The Bobcats start their fifth week of the regular season with a winning record (2-1) after beating Stephen F. Austin 41-37 for their sixth straight victory over the Lumberjacks.
The players and coaches are preparing for their game with The University of Nevada, Reno this weekend the same way they would any week. However, the program coming to town has almost as much prestige as Texas Tech and possibly more than Houston.
“This is a very good football team,” said Coach Dennis Franchione. “We are not dropping off any with the team we are playing. It’s just a different style. (Nevada has) a very good offensive line. They are physical. They have the leading rusher in the nation.”
Quarterback Shaun Rutherford knows Nevada has a very good football team but he is not letting himself or his teammates indulge in any pre-game hype. The senior, coming off another solid game against SFA, wants to continue to execute the Bobcats’ brand of football.
Introducing a club sport to a university can cause growing pains almost instantly. The Texas State club hockey team felt those pains in its first season last year, but what emerged was the motivation to make everything about it better.
The Bobcats have started the season with a pair of competitive, season-opening games against one of the top club hockey teams in Texas: the Aggies of College Station. The Texas State team still practices and plays its home games in Austin, but there has been continuous positive reinforcement for the second-year program.
“I think we are better in almost every aspect of the game this year,” said Team Captain Casey Savage. “We have more talent, size, commitment and just an overall better-focused winning attitude. The hockey ‘systems’ we are learning are some of the same ones used by NHL teams today.”
Stephen F. Austin (1-2) will be making its first trip to Texas State (1-1) Saturday evening since the Bobcats made the move to the FBS.
“We are ready to play SFA now,” senior safety Jason McLean said. “We already got the taste of Texas Tech out of our mouth last week. We have already forgotten about that game. We got to take it one game at a time now.”
Texas State has dominated the series recently. The Bobcats have won five consecutive meetings, including their 35-26 win in Nacogdoches in 2011.
“Texas State is every bit as talented as any team we’ve played this season, if not better,” SFA Coach J.C. Harper said.” They have a ton of talent on both sides of the ball, and they will do a lot of the things they did last year. Defensively, they like to change things up. We will see a lot of blitzing.”
The Bobcats are in the midst of a new game week after recovering mentally and physically from their first loss of the season to Texas Tech.
“We are a lot more rejuvenated,” said Isaiah Battle, junior wide receiver. “We got our legs back under us. At the same time, we got to learn a lot about our opponent. We came into this week ready to work, feeling fresh. We’re hoping to get this win, because we need it.”
Players admitted the loss was disappointing, but it did not take long to erase the game from their memory. However, Battle is using the loss as further motivation during preparation for SFA.
“(We’re) definitely (preparing for SFA) the same if not more (than Houston/Tech),” Battle said. “We know what we don’t want to happen. We have definitely learned from our mistakes from the Tech game.”
Fireworks lit up the night sky and the spotlights shined brighter than ever over Texas State’s first FBS game, but one player notably did not record a rush, yard, catch or touchdown on the stat sheet.
Senior running back Marcus Curry, who had all of Texas State’s touchdowns in their Houston win, was sidelined. Curry missed the Tech game with a strained quad, adding to the laundry list of injuries that have piled up on Curry over his college-playing years.
Hello My Name is Xavier Daniels, Texas State Running BackWhat NFL player do you model yourself after?
If you could play any other sport, what would you play?
I’d run track.
What other position in football would you play besides safety?
What/who is your biggest inspiration?
Out of anywhere in the world, where would you want to travel to?
Anywhere in Europe.
What is a song that you have been listening to a lot lately?
“Pirates” – Rick Ross
What movie/show have you been watching as of late?
“Paid in Full.”
The aftermath may be overwhelmingly negative after a much-anticipated game, such as the one Texas State students have been talking about for almost a year, ends poorly. However, there were some positive thoughts following the Texas Tech match.
The Red Raiders handled the Bobcats the entirety of the game after the first three and a half minutes, which excited maroon and gold wearers that day. On a positive note, the Bobcats were able to force a fourth down on Texas Tech’s first series in which the Red Raiders fumbled. For the other 56 and a half minutes, the Bobcats were playing catch-up.
In a “David vs. Goliath” level of a matchup, the Bobcats had to come out swinging—which they did.
“We were ready to play Texas Tech last season, but we were not ready to win,” Coach Dennis Franchione said before the recent game against the Red Raiders.
Self-inflicted mistakes, a slow start and a lacking defense plagued the Bobcats in the biggest home game in Texas State history.
The defeat took place in front of a record 33,006 fans Saturday, dropping Texas State to 1-1. However, Coach Dennis Franchione believes even a solid showing from Texas State might not have gotten a different result.
Texas State added its first ever football game as an FBS member to the win column. The Bobcats will soon get to play what is arguably their most anticipated game of the season at home against Texas Tech Saturday.
“(Texas State) was on the road, and I’ll tell you what, they handled that ballgame in the first half,” Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said. “They are well coached. We saw them play last year, and they were up-and-down the field on us.”
Texas State experienced its first FBS win in school history over Houston Saturday 30-13, although the celebration did not last long as the team looks forward to an even bigger test against Texas Tech this weekend.
“I hope (the players started preparing) about 5:30 on Sunday when we got done with our team meeting,” Coach Dennis Franchione said. “We finished up our dialogue from the Houston game. Then we started our scouting report for the Texas Tech game.”
Momentum and excitement is bubbling from last week’s monumental win over the Cougars. The much talked-about Texas Tech game and the official unveiling of the expanded stadium end zone section have added intensity to the practice fields.