MU football faces Cincinnati, both look to extend record to 3-1


Richard Crank

Xavier Gaines runs the ball for the Herd in the game against Ohio on Sept. 14.

The Cincinnati Bearcats will seek revenge against the Herd at Joans C. Edwards Stadium Saturday after losing the last matchup.

The last time the two teams met was during the 2017-18 season. The Thundering Herd traveled to Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati and upset the Bearcats with a final score of 38-21.  

“The improvement they (Cincinnati) have made in the past two years is tremendous,” Head Coach Doc Holliday said. “They are a team that won 11 games a year ago and that’s hard to do. They also beat Virginia Tech in their bowl game, so they have a lot of momentum going right now.”

With both of the teams coming off a bye week, the Herd and Bearcats have had extra time to get players healthy and prepare for each other.

In Marshall’s last game against Ohio University in the Battle for the Bell redshirt sophomore running back Brenden Knox did not play in the second half due to an injury after racking up 133-yards and one touchdown. 

“Anytime you have a bye week you can catch your breath a little bit,” Holliday said. “We have some guys that are playing this week against Cincinnati that would not have played last week – Knox for example – but he will be fine.”

Cincinnati opened its season with a win against UCLA with a score of 24-14, but did not score against the now fifth ranked Ohio State University in its second game and lost 42-0. The Bearcats improved to 2-1 when they faced Ohio (Miami) with a score of 35-13. 

The Herd’s defense will have its hands full again this weekend as yet another duel threat quarterback comes to Huntington. Cincinnati’s sophomore quarterback Desmond Ridder rushed for five touchdowns last season on 150 attempts and threw for 2,445-yards and 20 touchdowns as a freshman.

“It is another opportunity to go out there and play against a good team,” Marshall senior linebacker Omari Cobb said. “We have to keep our defense going and flying around and keep being the best defense we can be.” 

With the bye week, Marshall also used the time to get extra studying in for Cincinnati.

“We had about a four- or five-day head start,” redshirt junior offensive lineman Cain Madden said. “We saw them two years ago but their whole defense are veterans now. We know they are going to go out there and make plays, but we just have to go out there and play our game.”

The Thundering Herd will look to remain undefeated at home as they face Cincinnati in Huntington on Saturday, Sept. 28 at 5 p.m.

Brigham Warf can be contacted at [email protected].