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Monday, December 9, 2019

Football

Ahead of Cincinnati, fans respond to Tune’s performance


Fans have had generally favorable reviews of sophomore quarterback Clayton Tune through his first game. | File photo

Fans have had generally favorable reviews of sophomore quarterback Clayton Tune through his first game. | File photo

The Cougars have been on an emotional roller coaster the past few weeks, and with sophomore quarterback Clayton Tune having a successful first start of 2019, some superfans are optimistic the season can still be a success.

Tune led the Cougars to a season-high 46 points against the Mean Green in the team’s first game without senior quarterback D’Eriq King.

The sophomore from North Texas finished the night with 124 yards and a touchdown passing while also rushing for 105 yards, leaving fans buzzing.

“The Cougars came out to prove that this season hasn’t been redshirted,” said public relations senior and superfan Edwin Mascorro. “There was energy. Tune will continue to gain confidence.”

Mascorro was not the only one excited about Tune’s performance against North Texas.

“I was impressed by his running ability and look forward to seeing what he can do for the rest of the season,” said Patrick Ray, who has been a fan of the Cougars since 1988. “The snaps were better. I liked how Tune led the scoring drive right after halftime. We needed that coming off the last three games.”

Another fan was impressed with the experience Tune showcased.

“He showed lots of poise that’s normally seen by quarterbacks with more experience,” said Hugh Bob Lawrence Jr., who graduated from UH in ’82. “Tune was able to go through the progressions to get the best option. It was nice to see that once he was out of the pocket. He still made accurate passes on the run.”

All three superfans agreed the football team can make a run to qualify for a bowl game.

The upcoming game against Cincinnati will be a test to see how Houston will perform in a matchup against a strong opponent with the Tune-led offense.

Despite the recent criticism the program has received after the redshirt announcements from King and senior wide receiver Keith Corbin, the three fans continue to support the Cougars.

Ray said he understands the criticism and frustration from some fans that two of the brightest stars on the team will not be on the field, but he compared the football program’s current situation to the basketball team’s a few years ago.

“When (Kelvin) Sampson took over the basketball program, it was in about as bad a shape as one can get,” Ray said. “He got us out of that hole, but it took time. Now, we have a great new arena and nearly sellout crowds after two NCAA Tournament appearances. We have to keep that energy for the football program.”

While Ray saw the perspective of both sides, others felt it was unfair to give up on Tune and the Cougars.

“It is disappointing fans would not support the players, regardless of their record,” Lawrence said. “If they saw the excitement and passion of the players at UNT, it was clearly seen that they were giving their best. I see no quit in the team, so fans should not quit on them.”

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