Three Things We Learned From Conference USA During Week Seven

Offense was the name of the game for Conference USA in week seven if we ignore the anemic performances from UTSA, Rice, and Southern Miss. Even in the games that stayed in the 20s, there was enough offensive firepower to entertain the masses.

With that said, let’s take a look at what we learned about Conference USA in week seven.

Western Kentucky and Middle Tennessee should play every week (at night):

Outside of last year’s game, the “100 miles of hate” is normally one of the most exciting games of the year. The only complaint was the fact that it was played in Murfreesboro at virtually the same time as the Tennessee/Alabama game, a game that transfixes the state of Tennessee every year. How bad was it? Take a look.

The game itself was a roller coaster of momentum swings with both offenses putting up video game numbers. Quarterbacks Brent Stockstill of MTSU (434/3TD) and Mike White of WKU (391/2TD) were ridiculously efficient and deadly throughout the day, connecting on a combined 75.5% of all passing attempts.

Both stud receivers stepped up as Hilltopper receiver Taywan Taylor had 12 catches for 197 yards and a touchdown, but was beaten out by his counterpart. Richie James had a career day with a school-record 16 catches to go along with 223 yards and two touchdowns. Even the run games got in the action with I’Tavius Mathers (143 yards) and Anthony Wales (158 yards) combining for five touchdowns.

Plus, a freaking walk-off PAT. I’m worn out just thinking about this game.

Louisiana Tech is an offensive machine:

A week after running roughshod through the WKU defense, Ryan Higgins and company crushed an overwhelmed UMass squad 56-28. The Bulldogs put up 690 yards of total offense with 484 coming in the air via Higgins.

Oh yeah, Carlos Henderson has a game. The junior caught 12 passes for a ridiculous 326 yards and five touchdowns on the day. That is on the heels of an eight catch, 232 yard, three touchdown performance the previous week. And we haven’t even talked about Trent Taylor. All he is doing is leading the nation in receiving yards with 100+ yards in each of the last six contests.

The Bulldogs are the #2 ranked passing team in the nation and #4 overall offense, trailing only Toledo, Texas Tech, and Louisville. At 3-1 in CUSA play, whichever team represents the east better hope that Southern Miss can beat them in the season finale so they don’t have to face that offense.

Never pretty, FIU continues to win:

After four games of the 2016 season, Florida International sat at 0-4 on the year with a loss to UMass and a 53-14 total destruction by the hands of rival Central Florida. The administration finally had enough and fired head coach Ron Turner. The former Illinois head coach was a disappointing 10-30 during his three-plus seasons and never got the Panthers above fourth in the east.

In stepped interim coach Ron Cooper. In the three games under Cooper, the Panthers have turned things around with three straight wins over FAU, UTEP, and Charlotte. That is a weak winning streak, compounded by the fact that it took a last second score to defeat a bad Charlotte team on Saturday. But, a win is a win and the Panthers are 3-0 in CUSA play with their future in their hands.

FIU will likely drop to 3-7 on the season with Louisiana Tech, MTSU, and WKU in consecutive weeks, but it has been fun so far hanging with Mr. Cooper.

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