To keep it short and simple, Saturday’s contest against FAU was unacceptable. We were outplayed in every phase of the game and we showed similar characteristics we had in the loss a week prior at UAB. There was not much to take away from the game other than the first 100 yard game for running back Nay’Quan Wright and a 98 yard day for wide receiver, Michael Brown-Stephens. We hope to improve from this disappointing performance and get back on track and be the team we were shaping out to be a few weeks ago.
It is difficult to try and understand why the Bulls have taken a step back in the past couple weeks, but we do know that we have to get things back in order, and very fast. Going into this season, there were high hopes on making a bowl game and the odds were very realistic with how favorable the schedule is. Taking those two losses back to back was not in the plans but the goal remains the same.
We will be away this week at UCONN, and the hope is to get our confidence back against a one win team. But, what we cannot do is play down to the Huskies’ record. This game is determined in between the lines and we have seen week to week that a team’s record doesn’t always represent who they are on the field. Following a couple uncharacteristic weeks, the Bulls should take that anger into this game, and ultimately dominate the way we know they are capable of.
This week at UCONN could be one of the most important games of the season given the current circumstances. The Bulls need just three more wins to reach bowl eligibility, and securing the games that should be won is essential at this time of the year. This is also the game before we go into the bye week, so there will be a mental, physical, and strategic reset after this game that will hopefully put us in the position to take care of business the rest of the way.
As far as what we need to do at UCONN or what we should expect, there isn’t much to say. We just need to get fired up and play football. We need to get the aggression, tenacity, discipline, and grit that we had from week 2 to week 5 back for the rest of the season.
It’s a lot easier said than done considering there are some injuries from key players like Aamaris Brown (DB) and Jason Vaughn (DE), who make a huge difference on the defensive side of the ball. But, we hope to see a scheme that benefits the guys who are able to play for us.
Offensively, we have seen the passing game slightly improve along with the rushing game getting back in order. We hope to eventually see a consistent balance between the two, but that will come along with finding the true identity of this offense.
This week can be the game where we do establish that much needed balance, and we should see big games from Nay’Quan Wright (RB), Sean Atkins (WR), and Byrum Brown (QB). The main focus for the offense should be to protect the ball, win the time of possession, and win up front.
Not too much to digest here after a couple disappointing weeks, but I’m hopeful that we are able to improve from them. As I mentioned, there were high hopes coming into this season, and those hopes are still within reach, but it must be taken care of this week and no later. It will be a lot better for this team to go into a bye week with a much needed win rather than a third straight loss, and I’m sure this team and staff is aware of the situation in hand. All of the negative is behind us now, and Bulls will do what they have to do to win!
— 587 — FAU out-gained USF 587 yards to 388.
— 3rd — FAU converted 9-of-16 on third down while the Bulls went 3-of-15..
— 65K — FAU recorded 17 explosive plays in the game.
— 1st — Tavin Ward made his first career start at cornerback and posted his first career interception to go along with eight tackles..
— 100 — RB Nay’Quan Wright posted his second career 100-yard rushing game gaining 106 yards and a touchdown on the day.
— 98 — WR Michael Brown-Stephens made four catches for 98 yards.
—— #ComeToTheBay ——