Flashes football to face Marshall on home-turf

Kent+State+junior+and+wide+receiver%2C+Josh+Boyle%2C+misses+the+catch+in+a+last+minute+play+against+The+University+of+Massachusetts+on+Oct.+11%2C+2014.+The+Flashes+lost+40-+17

Kent State junior and wide receiver, Josh Boyle, misses the catch in a last minute play against The University of Massachusetts on Oct. 11, 2014. The Flashes lost 40- 17

Stephen Means II

Kent State (1-2) is coming off a weekend where they lost to Minnesota (2-1,) but they were able to take a lot of positives with them for the rest of the season.

For the second week in a row the defense played extremely well. But the offense has proved that it still has a long way to go, especially in the penalty category.

“This game we had a couple key ones early,” said head coach Paul Haynes. “When everyone talks about the woes of the offense you sit there and start on a minus six, minus five and a minus 10 against a very good team it’s hard to go 80 and 90 yards against a very good defense.”

The Flashes return home this week to take on opponent Marshall University (2-1).

“(They’re) fast striking (and have) a lot of talent all over the place,” Haynes said. “We told our defense this morning that there are getting padded on the back a bunch, but the pats are over.”

The Thundering Herd is coming off a victory against Norfolk State, 45-7.

Despite a 52-3 loss to Illinois, Haynes feels that Marshall has possibly the best offense on its schedule to this point.

“This right here is going to be the best offense we’ve faced to date,” Haynes said. “(They) don’t do a lot, it’s not a lot of complex stuff, but they do it so fast that they just try to screw you up. One missed tackle here or one missed read there and it’s touchdown.”

The Thundering Herd have a fast paced offense lead by senior running back Devon Johnson with 381 rushing yards this season and an average of 7.1 yards per carry.

Marshall has used two quarterbacks this season. Junior Michael Birdsong has 340 yards and two touchdowns and freshman Chase Litton has 270 yards, four touchdowns and a 77.4 completion percentage.

Junior running back Nick Holley was ruled out for Saturday’s game due to a hip and back injury suffered during the fourth quarter against Minnesota.

“He’s banged up,” Haynes said. “Everyday he’s felt better than what he felt yesterday. We’ll see as the week goes on how he is.”

Next in line at the running back position is redshirt senior Trayion Durham with 21 carries for 92 yards and one touchdown.

Kick off at Dix Stadium is at 3:30 Saturday, September 26.

Stephen Means is a sports reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]