UTSA Thriving As Underdogs

UTSA has lined up as heavy underdogs three times this season -- by 17 points or more -- and has emerged from those three games with a 2-1 record.

Asked Monday if he thinks his team is developing an underdog mentality, UTSA coach Frank Wilson said his team really just relies on the same mentality each week.

At the same time, he couldn't help quizzing the media about the forecast for this week's Conference USA West division showdown against Louisiana Tech.

"We're 20 again?" Wilson asked, smiling.  "Good."

So far this season, UTSA has been installed as nearly three-touchdown underdogs against Arizona State, Southern Miss and Middle Tennessee State.

The Roadrunners led Arizona State by 16 in the second half at home in September and lost, 32-28.  

They led from wire to wire against Southern Miss in October, also at home, and won, 55-32.

Last weekend, playing on the road at Middle Tennessee, they sped to a 21-point lead in the first half and prevailed, 45-25.

"You look at those teams," Wilson said.  "Those are quality teams.  When they boast the record that they (have) and they're beating (Southeastern Conference) opponents, it's hard not to view them in the light that they're in."

Southern Miss won earlier this year at Vanderbilt.  Middle Tennessee won on the road at Missouri.

"Look at Louisiana Tech's performance in their game against Arkansas (a 21-20 loss in Fayetteville), a game that they could have easily won," Wilson said.  "(Look at) the success and the amount of points they're scoring offensively.  How dynamite they are on both sides of the ball ... I respect the pundits and their opinions.  

"I don't pay that much attention but I respect their opinion.  So we just have to focus on us and do the things that we need to do."

UTSA running back Jarveon Williams said the team approaches each game the same way no matter what is being said outside the locker room.

"If people pick us as underdogs, I guess that's how we like it," he said.  "People don't really expect a lot out of us.  But we still find a way to show up and play a good game.  Coach Wilson does a good job of instilling that attitude in us."

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