The Florida Atlantic Owls after opening the season with a tough schedule visiting the Ohio State Buckeyes lost. Hosting UCF in their home opener, lost.
The Owls flew high to gain a four-game winning streak.
That winning streak was on the line when the Marshall Thundering Herd visited Boca Raton, Florida.
Snapback to reality, oh there goes gravity. Better yet, Owl down.
Brenden Knox scored the go-ahead touchdown with 36 seconds left in the fourth quarter, and the Thundering Herd beat the Owls 36-31 on Friday night.
Knox finished with 23 carries for 220 yards and two touchdowns for the Thundering Herd (4-3, 2-1 Conference USA). His game-winning 17-yard TD run capped a 10-play, 77-yard drive and was the fourth lead change of the fourth quarter.
Marshall failed to convert the two-point attempt after Knox’s TD, but on the next play from scrimmage, the Herd’s Steven Gilmore intercepted Chris Robison’s pass to secure the victory.
“We had so many opportunities early to take advantage of the situation, which we did not do obviously,” FAU coach Lane Kiffin said. “This is what happens. You keep getting penalties, you miss tackles, you have three-and-outs, and you don’t convert on fourth-downs, you lose at the end.”
Robison scored on a 1-yard keeper to give the Owls (4-3, 2-1) a 24-22 lead with 10:09 left in the game. Less than a minute later, Isaiah Green’s 60-yard TD pass to Willie Johnson put Marshall ahead 30-24. Marshall failed on the two-point conversion, and FAU took the lead on Malcolm Davidson’s 2-yard TD run with 3:36 left.
FAU gave up seven sacks for 48 yards and were out rushed 254-57.
Robison passed for 369 yards. But that interception during a drive that would have given the Owls a possible win hurts the growth of an experienced quarterback. It was a back and forth fourth quarter that turnover gave the edge to the Thundering Herd.
The beat goes on.
The Thundering Herd play host to Western Kentucky.
The Owls look to regroup, visiting Old Dominion.