No. 18 Houston opens tough stretch vs SEC's Vanderbilt

HOUSTON (AP) The 18th-ranked Houston Cougars have hit arguably the toughest stretch of their season, starting Saturday against the Vanderbilt Commodores.

The Cougars have four of their last five games at home, which should help against Vanderbilt, Cincinnati, No. 16 Memphis and Navy.

However, first-year coach Tom Herman is quick to point out that being at home doesn't matter if they don't execute.

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Houston will have a challenge over the final five weeks. None of the Cougars' first seven opponents have winning records, with the seven teams a combined 13-37. The final five opponents for Houston have a combined record of 22-13.

The Cougars already defeated one team from a Power 5 conference in Louisville September 12 and know what defeating another school from a Power 5 conference would do for them.