Cougars storm to shutout of Cardinals
After playing one of the top games in program history last weekend, football followed their impressive first act with a 42-0 win against the Lamar University Cardinals on Saturday.
Although the win took longer than expected due to a rain delay, the Cougars were en route to their first win of the season at TDECU Stadium.
“I’m really proud of the entire team for handling that kind of adversity,” Head coach Tom Herman said. “We do train for that kind of chaos, but for them to sit through what amounted to a three-hour rain delay and then come out with more energy and better play, to be honest with you, after a break was great.”
Herman said that the team listened to music and ate chicken sandwiches to pass the time.
The game was halted for 3 hours and 36 minutes in all, but the stoppage in play did not deter the Cougars from having their way.
Even without senior quarterback Greg Ward Jr., due to shoulder soreness, on the field, junior Kyle Postma served as a serviceable substitute.
Postma finished with 106 yards rushing and two scores on the ground.
“This is my first game ever running 100 yards,” Postma said. “I wasn’t expecting to do that at all. I go into the game and (wanted to) do everything possible to help the team win and whatever happens, happens. I try to do the best I possibly can out there on the field.”
In all, the team rushed for 381 yards thanks to remarkable efforts from freshmen Mulbah Car and Kevrin Justice.
Car and Justice also reached the century mark in rushing, giving the Cougars three players with at least 100 yards rushing in a game for the first time since Oct. 25, 1973.
“We talked about running hard and having a great running game,” Justice said. “We just punched everything, had a lot of great blocks, the offensive line stepped up and receivers were blocking down field, so it all adds up. That’s how you rush for that many yards. Everybody has to work as a team.”
Despite how well the Cougars played on offense, their defense was the most notable.
The Cardinals were held in check all afternoon and were never able to cross midfield. Led by senior Tyus Bowser, football’s defense swarmed the Cardinals on nearly every play.
“We just put it all on the defense,” Bowser said. “The entire defense as a unit and our coaches put us in position to make plays and make sure they don’t get those yards. Big props to Coach (Todd) Orlando, the entire defensive staff and all of the guys on the defense.”
In total, the Cardinals managed just 73 yards of total offense.
Freshman defensive tackle Ed Oliver had another great performance in his second career game, tallying 2.5 tackles for a loss.
Herman’s team will now turn around and face the University of Cincinnati Bearcats on Thursday in a nationally televised game. He noted that both Ward and Duke Catalon are expected to play against the Bearcats and their absences were mostly precautionary.
“Usually you have Sunday and Monday to get the bumps and bruises out, but we have to accelerate that process,” Herman said. “It’s a really quick turnaround.”