published Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

Mocs too thin for new injuries

“We’re surviving right now, [but] this week we can’t take a hit,” UTC coach Russ Huesman says.

Audio clip

Russ Huesman

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga coach Russ Huesman has no complaints about how his football team handled some key injuries last week against Jacksonville State.

But he doesn’t think the Mocs (0-2) can survive anyone else going down Saturday against Eastern Kentucky (0-2).

“We came into the season thin, and we’re surviving right now,” Huesman said. “This week we can’t take a hit, so if anybody’s got some wood to knock on, please start knocking. We’ve got to stay healthy.”

The Mocs went into the Jacksonville State game without all-conference cornerback Buster Skrine. During UTC’s 21-17 loss, all-conference safety Jordan Tippit and right tackle Adam Miller suffered high ankle sprains.

Chaz Moore, a true freshman who turns 18 today, performed well in his first start at corner. Kadeem Wise, a redshirt freshman, took over Skrine’s corner spot and Moore played Wise’s.

Moore made five tackles and forced a second-quarter fumble that defensive end Jaron Norfleet returned for a touchdown.

After Tippit went out in the second quarter, redshirt freshman D.J. Key replaced him despite not practicing at the position all week. Key, who moved from safety to Will linebacker in the preseason, finished with 12 tackles.

“That’s a good sign: You’ve got three freshmen that stepped up and played, and played at a high level,” Huesman said. “That makes you feel good.”

Sophomore Dustin Tate took Miller’s spot on the offensive line and played well, Huesman said.

Tippit and Miller will get their casts removed today, but both are doubtful for Saturday’s game. Skrine, who dislocated his right elbow in the opener, likely won’t return before the Sept. 25 game at Western Carolina.

Wynn will start

Offensive coordinator Marcus Satterfield said senior running back Erroll Wynn will start against the Colonels. Wynn, in his first action since 2008, gained 98 yards on 13 carries in the second half at JSU.

True freshman Keon Williams had 10 carries for 33 yards last week in his first appearance of the season and moved up to No. 2 on the depth chart, followed by Chris Awuah.

J.J. Jackson, who started the first two games, suffered a mild shoulder injury against the Gamecocks and did not practice Tuesday. He is questionable for Saturday’s game.

Contact John Frierson at jfrierson@timesfreepress.com or (423) 757-6268. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/mocsbeat.

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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