HUNTINGTON, W.Va.—There was a common theme from Thundering Herd players Monday afternoon as they visited with media.

They don’t care.

Herd fans were dismayed Sunday night when Conference USA officials announced Rice would host Saturday’s conference title game thanks to a convoluted formula the conference used as a tiebreaker.  However, it seems fans, which were hoping for another game at The Joan, took the news harder than the players.

“We found out at 8:30 and by 8:31 I’d moved on,” said quarterback Rakeem Cato.  “Doc Holliday preached to us that no matter where the game is going to hosted at we have to play our best football.”

As fans debated the validity of the formula, the players were more focused on the task facing them on Saturday, a good Rice team that also has won nine games this year and went 7-1 in C-USA.

“We’ve been waiting a long time for this moment,” continued Cato.  “Right now the moment is here and we’ve got to get the job done.”

That’s not to say The Herd wouldn’t have enjoyed lining up one more on the turf at Joan C. Edward Stadium.  For seniors such as Garrett Scott, last Friday’s game was the last one he’ll ever play in front of the home fans and admits it would have been fun to do it again with a conference title on the line.  But knows the championship is still out there.

“It doesn’t matter where we play,” said Scott.  “It would have been exciting to play here but it doesn’t matter.”

For a program that has not tasted conference championship since it joined Conference USA, the opportunity to bring the first ever C-USA football championship to Huntington is more important that where the game is being played.

“I’m just glad we’re playing another game, a championship game, it doesn’t matter where we play it at to tell you the truth,” said Tommy Shuler.  “We just have to go out there and take care of business.”

Taking care of business is exactly what Marshall has done the final five weeks of the season.  Even though its road woes have been well documented, The Herd feels it is ready to conquer those demons whether it is in Houston, Huntington or dusty patch of dirt in south Texas.

“We’re going to be ready to play.  We could play in a parking lot and we’d be ready to play,” said Gator Hoskins.

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  • Florida Boy

    Is the Liberty Bowl a part of the BCS lineup?
    I think not.
    You win your league and you are rewarded with the Liberty Bowl. It is a shame that Marshall will spend more than they will get from Bowl earnings, oh well that is the differance of being part of C-USA. On a bright note they will get a night of exsposure.

  • Greg

    Go Herd! Looking forward to the bowl season too [others wish they could say that]

  • Earl Ray

    This will be an instant classic, two top 100 teams slugging it out in front of 15,000 apathetic fans.

    • Jason

      Isn't Marshall #33 in the BCS? Also, no matter what, they still have 2 games left (including a bowl game). Not bad, considering where the program has been the last decade. The extra practices and experience will only make them better. Thanks Doc! go Herd!

  • WVU1979

    Good Luck Herd. Great Season this year.

  • Brett

    Go Herd! Cook that Rice!

  • RJ

    Should be a very good game. A win will land Marshall in the Liberty Bowl--- great travel location for Herd fans.

  • Gilbert Gnarley

    For the first time I was blessed with the opportunity to attend the closing of the memorial fountain at the Student Center in November. It was a very moving service. What better way for a team to cap the season than a win at Rice and the C-USA Championship.

    Go Herd!

  • mauldawg

    Wont watch the game,but will be rooting hard for Rice.

  • Jason

    Just win baby!

  • Larry

    The "Rice Bowl" should be at least 1/8 full for this epic showdown.

  • mauldawg

    Go "RICE"

    • Roger

      Go Herd! Enough said....

    • my favorite

      You're my favorite commenter because you make me laugh. You know, the type of laughter that comes when the dude has no clue he's clueless. SMH

      • Jason


      • mauldawg

        No Clue! That's what MU had today no clue!! Way to go Rice!!!!!