Cougars looking to Rebound in 2013

Tony Levine took over in 2011 after Kevin Sumlin left for the Texas A&M job; he was taking over a team who had just lost a conference championship and probably a shot at a BCS bowl. They went on to defeat a Penn State team shrouded in controversy and build hope for a better year next year. What ended up happening was a very lackluster 5-7 season, which bid farewell to Robertson Stadium in preparation for a new stadium next year. This year the Cougars will play all their home games at Reliant Stadium, and coach Levine hopes to build some success going into the new conference.

Junior David Piland was not able to reach his full potential with an injury plagued season but hopes to try and fill the big shoes left behind by Case Keenum this season and get the Cougars back on track. But this year will be tougher because of the perceived step up to the American Athletic Conference. Piland will have plenty of weapons with senior running back Charles Sims and they return their top 4 receivers from last season. But the question will be whether the offensive line, known as “the brick squad” can protect Piland long enough to hit his targets or even give Sims enough of a hole to make a play down field.

Houston has been known for putting up a lot of points in this offense and I think they will be able to score a lot of points this season as long Piland can do what his predecessors have done. Houston has a history of having great quarterbacks and Piland is looking to cement his place in that lineage. But another lackluster season will severely damage his chances of being remembered with names like Keenum, Klingler and Ware.

The defense is more depleted than the offense and it will take a strong effort from the defense this season to get the cougars back to their winning ways. The 72 points allowed to SMU last season was the most ever by any Houston defense and this year they will have a tougher time preventing another record being broken. The defense will face some of the toughest teams in the conference with games against Louisville, Cincinnati and their yearly game with an improved SMU.

The Defensive line only returns one starter and will probably be the biggest question on the entire unit. If they can just hold together long enough, maybe the Line backing corps led by Junior Derrick Mathews can make a push to keep any running game from getting going. If the line backers can find a way to keep the pressure on opposing quarterbacks, that will give the more experienced Defensive backfield to shine and force turnovers. This unit looks to be stronger than last year with three seniors all of which played in at least 12 games last year. If the Houston Defense can mesh well enough to make a few extra stops in games, then it could be the difference of another 5 win season or possibly an 8 win season.

Houston has a tough schedule at the end of the year, so if they are going to have a winning season, they will need to take advantage of the easier games at the beginning of the year.

8/30- Southern – W
9/7- At Temple – W
9/21- Rice – W
9/28- At UTSA – W
10/12- Memphis – W
10/19- BYU – L
10/26- Rutgers – W
10/31- USF – W
11/9- At UCF – L
11/16- At Louisville – L
11/23- Cincinnati – L
11/29- SMU – L
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2013 Record: 7-5

3 thoughts on “Cougars looking to Rebound in 2013

  1. Another good post Kody. I’m enjoying all the details on the teams near us. Keep up the good work.

  2. Pingback: Cougars looking to Rebound in 2013 | Sports Blog Movement

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