Run and Shoot: More broken play success

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More broken play success

HOUSTON, Texas -- This time, Chris Thurmond's gusty fourth-down decision paid off.

Facing 4th-and-5 on the TCU 36, Thurmond called timeout to set up the fourth-down play he wanted. Not that it mattered, because once again the Horned Frog defensive line got to Cougar quarterback Case Keenum. This time, Keenan eluded three would-be tacklers before finding Jeron Harvey for a gain of 21 yards. Keenum has been really impressive in evading oncoming lineman, keeping his cool, and finding the open receiver downfield. After Anthony Alridge was once again tackled for a loss and a false-start penalty, T.J. Lawrence kicked a 39-yard field goal to give the Cougars a 10-7 lead.

Not to get on my soap box, but that's exactly why you go for it on fourth down. Of course you're not going to make it every time. The idea is that you make it enough times to make it worth the marginally worse field position the other team gets on the times you don't make it. Today, exactly that has been the case for UH; the Cougars got three points where they would have gotten none, and TCU wasn't able to make anything of its better field position when UH didn't convert. Kudos, Chris Thurmond, kudos.

More important than the points, though, was that UH had an efficient drive for the first time all game. Sure, the Cougars probably feel they squandered some points in the red zone, but I think the momentum they gained will give them a boost at halftime. One telling statistic: the 68-yard drive lasted 6 minutes, 30 seconds.

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