Houston, TX (Sports Network) - The Rice Owls took advantage of five Southern
Miss to defeat the Golden Eagles, 44-17, in a Conference USA bout at Rice
Taylor McHargue started the game at quarterback for the Owls (3-6, 1-4 C-
USA), but had been battling injuries and was replaced midway through the third
quarter. McHargue completed 7-of-12 passes for 80 yards and a touchdown before
giving way to Driphus Jackson. Jackson attempted just six throws, completing
four of those passes for 92 yards and two touchdowns. Turner Peterson led Rice
on the ground with 136 yards and a score on 19 carries. He also caught a 38-
Southern Miss (0-8, 0-4) quarterback Arsenio Favors was benched in the third
quarter after throwing two interceptions and no touchdowns on 10-of-22 passes.
Cole Weeks made his season debut and completed just 4-of-9 passes for 76 yards
and a pick. Tracy Lampley went over 100 yards receiving for the first time this
The Owls got on the board first and scored the only touchdown of the first
quarter. McHargue took advantage of the short field set up by a Southern Miss
fumble and on the fourth play of the drive connected with Dennis Parks for a
35-yard touchdown. Corey Acosta hit a 50-yard field goal to give Southern Miss
its only points of the period.
On the first play of the second quarter, Jackson's first pass attempt went to
Peterson for a 38-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 14-3. The Golden Eagles
responded quickly, scoring less than two minutes later on a drive that had
three straight plays go for 14 or more yards, including a 39-yard reception by
Lampley. Jeremy Hester finished the drive from one-yard out.
Donte Moore scored on a nine-yard run late in the half to give Rice a 21-10
lead going into the locker rooms.
Both teams moved the ball well in the half and converted 50 percent of their
third down attempts.
Rice pulled away early in the third quarter. Cody Bauer came up with a big
sack on third down to end the Golden Eagles' first drive and give the Owls'
offense good starting field position on their next possession. That led to a
45-yard Chris Boswell field goal. On the ensuing Southern Miss drive, Favors
was intercepted by Paul Porras, who returned it 76-yards for a defensive
Weeks then replaced Favors for USM, but saw similar results when his first
drive ended with an interception. Rice took advantage, scoring just three plays
later when Jackson connected with Moore for his second touchdown pass of the
Peterson's eight-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter completed the
Rice has now won two of it's last three games after dropping four in a row,
and its lead the all-time series with Southern Miss, 3-1.
The Sports Network