PHOTO SLIDESHOW: Army Beats SMU in the Armed Forces Bowl

December 31, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Photos By Julius Pickenpack
julius.pickenpack@gmail.com

Turnovers Cost SMU Armed Forces Bowl

December 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

By Ali Williams
ajwilliams@smu.edu

SMU’s Pony Express did not come out of the last game of the year with an excess of points as they suffered a 16-14 loss to Army in the 2010 Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl at Ford Stadium.

Turnovers in the first half proved key to the ultimate demise of the Mustangs as the completion of two quarters left them down by 16 and without any points of their own. Two of the turnovers were interceptions planted by SMU quarterback Kyle Padron.

SMU quarterback Kyle Padron threw for 302 yards in Thursday's bowl game against Army. (PHOTO BY JULIUS PICKENPACK / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

“He didn’t go through his progressions in the first half quite like he should have,” said SMU Head Coach June Jones. “He did a lot of good things in there today, but you just can’t turn the ball over.”

SMU gained momentum in the second half to score two touchdowns, but their rallying efforts were too late and their mistakes were too many.

“It was a well-fought game. The turnovers obviously were the difference,” Jones said. “We had three and one for seven points, and they had none.”

Nearly a minute and a half into the game, Army’s Josh McNary picked up a fumbled ball from a sacked Padron for a bowl record 55-yard run to the end zone.

“We needed that fast start,” said Army Head Coach Rich Ellerson. “We needed to take advantage of that moment in the game where we have a little bit of an advantage because of our uniqueness, and we did that.”

Not only did the Mustangs give the ball up, but two missed field goals by senior kicker Matt Szymanski also caused SMU to miss out on crucial points. Coach Jones spoke with Szymanski before he took the pivotal fourth quarter kick for the Mustangs, who were behind by two points.

“I took the timeout just to tell him to hit the ball, relax, don’t rush it,” said Jones. “It looked like he rushed it, which is easy to do when you’re a young kid, a lot on the line. But he had enough leg. Just unfortunate it didn’t go in.”

Strong wind and a hasty strike by the kicker sealed SMU’s fate with only four minutes left to go and an inevitable Army possession until the final blow of the whistle.

SMU wide receiver Aldrick Robinson attempts to run the ball in the Armed Forces Bowl. (PHOTO BY JULIUS PICKENPACK / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

SMU’s performance included noteworthy moments that helped them in their close combat with Army.

Margus Hunt blocked Army’s extra point after their second touchdown score in the first quarter. A six minute, 92-yard drive by SMU in the third quarter for their first touchdown of the game set a bowl record.

Wide receiver Darius Johnson, the player with the most receiving yardage, was SMU’s bowl game MVP. He also made a leaping catch to score a second and final touchdown for his team.

“Throughout the season, we persevered. We took some losses early in the season,” Johnson said. “To get to this point has really been a blessing for me, and I know [it] has for my teammates.”

Although the Mustangs lost, they fought back in the second half to make it a close game until the end. Jones said that he is proud of how hard his athletes played and battled back in the second half.

“I think we’re learning how to compete together, play together, all those things that you do, good football teams do,” Jones said. “Now we’ve got to put them together and just keep winning.”

The win for West Point gives them their first winning season since 1996 and their first bowl win in 25 years.

VIDEO: Post Game Interview With MVP Darius Johnson

December 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

By Daily Mustang Staff
mustangeditors@smu.edu

The SMU Daily Mustang’s Ali Williams talked to SMU wide receiver Darius Johnson, the SMU MVP of the game, after the Mustang’s loss against the Army 14-16. Hear what he had to say about his performance, the team momentum and the team’s relationship with June Jones after his controversial interview for a positon at Maryland.

VIDEO: Post Game Interview with Darius Johnson from SMUDailyMustang.com on Vimeo.

VIDEO: Mustangs Go Black For Bowl

December 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

By E’lyn Taylor and Aida Ahmed
ejtaylor@smu.edu, aahmed@smu.edu

The Mustangs hit the field today with special jerseys for the Armed Forces Bowl as a tribute to the Armed Forces and U.S. Military Academy. The new SMU jersey is black with white lettering, contrasting greatly from the usual red and white jerseys worn in the regular season.

Fans had a lot to say about the Mustangs new look. Hear two SMU fans weigh in on what they think of the black jerseys and if they think they affected their performance in the bowl game.

Black Jerseys For The Bowl from SMUDailyMustang.com on Vimeo.

VIDEO: Bowl Game in the Stands

December 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

By Aida Ahmed and E’Lyn Taylor
aahmed@smu.edu, ejtaylor@smu.edu

Football fans “blacked-out” Ford Stadium Thursday morning for the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. Check out what fans from both SMU and Army had to say about the first half of the game.

Fan react at Armed Forces Bowl from SMUDailyMustang.com on Vimeo.

Boulevard For the Bowl

December 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Photos By Julius Pickenpack
julius.pickenpack@gmail.com

Football fans from both sides came out to boulevard Thursday morning for the Armed Forces Bowl SMU is hosting this year.

Mustang fans had on their red and blue while Army fans attempted to black out the boulevard.

The Mustangs will face Army at Ford Stadium at 11 a.m. Check back with the SMU Daily Mustang for more live game coverage.