Scores

Final

UAB 7

(0-2, 0-1 C-USA)

SMU 28

(1-1, 1-0 American)

8:00 PM ET, September 11, 2010

Gerald J. Ford Stadium, Dallas, TX

1 2 3 4 T
UAB 7 0 0 07
SMU 0 14 7 728

Top Performers

Passing: K. Padron (EWU) - 145 YDS, 2 TD

Rushing: Z. Line (SMU) - 16 CAR, 122 YDS, 2 TD

Receiving: D. Johnson (SMU) - 7 REC, 45 YDS, 2 TD

Stingy D, hard-charging Zach Line lead SMU vs. UAB

ESPNDallas.com

UNIVERSITY PARK, Texas -- At 235 pounds, Zach Line is not the prototypical running back.

Blocking, not ball carrying, is usually his chief duty.

But the sophomore had his number called 16 times and responded with a career-high 122 yards and two touchdowns in SMU's 28-7 win over Alabama-Birmingham in the Conference-USA opener for both teams Saturday night at Gerald J. Ford Stadium.

Afterward, Line admitted he was as surprised as anyone.

"No, that wasn't the plan tonight," he said.

SMU coach June Jones made some adjustments to the game plan on the fly, joking that his team had a little "Ohio State Power I" look.

"I could tell after Zach's first carry he had gained some confidence from last week," Jones said, referring to SMU's 35-27 loss at Texas Tech.

Line capped first-half drives of 99 and 64 yards with short touchdown runs.

He did the heavy lifting on both scoring drives in the second half that ended in Kyle Padron touchdown passes of 5 and 15 yards to Darius Johnson.

Jones said SMU (1-1, 1-0) would normally throw the ball against the look the UAB defense gave the Mustangs, "but we weren't passing the ball."

While praising Padron's scrambling (9 carries, 66 yards), Jones said when his quarterback watches the film, he will see missed opportunities for open receivers.

UAB (0-2, 0-1) managed only 261 yards against the Mustangs, and had to go just 9 yards for its only touchdown after SMU's lone turnover.

"Our defense is improved," Jones said. "As long as we don't turn it over, we'll be fine."

Just before halftime, SMU made a game-changing goal-line stand. UAB failed to score on three plays from the Mustangs' 1, allowing SMU to go to intermission with a 14-7 lead.

"We knew we had to stop them going to the half," said linebacker Pete Fleps, who led SMU tacklers with 13. "We did our job and shut them down."

UAB threatened again on the opening possession of the third quarter when quarterback David Isabelle connected with receiver Frantrell Forrest for a 50-yard gain. But just as Forrest was about to cross the goal line, SMU safety Ryan Smith dislodged the ball. It rolled out of the end zone for a touchback and the Mustangs retained their seven-point lead.

The Mustangs play the second of three straight home games against Washington State at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.

Randy Jennings covers college football for ESPNDallas.com.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

ESPNDallas.com 

Team Stat Comparison

 
UAB
SMU
1st Downs1125
Total Yards261421
Passing153174
Rushing108247
Penalties5-553-33
3rd Down Conversions3-133-10
4th Down Conversions1-30-1
Turnovers21
Possession23:2536:35

Passing Leaders

UABC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Isabelle7/151097.311
Southern MethodistC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Padron18/331454.420

Rushing Leaders

UABCARYDSAVGTDLG
Shed8425.3011
Isabelle16342.1019
Southern MethodistCARYDSAVGTDLG
Line161227.6228
Padron9667.3024

Receiving Leaders

UABRECYDSAVGTDLG
Forrest57114.2050
Jones23618.0132
Southern MethodistRECYDSAVGTDLG
Robinson45112.8018
Beasley35117.0029

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERUABSMU
TD08:19Mike Jones 4 Yd Pass From David Isabelle (Josh Zahn Kick) 70
SECOND QUARTERUABSMU
TD11:24Zach Line 5 Yd Run (Matt Szymanski Kick) 77
TD04:31Zach Line 3 Yd Run (Matt Szymanski Kick) 714
THIRD QUARTERUABSMU
TD04:35Darius Johnson 5 Yd Pass From Kyle Padron (Matt Szymanski Kick) 721
FOURTH QUARTERUABSMU
TD07:03Darius Johnson 15 Yd Pass From Kyle Padron (Matt Szymanski Kick) 728