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Memphis falls to SMU in rollercoaster fashion

The Tigers entered Dallas and lost to SMU in a competitive game that came down to the end. 

Memphis began slow and found every way to catch up. The Tigers could not get it done and it was close until the very end SMU took the victory. Head Coach Ryan Silverfield took the blame for the loss. 

"This is my fault," Silverfield said. "Anytime we lose it is one hundred percent on me, if we win it is the players."

Memphis trailed SMU early, being down 21 points in the early second quarter. The Tigers slowly fought back and climbed back into the game after the 24-3 deficit. However, both teams stalled in the final quarter and SMU found a way to score last and win 30-27.

The Tigers seemed unfavorable before the game even began. Memphis went 28 days without competing. Meanwhile, SMU competed against three local Texas opponents. Silverfield said being off for four weeks is not an excuse.

"The preparation is different obviously with the 28 days off," Silverfield said. "Ultimately, I have to do a better job of preparing."

The first quarter belonged to the ponies in almost every way, as the Mustangs would score 21 unanswered points. SMU quarterback Shane Buechele used his primary receiver Reggie Roberson Jr. to gut the Tigers' defense. In the first half alone, Roberson Jr. had 200 receiving yards on four catches and two touchdowns.

Early into the second quarter, Memphis was down 24-3 and things seemed bleak and doubtful for the Tigers. However, the offense rallied and scored 17 unanswered points on their end and Memphis entered halftime down 24-20. Memphis quarterback Brady White said the overall team response was positive during the early parts of the game. 

"Obviously its not what we want, but in life when stuff comes easy it is not always as satisfying," White said. "Obviously we want to play better and we don't want to get in that hole."

The second half started slow with SMU scoring first with a field goal. The score was then 27-20, SMU gave the ball back. Memphis then worked down the field, converting multiple third downs. Brady White then found Tahj Washington in the endzone for a touchdown. Riley Patterson then made it a tie game at 27 even. 

The leading receiver in the game was SMU's Roberson Jr. He was taken of the field with a leg injury in the third quarter. The Mustangs had to play the remainder of the game without their star talent after he was taken into the locker room.

The Mustangs fumbled the ball of the second play of the fourth quarter and Memphis had a chance to score. However, the Tigers could not capitalize and it returned to SMU. Southern Methodist took another three minutes of the clock and Memphis got possession with 7:49 left in regulation. The Tigers seized and ended their drive with a punt. 

Both teams watched their drives continue to stall several times after that. Memphis held SMU to a fourth down and got the ball back with 3:14 left in the game. However, a untimely fumble from White gave the ball back to the Mustangs. SMU took the ball downfield and made a 43-yard field goal earning the lead 30-27. Memphis had nine seconds left on the clock and could not pull of the comeback.

White said there are negatives and positives to the outcome. 

"The negative is we lost, the positive is we played really crappy and still should have won that game," White said. 

White finished the game with 380 passing yards and three touchdowns. However, he threw two interceptions and fumbled the ball within the final two minutes of the game. 

SMU beat the Tigers for the first time since 2014, ending a six game losing streak. Memphis dropped their second game of the season. 

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