College Football News Preview 2020: UAB Blazers Keys To The Season
Biggest Key To The UAB Blazers Offense
Enough with the turnovers. The UAB offense was banged up, it couldn’t convert third downs, and the passing game wasn’t consistent enough. However, the downfield passing was great, and the running backs were in place to help keep the clock moving.
But there were way, way too many giveaways.
The Blazers were last in Conference USA and 127th in the nation in turnovers, giving up 28 of them with two or more in ten games.
Interceptions were the biggest problem, throwing the second-most in college football with 20.
UAB lost all three games when it turned it over three times or more, and was -11 in turnover margin in the five losses.
In the 13 losses since the program came back to life, the team failed to be on the positive side of the turnover margin in any of them.
Biggest Key To The UAB Blazers Defense
Continue to be a rock against the run. There’s a good group for the front three, the linebacking corps is among the best of all the Group of Five programs, and everyone can hit for what was the nation’s 20th best run defense that allowed 118 yards per game.
But it allowed over 260 yards on the ground in the Conference USA title game loss to Florida Atlantic and in the bowl game loss to Appalachian State. The Blazers only gave up over 150 rushing yards to one other team – it lost to Southern Miss 37-2.
The Blazers went 9-1 when allowing fewer than 150 yards – only losing to Tennessee. Over the last three seasons, they’re 18-0 when giving up 120 rushing yards or fewer.
Key UAB Blazers Player To A Successful Season
PK Matthew Quinn, RFr.
Or sophomore Wilson Beaverstock. Someone has to replace Nick Vogel, who nailed 19-of-23 field goals without a miss over the final seven games.
The kicking game didn’t come into play in a big way in any one game – none of the UAB games were decided by a field goal – but Vogel nailed both of his tries in the five-point win over North Texas, and was 2-for-2 in the six-point win over Louisiana Tech.
In what should be an improved Conference USA, there will be at least one game that comes down to a big kick, and Quinn has to be solid.
Key Game To The UAB Blazers Season
at Louisiana Tech, Oct. 31
Louisiana Tech was ripping through the season after losing the opener to Texas, and then came the suspension of several key players at the absolute worst time. Things worked out, but not before the Bulldogs lost back-to-back road games to Marshall and UAB.
It was the third loss in three years to the Blazers.
This year the game is at home, but UAB gets a week off to prepare. If UAB can pull this off, with at Old Dominion, North Texas, and at UTEP to follow, it should be in a position to take yet another West title when Southern Miss comes to Birmingham for the regular season finale.
– UAB Blazers Schedule Breakdown & Analysis
2019 UAB Fun Stats
– UAB 2nd Quarter Points: 124 – UAB 4th Quarter Points 27
– Sacks: UAB 44 for 253 yards- Opponents 25 for 163 yards
– Fumbles: Opponents 28 (lost 13) – UAB 15 (lost 8)