Tulsa football adds another home win in week three

Joe McCurdy reports on TU’s triumphant win against Jacksonville State.

Tulsa was firing on all cylinders this past Saturday when the Golden Hurricane faced Jacksonville State for their week three matchup. Going into the game with a 1-1 record, Tulsa had the opportunity to gain confidence in their squad before traveling to Oxford, Mississippi, and facing ranked No. 16 Ole Miss. Going into the game, one of the bright spots of the season has been Tulsa’s offense, putting up a scintillating 400 passing yards per game with three receivers recording multiple 100-yard games. Facing Jacksonville State University, who was 3-0 coming into the game, Tulsa was working to dispel some old ghosts after losing to fellow FCS team University of California – Davis with a score of 19-17.

It’s safe to say that all fears of an upset were quickly eliminated after putting up 40 points in the first half and holding the Gamecocks offense to a measly 3 points. For a team that is used to playing in stressful nail-biters, it was refreshing to see this Tulsa squad handle a team in such a dominating fashion in all three phases of the game. Offensively, Davis Brin continues his 2022 campaign of being one of the best quarterbacks in the NCAA statistically. Currently leading the nation as the No. 1 QB in passing yards with 1,209 yards on the season raking in 11 TDs and only one interception, Brin played so well on Saturday that the lead over the Gamecocks was commanding enough that head coach Phillip Montgomery put in two backup QBs to finish the game, red-shirt freshman Braylon Braxton and sophomore Roman Fuller. With the statistics that Brin has been putting up, the “Brin for Heisman” campaign has officially started among Tulsa fans, which isn’t something that has happened for past Tulsa QBs.

As for the Tulsa defense, they played with a new intensity that hadn’t been seen in the previous two games. Not only did they record their first sack of the season but they finished the game with four sacks, two fumbles and one interception, all while holding Jacksonville State under 300 total yards on offense. After a season where our defense was our strongest asset in 2021, it was hard to see them struggle in the opening two games. With this week three performance, it will be interesting to see if they’re able to continue that success or struggle with opposing offenses. With Tulsa facing the prolific SEC offense of the Ole Miss rebels, it will test the defense with an offense unlike any the team has faced so far.

Special teams also had a huge game for themselves. With a muffed punt and safety on top of punter Lachlan Wilson having three out of four punts downed within the 5-yard line, their impact had a huge effect on keeping the momentum on the side of the Golden Hurricane. Wilson, the Australian-born punter, received the Ray Guy punter of the week award because of his performance on Saturday.

With a final score of 54 to 17, Tulsa improves to 2-1 on the season and is looking to upset Ole Miss on the road as a twenty-point underdog. Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffen doesn’t see the Golden Hurricane as an underdog, praising their prolific offensive attack, saying that Tulsa “will be [their] biggest test of the season so far.” Tulsa, historically, has played up to their opponents over the last five years, while not always getting the win, they always seem to give the big teams a scare, most recently against a high-ranked Cincinnati team where the Golden Hurricane almost pulled off the comeback and the upset but came just short. It truly is going to be a season changer if Tulsa comes out of Oxford with the win and there’s no doubt that Tulsa has the team to do it.

Post Author: Joe McCurdy