Dos Coogs is doing Halloween in style. Today, we take a look at two questions before we start to focus on SMU.
1. What is the trickiest game left for the Coogs?
Brad Towns (played baseball for the Cougars): Memphis was THE game before the season started and that hasn’t changed. We will likely win the West before we head up there on Thanksgiving day but they are the only team left that poses any danger.
Memphis is a different animal than SMU, Temple, or Tulane. They have similar talent to us and a good enough offense to have a puncher’s chance. Plus, this game is always a war. Each of the last 4 games have been decided by 4 points or fewer.
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How close have games with Memphis been? In our last 4 meetings, Memphis leads in total points, 148-145, while UH leads in yards, 1924-1914.
Ryan Monceaux (Publisher, GoCoogs.com): Temple is the biggest November game for the Coogs for a lot of reasons.
First, they’ll come in here with a winning record. As it stands today, they’re the only AAC team we play with a winning record other than USF. We desperately need quality wins and this is as quality as we have left.
Second, I have this football gambling theory that I’m applying to this game. I think it’s pretty hard getting up for a third big game in a row. Temple will have just faced Cincinnati and UCF before they come to Houston. The last two of those games are on the road. Fade Temple – bet UH big.
But wait…the same three-game theory is true for UH, too: after a big match-up with USF then a roadie against our “rival” SMU this weekend, the Coogs will be playing three big games in a row (SMU is considered big because they are a “rival” and will be up for us). Will the Coogs be able to come with their A-game?
I think we are quite a bit better than Temple. The Owls don’t have the speed or athletes to keep up with us and our defense should match up well with their plodding offense.
Finally, and most importantly, a win in the Temple game should give UH the West division title.
2. Did UH get screwed in the CFP Rankings?
Monceaux: No. As I tweeted moments after we realized we were left out, UH’s position doesn’t matter now. If the Coogs have 12 wins on the afternoon of December 1st, we’re going to the NY6. There’s no question about it. And if we don’t have 12 wins, we’re not going to the NY6. There’s no question about it.
Win and you’re in. Simple as that. Being ranked at this point in time is just for bragging rights.
Towns: I don’t believe so. Of course the knee-jerk reaction is to say that a 7-1 record should be there (especially with a win over a ranked USF). But our resume doesn’t really support it currently – especially since schedule strength is a factor.
USF was a solid win but they were a top 25 team in name only. They were completely exposed by the Coogs. USF, much like UCF, built their undefeated record on a pretty weak schedule. But at the end of the day, the first CFP ranking always creates a ton of hype and controversy but means nothing.
There’s a long way to go before the final CFP ranking with a lot of significant games still to be played. The only way for us to get into the final CFP poll where it matters is to win out. We have little margin for error since the AAC is weaker than it ever has been.
Cover Photo By Mario Puente
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