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Nevermind the Score, Texas State Beat Tech

Bobcats enjoy Big-Time Football

By Joe O'Connell, 3:10PM, Fri. Sep. 14, 2012

Nevermind the Score, Texas State Beat Tech

Texas State won last week.

OK, technically they were stomped 58-10 by Texas Tech in the Bobcat’s first real home game as an FBS (translation: Big-Time Football!) team and transient Western Athletic Conference member. But they still won.

Larry Teis, Texas State athletic director, was positively giddy after the game, which saw an amazing 33,006 in attendance. They even brought in bleachers to extend the size of the recently expanded stadium. It’s a far cry from the days when a tiny, old-school stadium stood next door in what is now a parking lot. It’s also a major jump from last year when Bobcat Stadium could hold 16,000 max.

Parking was a headache. Tailgating was a blowout party. 150 press credentials went out. What’s not to like?

Oh, that pesky score. Eight points worse than the 50-10 kidney-punch the Red Raiders applied to the Bobcats last year in Lubbock (Texas State led that game 10-9 at the half). Bobcat defenders looked tiny when they tried, mostly unsuccessfully, to cover towering Red Raider receivers this time. Seth “Lonesome” Doege was masterful, throwing for 319 yards and five touchdowns. Tech never punted — not once. They rang up 591 yards of offense.

Meanwhile, the Bobcats played without an injured Marcus Curry, who raced from 131 yards in Texas State’s season-opening 30-13 win over the University of Houston that saw a Curry run make ESPN’s top plays of that week. Shaun Rutherford, who was glorious, amazing, awe-inspiring and more against the Cougars, couldn’t complete a pass in seven tries in the first quarter against Tech — unless you count the interception Cody Davis ran back 88 yards for the Red Raiders.

Tyler Arndt came in at QB and helped the Bobcats cut a 28-0 deficit with a 25-yard touchdown pass to Terrence Franks, who at times looked impressive carrying the ball in place of Curry. But it wasn’t enough. Nothing was. Texas Tech dominated in every way.

Yet it counts as a Bobcat win all the same. My pal Sig, a Houston alum, didn’t get it. He wrote on Facebook prior to the game, “The Cougars weren't that good and your guys aren't that great. Tech will never be what it was before firing the best coach they ever had, so don't go dancing in the streets if you win.”

The point is for a moment the Texas State Bobcats were taken seriously going into their home opener. The stands were full, the excitement was a beating heart. No one was wearing a Texas Longhorn T-shirt. The Austin American-Statesman actually sent a staff reporter to the game.

Of course, there’s still a long way to go. Said Statesman reporter misspelled Rutherford’s first name, repeating a mistake from earlier in the week. It’s doubtful the stands will be as full on Sept. 28 (this is a bye week) when Stephen F. Austin comes to San Marcos. And don’t count on the Austin and San Antonio dailies to send a staff writer this time. But give it time. The Texas school with the fifth largest student body has dipped its toes in Big-Time Football. It’s going to be a wild and rocky ride. Stay tuned.

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