Coming off a major upset loss, few teams would want their next game to be a nationally-televised game against a ranked opponent coming off a big win. Unfortunately for the Houston Cougars, that is exactly what follows a disappointing road loss at Tulsa last Saturday, as No. 25 Memphis comes to town for a Thursday night showdown at TDECU Stadium.
Memphis is riding high after downing then-No. 25 Navy — their second win over a ranked team this season.
Quarterback Riley Ferguson leads the Tigers with more than 1,800 passing yards, 19 touchdowns and five interceptions on the season. Ferguson has the third-highest quarterback rating in the AAC.
Sophomore Darrell Henderson averages 8.1 yards per carry, with 542 yards on the season.
Offensive struggles on the offensive side of the ball have limited Houston's offense for much of the season. Star running back Duke Catalon has carried for 50 yards or more just twice through six games.
However, the Memphis defense enters ranked 113th in the nation for passing yards allowed per game and 107th for rushing yards allowed per game.
A key for Houston will be shutting down Ferguson and the Tigers’ passing attack, ranked 16th nationally.
Navy currently sits atop the AAC West with a 3-1 conference record. Memphis and Houston enter Thursday's contest tied for second at 2-1, adding importance to week's matchup, which will be televised nationally on ESPN. A win for Houston coupled with a loss by Navy against No. 20 UCF on Saturday could see the Cougars in the drivers seat in the division. Navy comes to town for the regular season finale on Nov. 25.