Rice football was off in Week 3. How did the rest of the conference fare and what’s next for the Conference USA football in Week 4?
|Team||Last Week||Result||This Week|
|Charlotte||vs Old Dominion||W, 28-25||@ UMass|
|FIU||vs UMass||W, 63-24||@ Miami|
|Marshall||CANCELED||—||vs NC State|
|MTSU||vs Georgia||W, 49-7||OFF|
|North Texas||@ Arkansas||W, 44-17||@ Liberty|
|ODU||@ Charlotte||L, 28-25||vs Virginia Tech|
|Rice||OFF||—||@ Southern Miss|
|Southern Miss||CANCELED||—||vs Rice|
|UAB||vs Tulane||W, 31-24||OFF|
|UTEP||@ Tennessee||L, 24-0||OFF|
|UTSA||@ Kansas State||L, 41-17||vs Texas State|
|WKU||@ Louisville||L, 20-17||@ Ball State|
Notable Week 3 results
Rain, rain go away
Two CUSA games were postponed without any rescheduled date courtesy of the impending impact of Hurricane Florence. Marshall’s trip to South Carolina and Southern Miss’ game at App. State did not happen. Add three scheduled bye weeks to that mix and there wasn’t much CUSA football played this weekend.
People are starting to notice North Texas
A blowout win over an SEC team on the road is a good way to get noticed. North Texas earned votes in the AP Poll following their Week 3 win over Arkansas and figured to continue climbing if they can take care of business in their next several games. On paper, the Razorbacks were the toughest opponent this team was supposed to face this season.
UTEP didn’t get blown out
As for other CUSA teams that took on SEC foes in Week 3, UTEP’s defense faired surprisingly well against the Tennessee Volunteers. The offense was completely shut out, but the 24-0 deficit was well within the 33.5 point spread.
Week 4 storylines
Opportunities aplenty for statement wins
Four CUSA teams play ranked opponents in Week 4. FAU visits No. 16 UCF on Friday night, No. 13 Virginia Tech travels to Old Dominion, FIU plays at No. 21 Miami and No. 6 LSU hosts Louisiana Tech. Any wins in those games would raise eyebrows across the nation.
Can Rice bounce back?
The Owls have had their ups and downs this season, but the sentiment at South Main remains largely positive. A win over Southern Miss would bring Rice back to .500 and give their hopes of a bowl berth renewed life. It’s not a “must win” by any means, but it would be a positive indicator that the rebuild is on schedule.
Does Marshall have the best chance to knock off a Power 5 team?
The encore to North Texas’ win over Arkansas could come from CUSA East in Week 4. Marshall takes on 2-0 NC State in a game that projects to be closer than meets the eye. These are two similar programs that don’t run the ball very well and will try to air it out often. The line opened at NCST +4 and has moved up to 6.5.