Associated Press file photo by TONY GUTIERREZ -- Louisiana Tech running back Kenneth Dixon

DENTON, Texas — There is no rest for the weary.

Especially not Louisiana Tech. The Bulldogs prepare to play their third road game in 13 days, opening Conference USA play at North Texas at 7 p.m. Thursday.

Louisiana Tech is coming off a 48-20 blowout of UL-Lafayette, a game in which the Bulldogs racked up 533 yards from scrimmage despite a slow start.

“Even with a slow start ... to average 7.8 yards per play and put up 41 points was a credit to the way this team played,” Louisiana Tech coach Skip Holtz said. “There were five big plays that went for 287 yards and resulted in two touchdowns for the offense. That is something we have talked about and worked on — having the ability to make more big plays.”

The big plays included a 99-yard touchdown run by Kenneth Dixon that set school and conference records and was part of a 184-yard effort that earned him Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week honors.

“They’ve got a phenomenal running back, obviously, we all know that,” North Texas coach Dan McCarney said of Dixon. “(Kenneth) Dixon’s averaging 113 yards. We were able to limit him last year, but we were about the only ones. There weren’t many teams that limited him last year. He’s an outstanding back and he shredded Louisiana-Lafayette. ... He has got size, he has speed, he has toughness; he has it all.”

Last season North Texas limited Dixon to 25 yards on 12 carries in a 28-13 win over Louisiana Tech in Ruston. Aiding in the Mean Green efforts last year was an interception return for a touchdown and a 61-yard touchdown pass as North Texas utilized big plays in the win.

Now the Bulldogs turn their attention toward a North Texas team that strolled to a 43-6 win over SMU at home last week.

“One of the big challenges is the short week,” Holtz said. “Playing our third game on the road in 13 days is a big challenge. Playing on the road is hard, it takes a lot out of you. You get back at two in the morning on Sunday and have to practice that day because it is a short week.

North Texas has the advantage in that they were done at about 3 and they played at home. They have a 12-hour head start, and in a short week, that is everything. That is a 12 hour difference in rest and game preparation.”