Never apologize, the starting walk-on, and the magic number

Non-stop football today: never apologize, a walk-on now starting, and UH’s magic number is 28 and has been for 20 years.

the daily #37 | 9/6/2023 | Archives

Apologies. Carter Yates from Dave Campbell’s said something that stuck with me: Don’t apologize for winning. I’ve heard it before, but this time it clicked. Win a game and move on. Teams are great at that, fans are terrible at it. Listen to our interview with Carter here.

Living The Dream. Hakeem Ajijolaiya played about 70% of his 44 defensive snaps lined up at NT Saturday (he also had five more on FG/PAT kick team). He was deservedly given a scholarship in mid-August, and a month later, he’s starting games.

Hakeem is listed as the starter at NG this week and had the start there against UTSA. He’s worked himself into the #2 spot of UH Hakeems all-time (and #1 for being named Hakeem while on campus).

The rotation on the interior line against Rice and TCU will be interesting. We could see fewer guys against Rice, and maybe DL coach Brian Early could get some guys back for the Big 12 opener.

Sweet Spot. During the Sumlin years, it hit me that UH wins about 90% of their games when they give up 28 points or less – basically, a touchdown a quarter. That sounds doable, right? I looked it up at some point, and Briles and Sumlin won exactly 90% of games (54-6) when they gave up 28 points or less.

So I broke it down by coach since Briles (2003-present), and it’s holding steady at 88.7%. So I went up and down a little to see where the sweet spot was.

GoCoogs has loosely kept up with this stat since we started the site. But here’s an update through the UTSA game:

Coach≤ 24≤ 28≤ 31≤ 35

Still think 28 points is the magic number. Not a huge statistical difference between 24 and 28 ppg given up, but once you get to 31 points, the record gets considerably worse. In games where an opponent scores 25-28, UH is 20-6. In games where an opponent scores 29-31, UH is 9-12.

The most surprising thing is that since Tony Levine, UH has won 91% of games when giving up 28 or fewer (52-5).

After holding UTSA to 14, Dana Holgorsen has held half of opponents (24 of 48) to 28 or fewer points.

Follow GoCoogs on YouTube

No one has more fun with Cougar Athletes, showing their personalities, quirks, and behind-the-scenes action, than Follow us on YouTube today!

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.