2008 North Texas Mean Green
Arkansas State 33 … North Texas 28
Arkansas State overcame the best UNT defensive performance of the season with two short touchdown runs from Reggie Arnold and helped by two Josh Arauco field goals. His 24-yarder finally helped ASU pull away. North Texas lost three interceptions, but got two touchdown runs form Cam Montgomery in the third quarter to take a lead before Arnold and the ASU offense took over.
Player of the game: Arkansas State RB Reggie Arnold ran 21 times for 101 yards and two touchdowns, and he caught a pass for 11 yards
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 25-37, 202 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 20-121, 2 TD. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 11-90
Arkansas State - Passing: Corey Leonard, 12-22, 205 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Reggie Arnold, 21-101, 2 TD. Receiving: Jahbari McLennan, 4-79
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas might have lost its home finale, but it closed out with one of its better games of the year in the loss to Arkansas State. Giovanni Vizza threw three interceptions and Cam Montgomery ran well, but the real shocker against the Red Wolves was a defense that kept the team in the game throughout. It's going to be a long off-season as the program tries to find something that works on both sides of the ball. Is Vizza going to be the answer? Who can the defense build around? 1-11 will bring a ton of questions.
Aug. 30 at Kansas
State L 45-6
Sept. 1 at
Oklahoma L 79-10
Middle Tennessee 52 … North Texas 13
Phillip Tanner ran for five scores from 12, 1, 19, 66 and 36, with the last four coming in the second quarter, and he returned the opening kickoff of the second half 92 yards for a score as part of his record-setting 301 yards of all-purpose offense. North Texas made it interesting in the first quarter on a 57-yard Casey Fitzgerald scoring catch and an 11-yard run from Cam Montgomery, but Tanner cranked out five straight scores as part of 35 unanswered points. Each team turned it over three times.
Player of the game: Middle Tennessee RB Phillip Tanner ran 14 times for 159 yards and five touchdowns, and he returned a kickoff for a sixth score
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 25-39, 221 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 12-77, 1 TD. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 12-118, 1 TD
Middle Tennessee - Passing: Joe Craddock, 19-31, 251 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Phillip Tanner, 14-159, 5 TD. Receiving: Patrick Honeycutt, 7-91
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... It's a weekly gripe. If you're going to be this bad, at least be decent at what you're supposed to be decent at. The Mean Green offense continues to sputter and cough. The defense is a disaster and it's not all of a sudden going to be USC against Arkansas State to close things out, but it the offense isn't going to keep the chains moving, and it doesn't have the pop to put up points on the board on a consistent basis, it'll be time to go back to the drawing board for head coach Todd Dodge and his staff. The passing game isn't clicking.
Florida Atlantic 46 … North Texas 13
Rusty Smith threw four touchdown passes with two to Cortez Gent as Florida Atlantic breezed past the Mean Green. FAU cranked out 507 yards of total offense and blew up on a 30-point scoring run highlighted by a blocked punt for a score from Darian Thomas, a 41-yard Charles Pierre touchdown run and a 57-yard DiIvory Edgecomb catch and run for a score. North Texas managed just 133 yards of passing offense with a one-yard Cam Montgomery touchdown run in the second, but couldn't keep up the pace.
Player of the game: Florida Atlantic QB Rusty Smith completed 15-of-23 passes for 237 yards and four touchdowns with an interception.
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 13-23, 125 yds, 2 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 20-80, 1 TD. Receiving: Brock Stickler, 5-34
Florida Atlantic - Passing: Rusty Smith, 15-23, 237 yds, 4 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Charles Pierre, 12-140, 1 TD. Receiving: Cortez Gent, 7-116, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas just can't find any consistency. A week after the offense blew up on Western Kentucky, nothing worked against Florida Atlantic. The defense is the defense; it's not going to get any better over the final few games. However, the play of the passing game has to improve to show that things are improving under Todd Dodge. After two years, the timing and the precision need to be better. With a week off before facing Middle Tennessee, the team has some more time to work before closing out the year.
North Texas 51 … Western Kentucky 40
Giovanni Vizza threw four touchdown passes including a 27-yarder to Casey Fitzgerald to give the Mean Green a 45-40 lead late, and Tobe Nwegwe saved the win returning a David Wolke pass 97 yards for a score to end the game. The special teams came through with a blocked extra point for a two-point conversion following a one-yard Wolke run for what would turn out to be the game-winning score, but WKU had its chances. Wolke finished with 178 rushing yards and two touchdowns, but Vizza was too effective and the defense was able to come up with the four turnovers needed to survive.
Player of the game: North Texas QB Giovanni Vizza completed 23-of-37 passes for 214 yards and four touchdowns, and he ran seven times for 34 yards and a score.
Stat Leaders: Western Kentucky - Passing: David Wolke, 13-27, 190 yds, 2 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: David Wolke, 21-178, 2 TD. Receiving: Jake Gaebler, 8-125, 1 TD
North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 23-37, 214 yds, 4 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 21-130, 1 TD. Receiving: Brock Stickler, 8-86, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... It wasn't a thing of beauty, the offense wasn't exactly crisp, but the team came up with the plays needed against Western Kentucky to come away with the win. The defense gave up 504 yards and couldn't stop QB David Wolke, but it forced four turnovers while the special teams created the blocked extra point for a two-point conversion that would be the key to the fourth quarter. Breaking the long losing streak is a plus, but the defense has to be far better, and the offense far more consistent and efficient, to get through the final three Sun Belt games.
Troy 45 … North Texas 17
Troy's Levi Brown set a school record with 50 pass attempts with a six-yard touchdown pass to Jerrel Jernigan and a 29-yard play to Mykeal Terry in the blowout win. The Trojans put the first 22 points on the board before UNT came up with a 32-yard Casey Fitzgerald touchdown catch to break the run. Even with UNT got a break, like with a 46-yard Jeremy Knott field goal, Troy answered with Jorrick Calvin taking a kick back 94 yards for a score. DuJuan Harris scored two short ones.
Player of the game: Troy QB Levi Brown completed 40-of-50 passes for 391 yards and two touchdowns
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 31-52, 246 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 16-92, 1 TD. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 14-113, 1 TD
Troy - Passing: Levi Brown, 40-50, 391 yds, 2 TD
Rushing: Maurice Gren, 7-41. Receiving: Jerrel Jernigan, 9-123, 1 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas is built to make comebacks with the passing game, but it couldn't do it against Troy. The defense continues to be a nightmare, while Giovanni Vizza is throwing a lot with little results. The four turnovers were a killer to have any hope of keeping it close. Western Kentucky is struggling, so next week's game might be the one honest chance at a win.
UL Monroe 35 … North Texas 23
ULM got up big early and put it on cruise control. Kinsmon Lancaster hooked up with Luther Ambrose for a 69-yard touchdown pass, ran for a 54-yard score, and Rodney Lovett ran for a 49-yard touchdown on the way to a 21-0 first quarter lead. Lancaster's five-yard touchdown run early in the second and a 46-yard J.J. McCoy catch made it 35-4 before North Texas was able to go on a run scoring 20 unanswered points. Giovanni Vizza threw two fourth quarter touchdown passes for the Mean Green.
Player of the game: UL Monroe QB Kinsmon Lancaster completed 12-of-21 passes for 171 yards and a touchdown, and he ran 10 time for 95 yards and two touchdowns
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 37-61, 362 yds, 2 TD
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 23-92. Receiving: Brock Strickler, 10-129
UL Monroe - Passing: Kinsmon Lancaster, 12-21, 171 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Frank Goodin, 18-96. Receiving: Luther Ambrose, 2-70, 1 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... It was like North Texas didn't have a defense on the field in the first half against ULM. Giovanni Vizza threw the ball well once the game was out of reach, and he kept the chains moving, but the offense was only able to put up three field goals before the fourth quarter. If the defense is going to continue to struggle so much, the offense has to find a way to keep up.
UL Lafayette 59 … North Texas 30
Jason Chery scored five touchdowns in the first half highlighted by an 81-yard run, a 97-yard kickoff return, and a 57-yard touchdown catch. However, North Texas was able to keep up the pace as Giovanni Vizza hit Roderick Johnson on a 12-yard touchdown pass and Casey Fitzgerald for a 43-yard touchdown to start the second half. But the UNT offense fizzled out and ULL went on a 24-3 run to close things out helped by a 31-yard Michael Desormeaux touchdown run and short scores from Tyrel Fenroy and Matt Dupre.
Player of the game: UL Lafayette WR Jason Chery caught three passes for 123 yards and three touchdowns, and ran three times for 85 yards and a score. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown.
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 29-44, 361 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 20-116, 1 TD. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 14-231, 1 TD
UL Lafayette - Passing: Michael Desormeaux, 14-20, 217 yds, 3 TD
Rushing: Michael Desormeaux, 15-123, 1 TD. Receiving: Jason Chery, 3-123, 3 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... The offense finally showed some signs of life, but the defense dug too deep a hole against UL Lafayette. Casey Fitzgerald was unstoppable catching 14 passes for 231 yards and a score, but the defense never had an answer for the Ragin' Cajun balance or for Jason Chery and his five touchdowns. It's going to be a long year for the D, but things could be more fun if Giovanni Vizza continues to crank out yards. He threw for 361.
FIU 42 … North Texas 10
FIU jumped out to a 28-0 first half lead and was up 35-0 on an eight-yard Eric Kirchenberg touchdown catch. Paul McCall threw four touchdown passes including two to T.Y. Hilton from 65 and 73 yards out, and A'Mod Ned ran for a 26-yard touchdown. The special teams got in the act as Alonzo Phillips returned a blocked punt 11 yards for a score in the first quarter. North Texas finally got on the board with a 28-yard field goal in the third, but it didn't get into the end zone until the final minute on a one-yard Micah Mosley run.
Player of the game: FIU RB Paul McCall completed 11-of-19 passes for 234 yards and four touchdowns
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 34-46, 274 yds, 3 INT
Rushing: Lance Dunbar, 9-48. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 10-120
FIU - Passing: Paul McCall, 11-19, 234 yds, 4 TD
Rushing: A'mod Ned, 12-56, 1 TD. Receiving: T.Y. Hilton, 3-145, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas isn't getting anything going down the field and isn't getting any yards after the catch. To be struggling is one thing, but to get the doors blown off by FIU is another. The UNT defense is non-existent, but that was expected. The offense was supposed to be hitting its stride by now, and it isn't. Giovanni Vizza threw for 274 yards, but it too 46 attempts to get there. The defense will have to gear it up for a UL Lafayette attack that blew up on UL Monroe last week.
Rice 77 … North Texas 20
Chase Clement threw four touchdown passes and ran for two more, and Jarett Dillard caught four touchdown passes as Rice rolled for 502 yards and a Conference USA record 77 points. The defense forced six turnovers and got into the scoring act with a 13-yard interception return for a score from Arnaud Gascon-Nadon. North Texas stayed alive with 20 points in the first 20 minutes on two Cam Montgomery touchdown runs and a seven-yard Lance Dunbar seven-yard catch, but Rice scored 49 unanswered points.
Player of the game: Rice QB Chase Clement completed 22-of-28 passes for 298 yards and five touchdown, and ran ten times for 69 yards and two scores, and Jarett Dillard caught eight passes for 114 yards and four touchdowns in the 77-20 win over North Texas. The two have combined for 42 career touchdowns, a new NCAA record for a QB-WR duo, breaking the mark held by the former Louisiana Tech combination of Tim Rattay and Troy Edwards.
Stat Leaders: Rice - Passing: Chase Clement, 22-28, 298 yds, 5 TD
Rushing: Chase Clement, 10-69, 2 TD. Receiving: Jarett Dillard, 8-114, 4 TD
North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Bizza, 25-39, 251 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 11-76, 2 TD. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 7-89
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... The North Texas defense could still use a little, uh, work. Rice ripped apart the Mean Green D like it wasn't even there. There was no pressure into the backfield and the run defense wasn't even close. Offensively, the six turnovers made the blowout an epic rout. The passing game isn't coming around. Giovanni Vizza threw for 251 yards and a touchdown, but if he can't rock against Rice, he's going to have a hard time succeeding against anyone.
LSU 41 … North Texas 3
Charles Scott tore off touchdown runs from 39 and 43 yards out and Trindon Holliday ripped off a 92-yard punt return for a score as LSU rolled past North Texas. The Mean Green managed a 33-yard Jeremy Knott field goal, but that was it as the LSU defense allowed just 199 yards of total offense. LSU outrushed UNT 216 yards to 44.
Player of the game: Charles Scott ran seven times for 102 yards and two touchdowns
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 22-40, 149 yds
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 8-33. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald, 11-75
LSU - Passing: Andrew Hatch, 10-17, 125 yds
Rushing: Charles Scott, 7-102, 2 TD. Receiving: Brandon LaFell, 7-69
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas was never going to stay with LSU, but that doesn't mean the team can't be sharper. Nine penalties, little production on third downs, and still no pop to the passing game were problems. On the plus side, Casey Fitzgerald got rolling with 11 catches for 75 yards. Now Giovanni Vizza has to start pushing some passes deeper. Star freshman Riley Dodge threw a pass, but it was intercepted.
Tulsa 56 … North Texas 26
Tulsa roared out to a 42-7 first half lead with Davis Johnson throwing four of his six touchdown passes and running for another. The Golden Hurricane rolled up 554 yards of total offense and were never threatened with more offense coming in the second half with Johnson hitting A.J. Whitmore for the final Tulsa score with a 22-yard touchdown catch. North Texas came up with two fourth quarter touchdowns with Casey Fitzgerald catching a 32-yard touchdown pass and Breece Johnson scoring on a six-yard catch.
Player of the game: Tulsa QB David Johnson completed 25-of-33 passes for 418 yards and six touchdowns and ran eight times for 12 yards and a score
Stat Leaders: Tulsa - Passing: David Johnson, 25-33, 418 yds, 6 TD
Rushing: Tarrion Adams, 11-46 Receiving: Brennan Marion, 4-107, 1 TD
North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 30-45, 247 yds, 2 TD
Rushing: Lance Dunbar, 10-72, 1 TD. Receiving: Sam Dibrell, 5-65
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... The North Texas offense is made to be able to keep up in firefights, but it didn't show up against Tulsa until it was way too late. Giovanni Vizza threw well, but he didn't make enough things happening on his deep passes and he didn't keep the chains moving give the defense a rest. Defensively, UNT is still in big trouble. It has to find something it can count on, but Tulsa's offense might not be the proper indicator. The Golden Hurricane attack is still loaded after leading the nation last year in total offense.
Kansas State 45 ... North Texas 6
It was a stroll in the park for Kansas State as the defense held the high-powered North Texas offense to 205 yards of total offense while the offense got three touchdown passes and two scoring runs from Josh Freeman. Keithen Valentine started off the scoring with a four yard run on the first play following a big punt return by Deon Murphy, and then it was all Freeman with touchdown throws from 30 and 43 yards out to Brandon Banks, and a six-yard strike to Lamark Brown on the way to a 42-0 lead before UNT got on the board late in the third quarter on a nine-yard Alex Loss scoring grab.
Player of the game: Kansas State QB Josh Freeman completed 18 of 24 passes for 232 yards and three touchdowns and ran five times for 23 yards and two scores.
Stat Leaders: North Texas - Passing: Giovanni Vizza, 16-29, 100 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Cam Montgomery, 8-62. Receiving: Casey Fitzgerald. 6-31
Kansas State - Passing: Josh Freeman, 18-24, 232 yds, 3 TD
Rushing: Keithen Valentine, 13-65, 1 TD. Receiving: Aubrey Quarles, 6-57
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... North Texas is supposed to be able to bomb away and throw on anyone, but the offense went nowhere against Kansas State. Giovanni Vizza wasn't awful, but he wasn't able to connect on anything deep and the attack sputtered too much to keep drives going. The defense was non-existent, and with Tulsa and LSU coming up, things are about to get worse before they improve.
2008 Recruiting Class
Star of the Class
Riley Dodge QB 6-0 183 Southlake Carroll HS
In 2007, he passed for 3,445 yards and 39
touchdowns... Carried 131 times for 772 yards (5.5 average) and 13 touchdowns
... Dodge was named to the 45th annual
2008 PARADE All-American High School Football Team ... Was recently selected to
the EA Sports first-team All-America Multi-Purpose squad for 2007 ... 2006 and
2007 Gatorade Player of the Year ... Shared Texas Sports Writers Association
2007 Class 5A All-State Football Team Offensive Player of the Year ... Dodge was
named to the Texas Class 5A All-State team for the second straight season ...
Voted District 5-5A MVP ... Top 25 Dallas area recruit by Dallas Morning News
... Was the 2007 Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Offensive Player of the Year.
Potential Instant Impact Players
Adryan Adams DB 6-1 185 Northeastern Oklahoma A&M
Junior College: Recorded 69
tackles and one interception in 2007 as a sophomore ... Was an honorable mention
all-conference selection ... Helped anchor a NEO secondary that allowed only 178
yards passing per game ... In 2006, tallied 51 tackles and a team-high three
interceptions as a true freshman ... Four-star recruit by Scout.com ... Rated
nation's fifth best JUCO cornerback by Scout.com.
Justin Edwards DB 6-1 185 Eastern Arizona JC
Junior College: Was a 2007 NJCAA
All-Region I selection for Eastern Arizona Junior College and coach Joe O'Mera
... Led the team with 120 tackles as a sophomore from the free safety position.
High School: A graduate of Naaman
Forest High School, Edwards was ranked as top 60 prospect in the Dallas area by
the Dallas Morning News during his senior year ...Named to the
Dallas-Fort Worth All-Area Team in 2005 ... 2004 and 2005 District 11-5A
first-team selection ... Tallied 271 tackles and 12 interceptions during his
high school career.
Nate Jenkins OL 6-4 335 Pearl River CC
Junior College: Four-star recruit by Scout.com ... Rated nation's fourth best JUCO offensive tackle by Scout.com ... Top 50 JUCO prospect by the Sun Herald ... Earned second-team all-state honors as both a freshman and sophomore at Pearl River ... Team played for a National Championship during his freshman year at PRCC.
Rest of the Class
|DB||6-1||185||Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College|
|Brandon Akpunku||LB||6-0||200||Cedar Hill, Texas (Cedar Hill HS)|
|Kenny Barrett||WR||6-4||190||Mart, Texas (Mart HS)|
|Desmond Brigham||WR||6-0||169||Caddo Mills, Texas (Caddo Mills HS)|
|Tevinn Canty||DT||6-4||292||Arlington, Texas (Lamar HS)|
|DaWaylon Cook||DB||6-2||187||Dallas, Texas (Samuell HS)|
|Riley Dodge||QB||6-0||183||Southlake, Texas (Carroll HS)|
|RB||5-9||185||Haltom City, Texas (Haltom HS)|
|Justin Edwards||DB||6-1||185||Eastern Arizona JC (Naman Forrest HS)|
|Coleman Feely||OL||6-4||287||Austin, Texas (Anderson HS)|
|Troy Franklin||OL||6-5||270||Celina, Texas (Celina HS)|
|James Hamilton||DB||5-10||180||Cedar Hill, Texas (Cedar Hill HS)|
|Joe Hawthorne||DT||6-4||250||Arlington, Texas (Martin HS)|
|Kylee Hill||DB||5-10||190||Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College|
|Royce Hill||DB||5-11||170||Houston, Texas (Cypress Ridge HS)|
|Gabe Hollivay||OL||6-3||320||Itawamaba CC|
|Alonzo Horton||DE||6-4||260||Northwest Mississippi CC|
|Nate Jenkins||OL||6-4||335||Pearle River CC|
|Jeremy Knott||K||6-4||185||Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College|
|Nick Leppo||OL||6-2||285||Southlake, Texas (Carroll HS)|
|Jeremi Mathis||RB||6-1||205||Arlington, Texas (Martin HS)|
|Jeremy Phillips||DB||6-3||184||Waller, Texas (Waller HS)|
|Forrest Rucker||WR||6-5||195||Hearne, Texas (Hearne HS)|
|John Shorter||DB||5-11||177||Dallas, Texas (Lake Highlands HS)|
|Willie Taylor||WR||6-0||160||Dallas, Texas (Hillcrest HS)|
|DB||5-11||180||Vernon, Texas (Vernon HS)|