No. 24 UTSA aims to preserve first ranking at Louisiana Tech

No. 24 UTSA (7-0, 3-0 Conference USA) at Louisiana Tech (2-4, 1-1), Saturday at 7 p.m. EDT (Stadium).

Line: UTSA by 6 1/2, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Series record: Louisiana Tech leads 7-2.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

UTSA is ranked for the first time in program history and will have to beat the sub-.500 Bulldogs to keep it that way. While Tech has dropped three non-conference tilts by a touchdown or less, the Bulldogs are nonetheless in position to try to rally for a Conference USA title. But they must rattle off a series of league victories to do so, starting this week.

KEY MATCHUP

UTSA QB Frank Harris and the Roadrunners’ offensive line against Louisiana Tech defensive linemen — and brothers — Ben and Levi Bell. The Bell brothers have combined for six of Tech’s 10 sacks this season, and they’ll be looking to get Harris, who has completed 69.2% of his passes this season, out of his comfort zone.

PLAYERS TO WA TCH

UTSA: Harris has 1,600 yards and 14 TDs passing against just three interceptions.

Louisiana Tech: QB Austin Kendall has thrown for 1,342 yards and 10 touchdowns in five games, but also has been intercepted eight times.

FACTS & FIGURES

UTSA is 7-0 for the first time and on its first winning streak as long as seven games. … Head coach Jeff Traylor is 14-5 at the helm of the Roadrunners, the best 19-game start for a UTSA coach. … UTSA has won 10 of its last 11 contests dating to last season. … The game marks the first time the Bulldogs will host an undefeated team with at least seven wins since Boise State in 2009. … Louisiana Tech has hosted a Top 25 opponent in Ruston four previous times. … Tech last hosted a Top 25 opponent in 2010, losing to No. 14 Nevada and then-QB Collin Kaepernick. … Louisiana Tech’s last win over a Top 25 opponent was a 48-45 victory over No. 25 Navy in the Armed Forces Bowl on Dec. 23, 2016. … The Bulldogs’ last victory over a Top 25 opponent in Ruston was a 28-21 win against No. 17 Fresno State on Oct. 2, 2004.

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