Blazer Buzz: UAB vs. Southern Miss TV info, key matchups –

The details:

WHAT: UAB (6-1, 3-1 CUSA) @ Southern Miss (5-3, 3-1 CUSA)

WHEN: Saturday at 2:30 p.m. CT

WHERE: M.M. Roberts Stadium in Hattiesburg, Mississippi

SERIES: Southern Miss leads 10-7

TV: NFL Network

LINE: UAB at +7


If the Blazers can continue to control their own fate in the division race with games against UTEP, division-leader Louisiana Tech and North Texas to close out the season.


1. Born to Run. The Golden Eagles have the 18th-ranked rushing defense in the nation (112.1 ypg) but history suggests that UAB is in for a colossal performance from a young intrepid running back with three of the top 10 rushing games in school history coming at Southern Miss. Darrin Reaves accomplished the feat with 223 yards in 2012 and Philadelphia Eagles running back Jordan Howard set the school record of 262 yards in a single game at the Rock in 2014. UAB’s all-time leading rusher Spencer Brown put up 209 yards during his true freshman season two years ago in 2017.

2. Learning to Fly. Even if UAB gets the running game going early, the offensive fireworks won’t just be contained to the ground with four of the top 10 conference receiving leaders lining up on the outside. Southern Miss receiver Quez Watkins leads the league with 697 yards (116.2 ypg) while UAB’s Austin Watkins – no relation – is second with 689 yards (86.1 ypg).

3. Legion Field West. Southern Miss won the first nine games in the series starting in 2000 but the Blazers have won seven of the last eight and three straight under head coach Bill Clark. In addition, UAB has not lost at Southern Miss since former Golden Eagles’ coach Larry Fedora’s first season in 2008. Last year saw an overtime classic with a game-winning 17-yard touchdown run by Brown and it should be another battle with both teams battling for a division title.


UAB’s secondary vs. Southern Miss’s passing attack: The Blazers have become more balanced as the season has progressed and the offensive line becoming more adept at run blocking. Southern Miss, on the other hand, lives on the pass and is the 12th-ranked passing offense in the nation (315.1 ypg). Southern Miss has allowed only nine sacks this season so it’ll be even more imperative for the defensive backs to win on the press and give a tenacious front seven time to get behind the line as well as disrupt passing lanes.


Spencer Brown – Expected to return after a three-game absence following a lower leg injury against Rice.

Lee Dufour – A practice participant the past couple of weeks so a return is possible. However, it is likely Andrew Smith starts his sixth consecutive game.

Tyler Johnston – Clark reiterated this week that Johnston’s status would become clearer at the end of this week. Johnston suffered a mild sprain against Tennessee and is likely to start against the Golden Eagles.

Colby Ragland – According to Clark, Ragland reaggravated a sprain last week but was available on an emergency basis against the Volunteers.

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