Football Faces SMU Saturday|
Oct. 12, 2006
Marshall travels to Dallas this weekend for a Conference USA cross-divisional matchup with SMU. Kickoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. (EDT).
The game will be televised in West Virginia on WOWK, WVNS-DT, WTRF-DT, and WBOY with Dave Weekley and John Gregory handling the call.
The Thundering Herd (1-4, 0-1 C-USA) is coming off of a, 23-22, last second loss at home to defending C-USA East Division Champion UCF. Marshall rallied from a 20-9 third quarter deficit to take a 22-20 lead on a 50-yard field goal from Anthony Binswanger with just 3:00 minutes to play, however UCF orchestrated a long drive in the closing seconds that was capped off with a 22-yard field goal with just seven seconds to play.
Marshall junior running back Ahmad Bradshaw had a spectacular performance against the Knights to continue his strong play. The Doak Walker Award candidate rushed for a season-high 181 yards on just 18 carries in the game (10.1 yards per carry). Bradshaw is averaging 106 rushing yards per game and boasts an impressive 6.2 yards per carry average for Conference USA's top rushing team (Marshall is averaging 174.6 rushing yards per game).
The Thundering Herd has already battled through an extremely difficult early season schedule having played at nationally-ranked West Virginia, at Big 12 member Kansas State, at nationally-ranked Tennessee and then returning home to face the defending C-USA Champion Golden Knights last week.
Marshall finds itself in the midsts of a wide-open C-USA East Divsion. Every school in the East, with the exception of UAB has at least one league loss already, while Memphis is off to an 0-2 start. A win over SMU, would put the Thundering Herd right in the middle of the division race at 1-1.
SMU (3-3, 1-1) is coming off of a 24-21 loss at UTEP that snapped a three game winning streak. The Mustangs rallied from a 17-0 halftime deficit, but a 27-yard touchdown pass from UTEP running back Marcus Thomas to Dan Robinson with 8:28 to go in the game was the difference.
The Mustangs are limiting opponents to a league-low 82.8 rushing yards per game and feature one of Conference USA's top defenders in linebacker Joe Sturdivant who currently ranks fourth in the league in tackles with 8.8 per game (53 total). SMU also features the top two sack leaders in C-USA in Justin Rogers (5 sacks) and Reggie Carrington (4 sacks).