SAN MARCOS, Texas — Safe to say, Sun Belt Conference opponents and Arkansas-Pine Bluff don’t go very well together.

SAN MARCOS, Texas — Safe to say, Sun Belt Conference opponents and Arkansas-Pine Bluff don’t go very well together.


A year ago, Arkansas State waltzed to a 49-0 halftime lead over UAPB on its way to a 62-11 victory. Texas State was a touchdown away from matching that first-half effort Saturday evening, but the Bobcats still topped their 2013 single-game high for points in the first 30 minutes and Tyler Jones quarterbacked his way to a career high in yards in a 65-0 victory over the Southwestern Athletic Conference’s Golden Lions before 17,813 at Bobcat Stadium.


"It’s football," UAPB senior quarterback Ben Anderson said. "It wasn’t like they were in the NFL and we were in high school or nothing. We had a chance when it was 0-0. We had a chance when it was 21-0. We just tucked our tails as a team, and it showed on the scoreboard. We’ve just got to have more heart, more effort."


The margin of defeat is the largest in school history, surpassing a 64-0 loss to Texas Southern in 1955. UAPB also tied the school record for the most points given up, set in a 1935 loss to Texas College (65-6).


"Way, way too many mistakes," UAPB coach Monte Coleman said, his team having lost two of three fumbles and missed a number of defensive assignments. "Texas State is a very good football team; I can’t take that away from them. They had a great game plan against us, offensively and defensively.


Sophomore Jones completed 21 of 25 passes for 278 yards, beating his previous high of 228 against Idaho. His night was finished after Texas State (1-0) scored on its first drive of the second half.


Jones’ four touchdowns, all in the first half, doubled his previous high for a game.


As if that wasn’t bad enough for the Lions, the Bobcats racked up 697 yards. UAPB totaled 215 yards.


"Anytime you give up almost 700 yards, you’ve got to go back and research," Coleman said. "They had some long plays, long passes and numerous touchdowns where we were actually in position and didn’t make plays. Ain’t much more I can say about that."


Anderson had no opportunity to outshine Jones as the Lions (0-1), who dropped their second straight season opener, struggled to finish drives. Anderson completed 8 of 19 passes for 76 yards and, once again, led UAPB in rushing with 57 yards on 12 carries. He was sacked three times.


More impressive than Jones’ performance was the pace in which the Bobcats’ offense was operating. They averaged 17 seconds per play on their first drive and 11 on their second, on their way to a 20.6-second clip.


"They stuck to what they wanted to, and my guys just played slow," Coleman said. "I don’t know if the 10-hour or 11-hour bus ride drained us a little bit."


The Lions didn’t move near as fast offensively despite holding the ball longer (32 minutes, 29 seconds). First-year offensive coordinator Anthony Jones has moved the unit from a no-huddle system employed by Eric Dooley the previous three seasons.


UAPB punted on every drive but one, and that ended on a 39-yard field goal attempt by Tyler Strickland that went wide right.


Defensively, the Lions could not compensate for their offensive struggles.


Robert Lowe, a preseason candidate for the nation’s top running back award (Doak Walker Award), rushed for 150 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. Along with Jafus Gaines’ 119 yards and two touchdowns on four catches, that gave the Bobcats their first game with a 100-yard rusher and 100-yard receiver since 2011.


Gaines had the miracle play of the night in a game where the Bobcats needed no miracles. He caught a deflected pass on his back at the goal line to give Texas State a 14-0 lead late in the first quarter.


Terrence Franks caught a 16-yard pass for a touchdown to up the lead to 21-0. He also rushed 4 yards for a score in the third quarter.


Gaines received most of his yards on a 71-yard haul from Jones early in the second quarter. That set up Lowe’s 9-yard scamper for a TD.


The only break the Lions’ defense came up with was a fumble recovery on a bad option pitch near the end zone by backup Connor White. But even against Texas State’s second-team defense, Anderson and the offense could get nothing going.


"We didn’t play aggressive as we had practiced," Coleman said. "We made some easy calls. We didn’t get too fancy on defense, and unfortunately we didn’t make plays."


Second-string quarterback Marcus Terrell entered the game for UAPB with 5:56 remaining. He completed 1 of 2 passes for 12 yards, becoming the first UAPB quarterback other than Anderson since 2012 to complete a pass. C.J. Branch took the only snap Anderson missed in all of 2013 after Anderson lost his helmet.


Now, the Lions are faced with a week full of soul-searching in preparation for their home opener against Concordia College Alabama.


"I thought we were ready," Coleman said. "I thought we would have played a little bit better. But we made way too many mental mistakes to win any football game against anybody."