With their bye week in the books, the Marshall Thundering Herd football team now turns its focus to opening week as they prepare to face NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) school Morgan State.
Morgan State enters the matchup 0-1 on the year after falling to fellow FBS school Holy Cross, 51-24, in a shocking loss. To put it in perspective, Holy Cross, from the Patriot League conference, only offers 29 football scholarships per semester, while the Bears offer 63, making the Holy Cross win that much bigger.
Despite the ugly loss, Marshall is not overlooking their first opponent of the new season.
“We take practice very seriously, we take our reps very seriously,” said sophomore quarterback Chase Litton. “[Morgan State] is a very athletic team. We just have to find their weakness and attack it. I mean, all men on that defense are capable of making a play, like they did last week. The score didn’t really show that, but they’re a good team.”
Litton’s response shows he has made great strides as a leader this offseason. It will be important that the QB maintains the same attitude to keep his team grounded Saturday against a clearly inferior team. With as many high profile games on the upcoming slate, it will be easy for Marshall to overlook Morgan State and, as the opening weekend of college football has shown, underestimating an early season opponent can spell trouble.
Most importantly, the Herd is ready to take the field. With as much turnover that Doc Holiday’s team has experienced this offseason, this year’s team is ready to showcase its talents in front of 29,000 rabid fans.
“It’s finally here. I’m tired of practicing against our own guys,” new addition CJ Reavis said. “[Having a bye-week week one] is cool until like last night when you see Notre Dame and Texas going at it and it’s like ‘alright, I’m ready to play football, I’m tired of watching.’”
With the wait finally over, Marshall now finds itself mere days away from the opening kickoff of one of the most hyped seasons in school history. It is the first time since 1981 that the Herd has entered the second week of college football season having yet to play a game.
Marshall’s first game kicks off at 6 p.m. at the Joan C. Edwards Stadium. The game can also be watched on the BeIN Sports Network.
Jacob Griffith can be reached at [email protected]