Sun Belt Showdown: UT San Antonio Roadrunners vs Texas State Bobcats
UTSA and Texas State have met only once, but one game produced enough heat-and-hatred to created a branded showdown between CUSA and the Sun Belt.
Roadrunners (2-0) @ Bobcats (1-2), Saturday September 23, 6:30CST on ESPN3
This is more than just a mere Sun Belt Showdown. It’s a damn H-E-B I-35 Showdown, pitting one of CUSA’s best against arguably Sun Belt’s worst this Saturday in San Marcos.
The Bobcats may not be very good, but an in-state, peer-to-peer rivalry is just what was needed to stoke the fanbases, who have made their salty opinions known all week long.
Heat-and-Hatred my friends. Heat. And. Hatred.
When last these titans met
The first and only time these bitter adversaries met was in 2012, and it wasn’t bad. The Roadrunners emerged the 38-31 victor behind a 3 TD performance from UTSA QB Eric Soza. Bobcats QB Shaun Rutherford nearly won the game for Texas State by himself, throwing 2 TDs and rushing for one, too. Maybe the 2017 rematch with be just as epic!
What makes us think the Bobcats can win?
Did you see that Texas State game against Appalachian State? The Bobcats completely shut down Mountaineers RB Jalin Moore (9 carries, 14 yards), and nearly recorded the upset. The Bobcats have a solid front seven that only allows 89 yards a contest – tied with Auburn for 12th stingiest in the nation. Junior LB Frankie Griffen (6-0 205) leads a defense that has nine sacks on the season, tops in the Sun Belt. Do not underestimate this defense.
True, the Bobcats will need to score to win, and QB Damian Williams hasn’t been great. But he wasn’t bad in Week 3, when he put 260 yards and a TD on (again) the Mountaineers. It was Williams’ best performance of the year, by far. Perhaps the Mississippi State transfer is getting a firm grip on the playbook just in time for THE SHOWDOWN.
UTSA seems like the better team, but…
Did you see that Roadrunners game against Baylor? Yes, UTSA delivered one of the G5’s more celebrated P5 knockouts. And many of our broad assessments of UTSA is based on the glamour of this win. It’s really all we’ve got. After all, UTSA’s game with Houston was canceled (thanks, Harvey), and their only other test has come against FCS opponent, Southern Jaguars. The Roadrunners put up 51 points on the Jags with 4 TD passes from QB Dalton Strum (6-2 205).
Baylor lost to Liberty in Week 1, and Southern is, well, Southern. What do we really know about the Roadrunners? Texas State is about to find out.
Pride and bragging rights are just two things the Bobcats and Roadrunners are playing for!
The winner of THE SHOWDOWN gets to keep this:
Ok, so it’s not the most artfully designed or creatively concepted trophy. In fact, it kind of looks like an assistant AD was assigned to visit the trophy shop and pick something that was in stock. Here are three better trophies, just off the top of my head:
- A Solid Iron H-E-B Shopping Cart with a Loose Wheel
- A Ten Gallon Hat Worn By Lee Horsley in an Episode of Matt Houston
- A Blood Stained Turquoise Belt Buckle Found at a Logan’s Steakhouse Parking Lot
Should the schools adopt any or all of my genius ideas, DM me on Twitter and we can discuss a payment plan.
The more I think about it, the more I expect a competitive game in San Marcos, where the fans seem to have legit disdain for UTSA. The Roadrunners, however, have already taken down one Texas rival. I suspect they have enough to dump another.
A former notary public, Jeremy Harper is a professional writer and Chief Instigator for Storm the Castle Creative. He spends much of his free time staring blankly into space.