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

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Bowl eligibility in Mustangs’ sights

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After a bye week, SMU is tied with Tulsa for first place in the Conference USA West division thanks to two straight conference losses by Houston and could become bowl eligible with their sixth win of the season this weekend.

The Mustangs will take on the Marshall Thundering Herd in a pivotal Conference game at Gerald J. Ford Stadium on Saturday at 2 p.m.

In 2009, the Thundering Herd finished with a 7-6 record overall and a 4-4 record in conference play.

Marshall has somewhat slipped this year with a 4-6 record overall and a fourth place standing in the Conference USA East division.

However, the Thundering Herd has won three straight games including last week’s 28-13 victory over Memphis.

Last year’s contest between SMU and Marshall came down to the wire and saw the Thundering Herd prevail 34-31.

In that game, SMU quarterback Kyle Padron threw for 225 yards and two touchdowns but also threw one crucial interception. Marshall quarterback Brian Anderson had a good day, passing for 213 yards and two touchdowns.

The Thundering Herd racked up 475 total yards, outgaining the Mustangs by nearly 150 yards. Marshall also had zero turnovers while SMU coughed up the football twice.

Both teams have the same signal callers under center this year and fireworks are expected.  

Marshall is 1-4 on the road this season, while SMU is 3-2 at home. The Mustangs are in the same situation as two weeks ago: Get the win and you are probably in a bowl.

Offensively, both teams are ranked in the top 65 in total passing yards.

Both teams have also been running the ball well and are averaging over 100 yards per game respectively.  Padron has been solid this year, passing for 2,745 yards and 23 touchdowns. Padron threw for 255 yards and one touchdown against UTEP two weeks ago.

Padron currently leads Conference USA in pass efficiency and ranks 11th nationally in passing yards and has a quarterback rating of 136.6.

Padron also has three solid wide receivers to throw the ball to. Aldrick Robinson leads the receiving corps with 50 receptions for 994 yards and 10 touchdowns. The senior is averaging 19.9 yards per reception and is ranked seventh nationally in receiving yards.

Junior Cole Beasley has not been too bad himself. He has caught 62 passes for 759 yards and five touchdowns on the season.

Finally, Darius Johnson has been yet another explosive offensive weapon for the Mustangs. Johnson has 57 receptions for 556 yards and five touchdowns.

For Marshall, Anderson has thrown for 1,919 yards and 17 touchdowns including 251 yards and three touchdowns against Memphis last week.

The Mustangs have established a ground game this year behind running back Zach Line who has rushed for 972 yards and seven touchdowns. The sophomore rushed for 54 yards against UTEP.

Defensively both teams are surrendering an average of over 27 points per contest.  

The Thundering Herd is led by linebacker Mario Harvey. This season, Harvey currently leads the team in tackles with 111 including 46 solos, 13.5 tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks, two pass break ups, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.

The Mustangs are led by sophomore linebacker Taylor Reed, who currently leads the team with 106 tackles, including 72 solos and 1 fumble recovery.

Look for a high scoring affair in this game as both teams are in a must-win situation heading into today’s game.

 

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