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FAU defeats North Texas 41-17 to win first ever Conference USA Championship

FAU wins their first conference title since 2007 in Lane Kiffin’s first season.

Conference USA Championship - North Texas v Florida Atlantic Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

After FAU defeated North Texas 69-31 earlier in the season, breaking just about every school record and Conference USA record in the process, Seth Littrell claimed that the loss had more to do with North Texas not being focused and not playing to their potential, rather than FAU outplaying them.

But in the rematch North Texas didn’t fare any better. FAU (10-3, 9-0), defeated North Texas (9-4, 7-2), 41-17 to win their first ever Conference USA Championship.

Kalib Woods was named the MVP of the game as North Texas couldn’t cover him. Woods broke the school record for most receiving yards in a game with 208 yards, on six receptions for two touchdowns.

The win gives FAU their first conference title since 2007 when they were a member of the Sun Belt, gives FAU their first 10-win season in school history, and puts the Owls in elite company as they join WKU as the only C-USA teams to go 9-0. The win pushes Lane Kiffin to No. 2 on FAU's career win list. That’s not a joke. Neither is this FAU team.

The Owls started the game fast as they scored the game’s first 10 points in the opening quarter behind a stout defense and some trickery on offense. After marching down the field but settling for a 24-yard Greg Joseph field, the Owls would then use two trick plays to get into the end zone.

After outscoring UNT 10-0 in the first quarter, the second quarter didn’t get any better as UNT continued to have trouble moving the ball. FAU took advantage, as Devin Singletary would add a three-yard touchdown run and a five-yard touchdown run.

At halftime FAU led 27-0 and out-gained the Mean Green offense 382-141. If FAU didn’t settle for three red zone field goal attempts due to poorly timed penalties, the lead might have been larger.

After forcing another three-and-out to start the half, Kalib Woods would put the game out of reach with a 58-yard touchdown reception from Jason Driskel to give FAU a 34 point lead.

The defense was phenomenal as they finished the game with nine sacks, breaking a C-USA Championship Game record for sacks in a game. Jalen Young recorded two interceptions, and set a school record with 20 team interceptions on the season.

Devin Singletary would finish with 164 yards and three touchdowns. Singletary now has 29 touchdowns and is currently tied with FAU’s running backs coach Kevin Smith, for the most rushing touchdowns by a C-USA back in a season.

After three straight 3-9 seasons, FAU is now the best team in Conference USA. Enjoy it FAU fans. After so many years at the bottom, Lane Kiffin has put FAU on the top and as long as the Lane Train is in Boca the Owls should remain there.