NCAA Football Recap Week 5, UCONN Huskies Fall against Houston Cougars 42-14, September 29, 2016

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connecticut-huskiesCONNECTICUT HUSKIES houston-cougarsHOUSTON COUGARS
2-2 September 29, 8:00 PM | Turf of TDECU Stadium 4-0, 2nd in West

When: 8:00 PM ET, Thursday, September 29, 2016
Where: TDECU Stadium, Houston, Texas.

Connecticut at Houston, BOXSCORE
Final 1 2 3 4 T
connecticut-huskiesCONN 0 7 0 7 14
houston-cougarsHOU 0 28 14 0 42
Rotation /Team /Time Opening Lines MyBookie-White logo -70x40
09/29 8:00 PM
105 connecticut-huskiesConnecticut
106 houston-cougarsHouston
 —
51o-11
-23 -10
 —
50½u-10
-28 -10
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COLLEGE FOOTBALL – Thursday, September 29th, UCONN Huskies vs. Houston Cougars.

Team / Live in game Betting at bovada-logo-top-book. Spread Money Line Total
connecticut-huskiesConnecticut +29 -115  +3000 51 -105
houston-cougarsHouston University -29 -105  -7000 51 -115
168x28a-logo-bovada vegas-bet_now vegas_picks_red vegas-bet_now vegas_picks_red vegas-bet_now vegas_picks_red

Greg Ward threw for 389 yards to lead the Cougars over UCONN 42-14 on Thursday in Week 5 action at TDECU Stadium.

Houston won and also put money in the pockets of their supporters by covering the -27.5-point spread as favorites. Totals bettors, meanwhile, saw the game go OVER the closing number of 49.0.

Greg Ward completed 32 of 38 pass attempts for 389 yards for the Cougars in the win.

Noel Thomas rushed for 22 yards for UCONN, while Arkeel Newsome added 13 yards. Bryant Shirreffs threw for 239 yards for the Huskies, while receivers Noel Thomas and Hergy Mayala had 135 and 92 yards respectively.

UCONN was outgained by Houston 540-335 yards in Thursday’s match, while the important battle of first downs was won 27-14 by the Cougars.

Houston led the time of possession tally, as the game finished as a 33:30-26:30 split in that important category.

Next game, Houston takes its act on the road to face Navy looking for another win. For UCONN, they head home to face Cincinnati.

HOUSTON — Houston coach Tom Herman opted for an exercise in vocabulary to share the word — atonement — motivating his squad in advance of its matchup with Connecticut, the team that ruined the Cougars’ bid for an unbeaten season in 2015.

Senior quarterback Greg Ward Jr. dazzled, and the sixth-ranked Houston Cougars throttled the UConn Huskies 42-14 Thursday night at TDECU Stadium.

Ward cemented his status as a Heisman Trophy candidate, passing for a career-high 389 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for 65 yards and two scores.

He completed 17 consecutive passes bridging the first half and third period and spearheaded an offense that hit 40 points for a fourth consecutive game, the longest such streak for Houston (5-0, 2-0 American Athletic Conference) since 2011.

Houston rolled to a conference title and a victory over Florida State in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl despite that 20-17 setback at UConn last season. When presented with an opportunity to exact revenge, the Cougars instead righted past wrongs.

“We never use the word ‘revenge.’ The word we use is ‘atonement,’ to make a wrong a right,” Herman said. “We had a chance to atone for the transgressions of last year’s team.”

The Ward-led offense excelled, amassing 540 yards while converting 8 of 16 third downs and all five red-zone opportunities into touchdowns without committing a turnover. Excluding a possession late in the first half that followed a Huskies score with 30 seconds left, the Cougars produced six consecutive touchdown drives.

Houston dominated defensively, too, limiting the Huskies (2-3, 0-2) to 335 yards, including 62 rushing yards on 27 attempts. The Cougars began the game leading the nation in rushing defense, ranked fourth in scoring defense and fifth in total defense.

“We couldn’t move the ball,” Huskies coach Bob Diaco said. “We had trouble on defense. The guys were super frustrated.”

Aside from a 62-yard scoring pass from Bryant Shirreffs to Noel Thomas with 30 seconds left in the first half, the Huskies found the Cougars impossible to penetrate until the fourth quarter after the Cougars’ defensive intensity clearly waned. UConn totaled 137 yards in the final period with the outcome already well in hand.

Ward completed 32 of 38 passes. Houston receiver Linell Bonner caught 12 passes for 159 yards and a touchdown, while Steven Dunbar finished with five receptions for 97 yards and a score. Ward, meanwhile, was in absolute control of the offense.

“It means everything to be 1-0 (this week), as we say,” Ward said. “Just the stats, I don’t think about that at all. The only stat that I worry about is the win or loss.”

Huskies receiver Noel Thomas continued his climb up the UConn receiving chart with six receptions for 135 yards. UConn receiver Hergy Mayala added six catches for 92 yards. Shirreffs finished 13 of 29 for 239 yards plus a rushing touchdown.

Having sputtered to the tune of four first downs in the first quarter, the Cougars came alive in the second. Ward capped an 80-yard drive that began with 2:29 left in the first period with a dazzling 30-yard touchdown run, darting up the middle of the defense before cutting toward the Houston sideline and finding the end zone.

That play ignited a blistering stretch of offense, one that featured scoring drives covering 61, 60 and 86 yards on the touchdown marches in the second. Houston grabbed a 28-0 lead when Ward hit Dunbar on a 15-yard pass with 1:37 left in the first half, and the Huskies proved powerless to slow Ward or the Cougars’ onslaught.

“He’s probably the best player I played against,” Huskies linebacker Junior Joseph said. “He’s very electric. That’s why he’s in the race for the Heisman. Just a great player.”

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