The Houston Cougars took to the field inside TDECU Stadium on Saturday, September 5, 2015 and with a dominating 52-24 win over the Golden Eagles of Tennessee Tech to began the Tom Herman era in Houston. The Cougars tallied 627 yards of total offense with quarterback Greg Ward, Jr. passing for 275 yards.
Houston got on the board first at the 10:49 mark in the first quarter on a one-yard run by running back Ryan Jackson. The score was the conclusion of an eight-play, 56-yard drive that lasted 2:39. Kicker Kyle Bullard split the uprights for the extra point to make the score 7-0. Tennessee Tech responded with a 28-yard field goal three and a half minute later to make the score 7-3. Houston again found the end zone late in the first quarter when Ward, Jr. rushed the final three yards of a 68 yard drive for a touchdown. Bullard again “earned his pay” with a kicking conversion close out the quarter with the score of 14-3.
The Golden Eagles cut Houston lead to four points when quarterback Jared Davis connected with Brock McCoin on a 71-yard pass play for the score. Houston added 10 points in the second quarter with a 41-yard run by Ward Jr. for a touchdown and a 26-yard field goal by Bullock. As a result, the Cougars took a 24-10 lead into the locker room at halftime. They extended their lead in the third quarter with a Ward, Jr. 29-yard pass to Kyle Postma. The fourth quarter saw the Cougars get into the end zone three times to seal the win.
Ward, Jr. completed 21 of 28 passes for his 275 yard performance and carried the ball 13 times for 107 yards and two touchdowns, including a 41-yard romp to average 8.2 yards per carry. Running back Jarvis Webb also scored two touchdowns on the ground; a 14-yard run six seconds into the fourth quarter and a three-yard scramble with 5:56 remaining in the game. Backup quarterback Kyle Postma also got into the action as a receiver and caught four passes for 82 yards and one touchdown. Defensively, senior inside linebacker Elandon Roberts accounted for nine tackles against Tennessee Tech, with eight of them being solo bring downs.
The Cougars will next hit the road for a September 12 matchup against the Louisville Cardinals at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. Houston is 7-8 all-time against the Cardinals, last facing them on November 6, 2013 in Louisville. Houston came up on the losing end of that game by the score of 20-13. The Cardinals came up short in their first game of 2015; a 31-24 loss to the No. 6 Auburn Tigers on Saturday, September 6 in the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.