the daily: the curse, the QB, and the penalties


Today, the media meets with Doug Belk and Donovan Smith for the first time since he was announced as the starter. Also expected: Patrick Paul, Joseph Manjack IV, and David Ugwoegbu. Thoughts from Dana’s presser and some family stuff, too.

the daily #29 | Archives

What Do You Get The Woman That Has It All? Today is August 29, 2023. It has been 40 years to the day since my one and only sibling was born. My little sister Jamie is a UHD grad and has produced two amazing daughters who are caught up in the GoCoogs Spirit (that photo up there!).

Jamie and I were not close as kids but I’m lucky that we’ve become much closer as adults. Our distance in childhood likely stems from our annual trips to Sears Portrait Studio. She couldn’t hang:


Jamie had been “the curse” when it came to UH sports. For 15 years, we’d pick a game or 2, and she’d come, and … UH would always lose. Football, baseball, didn’t matter. Finally, we found one the Coogs couldn’t lose! And it was her birthday!

first game in the new stadium!

But UTSA Meep Meep’d all over that one.

She finally got into the win column in 2016 at NRG in the opener vs. OU. Not a bad time to finally win one. Happy 40th birthday, Jamie. I love you.

Dana Presser. Some positive things that came out of Dana’s presser on Monday:

– Chidozie Nwankwo has matured and grown up, Dana said. That’s good news – he’s the leader of that DL group, and they all respect his work in the interior.

– Dana says 90 players will dress out for UTSA while 30 others will not. Mostly walk-ons and injured players.

– The number of D1 transfers in the two-deep still surprises me. There are 24 in total that have transferred over the last few years. There are also 10 JUCOs and ten recruits UH signed out of high school. Either you start plugging in more HS guys into it, or you’re looking at massive turnover yearly. But it has been this way since Major Applewhite. Still, 42 new scholarship players is a lot.

– Right tackle is the spot on the offense to watch. If Unije can do his part to keep Donovan Smith clean, it’s a huge win for UH. He had a rough game against UTSA last year and was demoted. After 68 snaps vs. UTSA in the opener, it took until the last snap he played against ECU (game 11) to get to 69 total snaps since then. He’s got to show me something.

Clean It Up. One thing that hasn’t been discussed with the media (but apparently was a topic for the team in the spring): penalties. Last year, UH had 11 vs. UTSA, 12 against Tech, 10 vs. Kansas, 10 vs. Rice, and 9 vs. Tulane to start the year. 52 accepted penalties in five weeks. That was 454 yards worth of penalties.

To show another way, the worst day (penalty-yard-wise) an opponent had in the regular season last year was the 54 yards UTSA racked up. UH had more than 54 yards of penalties nine times.

Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, is proud to be a corporate sponsor as the Official Personal Injury Law Firm for the University of Houston Athletics.

“As a University of Houston alum, I am honored that the University of Houston Athletics chose our firm to be their official and exclusive personal injury law firm,” says Stewart J. Guss, the firm’s founder.