Memphis starting out eager to produce better finish


Published 2:45 a.m. ET Aug. 15, 2019


Memphis has a couple more steps it wants to take in its bid to establish itself as one of the nation’s top Group of Five programs.

Each of the last two years, Memphis has fallen to Central Florida in the American Athletic Conference championship game. And even though Memphis has earned a school-record five consecutive bowl berths, it has lost its last four bowl matchups.

Those disappointing finishes give the Tigers plenty of incentive heading into the season.

“The past couple of seasons haven’t ended the way we’ve wanted them to,” running back Patrick Taylor Jr. said. “We haven’t finished out the season the way we preached all year going into fall camp.”

Taylor’s presence has Memphis confident it can improve upon last year’s 8-6 season even as it replaces Darrell Henderson, the nation’s second-leading rusher in 2018.

Henderson was selected by the Los Angeles Rams in the third round of the draft after running for 1,909 yards and 22 touchdowns as a junior last season. Taylor rushed for 1,122 yards and 16 touchdowns while averaging 5.4 yards per carry last year.


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