Sun Sentinel
Football Bowl Subdivision
WEEKLY SCHEDULE
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   === Roadrunners head to Pelican State to take on 22nd-ranked Bulldogs ===
 
 Ruston, LA (Sports Network) - The 22nd-ranked team in the nation hits the
 field in Ruston this weekend, as the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs match up against
 the Roadrunners of Texas-San Antonio in Western Athletic Conference action
 
 Not only are the Bulldogs among ranked in the most recent AP Poll, but they
 are also rated 25th in the most recent BCS poll as well for the first time in
 history.
 
 Last weekend, LaTech struggled a bit on the road, especially when you consider
 the team thrashed Idaho (70-28) just a week earlier, but still managed to come
 away with a 28-14 win over New Mexico State in Las Cruces. The win was the
 second in a row and the seventh in eight games overall this season for the
 program, not to mention their first ever as a ranked team.
 
 "Any time you go on the road and win, I think it is a positive," stated LaTech
 head coach Sonny Dykes during his weekly press conference. "It is hard to play
 on the road. I think we have done studies before, looked at some stuff, and I
 think about a third of the teams that went on the road this week in college
 football won. As the season progresses, I think road trips get more and more
 difficult."
 
 The team playing on the road this weekend facing the Bulldogs just happens to
 be the Roadrunners of UTSA. The squad started off the 2012 campaign well
 enough with five straight wins, but none of those really came against tough
 competition. Granted, the program did take out New Mexico State in the
 conference opener on the road, 35-14, but since then the Roadrunners have
 bowed in three straight outings. Last weekend, the team was pummeled by Utah
 State at home in the Alamodome, 48-17.
 
 With the Roadrunners being new to the WAC and this being just their second
 year with a football program, it should not come as a surprise that this is
 the first-ever meeting between these two teams.
 
 At least for the first 15 minutes against Utah State, the Roadrunners might
 have thought they stood a chance, trailing 7-3 heading into the second
 quarter, but 34 straight points by the Aggies put an end to that soon enough.
 Defensively, UTSA gave up a whopping 522 yards of total offense and allowed
 USU to convert 10-of-17 on third down, which forced the unit to stay on the
 field even longer.
 
 From an offensive standpoint, UTSA tried to ride the arm of Ryan Polite who
 hit on 21-of-36 passes for 248 yards and a score, but he was also picked off
 twice and sacked two times by an aggressive USU defense that ranks among the
 best in the nation in sacks to this point in the campaign. Polite also paced
 the team on the ground as well, but having a mere 19 net rushing yards is
 nothing to brag about.
 
 Polite, who is filling in for an injured Eric Soza, has appeared in a total of
 four games now, completing 61.3 percent of his passes for three touchdowns and
 just as many interceptions. Evans Okotcha leads the program with seven rushing
 touchdowns, half of their entire total, but he is averaging only 3.4 yards per
 carry as a part-time starter who has a long of only 13 yards on 73 attempts.
 
 The combination of Triston Wade and Erik Brown has been a major reason why
 this team isn't being blown away on a more consistent basis, the two having
 combined for seven interceptions and 19 passes defended overall.
 
 For a team that now ranks second in the country in scoring with 52.6 ppg, the
 Bulldogs were not prepared for the slow start they had against New Mexico
 State on the road last weekend. Up until they scored their second TD of the
 game at the 9:13 mark of the third quarter, the Bulldogs missed a total of
 three field goals and had to punt three times. Luckily the second half was
 much better to the visitors as they picked up the 14-point win.
 
 Ray Holley ran for a game-high 130 yards and a score, while Colby Cameron
 converted 29-of-44 passes for 292 yards and one TD, adding a second on the
 ground during one of his seven carries.
 
 Defensively, Louisiana Tech permitted 405 yards on just 65 snaps to a team
 that should not have been even within four touchdowns at the end of the
 meeting. Chad Boyd stood his ground though as he registered a team-best seven
 tackles and logged an interception.
 
 Boyd now has one of the team's nine interceptions and when you add that to the
 squad 14 recovered fumbles, it is easy to see how the group ranks second in
 the country in turnover margin with a plus-2.13 per game. It also doesn't hurt
 that Cameron has yet to throw a single pick which means LaTech and Alabama are
 the only schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision that have not tossed an
 interception.
 
 With Cameron playing flawlessly and the running attack generating 246.5 ypg it
 is easy to see how this group is pounding the competition with a massive 575.1
 ypg in total offense.
 
 While coach Dykes had some nice things to say about the Roadrunners, that
 doesn't mean he won't run up the score on the visitors in an effort to improve
 their own standing in the national polls.
 
 
 
 10/31 10:55:28 ET