TULSA, Oklahoma – Saturday night probably felt like sweet redemption for G.J. Kinne and the rest of the Golden Hurricane.
It's hard to look impressive playing three of the top five teams in the country to start the year, but Tulsa showed its true colors with an easy 41-24 win against North Texas at H.A. Chapman Stadium.
The final score wasn't even indicative of the blowout that occurred, as the Golden Hurricane led 41-7 after three quarters before calling off the dogs.
But perhaps the most encouraging part of the night for TU fans was the play of quarterback G.J. Kinne.
He struggled against Boise State, throwing four interceptions and barely topping 100 passing yards.
But Kinne reversed those fortunes against the Mean Green, completing 20-of-31 for 314 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
Five different players shared that wealth on the receiving end, each picking up 30 yards or more.
Kinne's top target, Bryan Burnham, got back on track as well, racking up 101 receiving yards and a touchdown.
It didn't take long at all for the Golden Hurricane to set the pace, as Burnham caught that touchdown exactly three minutes into the game.
The TU defense, not to be outdone, did their part three minutes after that. Defensive back Dwight Dobbins picked off UNT quarterback Andrew McNulty and took it back 36 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-0.
North Texas' only score of the first half was a 52-yard field goal at the start of the second quarter.
But by halftime, Tulsa had essentially put the game out of reach with two more scores to take a 28-3 lead into the break.
The play of the game occurred just a few minutes into the third, as defensive back Dexter McCoil pulled off an impressive 74-yard interception return, taking it to the house to increase Tulsa's lead at the time to 31.
TU didn't generate much offense on the ground, but mostly because it didn't really need to. Trey Watts led all rushers with 58 yards, outrushing UNT's entire team.
North Texas (1-4) spread the ball around in the rushing game, with eight players getting a rush, but combined for just 56 yards on the ground.
With the Mean Green out of the way, the road ahead consists of Conference USA opponents for Tulsa (2-3, 1-0).
The Golden Hurricane has a bye week before hosting the University of Alabama-Birmingham on Oct. 15.