It was another record-breaking night for Frank Harris and the UTSA Roadrunners in their 45-30 win over the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders in Murfreesboro on Friday.
Harris became the first UTSA quarterback to throw for 400 yards in a game, finishing with 414 yards and two touchdowns. Harris also caught a pass from Joshua Cephus for 9 yards. That pass allowed the Roadrunners to set a new school record for passing yards in a game as a team with 423 yards.
“It’s exciting, but we definitely have things to work on,” Harris said. “We are 1-0 in conference play, so it definitely means a lot.”
UTSA was able to get yards on the ground, too, finishing the game with 167 yards and four touchdowns. Brenden Brady was the Roadrunners’ leading rusher with 98 yards and a touchdown. Harris scored two rushing touchdowns along with his two in the air.
“I’m not a stat guy, but there are times in a game where everybody in the building knows you have to run it,” UTSA Head Coach Jeff Traylor said. “You just have to bow up and run the dang thing.”
It wasn’t all good for the Roadrunners. Harris had three passes intercepted in the second half and that led to 10 points for the Blue Raiders.
Harris connected with Zakhari Franklin for a touchdown on the Roadrunners’ first drive in the first quarter and never relinquished their lead over the Blue Raiders. Last week, Middle Tennessee never trailed Miami in the team’s upset win over the ranked Hurricanes.
The Roadrunners added a field goal later in the first quarter to push the lead to 10-0.
Middle Tennessee scored on the first play of the second quarter to cut the Roadrunner lead to 10-7 with 14:53 left in the quarter. It was the beginning of a stretch of five minutes in which the two teams combined to score four touchdowns. By the time UTSA had scored the final touchdown of the five-minute burst, the Roadrunners’ lead was back up to 10, 24-14.
UTSA went into halftime leading 31-20. After scoring on their first drive of the third quarter to go up 38-20, the Roadrunners’ offense had three drives end in interceptions, including one that was returned for a touchdown in the fourth quarter as Middle Tennessee cut the Roadrunner lead from 18 to eight in the fourth quarter.
The Roadrunners went back up by double digits with 1:42 left in the fourth quarter on a 25-yard touchdown run by Brady.
Middle Tennessee drove into UTSA territory before their drive ended on a turnover on downs. UTSA was able to run out the final 19 seconds of the game to leave with a 45-30 win.
The win over Middle Tennessee lifted UTSA’s overall record to 3-2. The Roadrunners are also 1-0 in Conference USA for the third straight season.
Next week, the Roadrunners will be back at the Alamodome to host the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers in a rematch of last year’s conference championship game. The Oct. 8 game begins at 5 p.m.