If there’s anything to say about this Marshall football team, it’s that they have a flair for the dramatic — and an unwanted one, if you ask Herd fans.
After losing to a UAB team it should have handled, the Herd has put itself into a situation that’s a carbon copy of last year’s, needing to win it’s last two games to be bowl eligible. Here are some things to chew on as the days before Marshall’s home finale dwindle.
1) I’ll echo what others have said. When the least daunting opponent left on your schedule stands before you, and a win against him provides a needed cushion for the rest of the season — and then you lose to that opponent — the last thing you want to hear from any player after the game is, “We came out flat.”
But that’s what you heard.
Now there’s no choice. Now a flat start against either of their final two opponents likely means the Herd is staying home for the holidays. Now the question is, do the players get angry and bull through the rest of the schedule, or do their shoulders slump and they sit home and watch bowl season on TV?
2) As much criticism as the defense has received this year — and it earned a lot of it at the beginning of the year — it’s gotten better over the last few games.
Stay with me here.
In the last three games, the Herd has collected seven sacks and five interceptions. It has 14 sacks and nine interceptions for the year. The defense still struggles against the run — it’s 110th in the FBS allowing 221.6 yards per game — and it doesn’t look like that’s going to change. But it’s averaging 60 fewer total yards allowed now than it did in Week 4 and those turnovers give opportunities to an offense that, when it’s running on all cylinders, should be able to transform those turnovers into points.
3) I’ll keep this one short and sweet: So you’re asking a team that hasn’t won two straight games all season, one that just lost to a 2-7 opponent, to win its last two regular-season games?
Well, they did it last year …