Really, this was the only way for the regular season to end for Lane Kiffin and Florida Atlantic.
In his first season as head coach of the FAU, the former Alabama offensive coordinator made news on the coast-to-coast apparently daily for his tweet habits off the field. Something lost amidst the hubbub not related to social media was the team's success on the field, with 9-3 Owls riding a streak of eight consecutive wins for the US Conference championship on Saturday.
On the way out, that run has reached nine In a row, FAU (10-3) jumped to a big lead in North Texas (9-4) and then "held" for a 41-17 victory. The game marked the first appearance in the Conference USA title game for both football programs and, therefore, the first Owls league title.
The Mean Green had been looking for a measure of revenge when the Owls beat them 69-31 in week 8. That game was also played in the FAU territory.
With victory number 10, FAU established the single-season victory record, breaking the standard of nine established by the legendary Howard Schnellenberger first team in 2004. Not only that, but now the Owls have one more victory this season under Kiffin than in the last three years combined .
And, as has been the case throughout 2017, the offense of the FAU played a fundamental role in the success.
Owls entered Week 14 nationally in scoring (39.8 points per game) and 16 in total offense (480.2 yards per game). On Saturday afternoon in Boca Raton, they had 27 points and 382 yards … only in the first half. The Mean Green defense stiffened in the second half, however, when the Owls finished the game with 486 yards of offense.
FAU led 27-0 at halftime and 34-0 in the middle of the third quarter before UNT mounted what became an incomplete mini-comeback.
With three touchdowns on the ground in the day, including one at the end of the fourth quarter that officially extinguished UNT's hopes of coming from behind, Devin Singletary now has 29 quick touchdowns in the season. That ties the Conference USA record set by Kevin Smith at Central Florida in 2007. Smith is now the running coach at … FAU.
Those 29 touchdowns, by the way, are also tied for fifth in FBS. history.
Singletary was not the only offensive star in the game as wide receiver Kalib Woods caught six pbades for 208 yards and a touchdown.
It was not a perfect day for the Owls, however, as John Franklin III had a long touchdown run taken after Deshaun Jacksoned the moment.