Recap of UTSA’s loss to Southern Miss:
Humbling Loss: Southern Miss simply dominated UTSA Saturday in a critical Conference USA matchup for both teams. With a pedestrian offense effort to begin the game, UTSA really never gave themselves a chance to win while USM made big plays throughout the course of the game. The loss drops UTSA’s over record to 1-6. With five games remaining on the schedule, this loss vastly decreases UTSA’s chances of reaching post-season play in 2015.
Just Not Enough Offense: UTSA had a tough go of it, especially early in the game. With multiple three and outs in the first half, UTSA really never had a chance to score in the first half. Their one drive that showed promise early on ended in a redzone fumble. UTSA was out-gained in total offense in the first half 81 yards to 350 yards. Things did improve in the second half but by then, it was too late. UTSA finished with 205 yards of total offense compared to USM’s 556 yards.
Hard Hat D Good Early: For the second straight game, UTSA’s defense kept them in the game when they probably shouldn’t have been. On three possessions in the first half, Southern Miss had first and goal and the ‘Runners held him to field goals. Eventually, UTSA’s defense would go from bend to break as Southern Miss pulled away in the second half.
Offensive Line Woes: UTSA’s offensive line had troubles with Southern Miss. That could have been a combination of struggles with individual matchups and the play of a young quarterback. QB Dalton Sturm’s pocket presence was sporadic at best. On the run-game, there didn’t appear to be many running lanes expect for a few plays where Jarveon broke loose.
Sturm Tough: Making his second-career start, QB Dalton Sturm took his fair share of hits on the night. The Golid-native was sacked five times and tackled very hard seemingly one or twice every possession. Sturm played the entire game for UTSA but looked banged up by the end of the game. His production: 6 for 22 passing for 66 yards with 1 touchdown. He rushed 18 times for 24 yards with 2 fumbles.
Defensive Playmaking Continues: The lone bright spot Saturday night may have been the defense’s ability to continue to create turnovers. Bennett Okotcha had two interceptions, Michael Egwuagu added another interception, while Marcus Davenport forced a fumble that Stanley Dye recovered. Despite giving up big yards, the defense did a good job keeping UTSA in the game for as long as they could by forcing these four turnovers.
Much Needed Bye Week: The following players did not play for UTSA: QB Blake Bogenschutz, WR Kenny Bias, S Nate Gaines, S Darryl Godfrey, LG Kyle McKinney, and TE Triston Crossland. During the game, starting Center Juan Perez-Isidoro suffered a leg injury that required him to be helped off the field. He did not return and was seen on the sideline in a walking boot with crutches. UTSA has a bye next week before travelling to North Texas on Oct. 31.