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Ranking the five best games of UTSA football season

UTSA's inaugural year in the American Athletic Conference will be an exciting time for Roadrunner fans. Football has gotten most of the spotlight in terms of media attention, which is fair, considering the 'Runners are coming off back-to-back Conference USA titles. Now, with the start of the campaign in the AAC happening last weekend, it is a great time to rank the five best games on UTSA's schedule.

UTSA's entrance into the American Athletic Conference marks an exciting time for Roadrunner fans. While football has received much of the media attention, it's important to recognize the team's consecutive Conference USA titles. As the AAC campaign kicks off, let's take a closer look at the five most anticipated games on UTSA's schedule.

At number five, we have UTSA's matchup against Florida Atlantic. Both teams are newcomers to the AAC, and despite FAU's disappointing 2022 record, there is a sense of optimism within their football program. Former UT head coach Tom Herman has joined FAU, bringing his expertise to the team. With a talented quarterback in Casey Thompson and a strong offensive line, FAU could pose a challenge for UTSA. While FAU's defense remains a concern, their veteran players could cause problems for the Roadrunners. This game serves as a potential trap for UTSA as they navigate the new era of the Owls' program.

Coming in at number four is the highly anticipated I-35 Rivalry game between Texas State and UTSA. After a hiatus since 2020, the rivalry is back, with both teams heading in different directions. UTSA has dominated Conference USA and made their move to the AAC, while Texas State is seeking to regain relevance in college football. With new head coach G.J. Kinne leading the Bobcats, there is hope for a resurgence. Texas State has made significant additions through the transfer portal, including quarterback Malik Hornsby. While their defense still has some question marks, linebackers Jordan Revels and Derrick Brown will provide strong support. The rivalry between these two schools always leads to an intense and closely contested matchup.

At number three, we have UTSA's game against Tennessee. Undoubtedly the biggest name on the schedule, Tennessee had a roller coaster season in 2022. Despite their ups and downs, they are ranked No. 12 in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll. Led by head coach Josh Heupel, the Volunteers have a strong offense, with quarterback Joe Milton III and playmakers like Squirrel White and Bru McCoy. However, their passing defense is a weakness that UTSA could exploit. With a talented receiving corps and quarterback Frank Harris, the Roadrunners have the potential to cause problems for Tennessee.

Next up, we have UTSA's matchup against Houston. This rivalry has a sense of deja vu, as UTSA was Houston's first-ever opponent at TDECU Stadium in 2014. UTSA spoiled the opening game, and now Houston seeks revenge after last season's triple overtime defeat. The lead-up to this game has been heated, adding to the intensity of the rivalry. While Houston has lost some key offensive players, they have reloaded with the addition of quarterback Donavan Smith. Offensive tackle Patrick Paul is a standout player to watch. UTSA aims to spoil Houston's debut in the Big 12 Conference, making this a highly anticipated and fiercely competitive game.

Finally, the number one game on UTSA's schedule is their matchup against Tulane. Preseason polls struggled to predict the winner of the AAC, with both UTSA and Tulane being strong contenders. Tulane is the reigning conference champion, coming off an impressive season that included a victory over USC in the Cotton Bowl. Head coach Willie Fritz has led the team to success after a challenging period. Playing in New Orleans adds another layer of difficulty for UTSA, as the home crowd is known for their unwavering support. On the field, Tulane boasts a highly underrated defensive secondary. This game will be a true test for UTSA and a must-watch for college football fans.

As UTSA embarks on their inaugural year in the AAC, these five games stand out as the most exciting and challenging matchups. Fans can expect intense rivalries, talented opponents, and the opportunity for UTSA to make a statement in their new conference.

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