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Watch the Shane Buechele-Charlie Strong Bowl

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With the Longhorns off this weekend, the former Texas quarterback against the former Texas head coach takes center stage.

NCAA Football: SMU at Texas Christian Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Remember that time when true freshman quarterback Shane Buechele orchestrated a 50-point performance against Notre Dame in Sterlin Gilbert’s debut as the Texas offensive coordinator in 2016?

For a few moments, the Longhorns were back.

Oh, how the times have changed.

Multiple former Texas Longhorns will square-off down in South Florida on Saturday afternoon. SMU Mustangs quarterback Shane Buechele leads an undefeated team into a matchup against his former mentor, South Florida Bulls head coach Charlie Strong.

While surrounded by a talented supporting cast of skill-position players, Buechele has reached great success through four games with SMU. On average, he’s thrown for 289.8 yards per game and has completed over 66 percent of his passes. Led by Buechele, SMU currently boasts the nation’s 17th-ranked offense — five spots ahead of Texas. They’re averaging an impressive 514 total yards per game and 6.4 yards per play.

Meanwhile, Strong’s offense ranks near the bottom of the FBS. USF is averaging a shallow 292.3 total yards per game and 4.77 yards per play through three games.

What’s at stake?

SMU went a perfect 4-0 during non-conference play and is fresh off their 41-38 road victory over TCU. With a win on Saturday, the Mustangs would improve to 5-0 for the first time in over 35 years.

While SMU took care of business in Forth Worth, Strong had extra time to prepare his team for this matchup, as they’re coming off a bye week. USF dropped their first two games against power five opponents — Wisconsin (49-0) and Georgia Tech (14-10). Their lone victory was against FCS opponent South Carolina State.

After winning 17 of his first 19 games as USF’s head coach, Strong and the Bulls have plummeted since then. Dating back to last season, USF has dropped eight straight games against FBS opponents. For the sake of his job, Strong desperately needs a win and a 1-0 start to conference play.


According to Vegas, SMU is currently favored by 7.5 points. Kickoff is at 3:00 p.m. Central and the game will be nationally televised on ESPNU. Get your popcorn ready folks.