Revenge is a dish best served as a return butt-kicking. And that’s precisely what happened this past Saturday as SMU avenged last season’s blowout road loss with a 49-27 win over in-state rival the North Texas Mean Green.
The Mustangs started fast and kept going
After starting off slow in the season opener versus the Arkansas St. Red Wolves — the offense had an interception, safety and a missed field goal in its first four drives — it was important to start fast for the SMU offense. That’s precisely what it did as it scored a touchdown in the first three offensive possessions to take an early 21-0 lead. Not to be overlooked the defense matched the high energy of the offense by limiting UNT high-potent offense to only two first-downs in its first three drives. Led by defensive tackle Demerick Gary’s two sacks the SMU defense harassed UNT quarterback Mason Fine the entire evening and outside of a few plays, dominated the game.
Shane Buechele is good as advertised
Quarterback Shane Buechele showed that he was a team leader as he was named one of four captains, But there was uncertainty if the leadership would translate into on-field success. Against UNT Buechele exhibited the ability to make all the necessary throws for an SMU offense that finished the evening with 503 total yards — including 292 through the air. In addition to exploiting UNT through the air, Buechele showed the knack of knowing when to tuck the ball and run as he finished the game with 24 yards on four carries. It may not seem like a lot, but Buechele had a key 28-yard run on the first drive of the game which set the tone for the rest of the game.