by Daniel Olsen | Most die-hard BYU football fans know all about the Cougars but once in a while it’s nice to get to know their not-so-familiar opponents. Let’s take a look at the UTSA program a little more to know what they’re all about.
1. The Roadrunners have never played the Cougars: BYU has played almost half of the 130 FBS teams but when it comes to teams a little further away from home, visits to small Texas schools don’t come that often. That doesn’t mean the Cougars don’t “Mess with Texas” though. In fact, the last time BYU lost to a Texas school was in 2011 to TCU. They have since beaten storied programs like the Texas Longhorns and Houston.
2. UTSA was established in 1969: The Roadrunners are a fairly new program as their university was established the same year that man landed on the moon. Their football team didn’t start until 2011.
3. The Roadrunners have a bigger seating capacity than Lavell Edwards Stadium: The Cougars can seat almost 64,000 but Alamo Stadium seats 64,000 exactly. The stadium was originally built for bigger tenants. The Alamo Bowl, top high school football games, and other professional games have been played there since it was constructed in 1940. The stadium has since been renovated to the huge venue it is now. They have also hosted a few Final Fours in college basketball.
4. The I-35 Orange vs Maroon Rivalry encompasses all sports: Originally, a trophy was awarded to the winning basketball team between the UTSA Roadrunners and Texas State Bobcats. With the expansion of the athletics program, the trophy is awarded at the end of the year on a points based system to the best athletic program of that year.
UTSA has gotten the better of their rivals just 57 miles up the interstate highway in San Marcos. At least in football, the Roadrunners have ousted the Bobcats in all four of their matchups on the gridiron, including an epic overtime showdown this year. They also lead 36-25 in the basketball rivalry.
5. Two UTSA football players have been selected in the NFL Draft: It used to be that the only time a Roadrunner was spotted on TV was if you tuned into Looney Tunes in the 90s on Saturday mornings. Now there are a couple that were drafted in the NFL in the last couple years. They weren’t last minute picks either.
In 2016, tight end David Morgan II was drafted in the 6th round by the Minnesota Vikings. He was the 188th overall pick. He had a few nice plays early in his career but a knee surgery has put his career currently on pause. He is currently a free agent so the jury is still out on if another team will pick him up.
In 2018, Marcus Davenport was drafted 14th overall in the first round of the NFL Draft. He was selected by the New Orleans Saints and, when healthy, has been a stellar acquisition. He recorded six sacks last year and helped give his team some momentum en route to a great regular season. He currently has an elbow injury but the hope is that he can return to give his team some defensive firepower.
Final Prediction: BYU won by over 50 in their first game, 40 in their second, and 30 in their third. While it isn’t ideal for this downward trend to continue, I think they will win by slightly less than last week. The spread is supposed to be around five touchdowns in most sports books. I will take BYU by four touchdowns.
Final Score Prediction: BYU 45 UTSA 17
Photo Courtesy Athlon Sports