The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


SMU needs to turn it around
Justin Willis is pursued by Texas Techs Szymon Czerniak in Mondays game.
John Schreiber
Justin Willis is pursued by Texas Tech’s Szymon Czerniak in Monday’s game.

Justin Willis is pursued by Texas Tech’s Szymon Czerniak in Monday’s game. (John Schreiber)

The situation seems almost identical to last year. Coming off a bad loss against Texas Tech the Mustangs need to win against North Texas.

Last year that plan didn’t work out too well, but this year it must. The Mustangs can’t start the year 0-2 this season with an improved Arkansas State and a top 20 TCU left to finish off the non-conference schedule.

The Mustangs are facing North Texas, one of the few teams that suffered a worse opening-game loss. Boasting a new look, the Mean Green came out flat against Oklahoma and lost 79-10 in Todd Dodge’s first game.

SMU will need to look at what went wrong against Texas Tech and have it fixed before Saturday. After Monday’s loss, head coach Phil Bennett said that the team had to move on from the game as soon as they finished watching tape on Tuesday.

Whatever the Mustangs needed to do, they had a short week to work with. Just four days separate the season opener from tomorrow’s game. If SMU handles it well, a quick turnaround from last week’s defeat could be the best thing for the team.

But the Mustangs won’t be the only ones looking to get a bad taste out of their mouths. North Texas has been talking about how they would have preferred to play SMU in their season opener, citing the Mustangs as a team they would have had a chance to beat.

Last season SMU followed up a bad game with a worse game against UNT.

The opening drive stalled and the ensuing punt was blocked, turning into a touchdown for the Mean Green. Also, it was against North Texas that DeMyron Martin suffered his first injury of the season.

Thomas Morstead was the only player to score for the Mustangs in the season opener. With three field goals, Morstead accounted for the only offense SMU was able to muster against Texas Tech. Morstead also showed how dangerous he can be by sending three of five punts inside the 20-yard line.

The offense has to prove the ability to be the powerhouse that was talked about during the offseason. Bennett said that he expects even more from this year’s offense than he got a season ago. Last season, the team averaged just over 27 points a game. This year’s team is off to a slow start if they intend to surpass last year.

The defense also needs to prove that it has the ability to stop an offense. The defense gave up almost 500 passing yards, 80 rushing yards and 49 points.

Must-win games don’t often happen in the second week of the season. But if the Mustangs want to compete and be in position for a must-win game later in the season against a conference opponent, it starts on Saturday.

SMU will need to come out strong and stay healthy, but most importantly win.

James Mapps will split time with DeMyron Martin in the SMU backfield. (John Schreiber)

Freshman Chris Butler got a chance to run in the fourth quarter. (John Schreiber)

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