HUNTINGTON, W.Va.—It wasn’t pretty and sometimes it was down right ugly, but Marshall left Boca Raton with a win and that’s all that matters. The Herd improved to 2-0 in the conference and now sits atop the East Division thanks to East Carolina’s loss to Tulane.
While there was plenty for Doc Holliday and staff to correct after watching film of the FAU game, there are also several signs that Marshall has taken another step forward. It won on the road and had to face adversity to do it.
“As you go back and review that game, I think there were nine minutes and 57 seconds to go in the game and we were down by 9 points,” said Holliday. “Three things had to happen to go win that football game and all three of them did.”
The three things?
Marshall had to drive 91 yards for a score, get a defensive stop and score again. There was no margin for error.
“All those things had to happen for us to win that football game and they did. Leadership on the sidelines, locker room and all the things that we’ve been talking a long time about are starting to take effect. We won the game because of it. I don’t really enjoy winning games like that, but it is better than the alternative. I think you can grow as a football team when you find a way to win one like that. It’s been a while since we’ve done that around here.”
The win is significant because Marshall hasn’t shown recently that it could get behind and comeback to win on the road. Just this season it was down at Ohio and could not come from behind to win. It was leading at Virginia Tech and could not seal the deal and then could not battle back in overtime.
It may be a small step but it is another move in the right direction if The Herd is going to contend for a C-USA title this season. Marshall has another tough game on the road next Thursday at Middle Tennessee State and must still visit Tulsa and FIU later this year.
“You learn to overcome adversity and you learn to never look at the clock, never to look at the scoreboard and to play every snap like it’s the last snap. At the end of the day you can look up at the scoreboard and see where you are. They did that on Saturday. If they look at that scoreboard with 9 minutes on the clock, then chances are you won’t win that game. They just kept playing and playing and found a way to win.”
Marshall faced adversity and came away with a win and at the end of the day, teams still don’t get style points and win is still win whether it comes from a 35 point blowout or a last second field goal.