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Sunday, October 20, 2019

Commentary

Questions leading up to Houston at Tulane


WEB-Justin-Tijerina-IMG_1072

Tom Herman pumps up his team ahead of SMU matchup. | Justin Tijerina/The Cougar

 

With No. 24 Houston going on the road against a familiar opponent, Tulane University, on Friday, some questions still linger.

How is the offense different from last year under head coach Tom Herman?

In the 2014 season, the offense was struggling to score touchdowns, failing to turn third conversions into first downs. Although there was a burst of dynamics from the offense after Greg Ward, Jr. started on the last eight games of the season, the offense came up short at times.

This year, with Herman in charge of the program, things are different. The offense looks more in sync, moving the ball in various ways. They’re able to outscore their opponents, with the exception of the University of Louisville, a team that managed to play Houston to keep a minimal score.

With the Cougars being undefeated, will it add more pressure on the team?

Houston hasn’t had a season where it’s won the first five games since former head coach John Jenkins, who went 8-0 in the 1990 season.

This feat was accomplished by Herman when he brought the must-win mentality from his tenure as an offensive coordinator at Ohio State University. His program is not a formula that is being tested. It’s a working formula that has shown results since his debut game at the start of the season.

Will the outcome be different from last year’s season?

With the memory of last year’s loss to Tulane at home, the outcome should be different in Houston’s favor. The Cougars have shown more aggressiveness since their game against Louisville.

Beating a team that the majority of people expected to win is a major confidence boost, not just for the fans but for the players as well. It is worthy to play for a coach who knows his system works.

However, the Cougars should not be overconfident. There is always a small margin of unpredictability. Anything can happen, even to the best of teams.

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