SMU fends off Texas State, 31-24
Shane Buechele passed for 367 yards and a touchdown as SMU held off host Texas State 31-24 in the season opener for both teams Saturday.
The Mustangs (10-3 a year ago) had a much tougher time against the Bobcats than they had last season in a 47-17 victory.
Buechele completed 26 of 36 and SMU had good offensive balance as T.J. McDaniel rushed for 130 yards and a touchdown and Ulysses Bentley IV added two touchdowns and 49 rushing yards.
Brady McBride, a transfer from Memphis who was named Texas State’s starting quarterback earlier in the week, completed 21 of 39 for 227 yards and two touchdowns.
The Bobcats, who were the worst rushing team in the Sun Belt Conference last season (76.8 yards per game), finished with 194 yards on the ground.
The Mustangs snapped a 14-all tie when McDaniel ran 9 yards for a touchdown on the first possession of the third quarter.
The Bobcats tied the score for a third time on McBride’s 19-yard touchdown pass to Chandler Speights.
Buechele’s 51-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Roberson Jr. gave Texas State a 28-21 lead after three quarters.
Chris Naggar made a 32-yard field goal to give SMU a 31-21 lead with 2:20 remaining. The Bobcats answered with Alan Orona’s 47-yard field goal with 45 seconds left but didn’t recover the ensuing onside kick.
After a scoreless first quarter, both teams found offensive productivity in the second quarter.
SMU’s Jimmy Phillips Jr. intercepted McBride, setting up the Mustangs at their own 45. Five plays later Bentley ran 6 yards for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
Texas State responded on the ensuing possession with a 12-play, 75-yard drive that ended with Brock Sturges running 4 yards for a touchdown.
SMU made it three consecutive drives that ended in touchdowns when Bentley ran 12 yards for a 14-7 lead.
The Bobcats extended the scoring streak when Jeremiah Haydel made a one-handed catch of a McBride pass for a 3-yard touchdown that created a 14-all halftime tie.
–Field Level Media