Keenum adds another record as Houston crushes UAB
Birmingham, AL (Sports Network) - Case Keenum threw for 407 yards as he became the NCAA's all-time leader in passing yards during the No. 14 Houston Cougars' 56-13 throttling of the UAB Blazers.
Keenum has racked up 17,212 yards through the air in his college career, surpassing Timmy Chang of Hawaii's previous record of 17,072. It is Keenum's fifth NCAA record, already owning the records for career TD passes (141), TD's accounted for (163), total offense (18,101 yards) and career 300-yard games (34).
"I don't take any of these things lightly, and I know for a fact that this is a very special honor," Keenum said about setting the record. "I'm not going to fully enjoy it and celebrate it until after the season. Hopefully I will have a lot more to celebrate after the season than just the records."
Keenum completed 39-of-44 passes with two touchdowns and added two more scores on the ground for Houston (9-0, 5-0 C-USA), which recorded its best start in school history.
Michael Hayes carried the ball 16 times for 93 yards and a score, and Tyron Carrier caught 12 passes for 105 yards and a touchdown for the Cougars.
Jonathan Perry threw for 149 yards with a touchdown and an interception on 15- of-29 passing for UAB (1-8, 1-5), who lost for the second straight time after recording its lone win of the season.
Hayes' fumble on the opening possession of the game was recovered by UAB and the Blazers took advantage with a 12-play scoring drive capped by Patrick Hearn's nine-yard touchdown grab.
Carrier hauled in consecutive 11-yard gains on the ensuing drive before Keenum found him wide open in the corner of the end zone from two yards out to tie the game at seven late in the first.
UAB's next possession lasted 13 plays and stretched into the second quarter, but Ty Long's 47-yard field goal attempt missed wide left.
Houston then answered with a 15-play march down to the Blazers' one-yard line, but Hayes was denied the end zone on third and fourth downs, turning the ball over on downs to UAB.
The Blazers would fail to get out of the shadow of their own goal line and Trey Ragland's punt went just 26 yards. The Cougars took advantage of the excellent field position when Keenum dove over the left pylon from one yard out.
After a UAB three-and-out, Charles Sims capped another long drive by Houston by rumbling into the end zone from the one with 30 seconds left in the half.
Long's 39-yard field goal as time expired made it a 21-10 game at the break.
The Blazers cut the lead to eight on the opening drive of the third quarter when Long split the uprights from 37 yards, but it took Houston just four plays to get a comfortable lead again as Hayes pushed his way in for the score from the three.
Keenum added his second one-yard TD run late in the third and Justin Johnson's 11-yard TD catch early in the fourth helped the Cougars pull away.
Houston's D.J. Hayden picked off Perry on UAB's next possession and took it 54 yards for the score and Cotton Turner, who replaced Keenum late in the game, connected with Daniel Spencer on a nine-yard TD with less then five minutes in the fourth to account for the final margin.
"When the game started out, of course there was no pressure because we were playing well," Perry said. "But once the game started to change, that's when you feel a lot of pressure to make better plays and try to put points on the board."
Houston has scored at least 35 points in nine straight games...Hearn has recorded a catch in 19 of UAB's last 20 games...It was the eighth all-time meeting between the teams and the first since 2008...The series is tied at four games apiece...Houston totaled 654 yards, while UAB managed 269.
11/05 23:47:16 ET