It's hard to believe, but were about a third of the way done with the college football season. It always goes by too fast and the thought of no football again gives me nightmares. Thankfully were not there yet so I thought it would be a good time to check in with our local universities. The Horns and Aggies get all the attention across these parts so I'm showing some love to the smaller guys.
UTSA Roadrunners: 2-2 overall, 1-0 in Conference USA
As a Texas State alum and UTEP fan from El Paso, I hate to admit it, but things are going well for the Roadrunners. They already have two road wins against D-I schools (New Mexico, UTEP) and have played relatively well in losses to Oklahoma State and Arizona, two very good BCS teams. You can see their confidence building with every game and almost forget the core group of guys have been together for three years now. They are learning how to compete, win and know each other well. The next four games will say a lot about the program's progress. A tough home game against Houston Saturday, then a long road trip to Marshall followed by two more home games against Rice and UAB. The chance to go bowling is there. That would be an incredible feat for a program this young. But first start with the Cougars. I expect fans to be in full force at the Alamodome.
Texas State Bobcats: 2-1 overall, 0-0 in Sun Belt Conference
OK, let me rid myself of all this Roadrunner praise and get to my Bobcats. Solid start to the season. Nice opening win at Southern Miss and took care of business against Prairie View at home before predictably losing 33-7 to Texas Tech on the road. The game was much closer than the score showed. The Bobcats botched two red zone chances early and Tech didn't break it open until the 4th quarter. Much like UTSA this weekend, Texas State has a big non-conference home game against a solid Wyoming squad. This will be a good test for Texas State before Sun Belt play when the Bobcats get three of their first four conference games in San Marcos.
UIW Cardinals: 2-2 record, No conference play this season
The Redbirds (can I call them that) are transitioning to D-I football so they've been up and down as expected. After a tough season opener, UIW bounced back with back-to-back wins at Benson Stadium. They played a highly ranked Sam Houston State team tough on the road last week before the game got away early in the second half. I like the progress and they should get over .500 this week when they welcome Eastern New Mexico for Hall of Fame weekend at Benson Stadium. Side note: New Orleans Saints owner and UIW supporter Tom Benson will be inducted into the UIW Hall of Fame on Saturday. How has this not happened yet!? The stadium is named after him! OK, moving on.
Trinity Tigers: 2-1 overall, 0-1 in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference
The Tigers bounced back with a home win last week against Sul Ross State after a crushing loss to TLU in their conference opener. Trinity plays conference foe Austin College on Saturday, but it's not an official game in the standings. The two meet again later this season in Sherman in an official conference matchup. Austin in 0-3 and Trinity should improve to 3-1. The Tigers are behind the ball when it comes to the conference championship so each win is important to determine final bids for the D-III playoffs. Yup, I totally just looked up NCAA D-III football, it's fantastic.
Great thing about this weekend is all four of these schools play at home. That rarely happens. Go out and show support. Remember, you can always DVR those pesky A&M, SEC and BIG 12 games.