DALLAS, Texas - Houston Football used 433 offensive yards and five rushing touchdowns to earn a 35-9 American Athletic Conference win on the road at SMU Friday afternoon.
With the win, the Cougars improved to 7-4 overall and 5-2 in league action, while SMU fell to 0-11 and 0-7 in conference play.
After trailing at halftime, 9-7, Houston broke out for 21 points as it outgained SMU 183-15 in the game's third quarter. The Houston defense held SMU to just 80 total yards in the second half.
The three rushing touchdowns by Ward were as career best as he totaled 14 carries for 93 yards, just two yards and four carries shy of his career-highs. Ward was also 17-of-28 for 144 yards passing with one interception.
Farrow led the Houston offense with 110 rushing yards on 18 carries for his second straight 100+ yard rushing game and his fifth of the season. His two touchdowns also marked his second consecutive game with multiple rushing touchdowns.
Defensively, Houston extended its forced turnover streak to 34 straight games, tying the nation's longest active streak on a fumble recovery in the third quarter. Freshman Matthew Adams forced the fumble on a sack while senior Gavin Stansbury recovered the loose ball. Adams finished Friday with four tackles and the previously mentioned sack.
Sophomore linebacker Steven Taylor led Houston in tackles with six and also notched a career-high in sacks with two, totaling 11 yards for loss, after entering the game with two sacks on the year.
For the second straight year, Houston scored on its first offensive play vs. SMU as Ward ran for 38 yards just 1:30 into the game.
Houston had its first blocked kick of the season as Stansbury broke through to block an SMU field goal to keep the Mustangs scoreless with 4:17 left in the second.
SMU's defense put the Mustangs on the board first late in the second quarter as Ward was called for intentional grounding inside his own end zone. On the following SMU drive, the Mustangs covered 60 yards on three plays capped by a 67-yard pass from Matt Davis to Jeremiah Gaines to make it a 9-7 SMU lead at the half.
Houston opened the second half with an eight-play, 64-yard scoring drive capped by Farrow's 11-yard touchdown run. The drive featured seven rushing attempts for 55 yards.
Midway through the third quarter, the Houston offense covered the entire field, ending on a 4-yard scramble from Ward for his second touchdown of the game and first career game with multiple rushing touchdowns to put Houston up 21-9.
Adams and Stansbury combined to force a SMU fumble with Adams forcing and Stansbury recovering to extend Houston's turnover streak.
The forced turnover set up a short field for the Houston offense as the Cougars covered 23 yards in three plays, ending with a Farrow 14-yard touchdown run.
The touchdown by Farrow marked his second straight game and third in his career with multiple rushing touchdowns.
With 4:46 left in the game, Ward rushed for his third touchdown of the day with a 5-yard run. The Cougars used five plays for 52 yards to score its fifth rushing touchdown of the day, making it 35-9 late.
Houston will hit the road for its final regular-season matchup when it travels to Cincinnati, Ohio to take on American Athletic Conference foe Cincinnati Saturday, Dec. 6, at 11 a.m. CT on either ESPN or ESPN2. Network designation will be announced Saturday, Nov. 29.