a video game”, his coach Willie Taggart joked after the game.
Flowers would score two additional touchdowns on the ground and toss for two more. The junior signal caller had a career night rushing for 157 yards on 16 carries and completing 23 of 37 passes for 213 yards. The only downside to his game was a pair of interceptions.
Marlon Mack scored on a 34 yard run with 2:57 left in the game to break the 100-yard rushing barrier for the 17th time in his USF career. Mack carried the ball 16 times for 107 yards and also caught six passes for 75 yards.
UConn (3-4, 1-3) quarterback Bryant Shirreffs threw for a pair of touchdowns while connecting on 22 of 39 passes for 306 yards. Arkeel Newsome led the Huskies ground game tallying 72 yards on 15 carries and one touchdown.
The Bulls have a short week as they continue their AAC schedule next Friday night on the road in Philadelphia against Temple in a 7:00 PM kickoff. The game is scheduled to be broadcast on ESPN.
Tonight’s game was broadcast nationwide on CBS Sports Network.
Tonight’s win was the fifth straight for USF over UConn.
UConn last played in the Tampa Bay area in last December’s St. Petersburg Bowl at Tropicana Field, losing to Marshall 16-10.
Uniform Shuffle: The Bulls wore pink accents on their all green uniforms and white helmets for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Tonight’s win makes the USF bowl eligible for the second earliest time in school history. The Bulls won their sixth game on October 13, 2007 against UCF.
Marlon Mack had his 17th career 100-yard rushing game tonight to go over 3000 yards in his USF career.
Before tonight, the last nine games between USF and UConn had been decided by 8 points or less.
Last year (Oct. 17, 2015) the Bulls defeated the Huskies 28-20 in Hartford, CT.
The Bulls play their next two games on Friday nights. Next week (Oct. 21) at Temple and (Oct. 28) against Navy at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.