Following a third cancelation, Rice football returns to the field to face a stout Marshall squad. How big is the task at hand? We discuss in this week’s film room.
Well, at this point I’m running out of pithy things to say about postponements and cancellations. This stinks! Three very winnable games gone from Rice’s schedule, all in the division, and a rescheduled one this Saturday in Huntington against a juggernaut of a Marshall team.
I won’t sugarcoat this for y’all. Marshall is very, very, very good. Both of ESPN’s analytical power ranking systems (FPI and Bill Connelly’s SP+) have them as one of the top 25 teams in all of FBS. They’re led on both sides of the ball by ferocious lines: an OL with every spot manned by a senior and a defensive front that’s put up 41 tackles for loss and 22 sacks in seven games. Rice is going to have to play damn near perfect to pull this one off.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Grant Wells has been stellar for the Herd so far, but the heart and soul of their offense is junior running back Brenden Knox. He’s not the most explosive back (5.0 YPC, and his longest run this year is the 45-yarder we’ll see below), but he’s tough, agile, and has great vision.