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UTSA returns home to host UAB in nationally televised matchup

Roadrunners to face Blazers on Saturday night in American Athletic Conference action

UTSA Roadrunners (2-3, 1-0)
UAB Blazers (2-4, 1-1)

7 p.m. | Saturday, Oct. 14
Alamodome | San Antonio, Texas

Radio: UTSA Sports Media Network / Ticket 760 AM / SiriusXM 388
Live Stats:

Series History: UAB leads, 4-3
Last Meeting: UTSA 44, UAB 38 (2OT) • 11/5/22 (Birmingham, Ala.)


• UTSA will host UAB in the program’s first-ever American Athletic Conference home game on Saturday.
• This will mark the eighth meeting between the two programs.
• The Blazers lead the all-time series, 4-3, but the Roadrunners have won the last two matchups, both in dramatic fashion, pulling out a 44-38 double-overtime road victory last season and a 34-31 home triumph on a touchdown pass in the final seconds in 2021.
• The Roadrunners have won 17 of their last 19 home games and are 19-3 (.864) at the Alamodome under head coach Jeff Traylor.
• UTSA has won nine straight regular season conference games and 11 consecutive contests against conference foes when including the 2021 and 2022 Conference USA Championship Games.
• UTSA boasts a 21-3 (.875) record in regular season conference games and is 23-3 (.885) versus league competition when including the two C-USA Championship Games in the Jeff Traylor era.
• The Roadrunners are 32-13 (.711) under Jeff Traylor, the most wins and best winning percentage by a UTSA head coach.
• Saturday will mark UTSA’s annual Hispanic Heritage Game.

Fresh off a 49-34 road victory over Temple, UTSA will return home for the first time in a month to host UAB in a nationally televised American Athletic Conference contest on ESPNU. Kickoff for the Roadrunners’ first-ever home AAC game is set for 7 p.m. at the Alamodome. Saturday also will mark UTSA’s annual Hispanic Heritage Game. UTSA improved to 2-3 overall and 1-0 in the league following the win in Philadelphia, while the Blazers ran their records to 2-4 and 1-1 with a 56-35 home victory over South Florida. This will mark the eighth meeting between the two programs on the gridiron with UAB holding a slight 4-3 edge in the all-time series. The Roadrunners have won the last two meetings in dramatic fashion, pulling out a 44-38 double-overtime win in Birmingham last season and a 34-31 thriller on a last-second touchdown pass in 2021 at the Alamodome.

Saturday’s game will be televised nationally on ESPNU and it will be available online at WatchESPN and via the ESPN mobile app. Jay Alter (play-by-play) and Rene Ingoglia (analyst) will call the action. The game will air live in the San Antonio area on Ticket 760, online at, via the free iHeartRadio app and on SiriusXM 388. Andy Everett (play-by-play), Jay Riley (analyst) and Pat Evans (reporter) have the call. There will be a two-hour pregame and 45-minute postgame show.

The Roadrunners will return home to the Alamodome for the first time since Friday, Sept. 15. UTSA played back-to-back home games against Texas State and Army before a pair of road contests sandwiched around the lone idle week of the season over the past month. In fact, UTSA is one of only six FBS teams to play only three home games through the first eight weeks of the season, joining Bowling Green, Fresno State, Nevada, South Carolina and Virginia.

San Antonio will be in the path of an annular solar eclipse on Saturday prior to the home matchup with UAB. Per NASA, partial eclipse of the sun will begin at 10:23 a.m., annularity will start at 11:52 and end at 11:56 a.m., with the partial eclipse set to conclude at 1:33 p.m.

UTSA has been tough to beat at the Alamodome during the Jeff Traylor era. The Roadrunners have won 17 of their last 19 home contests and are 19-3 (.864) at the facility since his arrival prior to the 2020 season. UTSA reeled off a school-record 10-game win streak at home that started with a 27-26 victory over Louisiana Tech on Oct. 24, 2020, and ran through the 49-41 win against WKU in the 2021 Conference USA Championship Game before it was snapped in triple overtime against No. 24 Houston in the 2022 season opener. The Roadrunners have won seven of the last eight at home and are 45-30 all-time in the Alamodome.

UTSA fans have packed the Alamodome over the past two-plus seasons, as five of the program’s nine-largest home crowds have been recorded during that span. Two of the past three home games now rank second and fourth on the all-time chart, as 49,342 fans watched UTSA beat Texas State in the 2023 home opener to mark the second-largest crowd in program history. In the final home contest last season, the Roadrunners raced past North Texas, 48-27, to capture their second straight Conference USA Championship in front of 41,412 fans, which now ranks fourth on the list of largest home crowds. That figure edged the 41,148 fans who watched UTSA outlast WKU, 49-41, in the 2021 C-USA Championship Game, now the fifth-largest home attendance. The 2022 season opener against 24th-ranked Houston drew 37,526 fans, which ranks eighth all-time, just ahead of the 34-31 thriller against UAB in front 35,147 fans in 2021. The UTSA/Texas State crowd is the second-largest in the American Athletic Conference this season behind South Florida’s home game versus Alabama that drew 65,138. UTSA ranks third in The American, sixth among state of Texas FBS schools and 60th nationally in average home attendance (38,240). UTSA led C-USA in average home attendance in each of the past two seasons, averaging 28,917 per game last fall and 26,643 in 2021. A total of 465,400 fans have filed into the Alamodome to watch the Roadrunners since the return from COVID-19 protocols for the 2021 season. UTSA set NCAA modern startup program records in its first season by drawing 56,743 fans to the inaugural game against Northeastern State on Sept. 3, 2011, and by averaging 35,521 fans for six home contests.

UTSA’s Top 10 Home Crowds






Northeastern State



Texas State






North Texas



Western Kentucky



Oklahoma State



Texas State










The Blazers moved to 2-4 overall and 1-1 in American Athletic Conference play with a 56-35 home triumph over South Florida on Saturday. UAB’s other win was a 35-6 decision against North Carolina A&T in the season opener. The Blazers are averaging 31.8 points and 451.5 yards of offense per game while allowing 35.8 points and 439.8 yards per contest. Jacob Zeno, a product of San Antonio Jay High School, guides the offense, as the quarterback has thrown for 1,795 yards and 12 touchdowns on 176-of-233 passing and rushed for 101 yards and three scores on 48 attempts to give him 316.0 yards of total offense per game, good for second in The American and 14th nationally. Jermaine Brown Jr. is the top rusher with 270 yards and seven TDs on 58 carries, Tejhaun Palmer has a team-high 350 receiving yards and three touchdowns on 22 catches. Defensively, Keondre Swoopes paces the unit with 38 tackles, while Desmond Little has 4.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. Head coach Trent Dilfer, a former NFL quarterback who won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens in 2000, is in his first season at the helm.

Saturday will mark the eighth meeting on the gridiron between UTSA and UAB. The Blazers hold a slight 4-3 edge in the all-time series, but the Roadrunners have won the last two matchups, both in dramatic fashion. Last November, UTSA outlasted UAB, 44-38, in double overtime in Birmingham, while Oscar Cardenas’ memorable touchdown catch in the final seconds secured a 34-31 home triumph in 2021. The series is tied at 2-2 in games played at the Alamodome.

UTSA/UAB Series History





San Antonio, Texas

W, 52-31


San Antonio, Texas

L, 19-24


Birmingham, Ala.

L, 3-52


San Antonio, Texas

L, 14-33


Birmingham, Ala.

L, 13-21


San Antonio, Texas

W, 34-31


Birmingham, Ala.

W, 44-38 (2OT)

Joshua Cephus caught a 14-yard touchdown pass from Frank Harris and the defense forced an incompletion on fourth down in the second overtime, as UTSA outlasted UAB, 44-38, on Nov. 5, 2022, at Protective Stadium. Playing their program-record third overtime game of the season, the Roadrunners won for the first time in Birmingham. UTSA held a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter but the Blazers rallied to tie things up in the final minutes. Trailing 31-24 with 1:15 left to play, UAB put together an eight-play, 80-yard drive that culminated in a 38-yard touchdown pass from Jacob Zeno to Trea Shropshire with 15 seconds remaining. Matt Quinn’s extra point knotted the score to force overtime. UAB took a 38-31 lead in the first extra period on an 11-yard TD catch by Tejhuan Palmer, but UTSA answered with a 2-yard touchdown pass from Harris to Tykee Ogle-Kellogg to send the contest into a second OT. The Roadrunners took a 44-38 advantage after Cephus’ TD catch on a wheel route down the right sideline, and the defense then held strong, as Nick Booker-Brown made a key sack on third down and Corey Mayfield Jr. and Clifford Chattman provided coverage on a long pass attempt on fourth down to secure the victory.

Now in their 13th season of play, the Roadrunners will play the 152nd game in program history on Saturday when they host UAB. UTSA is 77-74 all-time and 45-30 at home. The 100th game and 50th home contest in UTSA history occurred against UAB on Oct. 12, 2019, at the Alamodome.

Frank Harris returned to the lineup to throw for 338 yards and three touchdowns to help lead UTSA to a 49-34 victory over Temple in the Roadrunners’ inaugural American Athletic Conference game last Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field. Harris completed 25 of 33 passes to help the Roadrunners pile up season highs of 49 points and 495 yards of offense to improve to 2-3 on the season and a perfect 3-0 in conference debuts. UTSA also ran its record to 8-4 all-time in league openers and 21-3 in regular season conference games under fourth-year head coach Jeff Traylor. Harris, who topped 10,000 career passing yards, tossed passes to six different receivers paced by Joshua Cephus’ seven catches for 81 yards and a touchdown. Devin McCuin hauled in six passes for 94 yards and a TD, Oscar Cardenas caught five balls for 51 yards and Tykee Ogle-Kellogg had three receptions for 83 yards and a score. On the ground, Robert Henry rushed for 78 yards and two TDs on only 11 carries, while Kevorian Barnes added 62 yards and a score on 11 totes. Defensively, Martavius French led the way with 10 tackles, while Avery Morris logged a career-high nine stops. Ken Robinson made seven tackles, while Kam Alexander and Jimmori Robinson recorded six stops apiece to help UTSA limit the Owls to 70 rushing yards.

The Roadrunners have won their last 11 games against conference opponents. The streak began with the 49-41 victory over Western Kentucky in the 2021 Conference USA Championship and continued with a perfect 8-0 regular season league slate in 2022 before extending the stretch to 10 with a 48-27 triumph over North Texas in the 2022 C-USA Championship Game. UTSA made its American Athletic Conference debut a successful one, racing past Temple, 49-34, last Saturday to push the streak to 11. The Roadrunners have won 21 of their last 22 contests against conference competition dating back to a three-game win streak that closed out the 2020 C-USA schedule in Jeff Traylor’s first season. In fact, UTSA boasts a 21-3 (.875) record in regular season conference games and a 23-3 (.885) mark against league foes in the Traylor era.

UTSA improved to 8-4 all-time in conference openers, including a perfect 4-0 under head coach Jeff Traylor, with the 49-34 road triumph over Temple last Saturday. The Roadrunners beat Middle Tennessee in each of the previous three league lid-lifters, scoring a 45-30 triumph last year in Murfreesboro after back-to-back home victories in 2020 (37-35) and 2021 (27-13). UTSA now has won each of its three league debuts, beating New Mexico State 35-14 in the Western Athletic Conference opener on Sept. 29, 2012, in Las Cruces, and defeating UTEP 32-13, in its first Conference USA game on Sept. 21, 2013, in El Paso.

UTSA’s Conference Openers (8-4)





at New Mexico State

W, 35-14



W, 32-13


at Florida Atlantic

L, 37-41



W, 25-6


at Old Dominion

L, 19-33


Southern Miss

L, 29-31



W, 30-21


at North Texas

L, 3-45


Middle Tennessee

W, 37-35


Middle Tennessee

W, 27-13


at Middle Tennessee

W, 45-30


at Temple

W, 49-34

UTSA is no stranger to close contests in the Jeff Traylor era, as 29 of the 45 have been one-score ballgames in the fourth quarter. The Roadrunners own a 20-9 record in those games. Dating back to the 2021 campaign, UTSA has seen 16 of the last 24 contests decided in the fourth quarter or later. Additionally, the Roadrunners are 12-4 in games decided by eight points or less since 2021.

The Roadrunners were working overtime in 2022, with a program-record three contests needing extra periods to determine the outcome. UTSA played the first back-to-back overtime games in program history to open the campaign. The Roadrunners dropped a 37-35 decision to No. 24 Houston in triple overtime in the opener. One week later, UTSA rallied from a 14-point, second-half deficit to score a 41-38 road triumph over Army West Point in one extra period. On Nov. 5 in Birmingham, the Roadrunners outlasted UAB 44-38 in double overtime to improve to 2-1 last season and 5-3 overall in overtime games. UTSA played overtime, double-overtime and triple-overtime games last season and joined Houston, Navy and Texas Tech as the only FBS teams to have played three overtime contests last year.

UTSA’s All-Time Overtime Games (5-3)





South Alabama

L, 27-30 (2OT)


Georgia State

W, 17-14 (OT)


at Charlotte

W, 30-27 (OT)



L, 49-52 (5OT)


at Texas State

W, 51-48 (2OT)



L, 35-37 (3OT)


at Army West Point

W, 41-38 (OT)


at UAB

W, 44-38 (2OT)

The Roadrunners have been picked to finish second in the American Athletic Conference Preseason Media Poll. UTSA received 440 total points and nine first-place votes ahead of its debut campaign in the AAC, good for second behind defending champion Tulane, which garnered 457 points and 20 first-place votes. SMU was projected to finish third, followed by Memphis, Florida Atlantic, East Carolina, North Texas, UAB, Navy, Temple, Tulsa, Rice, South Florida and Charlotte in the 14-team league.

American Athletic Conference Preseason Media Poll

 Team (First-Place Votes)


 1. Tulane (20)


 2. UTSA (9)


 3. SMU (3)


 4. Memphis (1)


 5. Florida Atlantic


 6. East Carolina


 7. North Texas


 8. UAB (1)


 9. Navy


 10. Temple


 11. Tulsa


 12. Rice


 13. South Florida


 14. Charlotte


Head coach Jeff Traylor has taken UTSA to new heights since taking over the program prior to the 2020 campaign. The Gilmer, Texas, native has turned around the program by instilling his 210 Triangle of Toughness culture, producing results on and off the field. Taking over a team that won a combined seven games in the two seasons prior to his arrival, he has led the Roadrunners to a 32-13 record, the most wins all-time and best winning percentage (.711) by a UTSA head football coach. Additionally, the Roadrunners own a 21-3 (.875) record in regular season conference games and are 23-3 (.885) against league competition when including the two Conference USA Championship Games in the Traylor era. Under Traylor’s direction, UTSA has won back-to-back conference championships, been nationally ranked in all three major polls in 2021 and 2022 and made three straight bowl appearances. The two-time conference coach of the year has coached six All-Americans, three national award finalists, 12 national award semifinalists, six conference superlative award recipients, 67 all-conference selections, two academic All-Americans and a pair of NFL Draft picks during his UTSA tenure. He was the 2021 AFCA Region 4 Coach of the Year and he has been a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year twice in addition to being a finalist for the 2022 Paul “Bear” Bryant Awards Coach of the Year, 2021 AFCA National Coach of the Year and the 2021 George Munger College Coach of the Year.

One of the newest FBS programs and now in its first year as a member of the American Athletic Conference, UTSA is playing its 13th season of football in 2023. The Roadrunners started their program from scratch and, following a practice year in 2010, played their first season as an FCS Independent in 2011 before joining the Western Athletic Conference for the 2012 campaign. UTSA moved into Conference USA in 2013 and became a full-fledged FBS member starting with the 2014 season. The Roadrunners set NCAA modern startup program records in 2011 by drawing 56,743 fans to their inaugural game against Northeastern State and by averaging 35,521 fans for their six home contests that season. UTSA made its first postseason appearance at the 2016 New Mexico Bowl in its sixth season of play and registered its first win against a team from the Big 12 Conference the following season with a 17-10 victory over Baylor. The Roadrunners made history in 2021, opening the fall with a road win against Illinois of the Big Ten Conference, capturing their first conference championship with a 49-42 decision against WKU and capping a 12-2 ledger with their third bowl game. They repeated as league champions with a 48-27 win over North Texas in 2022 and made their third straight and fourth overall bowl appearance, ending the year with an 11-3 mark. UTSA has posted at least six wins in seven of the 12 complete seasons in program history and it has reached the seven-win plateau five times, including in each of the first three years of the Jeff Traylor era. The Roadrunners reached double-digit wins in back-to-back seasons (2021-22), joining Baylor and TCU as the only Texas-based FBS teams since 2012 to notch at least 10 wins in consecutive years.

The Roadrunners will head to the Sunshine State to face Florida Atlantic on Saturday, Oct. 21 Kickoff is set for 5 p.m. CT in Boca Raton and the game will air on ESPN+ and Ticket 760.