The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

October 6, 2012

Thundering Herd defense still trying to keep pace

Offensively, Marshall is certainly keeping up with the times.

The defense is, too — just not in a good way.

The offensive fireworks that have taken over college football should be on display in Huntington today when Marshall hosts Tulsa. The 3:30 p.m. game can be seen live on CBS Sports Network.

Marshall (2-3, 1-0 Conference USA) has the league’s top-ranked offense, averaging 555.6 yards per game. Tulsa (4-1, 2-0) is third at 481.4.

The Herd is averaging 92.4 plays, making it among the faster paced offenses in the nation.

“It’s almost coming down to who has the ball last,” Marshall coach Doc Holliday said. “In our case it happened to be one or two turnovers (in losses against Ohio and Purdue). It could be two defensive stops. I believe that you have to play great defense to win championships. We are working extremely hard to get there.”

Like a lot of defenses today, Marshall is having trouble keeping pace. The Herd is allowing a conference-worst 44.4 points per game and is next to last in total defense at 495.8 yards per game.

Tulsa, meanwhile, leads the league in rushing defense (104.6) and total defense (338.0).

“Defensively, the key is getting your tails lined up in the right place and playing,” Holliday said. “I’ve said all along if you are thinking on defense and not playing, then you’re not going to be any good. You have to get lined up and play hard. I think that is what our kids did in the second half of the Purdue game was stop thinking and play the game. That has to carry over into this game this week.”

The defense has a tough assignment in trying to stop the Golden Hurricane.

Quarterback Cody Green is a Nebraska transfer who started for the Cornhuskers as a true freshman. He has completed 85 of 166 passes for 1,041 yards, nine touchdowns and six interceptions.

Trey Watts is the Hurricane’s top runner, averaging 72.6 yards. He has scored twice.

Tulsa has one of the best pass rushes in the nation, topping college football in tackles for loss (10.6) and sacks (5.2).

— E-mail: gfauber@register-herald.com

1
Text Only
College Sports
  • 042314 trickett Mountaineers have benefited from incoming football transfers

    Recruiting in college football seems to get more and more attention every season. Websites like Scout.com and Rivals.com stalk the high school sidelines and blow up potential recruits’ cell phones in search of the latest information. But there’s one important aspect that often goes ignored — transfers.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • WVU baseball pounds Terps

    The offense had 16 hits and sophomore left-hander Ross Vance struck out six as the West Virginia University baseball team routed Maryland 14-2 on Tuesday evening at Hawley Field.

    April 22, 2014

  • Crutchfield not interested in Division I job

    You would think Jim Crutchfield would be a great candidate for a head basketball coach’s job at an NCAA Division I university.
    But the Clarksburg native keeps saying that he’s perfectly content in that role at West Liberty, a Division II powerhouse. His 10-year record there is an absolutely amazing 272-49. Significantly, 10 of those defeats came in his first year at the West Liberty helm.

    April 22, 2014

  • Stepping up: Kelly racking up wins for Lions

    Sundays have become red-letter days for Chris Kelly.

    April 22, 2014

  • Paul Popovich, now 73, wishes he were playing baseball today

    If you’re a longtime baseball fan, you may recall Morgantown’s Paul Popovich.

    April 22, 2014

  • Hiring an interim while waiting on D’Antoni would be an injustice

    The search for Marshall’s new men’s basketball coach remained in a holding pattern over the Easter weekend while the Los Angeles Lakers put off their decision on coach Mike D’Antoni’s future until this week.

    April 21, 2014

  • 041914 gibby WVU trying to find speed on defense

    Tony Gibson took over as West Virginia’s new defensive coordinator over the winter with the goal of trying not to do too much to rock the boat. As the fourth coach to hold that spot in as many years, the Van native — in his second stint as a Mountaineer assistant — knew that his players needed some stability.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Turnbull’s tenure dominates WVU wrestling history

    Did Oliver Luck really do a thorough job in deeply evaluating Craig Turnbull’s 36-year career as wrestling coach before firing him?

    April 17, 2014

  • WVU’s top football prospects working out for NFL teams

    As we draw ever closer to the NFL Draft, the prospect workouts for teams are picking up steam for former Mountaineers. Both running back Charles Sims and defensive end Will Clarke have a busy road ahead.

    April 17, 2014

  • 041714 millard Kickoff time set for WVU-Alabama

    West Virginia football fans can now start counting down to the exact minute, instead of just the day.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo