Dec. 31, 2008
2008 Houston Cougars Football Postgame Notes
2008 Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl
Houston Cougars (8-5 * 6-2 C-USA) vs. Air Force Falcons (8-5 * 5-3 MWC)
Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2008 * Amon G. Carter Stadium * Fort Worth, Texas
** Wednesday's game marks the Cougars fourth straight bowl game appearance... It was the first time since 1978-81 that the Cougars accomplished that feat... It also was the Cougars' fifth bowl appearance in the last six seasons.
** Wednesday's game marked the Cougars' 19th bowl appearance in school history... The Cougars are 8-10-1 (.444) all-time in bowl game appearances.
** With Wednesday's win, the Cougars earned their first win in a bowl game since a 35-0 win over Navy in the 1980 Garden State Bowl in East Rutherford, N.J., on Dec. 22, 1980... The win snapped an eight-game losing streak in bowl games.
** Wednesday's game marked the second time that the Cougars competed in a bowl game in Fort Worth... In 2005, the Cougars dropped a 42-17 decision to Kansas in the Fort Worth Bowl.
** Wednesday's game marked the second time in 2008 that the Cougars faced Air Force... The Falcons enjoyed a 31-28 win against the Cougars on Sept. 13, 2008, at Gerald J. Ford Stadium in Dallas on the campus of SMU... It was originally scheduled as a home game for the Cougars on that date, but the threat of Hurricane Ike forced administrators to move the game north.
** By playing Air Force on Wednesday, the Cougars played an opponent more than once in a season for the second time in school history... The Cougars faced Conference USA rival Southern Miss twice in 2006 (L, 31-27, on Oct. 14, 2006, in Hattiesburg, Miss.; W, 34-20, on Dec. 1, 2006, on John O'Quinn Field at Robertson Stadium in the C-USA Championship Game).
** The Cougars are 2-1(.667) all-time when playing on Dec. 31. This will be the third bowl game in which the Cougars have played on Dec. 31 (1969 Bluebonnet, 1971 Bluebonnet).
** With 34 points, the Cougars scored in their 106th consecutive game... The Cougars have not been shut out since a 48-0 loss at Texas on Sept. 23, 2000.
** The Cougars are 24-11-1 (.667) all-time when playing in the month of December.
** The Cougars are 35-24-1 (.583) all-time when playing games on non-Saturdays... The Cougars are 2-0 all-time when playing on Wednesdays.
** The Cougars competed in their third non-Saturday game but their first Wednesday game of the 2008 season.. The Cougars rallied to defeat Conference USA rival UAB 45-20 on Tue., Oct. 18, 2008, in Houston and suffered a 37-23 loss at C-USA rival Marshall on Thu., Oct. 28, 2008.
** Air Forces' opening drive touchdown marked the fifth time this season, UH has allowed its opponent to score on their opening drive.
** Houston's opening drive touchdown gave them their fourth opening drive touchdown of the season... The Cougars also scored on their first opportunity with the ball against Tulane, Tulsa and Rice.
** With their 415 yards to total offense, the Cougars surpassed 400 yards of total offense in every game this season. It marked the first time since 1969 that the Cougars have accomplished this feat.
HEAD COACH Kevin Sumlin NOTES
** With Wednesday's bowl appearance, head coach Kevin Sumlin became only the third coach in UH history to lead his team to a bowl game during his first season... Sumlin joined Art Briles (2003, Sheraton Hawai'i Bowl) and Bill Yeoman (1962, Tangerine Bowl).
** With Wednesday's win, head coach Kevin Sumlin completed his first season at UH with an 8-4 overall record... He also set a UH record for wins by a first-year head coach... Sumlin topped the mark of seven wins set by Art Briles in 2003 and Bill Yeoman in 1962.
** With the win, head coach Kevin Sumlin joined Bill Yeoman as the only first-year Cougar coaches to win a bowl game.
** With the win, head coach Kevin Sumlin also becomes only the third coach in program history to win a bowl game, joining Bill Yeoman and Clyde Lee.
** Head coach Kevin Sumlin is 2-1 (.667) all-time when playing non-Saturday games... With Wednesday's win, he became only the fourth coach in school history to enjoy multiple wins in non-Saturday games.
** By competing in Wednesday's game, senior offensive lineman Michael Bloesch, senior safety Kenneth Fontenette, senior defensive end Phillip Hunt, senior linebacker Cody Lubojasky, senior safety Ernest Miller, senior linebacker Chris Pilot, senior defensive lineman Cody Pree and senior cornerback Quinte Williams competed in the fourth bowl games of their careers.... They joined Donnie Love (1978-81) and Lonell Phea (1979-81) as the only players to play in four bowl games during their careers.
** By playing in Wednesday's game, senior defensive end Phillip Hunt and senior safety Kenneth Fontenette competed in the 52nd and final game of their collegiate career to set a UH record... They moved past the previous record held of 51 games by Roshawn Pope (2002-06).
** By starting Wednesday's game, senior defensive end Phillip Hunt extended his school-record streak to 52 consecutive starts.
** With 252 passing yards, sophomore quarterback Case Keenum finished the 2008 season with 5,020 yards through the air... He became the first player since David Klingler (5,140 yards) in 1989 to reach that milestone.
** With one touchdown pass, sophomore quarterback Case Keenum has thrown a touchdown pass in 16 consecutive games.
** With 44 touchdown passes on the season, sophomore quarterback Case Keenum became just the third Cougar to throw for 40 or more touchdowns in a season... He joins David Klingler (52 touchdowns in 1990) and Andre Ware (46 touchdowns in 1989).
** With 252 passing yards, sophomore quarterback Case Keenum snapped a 13-game streak with at least 300 yards.
** With 22 rushing attempts, freshman running back Bryce Beall increased his school record for rush attempts by a freshman to 198.
** With his 22 rushing attempts, freshman running back Bryce Beall tied his season-high for rushing attempts. He also had 22 attempts against SMU on Oct. 18, 2008.
** With his two touchdowns, sophmore quarterback Case Keenum now has 50 touchdowns responsible for, moving him into second place all-time. He is now just the second player in school history to have at least 50 touchdowns responsible for.
** With his 22-yard field goal at the 0:04 mark in the first quarter, freshman Jordan Mannisto kicked the first field goal of his career.
** With his 60-yard punt in the second quarter, junior punter Chase Turner now holds the fourth longest punt in UH bowl history. The punt is also the longest punt in Armed Forces Bowl history. He now holds two of the top four punts in Houston bowl history. His 65-yard punt against TCU in the Texas Bowl (12/28/07) ranks as second longest punt in bowl history.
** With his two quarterback sacks, senior defensive end Phillip Hunt recorded his 13th and 14th sacks this season, setting the single season record with 14. Hunt also has 34 career sacks, setting the UH career record.
** With his 49 receiving yards, freshman Tyron Carrier became the first freshman to record 1,000 receiving yards in a season. He finishes the year with 1,046 yards.
** With his 18-yard reception in the third quarter, freshman E.J. Smith set a career-long.
** With his touchdown in the fourth quarter, sophomore Andre Kohn recorded his second consecutive receiving touchdown in a bowl game. He caught a 67-yard touchdown pass against TCU in the 2007 Texas Bowl.
** With his 137 rushing yards, freshman running back Bryce Beall recorded the sixth 100-yard rushing game of his career. Houston is now 6-0 when Beall rushes for at least 100 yards.
** With his 137 rushing yards, freshman running back Bryce Beall recorded the highest rushing total in a bowl game for the Cougars since Terald Clark rushed for 163 yards in the 1980 Garden State Bowl.