By Jonas Clark
“It is better than the alternative. We could be 0-3 right now.”
That was Coach Jeff Traylor’s response to the media Monday afternoon when asked about being the first coach in the history of the program to start 3-0. He goes on to say, “We don’t ever talk about winning and losing around here. We just talk about being the very best every day.”
That’s been the line, and the very best is what will be required of the UTSA Roadrunners when they take the field this Saturday at Legion Field against the 2-1 Blazers of the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
“You can see why they have won a lot of ball games. They have a fantastic coach. Bill (Clark) does a great job,” Traylor said. “They have got really, really good players and they execute. You can tell they have been winning for a long time, just tell by the way their kids play, they are used to winning.”
Winning the Blazers have done, and win they did last Thursday in a 42-10 routing of South Alabama (1-2) on the road. Redshirt freshman QB Bryson debuted as a starter with 319 yards passing for two touchdowns, completing 18/28 with no interceptions. His touch was on national display after he perfectly placed a TD in the hands of Austin Watkins in the back corner, halfway through the fourth quarter.
Lucero got the start after Tyler Johnston went down in week 2 against the University of Miami (FL). The QB may not be UTSA’s biggest threat this Saturday, as senior running back Spencer Brown looks to keep adding to his now-school record 36 rushing touchdowns, which he claimed after tallying three against South Alabama.
The Roadrunners enter Saturday’s contest with some accolades of their own. Sincere McCormick, the sophomore Judson alum, currently is second in rushing yards across the FBS with 377 yards. Freshman linebacker Jamal Ligon tallied up 19 tackles against Middle Tennessee to set a new single-game program record and earn the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week award. If it comes down to a kicking affair, the Roadrunners have the kicker for the job in Hunter Duplessis, who has a running streak of 16 consecutive made field goals, including his leading seven this season.
— Conference USA (@ConferenceUSA) September 28, 2020
One concern for UTSA this weekend will be the quarterback to lead the team. Frank Harris is a game-time decision after suffering a knee sprain on Friday, but 2020 transfer Josh Adkins showed he has the stuff to lead the charge if need be. On Adkins, Traylor said, “He missed a couple throws, but he bounced back. There are not many guys in the country who can run a two-minute drill as he did with one timeout and 40 seconds.”
Adkins joined the program this season as a redshirt junior after starting 22 games at QB the last three seasons at New Mexico State.
For all of Coach Traylor’s comments to the media, click HERE.
Before we wrap this up, you may have a difficult time keeping track of UAB’s players this weekend, as the names on their jerseys won’t match up with the players wearing them. For the Blazers, this weekend is the fourth year of their Children’s Harbor game, in which players each wear the last name of a child being treated at Children’s Harbor for serious illnesses. Here is a link for roster names and numbers if you need them.
This Saturday’s game kicks off at 11:30 am CST and will be broadcast live on Stadium. UAB allowed limited attendance at their season opener and returns home for the first time since.