Marshall Report Card: Game One, Hofstra

Marshall played Hofstra about the way you expect a first game to go against a I-AA team, with a SEC road trip to follow. Some up, some down, overall dominance of the Pride. Now Marshall is free to think and talk about playing Tennessee, which may have been in the back of their minds all along. Here is the Week One report card:

QuarterbackCStan Hill was exceptional, except for turnovers. 37-25-3 for 344 yards and 2 touchdowns are great numbers. Two of the interceptions should have been caught, but Hill must bring ball down to receivers or they will get killed over middle. One of fumbles caused by running into own lineman, then strip by Renauld Williams. Good start, but he will get better each game.

Running BacksAButchie Wallace (16/86, TD) and Earl Charles (11/50, 2TDs) combined for 3 touchdowns and 132 yards rushing. Tank Tunstalle (8/34) showed potential behind second-team offensive line.

Offensive LineA608 yards of offense, with no sacks allowed on 38 pass attempts. First-time starters Tony Bullock and Nate Griffin were very sharp, along with Nate McPeek, Joey Stepp and Luke Salmons. Second-team line did good job, as well.

ReceiversBDarius Watts is the top retuning receiver in the nation statistically and showed why with 7 catches for 122 yards, including the 51-yard screen for touchdown. Josh Davis quieter but effective with 7/88 and one score. Some drops, although the ball was slick from damp field that was holding a great deal of water.

Defensive LineB/CDefensive tackles get the "B". Hofstra held to 116 rushing, but most of that came on loss of contain on WVU transfer Issac Irby's two touchdowns for 72 yards. Toriano Brown and Reggie Hayes teamed for 2 solos, 4 assists, 2.5 tackles-for-loss, 1 pass-breakup and 1.5 sacks. Ends get the "C" for losing containment on reverses, no sacks and only 5.5 total tackles from Jamus Martin, Jonathan Goddard and Marcus Hairston.

LinebackersBJ.T. Rembert had 3 solos, 3 assists, 1 tfl, 1 pbu and .5 sack on the night. Gladstone Coke was third with 2 solos, 2 assists, 1.5 tfl and .5 sacks from the Rover position. Dionte Wilson (2 tkl, .5 sack & .5 tfl), Kevin Atkins (2.5 tkl, 1.5 tfl, 1 forced fumble he recovered) and Charlie Tynes (4 assists and pbu) all got off to a good start.

SecondaryBHeld Hofstra to under 50% completions (31-15-0, 125 yards). Troubling stat of no tackles for Moriah Anderson, one for Lonnie McCown. Willie Smith pulls up grade from "C" by leading team in tackles with 4.5, 4 solos. Roberto Terrell chipped in 2.5 tackles and pbu.

Special TeamsB+Ok, grade may be a little high, but kickoffs by Ian O'Connor and Nick Kelly were at or in endzone; Ben Lewis was perfect; Kelly 1-2 on field goals and barely right on 41-yard attempt; Tremel Guillory had 31-yard punt return, 9 yards longer than any in 2002. Only kickoff returns need some improvment by UT (either one, Tennesee or Toledo).

Overall, a "B" for game one. Bob Pruett inspired team to play better at half, but even with 24 point win it is hard to think Herd will not get better every game.


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