The Mustangs are learning to win. And they are getting the bulk of it done at home. SMU is 7-1 at home in the past two seasons with the only loss being in overtime against Navy in 2009.
Two and three seasons ago SMU (2-1) went 1-11, losing some tough and heartbreaking games. Of the 22 losses in those two seasons two were in overtime and six others were by less than seven points. Even last season the Mustangs lost two overtime games and another by just three points.
So far it has been a different trend for the Mustangs. Against UAB the offense struggled, then hit its stride in the second half leading to a 28-7 win. Last Saturday against Washington State (1-2) the Mustangs, 23-point favorites, were tied at 14 going in to half time. They outscored the Cougars 14-0 in the third quarter to put the game away.
The final score of 35-21 was closer than some expected going into the game, but the Mustangs did what they were supposed to do, win. And it was the first time they defeated a BCS conference school since 2000, going 0-17 against teams during the over 10-year time span.
SMU quarterback Kyle Padron used both his arm and his leg to be a part of all five touchdowns on Saturday. Padron threw for 280 yards and four touchdowns, three to Aldrick Robinson and one to Darius Johnson, and rushed for the first touchdown of the game.
Robinson led all receivers with 111 yards on four catches, while Cole Beasley led the team in receptions with five for 54 yards. Sophomore running back Zach Line continued his impressive start to the season with eight rushes for 82 yards bringing his season total to 276 yards in three games averaging 7.7 yards a carry and three touchdowns.
On defense Taylor Reed led all tacklers with 10 for the game, but Ja’Gared Davis had 3.5 tackles for loss and tied with Taylor Thompson with 1.5 sacks for the game.
Washington State’s quarterback Jeff Tuel finished the game completing 18 of 33 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough to defeat the Mustangs at Ford Stadium.
SMU will get its toughest test of the season at home, or on the road, when the fourth ranked TCU Horned Frogs come to Ford on Friday night. The Horned Frogs (3-0) have handled the Mustangs in each of the meetings since SMU upset TCU 21-10 in 2005.