Coppell Defense Knocks Out No. 9 Longview and QB Bivins Caraway, 41-8
UNIVERSITY PARK -- Coppell forced three-first quarter turnovers and closed the first half by flipping a cliche around on Longview.
The Cowboys built a three-score halftime lead and literally added injury to insult when they knocked Longview starting quarterback Bivins Caraway out of the game in the second quarter en route to a 41-8 victory against the ninth-ranked Lobos at SMU's Gerald J. Ford Stadium.
Coppell (1-0) used a strong push from its defensive line to throw kinks in Longview's running game, and the Cowboys' consistent pass rush gave Caraway fits before he left the contest with a leg injury with about eight minutes remaining in the first half.
"We're going to get him checked out tomorrow," said Longview coach John King, who did not say anything specific about the injury.
Coppell shut down Longview's offense. Caraway and Stephon Dunn combined for 5-for-15 passing for 80 yards and a second-quarter interception by Troy Parker, who returned the pick 35 yards to set up Charles West's one-yard touchdown run for a 14-0 lead. Longview sophomore Ja'Mycal Hasty took a dumpoff pass 46 yards for Longview's lone touchdown on the game's final play.
Lobo tailback Tory White was Longview's lone bright spot. He ran for 106 yards on 20 carries despite the constant stress Coppell's defensive line -- featuring high-major recruit Soloman Thomas, a junior -- put on the Lobos' offensive line.
"They gave us fits. We had some busted assignments. They're good. They're physical and have a great scheme and do it with great players," King said. "We had some busts, we had some turnovers, we had some missed opportunities, we had some bad calls on my part. You name it. And it all added up to what you saw tonight, just a poor performance by the Lobos."
Coppell's offense held up its end of the deal, too.
New quarterback Colby Mahon, who threw for 3,003 yards and 34 touchdowns at Bridgeport last season, completed 10 of 12 passes for 292 yards and four touchdowns. His first touchdown pass was a 36-yarder to Cameron Smith, who snagged a deflection by Longview's Stephan Maxey at the goal line as he fell to secure the score.
Mahon's first throw of the second half was the back-breaker. After Longview held Coppell's kickoff return inside the Cowboy 10-yard line and forced a third-and-6, Smith took a short hitch route 90 yards for a touchdown. Smith broke two tackles shortly after making the grab and sprinted the rest of the way for the score.
"It's 21-0 and third-and-7 and they go 90 on a hitch, that kind of deflates you," King said. "You get the ball back at midfield and get a score, who knows what'll happen. ... It's third-and-long and you're thinking, 'Here we go,' and you give a hitch up for 90. That just deflates you."
Smith had four catches for 145 yards, while Jacob Logan had two catches for 66 yards and two total touchdowns. Logan had a highlight-worthy 61-yard catch-and-run that gave Coppell a 21-0 lead with 4:29 left in the first half. Logan caught the ball near midfield at the visitor's sideline numbers and made a series of cutbacks spanning the width of the field to sprint into the end zone along the home sideline.
Coppell, which outgained Longview 409-218, held the Lobos (0-1) to 104 first-half yards and led 21-0 at intermission. Cowboy linebacker Tanner Masters had a sack, two forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery in the first quarter, and linebacker Aaron Gonzales added a first-half sack.
"They smothered us. We shot ourselves in the foot. It's frustrating," King said. "We've beeng grinding on (the offensive line). It's a work in progress and it takes a little time. They got us with a few slants and some blitzes on passing situations, and we busted a call and blew a protection. We even got a sack on three-step. That's the easiest protection in the world. I still think we've got a chance to be pretty good up front. We took our licks tonight and if they've got any pride, they're going to show up Monday and get better."
Caraway, who is committed to ULM, was 3-for-10 for 31 yards and an interception before leaving the game with the injury. Coppell's Gavin McDaniel ran 21 times for 83 yards. Cowboy tight end Josh Self caught two passes for 57 yards and a touchdown, a 12-yard strike that gave Coppell a 41-2 lead early in the fourth.
Logan's three-yard touchdown run gave Coppell 34-0 advantage with 2:40 left in the third, but Longview got on the scoreboard when Corey Bartley blocked the PAT and Nakia Brown returned it for two points.
Bartley also forced a first-half fumble, which DeMarkus Lathan recovered, and broke up a pass. Longview's Torean Sheppard also recovered a fumble.
Longview hosts North Little Rock on Friday in the Lobos' season opener. The Arkansas program boasts Alabama-bound running back Altee Tenpenny.