Football Faces Tulane Saturday


Darius Marshall

Darius Marshall

Oct. 7, 2009

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Marshall travels to the Louisiana Superdome on Saturday to take on Tulane in a Conference USA game that will be televised by CSS, WOWK-TV and WVNS-TV. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. EST.

Television: The game will be broadcast live by CSS (Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast) with Paul Crane serving as play-by-play announcer and Chuck Oliver providing analysis. The game will also be carried live by WOWK-TV in the Huntington/Charleston, W.Va. market and by WVNS-TV (Beckley/Bluefield, W.Va.). It will also be available on Cox Sports Television in New Orleans, La.

Oh So Close: In a hard-fought defensive battle last weekend, the Herd came out on the losing end of an East Carolina 21-17 victory. Darius Marshall kept his strong season rolling, rushing for a game-high 141 yards and both of the Herd's touchdown scores. A Patrick Pinkney 30-yard run in the third quarter proved to be the game-winner as the Herd was unable to score in the fourth quarter against the defending C-USA Champions. Marshall is now 3-2 overall and 1-1 in C-USA.

The Wild West: Since entering Conference USA prior to the 2005 season, Marshall has posted a 6-6 record against teams from the C-USA West Division. Four of those wins came in 2005 and 2006, against the teams Marshall will be facing from the division over the next two seasons. MU is a perfect 2-0 against Tulane and 1-1 with home victories over SMU and UTEP.

Tulane and Marshall: Marshall owns a perfect 2-0 mark in the overall series against Tulane. The first meeting in 2005, which was played in Mobile, Ala., due to Hurricane Katrina, saw the Herd take a 27-26 victory while the 2006 meeting in Huntington saw MU come out on the winning end of a 42-21 decision. Saturday will be Marshall's first ever game at the Louisiana Superdome. It is the last current C-USA venue that Marshall has not played in to date.

Marshall and Indoor Football: Marshall owns a 9-5 all-time record in games played indoors. Marshall football's first indoor game was a 21-16 loss inside East Tennessee State's Mini-Dome in Johnson City, Tenn. on Nov. 22, 1980. ETSU and Marshall were both members of the Southern Conference at that time and the Herd would go on to post a solid 6-3 record in games at ETSU. Marshall also played the 1987 I-AA National Championship game inside Pocatello, Idaho's Holt Arena-Mini Dome losing 43-32 to Louisiana-Monroe in that first national title game appearance for MU. Since then, Marshall moved to FBS status in 1997 and made four consecutive bowl trips to the Motor City Bowl and the enormous Pontiac Silverdome. Marshall won 3 of those four bowl games in the large 80,000+-seat dome that has since been replaced by Detroit's Ford Field. After falling short in a 34-31 shoot-out with Ole Miss in 1997, MU posted a 48-29 win over Louisville in 1998, followed that with a 21-3 win over BYU to cap off a perfect season in 1999 and in its last game inside a dome, Marshall bested Cincinnati by the score of 25-13 in the 2000 Motor City Bowl.

Tracking The Green Wave: The Green Wave evened its mark at 2-2 with a 17-16 road victory against Army. Senior kicker Ross Thevenot kicked a field goal with 2:20 remaining to give Tulane the win. The victory ended a seven-game road losing streak for the Green Wave. Wide receiver Jeremy Williams poses the top offensive threat for Tulane. Williams leads C-USA in receiving yards per game, averaging 131.2. On the defensive side of the ball, Tulane poses the second best defense in C-USA against the pass, giving up just 194.8 YPG. Because of their balanced offense and defensive style, Coach Mark Snyder has refered to the Green Wave as more of an East Division style team as oppossed to the wide-open heavy pass offenses that are common in C-USA's West Division.

The National Leader: Junior RB Darius Marshall became the nation's leading rusher thanks to a career-high 203 yards on the ground against Memphis and hung on to that advantage with 141 yards against ECU. The performance pushed his average to 159.75 YPG, 11.75 yards ahead of No. 2 Ryan Matthews of Fresno State. Marshall is also the nation's leader in all purpose yards, averaging 235.75 YPG, just ahead of Torrey Smith of Maryland, who has posted 230.6 yards per game. The junior's 203-yard, 3-TD effort against the Tigers marked the best game for a Marshall running back since 2006 when Ahmad Bradshaw rushed for 261 yards and 5 TD's against UTEP.