Owls won't match up to Houston Cougars

Dec 1, 2015 3:00 AM

Hosting the AAC Championship Game won’t be a problem for Houston.

The biggest obstacle our Navy Midshipmen faced last week as respects to college football was a game against the Houston Cougars.

If Navy won, they would be hosting the American Athletic Conference championship game. Despite a usually stellar performance by Navy’s QB Keenan Reynolds, who threw for a career-high 312 yards with a touchdown on 13-of-16 passing, Navy fell out of the race for any chance at a New Year’s Six and dropped from being rated No. 15 to 22 in the AP College Football Rankings.

Houston, by the way, happened to be unranked when it went up against Navy but has since moved in to the 18th spot with a record of 11-1. Additionally, beating Navy catapulted the Cougars to an opportunity to host the AAC title game and keep them in the race for the New Year’s Six.

For Temple to earn a bid at the AAC championship title the Owls needed to beat UConn. That happened, so now it will be the Owls against the Cougars in Houston for the AAC title. The opening line in Vegas showed the Cougars at -7 and it could fall below that as the week progresses. Although I’ve not finished my homework on these two teams my initial thoughts are to lean toward Houston.

Houston’s coach Tom Herman has just squashed rumors he is looking to make a move to South Carolina. Herman has gone on record telling his team he is not even considering any other coaching positions that might present themselves until after the AAC title game.

Houston’s one-year-old facility seats just over 40,000, with 26 suites, 42 loge boxes, 766 club seats, 2 suite decks, and 4 party decks. On Nov. 14, the stadium boasted a record attendance of 42,159. Something tells me the crowd might be a factor in the upcoming matchup.

I just feel Houston is very excited about having a winning football team, and the Cougars are not going to let the city down.

The team’s official hashtag on Twitter is #HTownTakeOver @UHCougarsFB, which has a nice ring to it. Most recent tweets include one that Coach Herman retweeted showing WR Demarcus Ayers making an unbelievable one-handed grab in the dominant performance over Navy.

You can look to follow @American_FB Championship, @UHCougarsFB, and @CoachTomHerman for more updates on Houston’s preparation for this game. The team, its coaches, and the city seem united and ready. With these essential elements, I do not foresee any problems.

My pick: I’d lean toward Houston -5.5 and, depending upon the total, I’d probably be inclined to take the OVER as long as it’s somewhere around 55. I think Temple will show up, but being that the Cougars are coming off a big win, playing at home, and no stranger to feasting on Owls, I’d give the edge to Houston in this championship game.

Michelle has a master’s degree in criminal justice from Boston University (2009) and was working toward a PhD in Public Policy Administration/Law when she took a detour via Vegas. She is now a freelance writer and has her own business, specializing in sports social media. Check out her blog at www.MondayMorningMichelle.com Email: [email protected].