On a day of remembrance, the UTSA Roadrunners delivered an unforgettable performance.
The UTSA Roadrunners made a statement last week in their victory over Illinois. On Saturday night, Jeff Traylor’s team made another one with a 54-0 shutout of Lamar University. It was the first shutout in program history, and it came in the home opener of the program’s 10th season.
“This is important today,” Coach Traylor said after the game, “but it’s not near as important as all those people that gave their lives for our country the last 20 years.”
— Phillip Higginbotham (@Phil_guard) September 11, 2021
On the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the contest between the Roadrunners (2-0) and the Cardinals (1-1) had somber beginnings. Before the playing of the national anthem, the crowd inside the Alamodome observed 20 seconds of silence in honor of those who perished on that day, and sacrificed their lives in the years since. It didn’t take long, however, until the crowd of 16,229 was once again rocking.
Home Field Advantage
“We had to fix our headphones. We couldn’t hear each other, it was just so loud,” Traylor said of the crowd.
Things really turned up just three minutes into the game when senior Sheldon Jones returned the first punt of the game 76 yards for a touchdown to start the scoring. “Just hearing the crowd just roar,” Jones recalled to the media afterward,” Honestly, that’s one of my best memories from here.”
The crowd would roar for a touchdown six more times in the game, as the defense added a score of their own, while the offense added four of their own. UTSA’s elite punter Lucas Dean had the night off as the offense scored on their first eight drives, ended their ninth and final drive in victory formation.
— Jonas Clark (@jarkclonas) September 12, 2021
Playing behind from the start, Lamar University could never get their footing as the Roadrunner defense prevented them from advancing to UTSA’s side of the field until partway through the second quarter. Throughout the game, the Cardinals gained just 106 yards of offense, 89 on the ground and 33 through the air, while losing 17 yards.
In one half of action, quarterback Frank Harris picked apart the Cardinals’ defense, completing 13-of-15 passes for 118 yards for no scores or interceptions. His arm opened up a running game that saw junior sensation Sincere McCormick total 46 yards and two touchdowns on just seven carries in the first half alone. With a 34-point lead at halftime, Josh Adkins started the third quarter, replicating Harris for 11-of-13 passing and 134 yards, though he tossed a pair of touchdown passes as well.
It was a dominating performance.
Next Up: Middle Tennessee (1-1)
“It’s gonna be very hard,” Traylor remarked after the game. “The next six days, everybody’s going to tell us how great we are, and we’re fixing to play a Middle Tennessee team that played our tails off last year, that came down to one play.”
FINAL! UTSA opens its home schedule with the first shutout in program history, blanking Lamar at the @Alamodome. NEXT: UTSA hosts Middle Tennessee on Saturday at 5 pm on ESPN+.
— UTSA Football 🏈 (@UTSAFTBL) September 12, 2021
Middle Tennessee lost their game this weekend against Virginia Tech 35-14 following their Week 1 victory over Monmouth 50-14. Quarterback Bailey Hockman connected with receiver Jimmy Marshall eight times for 111 yards in Blacksburg, Virginia, and looks to test the UTSA secondary next weekend in San Antonio. Hockman had 213 yards passing and three touchdowns against Monmouth, and his abilities could be a problem for the Roadrunners who gave up 266 yards and three scores to Illinois through the air.