FAU's offense looks to rebound

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

BOCA RATON Florida Atlantic players will be quite happy when they look up during their game Saturday at Minnesota.

After Saturday's 17-0 loss at Michigan State was played in a driving rain storm, the roof at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome will never look so good.

The soggy conditions didn't just lead to water-logged players, but also led to FAU having a poor day offensively.

Perhaps no player was more affected than Owls quarterback Rusty Smith, who was 8-of-34 for 143 yards against the Spartans.

But Smith thinks he and the offense will be able to regroup Saturday and put last week's offensive performance behind them.

"We don't think it's going to be as big of a problem for us to rebound," Smith said. "We're a pretty veteran bunch of guys so we're going to try and stay together as a team.

"We're going to be able to bounce back and handle whatever adversity is thrown at us."

Last season, the Owls defeated the Golden Gophers 42-39 to give FAU its first victory over a team from a BCS conference. That game featured a breakout performance by Smith, who threw for five touchdowns.

"Their quarterback, Rusty Smith, I think is as good a quarterback as there is in the country," Minnesota coach Tim Brewster said. "I think the guy throws the ball extremely well; last week, I don't think, was indicative at all of his abilities in the downpour against Michigan State.

"The kid can really throw the football and he's got tremendous confidence."