Introduction to the game: SMU – University of Houston Athletics
Cougars and Mustangs battle it out in the I-45 Showdown
No. 19/16 SMU in Houston
October 30, 2021 | 6 p.m. HC | TDECU Stadium | Houston, texas
Radio: KPRC 950 AM
WHAT TO MONITOR
“Saturday marks the first clash between opponents with one or no loss at TDECU Stadium at the end of the season since November 14, 2015, when Houston 9-0 hosted 8-1 Memphis. The then-No. 16 Cougars rallied at 20 points to defeat Tigers # 25, 35-34.
“Saturday’s game features two of the longest winning streaks in the country. SMU’s seven-game winning streak ranks fourth nationally. Houston’s six-game winning streak ranks 10th nationally.
“Called the“ third quarter defense, ”the Cougars unit leads the country for third-down conversion defense percentage (0.234), second for team bags (4.14), third for defense at first down (99), fourth for total defense (276.3), ninth for defensive touchdowns (2), ninth for fumbles recovered (8), 11th for tackles for losses (6.7) and 12th in passing yards allowed (173.4).
“Houston senior Marcus Jones is the only FBS player in the country to have scored a punt return touchdown and a punt return touchdown this season. Touchdowns from its three special teams lead the nation. With his 98-yard punt return touchdown on Saturday, Jones became the first player to record a punt return touchdown and punt return touchdown in TDECU stadium history. The 98-yard game was also the longest since the stadium opened. Dating from his time at Troy, Jones has eight career special teams touchdowns.
FOR THE FANS
“Fans attending Saturday’s blackout game are encouraged to wear black. The UH Team Shop will carry black shirts and hats, in addition to other gear, including clothing featuring the “Cougar Paw” logo worn by Houston Football coaches and staff, on sale at several locations around the stadium.
“Fans can enjoy the Family Pack of 4 for Saturday’s game including four tickets, four hot dogs, four chips and four sodas for just $ 60. To buy, click here.
“The Houston men’s basketball program will host its Red-White scrum at 2 pm Saturday inside the Fertitta Center. Free entry. Fans present should plan to park on their normal playing field on the day of the football match.
“With staff shortages affecting business and venue operations across the country, the Houston Sports Department and its suppliers are working hard to improve service and appropriately accommodate our fans and guests.
“Fans attending Houston football games this fall at TDECU Stadium are encouraged to arrive early and familiarize themselves with game day procedures and guidelines. Parking, tickets, tailgating, directions and additional information can be found here.
“Due to the campus construction project on Cullen Boulevard, fans are encouraged to plan ahead and allow extra time while using alternate routes to avoid delays.
Cougar Pride members who donate at the university level and above are welcome to enjoy food, entertainment and family fun at the Cougar Pride liftgate takeover. Located outside TDECU at Gate 2 – South East Corner, the CP tailgate will feature entertainment provided by DJ Teddi and food by Demeris BarB-Q. Cougar Pride members will also be able to taste a wide variety of locally made wines courtesy of Haak Vineyards & Winery
2:00 p.m. – Opening of the ticket office, paid parking lots, children’s area and tailgating
3:30 p.m. – Start of the Cougar walk
4.30 p.m. – Opening of the TDECU stadium
6:05 p.m. – Kick-off against ECU
FIVE THINGS TO KNOW
“Houston and SMU meet for the 36th time in program history. The Cougars have won 10 of the last 14 games. The teams had met for 15 consecutive seasons (2005-19) before COVID-19 erased the 2020 game.
“With Saturday’s win, Houston qualified for its 14th bowl game in the past 17 seasons (2005-present). The Cougars are one of 30 eligible bowling teams nationwide. Houston’s 13 bowl appearances since 2005 rank second on programs in Texas, behind Texas A&M (14).
“In its last six games, Houston has limited its opponents to 13.83 points per game. Houston’s 121 points (17.2 per game) are the lowest allowed in its first seven games of a season since allowing 102 (14.57) in 2016.
“Houston has been 43-17 in October since 2006, including a 24-9 record at home.
“Houston in reverse Alton mccaskill is second nationally among true freshmen in total touchdowns (10) and rushing touchdowns (9). He is third in scoring (60 points). McCaskill’s 25-yard touchdown run in Game 1 of overtime against ECU last Saturday made the difference in the Cougars’ 31-24 victory.
“SMU quarterback Tanner Mordecai is tied for first nationally with 29 passing TDs.
»Houston Head Coach Dana holgorsen and SMU head coach Sonny Dykes spent six seasons (2000-06) together on the staff of Texas Tech. The two served as 2000-04 receiver coaches and offensive co-coordinators together in 2005-06.
“SMU’s 7-0 start is the second time in the past three seasons.
“At 42.7 points per game, the SMU offense is currently sixth in the country.
LAST TIME AGAINST SMU
“The Cougars totaled 510 offensive yards in a 34-31 loss to SMU on October 24, 2019, at TDECU Stadium.
“Quarter-back Clayton tune completed his longest career pass with a 96 yard wide receiver Marquez Stevenson.
“Junior kicker Dalton Witherspoon had a perfect 3-for-3 on field goal attempts and had his two extra point attempts.
“Junior wide receiver Marquez Stevenson recorded a career-high 211 receiving yards and added two receiving touchdowns.
A WIN AT HOUSTON WOULD BE …
»Moves Houston to 5-0 in AAC, his best start since 2015 (5-0).
Take Houston’s winning streak to seven in a row, the longest on the program since Nov. 27, 2015-Sept. 29, 2016 (8 games). Houston’s six-game winning streak is the 10th longest active streak nationally.
»Move Houston to 34-12 at TDECU Stadium since the facility opened.
Be Houston’s first victory against a nationally ranked opponent since Oct. 27, 2018, against the No. 21/20 USF (57-36).
Move Houston to 4-0 at TDECU Stadium with one home game remaining (Nov. 19 vs. Memphis.).
Houston Football mini-maps are still available alongside one-game tickets for the remaining home games at TDECU Stadium. The Veer package starts at just $ 40, with fans choosing tickets to two Houston games. Fans can click here to purchase tickets.
Follow Houston Football on Twitter and Instagram at @UHCougarFB, and “Like” Houston Cougar Football on Facebook.