'Cats Fall To A-State

The second half told the story in Jonesboro Saturday night. Texas State stopped their passing game, the most efficient in the conference, yet folded on the run game. The 'Cats lost 38-21 and fell to 2-3 in SBC play.

This may have been one of the few games that Texas State out-passed the opponent, and certainly the first time on the road. However, the home team had their rushing attack on point, gaining 331 yards on the ground to Texas State's 160. The number 1 rushing defense in the conference folded against RB Michael Gordon who took the ball 20 times for 180 yards. This alone is more than any single rusher has put up against Texas State all season.

Tyler Jones was given the most responsibility so far this season. He attempted 28 passes, which were accurate until the second half. 5 of his 9 incomplete passes came in the 4th quarter. Completing 60% of his throws, Jones would have been credited with much more had Texas State scored once in the second half. His first pass on the wheel route to Terrence Franks went for 41 yards was good for a TD, the first of the game. The wheel route proved ineffective the remainder of the time.

Texas State's rushing game was shut down by the Arkansas State front 7. They held Lowe, Franks, Nutall, and Gay to under 160 on the day. This is the least efficient the rushing offense has been all season. Gay did show up, putting up 41 yards on 2 carries. This is something Texas State should look to, considering very few performers stepped up like the veteran 'blocking' running back.

Andy Erickson caught 4 passes for 51 yards, nearly a season high. Again, nobody caught more than 5 passes which seems to be the Tyler Jones way. Everybody but Lowe, Erickson, and Carden caught 2 or fewer passes. 10 receivers caught the ball on 19 completions. The surprising stat is that Jason Dann, the kicker, had more receiving yards than Ben Ijah and Isaiah Battle, arguably the two best receivers on the team.

The bottom line was that Texas State didn't have the second half push that would have led to a win. The 'Cats didn't score any second half points, for the first time all season. Arkansas State hogged the ball and the clock from the 3rd quarter on, exhausting the Texas State front 7. Next week they host Western Kentucky and Antonio Andrews, currently second in all purpose yards in the nation. Texas State will have to prove they can stop the running game at home much better than they did on the road against Arkansas State.

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