Welcome to heart break, Roadrunner fans. After showing few signs of mortality against a strong Northeastern team, UTSA fell flat on their face today in the Alamodome against Division III McMurry University. Repeatedly stumbling under their own feet, the Roadrunners took away every chance of victory they had on their own accord. Plagued by special team woes, untimely penalties, poor blocking, and a simply pathetic showing from the secondary, UTSA looked every bit like a first year program comprised primarily of freshmen.
– Special Teams
This is what really stood out to me. Josh Ward (scholarship kicker) was absolutely miserable. Ward had three kick offs before being yanked in favor of Sean Ianno at the end of the fourth. Two of Ward’s kicks flew wildly out of bounds, putting the War Hawks in excellent field position. Field position is absolutely crucial when you’re facing a high-octane offense like McMurry’s air raid O. At this point in time, I’m extremely disappointed in Coker & Tony Jeffery for offering Josh Ward a scholarship. If you’re going to give a scholarship to a special teams player you need to be certain that he’s a game-changer. After watching Ward’s poor mechanics I’m forced to wonder if the UTSA coaching staff even saw him play before the day he showed up to practice. Ward’s wind up on kicks is entirely too lengthy, opening him up to blocks like the one we saw McMurry return for a touchdown today. At this level of competition you must adjust your mechanics to the speed of the game. Aside from Ward, the blocking on special teams was also atrocious. In UTSA’s first two games there have been a myriad of opponents in the backfield as the Roadrunners attempt to kick/punt. These issues absolutely must be addressed before UTSA can expect to compete and (hopefully) upset some of the tougher teams on their slate. On the flip side, major props to UTSA’s return game who have provided Soza and his crew with great field position to start nearly every drive this year. I love the trio of Monroe, Harrison, and Jones on kick offs.
– Play calling
Was a bit confused here. Bush seemed to abandon everything that worked well in Week One. Granted, most of the bad looks we saw in Game Two were the fault of poor execution, but there were some real head-scratchers– namely, why didn’t Kam Jones (93 all-purpose yards) touch the ball until the second half? Jones is our biggest play maker and should be our go-to guy. What happened to the play-action game? I only counted a handful of play-action passes. I know McMurry was blitzing a lot of guys in their 3-man front, but damn. McMurry safety Will Morris was biting hard on every play, some play action could have led to deep completions.
– Offensive Line
Okay, I believe that they are all freshmen now. Guard Payton Rion played miserably. He is not ready to start yet; I expect Mike Sanchez or James Bakke to usurp his starting spot next week. Soza was under pressure too often (6 hurries, 1 sack). Often Soza only needed an extra split-second in the pocket to allow the passing routes to develop. This must improve. While the line’s pass blocking was bad, the blocking from the running backs in the pocket was equally disheartening.
A UTSA alumnus that has been cast away to Austin, Jared enjoys live music and a craft beer. He thinks four verts is the best play in football but loves a QB sneak on fourth and inches. Twitter