The 2021 season was something of a mixed bag for North Texas.
The Mean Green got off to a rough start against a tough schedule and looked dead in the water at 1-6. UNT needed a remarkable run to close the season just to become bowl eligible.
The Mean Green put together just such a run, winning five straight games.
The last of those wins was a 45-23 win over previously unbeaten UTSA. The Mean Green's heated Conference USA rival was ranked No. 15 at the time.
UNT had a chance to go out on top when it faced Miami (Ohio) in the Frisco Football Classic but fell 27-14 and finished 6-7.
The Mean Green enter the 2022 season and their opener on Aug. 27 at UTEP looking to break through and win a bowl game. UNT has played in a bowl in five of its six seasons under Seth Littrell but has lost each of those games.
Winning a bowl game would solidify Littrell's status with the program and vault UNT forward.
UNT hasn't posted a winning season since 2018. A fourth straight losing season would put Littrell's status at UNT in jeopardy.
Here's a look at the Mean Green both on and off the field heading into the season.
North Texas fact book
Head coach: Seth Littrell (seventh season at UNT; 37-38 overall record in six seasons as a head coach)
2021 record: 6-7 (5-3 C-USA)
Bowl result: Lost to Miami (Ohio), 27-14, in Frisco Football Classic
2021 offense: 430.5 yards per game (197.1 ypg passing, 233.5 ypg rushing) | 27.5 ppg
2021 defense: 382.2 yards per game (230.2 ypg passing, 152.0 ypg rushing) | 27.5 ppg
Starters returning (off./def.): 9/5
C-USA preseason media poll: 5th
Preseason All-C-USA selections
DL Roderick Brown
Brown burst on the scene as a freshman last fall when he posted 20 tackles and three sacks. He’s in position to start for the first time this season.
WR Roderic Burns
UNT turned to Burns as its main weapon in the passing game after it lost Jyaire Shorter, Tommy Bush and Deonte Simpson early last season. Burns responded by leading the Mean Green in receptions (58), receiving yards (802) and receiving touchdowns (4).
LB KD Davis
Davis entered the transfer portal this summer before quickly pulling his name out and returning to UNT. He’s led the Mean Green in tackles in three straight seasons and was a first-team All-C-USA pick last year.
K Ethan Mooney
The senior has been a consistent performer for UNT for years and has received either preseason or postseason All-C-USA honors in four straight seasons after he was named to the preseason team this year. The fifth-year senior kicked the game-winning field goal in the closing seconds of a 20-17 victory over UTEP last season.
OL Manase Mose
Mose elected to return for a sixth season at UNT in the offseason and will anchor the Mean Green’s offensive front. He was a second-team All-CUSA selection last season.
Five must-follow Twitter accounts for North Texas fans:
@SethLittrell — UNT’s head coach maintains an active Twitter account.
@brettvito — I’ve covered the Mean Green since 2003 and know where the bodies are buried.
@MeanGreenFB — The official account for UNT football is always loaded with video and photos from practices and games.
@LukeWaleriusUNT — UNT’s chief of staff heads up the program’s recruiting operations. When a player commits to the Mean Green, he puts out word. At that point, it’s a scramble to figure out who the player is.
@gomeangreen — UNT fans have gathered on the website Harry Miers started for years. The site keeps an active Twitter account.
Best place to tailgate on Saturdays: Apogee Stadium is built on what was a golf course and has plenty of open grassy spaces to set up above the venue.
Best place to grab a post-game bite: The Denton Square has become a good place to go after games since the A-train station came in a few years ago, leading to a revitalization of the area. There are a number of places to eat, including LSA Burger Co. The restaurant is located in an older building and has a rooftop patio that is a great place to sit after games.
Best gameday tradition to take part in: UNT’s coaches and players march to Apogee Stadium along with the band, cheerleaders and dancers two hours prior to kickoff. Fans often gather to watch the team walk by.