How Memphis triumphed as Houston blew a 17-0 halftime lead at home

(Patrick) #1

Memphis does seem to be about the closest thing to a rivalry that we have at this point. We hate them and they hate us equally and the games have been close.

Conference realignment ended more than a few annual rivalries, but there’s a couple new ones that have become among the most entertaining in all of college football. For Houston and Memphis, it’s a renewal of a rivalry that dates back across decades and multiple conferences. The two teams have played nothing but close games with crazy finishes since lining up as members of the American Athletic Conference in 2013, and Thursday night’s showdown in Houston was no different.

(Patrick) #2

“It was a multitude of things,” head coach Major Applewhite said of Houston’s second half collapse, “from receivers from Memphis making great plays, us being out of position at times, taking the bait on double moves, a pass interference penalty that extends a drive — there was also a special teams touchdown in there that was huge as well. But a lot of their deep shots that they were taking in the second half weren’t connecting….It was a number of things, whether it was poor technique, poor eyes, pass interference that extends a drive.”

(Patrick) #3

Even while on different teams, Anthony Miller and Ed Oliver continue to be the two best players in the conference. Miller has been unguardable, and Oliver continues to destroy the opposition. Miller gave Houston’s secondary fits, and Oliver finished with six tackles, a sack, and 2.5 tackles for loss.

(Patrick) #4

Kicking to Tony Pollard defies logic.

Houston learned the lesson many others have at this point: Don’t kick the ball off to Memphis sophomore Tony Pollard.

On Thursday, he had a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that cut Houston’s lead to 24-14 in the third quarter. It was Pollard’s third kickoff return for a touchdown this season, and fifth for his career.

When will teams figure out Memphis likely has the nation’s most dangerous return man?

“There was some great blocks on that, but that was just a phenomenal return,” Norvell said. "Tony ran through tackles. He willed himself into that end zone and that’s a play I’ll remember the rest of my life. I promise you.”

(Patrick) #5

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“There’s a lot of things I knew coming into this season in terms of our competitive experience,” he said. “This team does not have a lot of competitive experience. It’s never an excuse, but hopefully the last two weeks we’re learning as a football team and developing some competitive experience. What does that mean? That means you haven’t been in a lot of damn games and haven’t been in a lot of crunch-time situations.”

(Chris) #6

“Out of positions at times”
??? This has been the case the entire season. It starts with our OL, to WR’s, TE’s, ST and the entire defense.
That is what the Spring is for. That is what Summer camp is for to finalize.
Kicking to Pollard…
We do not have any tapes on Memphis? Was this their first game? How effective has Pollard been on KR’s this season? So why did we kick to him?
These three crucial areas alone are on the Coaching staff. There are no excuses for these.
Our Defense played well until Tulsa. Now it looks as if our opponents have us figured out. That is a huge concern. 87 points in the last two games does not lie.
The more I look at every game and the overall body of work I come back to the same conclusion. Bad Coaching is costing us this season.


Defense played a variety of soft zone/prevent that Memphis picked to pieces. And it sounds like we did not scout their return man. Then the pooch kick; that was just embarrassing.


On Miller’s 52 yd catch that setup TD #5, play by play guy screams “he adjusts to the ball!” That sums up what seems to be the problem with our secondary coverage outside of the red zone. They chase guys around but don’t look for the ball let alone adjust to it so make a play. That’s coaching.