Miami, FL – It’s FIU Homecoming weekend! The tailgate was lit, and the game definitely exceeded expectations. And while a homecoming king and queen were crowned, the real homecoming king has got to be FIU head coach, Butch Davis. With yesterday’s win, he’s won 11-straight homecoming games dating back to his time at UNC and Univ. of Miami.
Last week, the Panthers finally showed what all the preseason hype was about, defeating UMass 44-0. However, yesterday they faced conference rivals, the Charlotte 49ers. After a slow start to the season at 2-3, the FIU Panthers were in prime position to get back to a .500 record and make something out of this season.
Benny the Butcher
FIU led the series vs. Charlotte, coming in with a 4-0 record against the 49ers. The last three wins have been seven points or less, so a well-contested matchup was expected, especially with Charlotte coming off a bye week with plenty of time to prepare for the Panthers. Be that as it may, much like last week, a well-contested matchup is not what we witnessed. Heading into today’s game, Charlotte led Conference USA in scoring and rushing behind star senior running back, Benny Lemay. The man has rushed for 100+ yards in three games and is 2nd in Conference USA with five touchdowns! Nevertheless, after last week’s turnaround, and today’s outcome, it’s safe to say that the FIU coaching staff game planned for Lemay successfully. FIU’s game plan was to force the other parts of the Niners offense to step up and beat them. Lemay was going to produce regardless. He racked up 234 total yards and two TDs. But it wasn’t enough. Lemay was their entire offense and it wasn’t even close.
Jonesin’ for some TD’s
The Panthers, on the other hand, earned their 1st conference win of the season in dominant fashion, leaning on the running game and Anthony Jones’ three touchdowns! There are hat tricks in football, right? Jones must love playing against Charlotte. Last season against Charlotte, he caught both of James Morgan’s touchdown passes out of the backfield for his first trip to the endzone after returning from his unfortunate time away, recovering from a gunshot wound. In all, FIU recorded 350 rushing yards and 160 receiving yards, with both Jones (123 yards, 4 TD’s) and Napoleon Maxwell (118 yards, 1 TD) breaking out for 100+ yard games. D’Vonte Price himself had an 86 yard game on top of that. QB, Morgan threw for 160 yards and two touchdowns, and backup QB, Kaylan Wiggins rushed for a touchdown himself on their way to a 48-23 victory over the Charlotte 49ers.
Next up, FIU Football faces UTEP at home from Riccardo Silva Stadium. The Panthers are 2-1 vs. UTEP all time, winning 35-21 last time they matched up. UTEP is 0-4, and will also be coming off a bye week. Look for FIU to continue building momentum, as they fight their way back to another bowl game appearance.
- With the win, FIU has now won four-straight Homecoming games.
- Overall, Butch Davis is now 12-1 in Homecoming games having won 11-straight.
- Anthony Jones has now earned back-to-back 100-yard rushing games for the first time in his career
- The four touchdowns in a game for Jones is the most since T.Y. Hilton and Rashod Smith scored four in a game. Hilton scored four against ULM on Nov. 6, 2010, and Smith scored four versus New Mexico State on Oct. 30, 2004.
- For the third time under Butch Davis, FIU has earned two 100-yard rushers in a game
- The 350 rushing yards are the fourth-most in school history.