The Mustangs are now on a two game winning streak. After an impressive win against Navy in overtime, the Mustangs absolutely obliterated Houston Baptist. While there is not a whole lot to decipher here, against a FCS opponent, we did get some crucial talking points before the Mustangs head to Orlando to take on UCF.
William Brown is the Starter
It looks like SMU had the same problem Clemson had. Both teams had pretty solid quarterbacks that were not playing up to the high standards set for them. Both teams decided to run with their true freshmen. Whether fans think it is fair or not, SMU appears to be turning to Brown to finish the season. I personally thought that it would have been better to finish the season with Ben Hicks, and let Brown take his red-shirt year. Apparently, Sonny Dykes believes that it is worth it for Brown to play this year and thinks that they have a good chance to win the AAC. I say this because there is no way Brown starts a sure-fire win game and wastes a valuable game of experience on Houston Baptist. In addition to that point, Brown has looked pretty good. He passed for over 300 yards and led his team into the end zone twice.
The rest of the offense looked pretty dang good too
Braeden West helped in the run game as he rushed for over 60 yards. In addition to him, we got to see Xavier Jones back in action. As Jones gets more time back on the field, the more he will be able to contribute to the offense. We even got to see a couple other guys in the running game like Merek Pierce and Jared Miles combining for 88 yards rushing.
It was also the same case on the receiving end. Everyone got involved including a newer receiver in Tyler Page, who might have just had himself a breakout game. Page went for over 100 yards receiving by himself, in addition to Roberson’s 100 yard day.
At the end of the day, the Mustangs offense generated nearly 700 yards of offense and won in style. They appear to be firing on all cylinders now after that initial three game stretch.
Reggie Roberson has peaked at the right time
We all knew James Proche was the main receiver going into the season. The big question was who would be the number two receiver? Roberson has been the answer. He came up big against Navy with a touchdown reception and a kickoff return for a touchdown. This game he was exceptional as well as he went for 104 yards receiving. He appears to be the next great SMU receiver if he can show these continual flashes of greatness.
The Defense was questionable
If you missed my AAC defensive analysis, click here. In that analysis, you would see the stats for SMU are somewhat mixed. The Mustangs really struggled against the pass, but were pretty decent against the run. The bad news is this trend continued against an FCS team. Houston Baptist quarterback, Bailey Zappe, threw for 226 yards and two touchdowns. While this is not a stellar performance by Zappe, it is concerning enough that the trend may continue. Especially next week against a very pass happy UCF Knights team.
Special Teams is a mixed bag
All I have to say about this section was the kickoff return for a touchdown. LaDarius Dickens did not stop there though. He totaled 183 yards just on kickoff returns. The kickoff return unit finished with 203 return yards. Keep in mind, this is Houston Baptist and not an AAC team. However, SMU put up 230 yards from kickoff returns with a new return man in Jordan Brooks-Wess averaging 59 yards per return.
The Mustangs have a tough game after this though as they play a really tough UCF team. The good news is SMU has peaked at the right time, while teams like Memphis have fallen off. Therefore, SMU’s true season, and hunt for a bowl game, begins now.