FAU-FIU Notebook: Shula Bowl XIII
Road Woes Continue
FAU is 0-4 on the road this year and 2-0 at home. If this trend continues, the Owls will be home for the winter as they have three home games left on the schedule.
FAU is averaging nine points, 256 yards, and a whopping two turnovers per game on the road while on offense this year. Take away the Alabama and Nebraska games, and FAU's output creeps up to 340 yards per game on the road but has been unable to take advantage as the Owls have a combined seven turnovers - six fumbles, one interception - in the two games against Wyoming and FIU.
The defense has been just as perplexing, allowing 520 yards, and nearly 40 points per game while on the road this year with a total of two turnovers. Both compiled against Wyoming and FIU. Not going to win many games on the road with a negative five turnover ratio.
With three road games left on the schedule, FAU will need to reverse these trends rapidly if they plan on going bowling.
The next road game, preseason favorite Marshall. The Thundering Herd are averaging 45 points per game this year.
Opportunity Is Still There
At 2-4 and 1-1 in conference play, there is still a lot on the table for the Owls heading into the bye week.
These players know what its like to play with adversity when the media and fans have written off the team and used the negativity to come together as a team. At 2-6 last year, FAU reeled off four straight wins to close out the regular season with a 6-6 record and put themselves in position to nab a bowl bid.
Provided they overcome their troubles on the road, all of the remaining teams left on the schedule are beatable. Western Kentucky, UAB, North Texas, Middle Tennessee, and Old Dominion are a combined 16-10. Marshall is the only undefeated team left on the schedule, but they have not played the rigorous schedule FAU has played up to this point.
The problems that have plagued FAU this year are certainly fixable. The coaching staff will preach ball security during the long bye week. Since FAU has gotten past the Nebraska Alabama gauntlet, they have played their competition at the very least even.
The talent is there. Don't write them off just yet.
- This edition of the Shula Bowl will go down as the longest football game in FAU history. The game lasted five hours and 21 minutes.
- Jaquez Johnson threw his first interception on the year.
- Eight different receivers caught a pass last night.
- FIU has won three of the last four Shula Bowls