I’m not sure if you’ve “heard” but Marshall is expected to go undefeated this season en route to hosting the C-USA Championship game in Huntington.
Phil Steele has them ranked #19, playing Auburn in the Orange Bowl and going 12-0 as well in the regular season.
They have a quarterback (Rakeem Cato) who you can bet on to win the Heisman Trophy. They have a receiver (Tommy Shuler) who caught 106 passes out of the slot and a running back (Steward Butler) who nearly averaged nine yards per carry.
Don’t even get me started about their defense.
Marshall has a soft schedule. In the non-conference they open at Miami-OH, host Rhode Island and Ohio then play at Akron. They should be 4-0.
In conference play they get all of the tough games at home (Rice, FAU, MTSU and WKU) where they crushed C-USA competition last season. On the road they play fairly weak competition in FIU, Southern Miss and UAB. The lower rung C-USA schools.
Marshall travels to Norfolk to play ODU on October 4th. Marshall will be undefeated and nationally ranked. ODU could ruin their season.
Is ODU ready to compete with a top 25 team? Probably not.
While Marshall has an extremely soft schedule, ODU will have really challenged themselves leading up to this game. The Monarchs will have played at NC State, at Rice and hosted Middle Tennessee eight days before.
The Monarchs could either be energized after an amazing start to the season or in desperate need of a win. Either way, Marshall is the game circled on the calendar.
Marshall will be coming off of a bye. Last season the Herd were 1-1 off of a bye. They handled UTSA 34-10 at home but fell 51-49 at Middle Tennessee. That’s the type of score and circumstance where ODU would have a fighting chance.
ODU likes to get the game going in a hectic manner. They were able to create that type of atmosphere on the road against East Carolina and Pitt last season, only to have costly second half mistakes end their chance for an upset. Maybe this time at home with a year of experience under their belt they could catch lightning in a bottle against the Herd.
Expect upwards of 100 total points to be scored in this game, hopefully ODU gets their share of them.