Around the Group of 5: Week 6 (Football)
While the Power 5 schools have drawn the majority of the attention in college football so far, the Group of 5 is producing some solid action. We saw the first MWC action this past weekend as well as some good games in the AAC, C-USA and Sun Belt.
For the first time this season, there was Mountain West football as Air Force took on Navy at Falcon Stadium. Air Force found themselves down 7-3 early in the second quarter before scoring 37 unanswered points and winning 40-7. Air Force ran for 369 yards and four touchdowns on 53 carries.
In the American Athletic Conference, No. 15 Cincinnati stayed undefeated while No. 11 UCF was upset by Tulsa and SMU emerged as a title contender.
Cincinnati improved to 3-0 as it beat USF, 28-7. Senior running back Gerrid Doaks ran for 102 yards and a touchdown for the Bearcats.
As for No. 11 UCF, Tulsa snapped its 21-game home winning streak. Tulsa quarterback Zach Smith threw for 273 yards and three touchdowns leading the team to victory. UCF held a 23-5 lead before losing 34-26 and was held scoreless for the final 26 minutes of play.
SMU topped No. 25 Memphis, 30-27 on a late field goal by kicker Chris Naggar. A strip-sack caused by sophomore defensive lineman Junior Aho led to the Naggar field goal. The Mustangs were led by quarterback Shane Buechele who threw for 474 yards and three touchdowns.
In the Conference USA, UAB was able to hold off UTSA by a final score of 21-13.
UAB quarterback Bryson Lucero threw for three touchdowns. Despite the loss, UTSA got a strong performance from running back Sincere McCormick. McCormick ran for 150 yards and scored a touchdown as well. The Blazers improved to 3-1 and the Roadrunners are now also sit at 3-1.
Southern Mississippi picked up its first win of the season in a 41-31 victory over North Texas. The Golden Eagles got a big performance from running back Frank Gore Jr. who ran for 130 yards and a touchdown.
The rest of the games saw Western Kentucky top Middle Tennessee State, 20-17. The Hilltoppers got their first win of the season as quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome tossed two touchdowns.
In its season opener, FAU beat Charlotte 21-17. Junior quarterback Nick Tronti paced the Owls with three total touchdowns.
Over in the Sun Belt Conference, Coastal Carolina cruised by Arkansas State 52-23.
Coastal Carolina improved to 3-0 on the year after the win. The Chanticleers were fueled by freshman quarterback Grayson McCall who threw for 322 yards and four touchdowns.
Georgia Southern won 35-30 after Louisiana-Monroe quarterback Colby Suits was stopped at the one-yard line as time expired. The Eagles were led by their running game; J.D. King ran for 196 yards and a touchdown and Wesley Kennedy III tacked on two more touchdowns. Georgia Southern improves to 2-1, while the Warhawks fall to 0-4.
Georgia State rebounded from its loss to Louisiana with a 49-29 win over East Carolina. The Panthers were fueled by a balanced offensive performance. Freshman quarterback Cornelious Brown IV threw for 238 yards and three touchdowns. Running back Destin Coates ran for 113 yards and two touchdowns.
Matt Scalzo is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.