Blog Entry

QUICK HITS: Southern Miss 49, Houston 28

Posted on: December 3, 2011 4:03 pm
Edited on: December 9, 2011 7:18 pm

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Keeping Houston out of a BCS bowl just cost the Golden Eagles somewhere in the neighborhood $1.6 million, but we don't think they much mind at the moment. Over three quarters the Golden Eagle defense held Case Keenum and Co. to under 300 total yards and just two scoring drives longer than 5 yards, helping Austin Davis (17-of-33, 279 yards, 4 TDs) and the USM offense to build an insurmountable 21-point fourth-quarter lead. Running back/receiver Tracy Lampley finished with 196 total yards, 125 of them receiving.

WHY SOUTHERN MISS WON: We could hem and haw about the specifics, but this game was about Southern Miss being the better team, top-to-bottom, hands-down. Their defense was better, harassing Keenum in a way few teams have -- All-CUSA end Cordarro Law was a terror -- and stoning the Cougar running game on multiple 3rd-and-shorts. Their running game was better, with Lampley, Desmond Johnson, and Austin Davis combining to average 5.4 yards over their 33 carries; the 11-play, 80-yard third-quarter touchdown drive that put the Eagles up 35-21 and firmly in control of the game featured Johnson converting 3rd-and-13 and 3rd-and-9 on the ground, plays unthinkable for Houston's meek rushing game to pull off. They had the better special teams, thanks to a blocked Houston punt returned by Furious Bradley for a touchdown.

And most damaging for the Cougars, Southern Miss had the better quarterback. Davis wasn't perfect, but he outplayed Keenum, who seemed bothered by the pressure, misfired on several passes, and finished with his lowest yards per-attempt (5.6) of the season. There simply wasn't a facet of the game where Houston was better. Not only did the Golden Eagles deserve the victory, they deserved to take it home by three touchdowns.

WHEN SOUTHERN MISS WON: Down 21 and desperate, Keenum converted on fourth down and took the Cougars to first down at the Eagle 19. But a sack and two incompletions set up 4th-and-16, and Law tore into the backfield for the sack that would essentially end the game.

WHAT SOUTHERN MISS WON: Their first Conference USA championship since 2003 and first under Larry Fedora. (Maybe their last under Fedora, too, as many coaching candidate lists as he's on.) As joyous as Saturday's triumph was, the Eagles still have to think about what might have been--if not for losses to Marshall and UAB, teams with a combined 9-15 record, Southern Miss would be off to a BCS bowl.

WHAT HOUSTON LOST: Oh, not much: just a perfect season, any hope for a Keenum Heisman, the conference title, a BCS bowl berth, millions of dollars. But other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?


Since: Sep 21, 2006
Posted on: December 3, 2011 8:09 pm

QUICK HITS: Southern Miss 49, Houston 28

Well, that doesn't tell the whole story. There is a reason why you didnt put the opponents in there. The Boise win Vs TCU should be tossed out. That leaves 4 wins and 1 loss. Utah beat not exactly a perrineal power Pittsburgh, Boise's last minute upset Vs Oklahoma, which as the other poster pointed out was Highly over rated, Boise beat another not exactly a powerhouse Wisconsin team in the '10 Rose and Utah defeated Alabama, prior to them going on their tear in the '08 Fiesta. Boise, TCU and Utah still get a Tip of the hat for accomplishing that for sure. I think the frustration is when you have a team such as those who appear to be  top calibur teams but aren't challenged during the year and then they get to play a team who has actually been tested during the year by top level competition it makes you think about how unfair it is that one team earned their way to a shot and risked losing along the way while the other played push overs all season and yet they get matched up in a top bowl game with over a month to prepare?? That screams for justice. Case and Point today Houston Cougars, I mean really, if they had won today they would have been in a BSC bowl instead of  teams like Ok State or K. State or Wisc or Mich State whose teams played a much better schedule. How fair is that? As it is, If the projections hold up I won't be watching the Sugar Bowl. I mean Michigan Vs TCU, come on! Neither deserve to be there. I hear it for the Non A-Q schools crying foul about being shut out but at the same time there needs to be a leveling of the scheduling so These Non A-Q schools can earn their way in Vs. running the table on a schedule of Cup cakes. Some good argument to both sides.\

I just heard one of the commentators say how is it fair when you look at a conferance as strong as the SEC is and you in theory could have a 12-1 Champion next who could get hopped by a team from a much lesser Conference who goes undefeated? My sentiments exactly. If Boise had not been tripped by TCU we'd have a mess on our hands. LSU just whooped the same school that Boise fans have pointed to all year for validation only LSU beat them after a full year of work so This BullDog team was much better than the one that lost to Boise in Sept. LSU really put it into perspective today as they destroyed Georgia as Boise did if not worse but had Boise played LSU schedule would they be undefeated? Not likely! I think the point is, you have to play better teams to Qualify for consideration. 

Vis 20/40 

Since: Oct 1, 2011
Posted on: December 3, 2011 6:46 pm

QUICK HITS: Southern Miss 49, Houston 28

i'm fairly certain I saw a stat today that said that non-bcs teams are 5-2 in BCS games. correct me if i'm wrong.

Utah won the Fiesta Bowl in 04 and the Sugar Bowl in 08.
Boise State won the Fiesta Bowl in 06 and 09.
Hawaii lost the Sugar Bowl in 07.
TCU lost the Fiesta Bowl in 09 and won the Rose Bowl in 2010.

So...get your facts straight.


Since: Aug 30, 2008
Posted on: December 3, 2011 4:53 pm

QUICK HITS: Southern Miss 49, Houston 28

Another reason teams from weak conferences should not be considered for BCS considerations. With teams like Houston, Boise State and others playing pathetic schedules and they always get beat by a sorry ass chump team at some point in the year. Then when they get a BCS bowl or a really good non-BCS bowl they get slaughtered with the exception of the year Boise beat Oklahoma but everyone knows Oklahoma was overrated as hell that year and it still took the most luck ever for Boise to beat them that day.

Another good reason for a playoff. That way fans of these teams can be happy their team gets into the playoff but when they are paired up in the first game against Bama, LSU, or other BCS conference school and get slaughtered by 50 points then from there on out they will not be crying so hard about having a BCS shot and would prefer a lesser bowl they might be able to win.

Good job Southern Miss, way to destroy Houston and end their BS hopes, Oops, I meant BCS hopes.

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