2019 UTSA Roadrunners Team Preview

UTSA came into the FBS guns blazing, winning 15 games over their first two years. Since it has been up and down. Frank Wilson took over in 2016 and led the Roadrunners to their first-ever bowl game, and followed it up with a 6-5 record in 2017, but in 2018 things fell apart as the depth chart was shattered and UTSA fell to 3-9, losing their final six games by an average of over 25 points and ultimately finishing 127th of 130 in the end of year CSD Prime computer rankings.

There are a lot of good young names on this team, especially on the offensive side of the ball, and a lot of the top producers from last year return, so a return to six wins isn’t out of the question.

Offense

There’s no way to put it lightly, UTSA was atrocious on the offensive end last year. So bad that they parted with OC Al Borges after one year, promoting WR Coach Jeff Kastl to the new head role.

The top rusher from last year is back in RB BJ Daniels. Daniels was the top rusher on the team at… 322 yards. Yikes. He was hardly efficient either, averaging 3.7 yards per attempt. Brendan Brady, a backup last year, could challenge for the starting role after making much more of his limited attempts (4.5 YPA).

Four quarterbacks played significant time last year, none topping 1,000 yards. Two of them are back, including the leader last year, Cordale Grundy (50.5%, 4.5 YPA) who was maybe the worst starter on the FBS level last year. LSU transfer and one-time four-star prospect Lowell Narcisse will challenge for the starting role, and I’d have to give him the edge. Sophomore Frank Harris, who was injured for most of last year, also has an outside shot.

The receiving group was largely unproductive last year, likely due to the revolving door at quarterback. Tykee Ogle-Kellogg averaged 12.8 YPC, and the top returner yardage wise is senior Blaze Moorhead at 210. Kansas State grad transfer Carlos Strickland will come in at tight end and there are a lot of young three-stars that you could get excited about.

Four starters return on the line and JUCO transfer Ahofitu Maka will fill the hole at center, so the Roadrunners should be solid up front at the very least.

This team has recruited so well that the potential of this offense taking a big step forward is there, but there is no one on this offense that is a proven quantity, so another bad year feels just as likely.

Defense

The defense was alright last year, still bad, but not nearly as bad as the offense. However, the top four tacklers are gone from that group, so some new faces will have to step up.

The line looks solid, definitely the top unit on either side of the ball. Ends Lorenzo Dantzler, DeQuarius Henry, and Jarrod Carter-McLin combined for eight sacks and eight TFL last year. Tackles King Newton and Baylen Baker also return.

They add a few transfers at linebacker between JUCO Trevor Harmanson, LSU transfer Leyton Garnett, and Virginia transfer Dominic Sheppard to fill in holes left by departures on the second level

In the secondary they lose CJ Levine but Carl Austin is back from injury and they return two corners with starting experience, although both struggled in 2018. A lot of young three stars in the two-deep could challenge for starting roles here.

This defense won’t be anything special, but it should be a solid C-USA unit.

2019 Outlook

The defense should be pretty solid, but the offense is an unknown quantity. Plenty of good recruits come in on both sides of the ball to add depth, but I still think a bowl berth is unlikely. With only three seniors projected to start on offense, 2020 seems like this team’s time to shine.

Schedule

DateOpponentOPp. rankProj. Margin
31-AugIncarnate WordNRn/a
7-Sepat Baylor50-18.6
14-SepArmy78-8.5
21-Sepat North Texas80-14.2
5-Octat UTEP1302.1
12-OctUAB91-6.3
19-OctRice1276.0
2-Novat Texas A&M11-28.4
9-Novat Old Dominion115-3.8
16-NovSouthern Miss82-7.7
23-NovFlorida Atlantic79-8.4
30-Novat Louisiana Tech87-12.8

Average Projected Record: 4.2 wins, 7.8 losses (2.8 wins, 5.2 losses)