Football Hosts High-Powered Golden Hurricane Saturday

Nov. 26, 2008

Marshall's football team will play host to Tulsa on Saturday in what will be the final game at Joan C. Edwards Stadium for 14 Thundering Herd seniors. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. and the game will not be televised.

Parking Information: Football parking permits will be honored as usual on all game day lots. Marshall's basketball team plays host to Old Dominion at 11:30 a.m. and basketball West Lot parking passes will be honored at the Third Ave. Garage only.

Senior Day: Marshall will honor its 14 seniors who will be playing their last game at Joan C. Edwards Stadium on Saturday before the game. The 14 seniors are Darius Passmore, E.J. Wynn, C.J. Spillman, Ian Hoskins, Emmanuel Spann, Aaron Johnson, Chubb Small, Phillip Gamble, Cody Tominack, Maurice Kitchens, Joe Bragg, Matt Altobello, Brian Leggett and Matt Parkhurst.

Herd Spoilers: Marshall will be attempting to send its senior class out winners on Saturday and play spoiler at the same time. Tulsa is in a three-way tie with Houston and Rice atop the C-USA West Division. Houston and Rice square off at 3:30 p.m. at Rice Stadium with title game implications. Rice needs a win over Houston coupled with a Marshall win over Tulsa to take the West Division crown, while the Golden Hurricane needs a Rice victory and a win over Marshall. Houston controls its own destiny, by virtue of their win over Tulsa this year and should the Cougars win at Rice they will not only win the West, but host East Carolina in the Championship game on December 6th.



The Series: Tulsa defeated Marshall 38-31 last season in the only meeting between the two schools. Saturday's game is Tulsa's first visit to Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

Scouting the Golden Hurricane: Tulsa is coming off of a 56-7 home win over Tulane and features one of the top offensive attacks in the country...The Golden Hurricane is averaging 50.4 points per game and 584.6 total yards of offense per outing...Tulsa quarterback David Johnson has passed for 3,358 yards and 40 touchdowns (305.3 yards per game), while Tarrion Adams has led a dangerous rushing attack with 1,073 yards and six touchdowns...Brennan Marion has 35 catches for 962 yards and eight touchdowns to lead a list of four players with 30 or more catches on the season...defensively, Tulsa is led by Mike Bryan's 93 tackles and James Lockett's 8.5 sacks.

Scouting the Herd: Marshall is coming off of a 35-10 loss at Rice on Saturday and will be looking to close the season on a positive note...Marshall sophomore Darius Marshall has rushed for 1,001 yards this season to lead a strong Thundering Herd rushing attack and junior tight end Cody Slate had touchdown receptions in six consecutive games and 19 for his career...Defensively, Marshall junior linebacker Mario Harvey leads the Herd with 91 tackles and 4.5 sacks with senior linebacker Maurice Kitchens adding 81 stops, three sacks and a team-high four interceptions.

The Last Meeting: Tulsa's Paul Smith passed for 385 yards and three touchdowns to out-slug Marshall's attack 38-31 in Tulsa last season...MU quarterback Bernard Morris passed for 260 yards and two touchdowns, while Chubb Small rushed for 53 yards and two touchdowns.

Mr. Kitchens Shines: Senior linebacker Maurice Kitchens is having a career year. Kitchens has racked up 81 tackles and leads the team interceptions with four. In the win over Houston, he led the way with an 80-yard fumble return and an interception that set up two Marshall touchdowns. For his efforts, he was named the C-USA Defensive Player of the Week.

Call Him Thumper: Thundering Herd junior linebacker Mario Harvey is putting together a great season and living up to his nickname of "Thumper." He now leads the team in tackles with 91 total stops. He also leads the team in sacks (4.5 for -37 yards). He has also forced two fumbles, has an interception, and took a fumble return 62 yards for a touchdown at UAB.

Marshall Breaks 1,000: Sophomore running back Darius Marshall leads the Herd with 206 carries for a career-high 1,001 yards and five touchdowns. He also leads the team with 29 kick returns for 767 yards, an average of 26.4 yards per return. Marshall has rushed for more than 100 yards in a game seven times this season, including last week when he rushed for 118 yards at Rice. Marshall ranks sixth in the nation in all-purpose yards by a runner with 169.73 yards per game. He is now 14th all-time on Marshall's single season rushing chart and only the 10th individual at Marshall to rush for 1,000 yards in a season.

PASSmore Closing in on 1,000: Marshall senior receiver Darius Passmore may be the best named player in college football. He leads MU with 50 catches for 872 yards and five touchdowns thus far (despite consistently drawing double coverage) and has also carried the ball 21 times for an additional 195 yards and a touchdown. Passmore is within reach of 1,000 yards receiving this season and if he reaches that plateau he would be only the ninth individual in Marshall's rich receiving history to record a 1,000-yard season.

Mr. Spillman: Marshall senior free safety C.J. Spillman finished third in Conference USA and 12th in the nation with 10.92 tackles per game in 2007. He registered 131 total tackles on the year, which is the highest total by a Marshall player since Duran Smith recorded 160 stops in 2002. The standout went on to earn second-team All-Conference USA honors as a junior and was recognized by league coaches as a preseason All-CUSA pick this season. Spillman enters the Tulsa game with 64 tackles on the season. He recorded a key pass breakup and forced a fumble that secured the win over Memphis. He did not play against Houston due to injury, however he returned to action at ECU to record seven tackles and a pass breakup.

One Great Slate: Cody Slate has established himself as one of the top tight ends in the nation. Slate earned honorable mention All-America honors from both and College Football as a sophomore in 2007. Last year his 5.5 receptions per game and 68.17 receiving yards per game ranked third in the nation among all tight ends. The Marshall standout had only two catches for 22 yards against Illinois State before leaving the contest with an injury that forced him to miss the Wisconsin and the Memphis games. He returned against Southern Miss to contribute four catches for 76 yards and a touchdown. Slate has at least one touchdown catch in six consecutive games and leads the Herd with eight touchdown receptions this year to go along with his 452 receiving yards. Slate, a junior, now has 19 career TD receptions and stands 8th all-time in career receiving TDs at Marshall. He also has 1,954 career receiving and is tied with Fuzzy Fillez's 1,954 yards from 1973-76 for 10th all-time at MU.

Home Sweet Home: Marshall enjoys one of the finest home field advantages in college football. Since opening in 1991, the Thundering Herd has posted an impressive record of 115-16 at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Marshall's 115 home wins over that period of time is believed to be the most in major college football.