Marshall Falls To No. 15 Tennessee|
Sept. 23, 2006
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - LaMarcus Coker ran 89 yards for a touchdown and Montario Hardesty added a 20-yard scoring run to help No. 15 Tennessee shake off last week's loss to Florida with a 33-7 victory over Marshall on Saturday.
Lightning and heavy rain postponed the start of the game by an hour. There were showers mixed with sunshine and even a rainbow during the game.
For the first time in 41 years, the Tennessee band did not form the giant 'T' on the field for the team to run through before the game because of the delay. Halftime was shortened to 15 minutes.
Tennessee (3-1), which netted minus 11 yards rushing against the Gators, finished with 176 yards on the ground against the Thundering Herd (1-3).
The rain cleared by the fourth quarter, and that's when Coker put the game out of reach. On the first play from scrimmage in the period, Coker got loose down the sideline and outraced the Herd defenders to record the third-longest run in school history.
With Tennessee leading 23-7, a pass from Marshall's Bernard Morris was picked off by Jonathan Hefney, Tennessee's second interception of the second half. James Wilhoit tacked on a 49-yard field goal to increase the lead to 26-7 with 5:24 remaining.
The win was the 75th for Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer in Neyland Stadium.
The Vols extended their lead to 16-7 before halftime. Jayson Swain caught a pass that was deflected by teammate Bret Smith for a 20-yard gain, and Hardesty ran for a 20-yard touchdown on the next play.
Starting tailback Arian Foster did not play because of a sprained ankle he hurt three weeks ago against Air Force. Fourth-stringer David Yancey had a 5-yard touchdown run with 23 seconds to go when the Vols took out the starters.
The game started out ugly for Marshall when Morris was sacked in the end zone for a safety on the Herd's first possession of the game. Marshall was backed up at its own 3 when the first snap of the game was fumbled and Morris recovered it.
The Vols were ahead 9-0 in the first quarter when Erik Ainge completed a pass to Swain for a 47-yard touchdown play.
Ainge finished 18-of-27 for 258 yards.
Marshall's top rusher, Ahmad Bradshaw had 72 yards on 24 carries, and Morris ran 14 times for 32 yards. Morris completed eight of 14 passes for 110 yards.
Wilhoit missed a 42-yard field goal on Vols' first possession, breaking a streak of 11 made kicks.