Two Mike Leach disciples face off, a Notre Dame reunion and a Solar Belt encore? What to anticipate in Week 3
7:00 AM ETDavid M. HaleCloseESPN Workers WriterACC reporter.Joined ESPN in 2012.Graduate of the College of Delaware.Harry Lyles Jr.The 2001 Texas Tech soccer crew, led by Mike Leach, was a who’s who of future head coaches — an inventory that included Kliff Kingsbury, Artwork Briles, Sonny Dykes, Ruffin McNeill, Greg McMackin and two guys who will go face to face this weekend: Baylor’s Dave Aranda and Houston’s Dana Holgorsen.In a recreation that was scheduled (*checks watch*), oh, about 45 minutes in the past, Aranda and Holgorsen will face off as head coaches for the primary time on Saturday, however they go means again. That the 2 each served on the identical employees — Holgorsen as receivers coach and Aranda as a grad assistant — represents the tip of the similarities, nonetheless.A fast synopsis:Method to soccer Aranda: Defensive mastermindHolgorsen: Air raid guruHairstyle Aranda: Clean and shavedHolgorsen: As if hair had been made out of wacky, arm-waving inflatable tube menPersonality Aranda: Subdued, deliberateHolgorsen: Buys Purple Bull by the palletWinning second Aranda: Final yr’s nationwide title (as defensive coordinator at LSU)Holgorsen: “Let’s go win the f—ing recreation!”After all, that does not imply the matchup lacks familiarity. The truth is, Aranda mentioned he has at all times been immensely impressed by Holgorsen’s vitality.Houston head coach Dana Holgorsen (pictured) and Baylor head coach Dave Aranda, who face one another Saturday, go all the best way again to teaching collectively on Mike Leach’s early-2000s Texas Tech employees. Ken Murray/Icon SportswireAranda recounted a narrative of discovering Holgorsen in his workplace with two TVs enjoying on the similar time. In a single hand, Holgorsen had a distant, fast-forwarding by means of performs on a cut-up of the subsequent week’s opponent. Within the different hand, he held one other distant, fast-forwarding by means of the film “Tombstone” looking for a quote he actually favored.”The man that was type of preserving every little thing working was Dana,” Aranda mentioned.And what does Holgorsen keep in mind about working with Aranda at Texas Tech?”I’ve adopted him and watched him, and his success is no surprise,” Holgorsen mentioned. “However I do not keep in mind a complete lot about him [at Texas Tech], actually.”Ah, the lifetime of a grad assistant.Nonetheless, Leach remembers that employees as a really idyllic assembly of the minds — even when, within the case of Aranda and Holgorsen, there wasn’t a ton of overlap in strategy.”They at all times acquired alongside nice,” Leach mentioned. “Simply very completely different personalities. One was all offense, and one was all protection.”Recreation day Q&A with Tulane’s Keon HowardKeon Howard was the beginning quarterback at Southern Miss means again in 2017. On Oct. 21 of that yr, he gained a recreation vs. Louisiana Tech. Two weeks later, in opposition to Tennessee, he was 7-of-22 passing and was benched. He would not begin one other recreation for almost three years.Final Saturday, Howard was again at QB, this time for Tulane, main a fourth-quarter comeback victory over South Alabama.It had been 1,058 days between victories for Keon Howard as a beginning QB. Courtesy Tulane AthleticsHow huge of a comeback story was it? It had been 1,058 days between victories for Howard as a beginning QB, the longest stretch between two wins since Damian Williams went 1,380 between two of the three video games he gained as a starter — first at Mississippi State (2013) after which at Texas State (2017) — in accordance with ESPN Stats & Info analysis.Howard is hoping for a little bit higher legacy than that. We talked to him about his return from the abyss and his hopes for Tulane in 2020.ESPN: You went three years between wins. What was it wish to get the chance to go on the market and have that have once more?Howard: You actually mentioned the important thing phrase — alternative. I am simply profiting from the chance that was given to me. I have been doing this since I used to be four years previous. My complete be aware to myself was to exit and do my job and get a ‘W’ and let it unfold how it’s going to unfold.ESPN: Did you ever marvel if you happen to’d ever get the possibility to do that once more?Howard: No. I at all times attempt to take a look at the glass midway full and preserve a optimistic mindset with every little thing. I knew my alternative would come. I simply did not know when. My favourite Bible verse is, “What I do you don’t notice now, however you’ll perceive afterward.” So I simply keep devoted and know my alternative would come, and I will be prepared when it does.2 RelatedESPN: What did the expertise during the last three years train you?Howard: I feel 2020 typically, it has been a yr the place you’ve got to have the ability to take in the future at a time as a result of you do not know what tomorrow will carry. I am blessed with 24 hours to reap the benefits of that chance.ESPN: Do you see your self as a job mannequin for overcoming adversity?Howard: Little question. Each time my ft hit the bottom, I am preventing. I am blessed to battle by means of adversity. Going by means of these trials, I hope youthful children, youthful quarterbacks, which may look as much as me, they will see downs and highs and lows and you must be persistent, keep working, keep devoted and have a dedication — not simply to your self, however to your teammates to push them and uplift them and simply know your time will come. And when it does come, be prepared.ESPN: You put on No. 9 to honor your godfather, Steve McNair. What did he imply in your life?Howard: He impacted my life in so some ways — mentorship, him and his brothers and the entire McNair household. They took me in after I was within the seventh grade, they usually handled me like their very own, not simply with soccer and life typically. Seeing how a lot [Steve] actually labored and the preparation time, the lives he impacted across the group. Seeing how many individuals he really impacted over time actually means rather a lot to me, and after I put on that quantity, it brings delight, but it surely additionally brings duty to know that his legacy will nonetheless dwell on by means of me so long as I am enjoying.Will high quality of play enhance in Week 3?North Carolina head coach Mack Brown lastly acquired round to checking his telephone Saturday night time after an unpleasant however in the end convincing 31-6 win over Syracuse. Brown had a bunch of texts from some native friends all providing a type of backhanded congratulations.”Glad to see you lastly confirmed up at halftime,” one learn.As backhanded compliments go, this one stung — as did the 10 or 15 others, Brown mentioned.Brown merely wrote again, “1-0, mission completed,” however even he was acutely conscious that even in a win, there was plenty of work left to do.Such was life for almost everybody after the Week 2 video games, when shoddy play was the norm and the previous adage that groups make their largest progress between the primary and second video games turned much less a cliché and extra a determined hope for coaches.play0:44North Carolina’s Dazz Newsome drops the punt and it is recovered by Nolan Cooney for Syracuse.Check out North Carolina, specifically: The Tar Heels missed a discipline purpose. They roughed the punter. They fumbled a punt return that led to a rating. That they had a punt return referred to as again for an unlawful block and allowed Syracuse to return a punt that (fortunately for UNC) was additionally referred to as again for a somewhat benign blocking penalty. And people had been simply the special-teams gaffes.The kicking video games across the nation had been a multitude. By no means probably the most dependable of types even in a standard week, FBS kickers missed almost 40% of their discipline purpose tries final week.After which there was Navy’s Labor Day fiasco, a torpid walk-through that coach Ken Niumatalolo chalked as much as a scarcity of contact and physicality in camp after coronavirus worries satisfied him it was greatest to carry again.Within the aftermath of UNC’s sloppy play, Brown requested a seemingly unusual query of his guys the day after the sport: When did you imagine — genuinely imagine — you’d play this recreation?After an offseason of stops and begins and rumors and modifications and what-ifs, Brown anticipated some divergent solutions. As a substitute, there was a reasonably clear consensus.”By and enormous, these guys had been practising, however of their thoughts, they weren’t ready to play a recreation till 10 days or possibly every week in the past,” Brown mentioned.It is laborious accountable them. At Houston, Holgorsen held a “mock recreation” final Saturday to get his crew prepared for Memphis, whilst gamers started listening to rumors of a COVID-19 outbreak at Memphis that might in the end cancel their recreation. Just a few hours later, Houston had a brand new recreation scheduled in opposition to Baylor, sending grad assistants and crew analysts scurrying for movie.”A day later was the primary time our gamers truly believed we had been going to play a recreation,” Holgorsen mentioned. “If Memphis acquired canceled and I needed to follow them one other week with out a recreation, I did not understand how I used to be going to strategy that.”That type of chaos creates a direct line to the sloppy play on the sector, Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy mentioned.”It is simply preparation,” Gundy mentioned. “There’s been a degree of how bodily groups wish to put together and your limitations based mostly on the virus.”So what does that imply for this week?Effectively, kickers will probably be kickers, so there may be no simple resolution for that. The remaining is essentially some mixture of higher preparation and a whole lot of hope.”You simply should click on proper into it and go together with it,” Aranda mentioned. “We’re lucky that we acquired ourselves a very good recreation, and now we have a possibility to exit and present what we have. I do know our guys are excited.”Charlie Weis Jr. returns to Notre DameYes, Charlie Weis Jr. has considered the way it will really feel when he walks into Notre Dame Stadium on Saturday and takes his spot on the guests sideline. Sure, he may hum the battle tune by chance when it begins enjoying throughout pregame warm-ups. No, the USF offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach has not let any of that get in the best way of getting ready the Bulls’ offense for the massive problem forward.The truth is, Weis Jr. mentioned when he heard that USF was engaged on a last-minute deal to play Notre Dame, his first thought was, “We have a whole lot of work to do as a result of they’re actually good,” he mentioned with fun. However naturally, he and his father, former Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis, have talked a few profession coming full circle.Weis Jr. acquired his begin as a young person on the Notre Dame sideline together with his father, famously sporting a headset and serving to. Matt Cashore-USA TODAY SportsWeis Jr. acquired his begin as a young person on the Notre Dame sideline together with his father, famously sporting a headset and serving to. He noticed the highs and the lows, and felt the sting when he was a junior in highschool and his father was fired. However Notre Dame nonetheless holds a particular place to him, and there is multiple purpose for that.”It is positively one thing I considered and dreamt about, it could be actually cool to return to South Bend, a spot that I like, a spot that I nonetheless name dwelling and get to be in Notre Dame Stadium yet another time,” Weis Jr. mentioned. “I used to be actually excited concerning the alternative to go there. It is a very particular place to us.”His sister, Hannah, nonetheless lives in South Bend on the group dwelling and neighborhood their dad and mom established for her and others with particular wants, Hannah & Associates. Earlier than Notre Dame was even on the schedule, Weis Jr. drove 16 hours every strategy to go go to her over the summer time. Given the COVID-19 restrictions, Weis Jr. was capable of see her solely by means of a screened door.The journey on Saturday, although, will probably be strictly enterprise. And Weis Jr. is prepared for it.”We’re telling our gamers that is an superior expertise, it is a spot that is a bucket record for most individuals to go to,” Weis Jr. mentioned. “We instructed them, if you first see it, benefit from the second, after which as soon as that ball will get kicked off, it is all about South Florida, it is all about us and doing our job.” — Andrea AdelsonWhat to observe forThe Solar Belt’s encore presentation: For a Group of 5 convention, it is laborious to do a lot better than what the Solar Belt did final week. Louisiana and Arkansas State got here up with two of the three largest upsets in faculty soccer. This weekend, the Ragin’ Cajuns tackle a Georgia State crew that had a whole lot of query marks coming into 2020 — and will have lots of them answered in opposition to one of many Solar Belt favorites. One other recreation to regulate is Appalachian State vs. Marshall. The Thundering Herd return loads of gamers from a crew that completed 8-5 in 2019. A Mountaineers win would solidify their energy on the high of the Solar Belt.Will Navy be prepared for Tulane? The optimistic for the Midshipmen is that Saturday’s recreation cannot be worse than their season opener, by which Navy acquired bounced 55-Three by BYU. Niumatalolo would later announce that the crew would return to regular follow with full contact and 11-on-11 scrimmages. Bluntly, Niumatalolo mentioned, “We’re most likely the cleanest crew within the nation [for COVID-19], however sadly, we suck at soccer proper now.”Tulane, in the meantime, faces a good quantity of turnover from a 2019 season by which it completed 7-6, however the Inexperienced Wave will not be a slouch coming off an in depth win final Saturday. This week, the crew prolonged head coach Willie Fritz, who led Tulane to its first consecutive bowl appearances, in 2018 and 2019.Is Louisville’s offense going to point out up once more in opposition to Miami? It is easy to overreact to those early video games — we do even throughout a standard faculty soccer season. However the Louisville offense we noticed within the first half in opposition to Western Kentucky was enjoyable to observe, highlighted by Micale Cunningham’s completions of 63 and 70 yards to Braden Smith and Dez Fitzpatrick, respectively.play0:35Coated by three defenders, Dez Fitzpatrick nonetheless finds a strategy to reel within the 70-yard landing reception extending Louisville’s lead.We will get to see the Cardinals’ offense on a much bigger stage this weekend after they tackle 1-Zero Miami (the place School GameDay will probably be stationed). If there’s one factor Miami will attempt to reap the benefits of, will probably be Louisville’s particular groups, which struggled final Saturday. The Hurricanes may also look to see how QB D’Eriq King performs in his first recreation in convention play. He completed final week’s win over UAB 16-of-24 with 144 yards and a landing, however the Hurricanes expect extra from the switch from Houston. Louisville will probably be a very good take a look at.Final-minute cancellations and quarantines: That is going to be an inevitable issue this season for any universities which have determined to play soccer. Simply this week, Arkansas State, coming off an upset win over Kansas State, noticed its recreation in opposition to Central Arkansas postponed as a result of not having the ability to “assemble a full two-deep depth chart at a selected place group as a result of participant unavailability.”Different video games that had been scheduled for this week which are now not occurring embody Houston vs. Memphis, Tulsa vs. Oklahoma State, Virginia vs. Virginia Tech and BYU vs. Military.That we have already seen so many delays, cancellations and last-minute additions most likely serves as some warning to Huge Ten followers eagerly anticipating their league’s return. The brand new security protocols name for a one-week hiatus if greater than 5% of the crew checks optimistic, and there is little wiggle room within the eight-game schedule mannequin. Huge Ten gamers spent the previous month saying they needed to play, however now they will must do their half to point out they’re higher geared up to maintain the coronavirus at bay than so many different colleges nonetheless trying to find solutions.Gamers to watchHale: Pitt defensive finish Patrick Jones IIThe greatest cross rusher you most likely have not heard of is about to feast on a brutal offensive line. Jones has NFL draft first-round potential — he racked up 8.5 sacks and 18 QB pressures final yr. He’ll be up in opposition to Syracuse QB Tommy DeVito, who was sacked seven occasions within the Orange’s opener and has gone down 51 occasions for the reason that begin of 2019 — eight greater than another QB within the nation.Choose the winner of 10 faculty soccer matchups every week. Play straight up or confidence. Make Your Picks
Lyles: Louisiana QB Levi LewisThe Ragin’ Cajuns are using excessive from their win over Iowa State. Lewis performed a stable recreation and now opens up convention play in opposition to Georgia State, which has a protection with many questions. Lewis had some huge performances in Solar Belt play in 2019 (most notably 354 yards, four touchdowns and 1 interception in opposition to App State within the convention title recreation), and there can be no higher strategy to observe up a Energy 5 win than by filling the stat sheet to open up convention play.Below-the-radar recreation of the weekHale: SMU at North TexasLike factors? This is your recreation of the week. The over/underneath for this one is pegged at 70.5 — a full landing greater than another recreation on the docket. SMU QB Shane Buechele struggled within the opener in opposition to Texas State, however he stays extremely harmful. North Texas’ new starter, Jason Bean, had 4 touchdowns in his debut in opposition to Houston Baptist.Lyles: App State vs. MarshallApp State had a harder time than anticipated final week with Charlotte and may very well be in for an additional problem this week. The Thundering Herd have an skilled roster and are coming off an 8-5 season, and final week, they blew out Jap Kentucky 59-0. Quarterback Grant Wells accomplished 16 of his 23 cross makes an attempt for 307 yards and 4 touchdowns. Marshall additionally had a balanced assault on the bottom, with Data McDaniel and Brenden Knox combining for 32 carries and 178 yards. In every week with some fairly underwhelming video games, this one ought to be one of many extra aggressive ones.Upset picks of the weekIt’s most likely a little bit early to anoint us each as geniuses, however each of our upset picks in Week 2 — Louisiana over Iowa State (Lyles) and Coastal Carolina over Kansas (Hale) — proved to be sensible insights. We’ll attempt to preserve the streak stepping into Week 3.Hale: Boston School over DukeNo crew has been extra neglected within the ACC this yr than BC. Sure, there is a new teaching employees, but it surely’s not like Steve Addazio left an empty cabinet, and new head coach Jeff Hafley has gotten optimistic buzz this offseason. BC has arguably the perfect offensive line within the ACC, a stellar tailback in David Bailey, some better-than-you-think receivers and a star at linebacker in Max Richardson. Extra importantly, BC has been eyeing this recreation for some time, whereas Duke is recent off a bodily loss to Notre Dame.Lyles: Marshall over Appalachian StateMarshall is properly rested, and the Mountaineers let Charlotte grasp round a little bit bit too lengthy. That might seemingly be due to the inconsistent offseason as a result of COVID-19, however I am prepared to take an opportunity on the Thundering Herd.