The Houston Cougars overcame a sloppy start to win an important early season road test against the Cincinnati Bearcats in fromt of a national television audience Thursday night.
Greg Ward Jr overcame a sore shoulder that clearly has continued to bother him and the defense had a gritty performance to preserve to road conference win in a game the Cougars had to adapt to find a way to win.
As is the case each week, Cougar Digest hands out it's game balls to the Cougars top performers of the game.
Steven Taylor - The senior linebacker had a tremendous game from start to exclamation point finish when he intercepted a Hayden Moore pass and returned it 74 yards for a score that pretty much put away the hard fought game for the Cougars. On top of that, Taylor finished with a tremendous stat line - Team leading nine tackles, two sacks and the amazing pick-6.
Linell Bonner - Although Bonner did not find the end zone Thursday night, he had a big game helping to be a consistent target for Greg Ward Jr. Bonner finished his day with eight catches and 119 yards. Chance Allen could be another option here as well. He finished with the first score of the game but had less catches and yards than Bonner.
Howard Wilson - Wilson is beginning to show some plays that show why he had coaches feeling good about their options to replace recent first round draft pick William Jackson. He had a dropped interception in the first half that was a sure pick-6 but made up for it late in the game with a pick-6 on the next defensive play after Taylor's big interception return to seal the game. Wilson finished with eight tackles and a pass breakup to go along with his two interceptions.
Greg Ward Jr. - It wasn't Ward's best game or his most crisp performance but he was very gritty and led his team through it all. His stat line ends up as 24 of 36 passing for 326 yards with the one score and two interceptions. He also finished with a career high 26 carries for 73 yards and 2 scores on the ground.