Houston vs. SMU: Garrett Gilbert struggling in June Jones' offense

Ivan Pierre Aguirre-US PRESSWIRE

Houston will try to further delay SMU quarterback Garrett Gilbert's improvement in his new offense on Thursday night.

Since transferring from Texas to SMU in the offseason, quarterback Garrett Gilbert is still looking to get solid footing in his new offense, as the Mustangs host the Houston Cougars on Thursday night.

Through six games this season, Gilbert has completed 49.5 percent of his passes for 1,393 yards -- the fourth-most in Conference USA -- as well as seven touchdowns and 11 interceptions. His quarterback rating of 91.8 ranks last (12th) in the conference among qualified passers.

"It's not good enough to win; he's got to play better," SMU head coach June Jones said of Gilbert in a report from The Dallas Morning News following the Mustangs' 27-26 loss to Tulane last week. "But he competed and he scrambled, made some big plays when we had to have a drive at the end. At times he plays confident. At other times he's still learning."

SMU website PonyFans.com, in assessing Gilbert with Joseph Duarte of the Houston Chronicle, noted that although he "has simply underthrown or overthrown some passes," a high volume of receiver drops also hasn't helped the offense, which is averaging 23 points per game.

The Mustangs take on the Cougars Thursday night at Gerald Ford Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT.

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