published Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Other state colleges

MEMPHIS

Memphis, NCAA Div. I (FBS)

2010 record: 1-11, 0-7 C-USA

Biggest names: Tigers coach Larry Porter had the biggest signing class in Tennessee in February with 26 signees, and he’s hoping to see improvements on the field in his second season. Sophomore Andy Summerlin, a junior college transfer, has had a good preseason at quarterback and seems to have a slight edge over freshman Taylor Reed and Wake Forrest transfer Skylar Jones for the starting job. Running back Jerrell Rhodes returns for his sophomore season after rushing for 469 yards on 116 carries last season. With only four starters returning offense, the defense will have to lead the way. Corey Jones, Dontari Poe and Frank Trotter are back to anchor the defensive line, and sophomores Taurean Nixon and Lonnie Ballentine could wind up starting at cornerback.

SCHEDULE

* Conference game

Sept. 1 Mississippi State, 8 p.m.

Sept. 10 at Arkansas State, 7 p.m.

Sept. 17 Austin Peay, 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 Southern Methodist, noon*

Oct. 1 at Middle Tennessee State, 7 p.m.

Oct. 8 at Rice, 12:30 p.m.*

Oct. 15 East Carolina, 7 p.m.*

Oct. 22 at Tulane, 3:30 p.m.*

Oct 29 at Central Florida, 4 p.m.*

Nov. 12 UAB, 4:15 p.m.*

Nov. 17 Marshall, 8 p.m.*

Nov. 26 at Southern Miss, 4 p.m.*

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MIDDLE TENNESSEE

Murfreesboro, Tenn., NCAA Div. I (FBS)

2010 record: 6-7, 5-3 Sun Belt

Biggest names: Redshirt sophomore Logan Kilgore will get the first shot at the starting quarterback job, replacing Dwight Dasher, who struggled in his senior season with turnovers and off-the-field problems. Kilgore (6-3, 178) started three games last season while Dasher was suspended to start the season, and coach Rick Stockstill will look for Kilgore to take the next step. In the backfield, junior runningback Benny Cunningham will split time with D.D. Kyles carrying the ball. Stockstill will rely on new coordinators this season as well, with Willie Simmons moving from running backs coach to offensive coordinator and Steve Ellis taking over as defensive coordinator.

SCHEDULE

* Conference game

Sept. 3 at Purdue, noon

Sept. 10 Georgia Tech, 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 at Troy, 4:30 p.m.*

Oct. 1 Memphis, 7 p.m.

Oct. 6 Western Kentucky, 7:30 p.m.*

Oct. 22 at Florida Atlantic, 8 p.m.*

Oct. 29 Louisiana, 7:30 p.m.*

Nov. 5 at Tennessee, TBA

Nov. 12 at Louisiana-Monroe, TBA*

Nov. 19 Arkansas State, TBA*

Nov. 26 Florida International, TBA*

Dec. 3 at North Texas, TBA*

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TENNESSEE TECH

Cookeville, Tenn., NCAA Div. I (FCS)

2010 record: 5-6, 4-4 Ohio Valley

Biggest names: Senior wide receiver Tim Benford earned preseason all-Ohio Valley Conference honors, and the former Red Bank star will be counted on to lead what could be one of the more experienced teams in the OVC. Benford led the team with ten touchdowns and 812 yards receiving last season and coach Watson Brown will expect even better things this season as Golden Eagles try to make a run at the OVC title. At quarterback, junior Tre Lamb of Calhoun will be the most experienced signal caller on the team after he threw for 974 yards and 11 scores while splitting time with Cass Barnes last season. On the defensive side, senior linebacker Jake McIntosh (6-2, 230) of Dalton returns after making 72 tackles in 2010, which is second among returning players behind safety Marty Jones.

SCHEDULE

* Conference game

Sept. 3 at Iowa, noon

Sept. 8 Maryville (Tenn.) 8 p.m.

Sept. 17 at Eastern Illinois, 7:30 p.m.*

Sept 24 SE Missouri State, 8 p.m.*

Oct. 1 at UT-Martin, 7:30 p.m.*

Oct. 15 Tennessee State, 8 p.m.*

Oct. 29 at Jacksonville State, 4 p.m.*

Nov. 5 Murray State, 2:30 p.m.*

Nov. 12 at Eastern Kentucky, 1 p.m.*

Nov. 19 Austin Peay, 2:30 p.m.*

------

TENNESSEE STATE

Nashville, NCAA Div. I (FCS)

2010 record: 3-8, 0-7 Ohio Valley

Biggest names: Coach Ron Reed’s Tigers struggled in his first season at TSU, but he returns 16 starters, including 10 on offense, and hopes to turn things around quickly. Former Howard standout Rico Council returns for his senior season with 209 career tackles — second on the all-time school list behind Reed — and the linebacker was named OVC preseason co-defensive player of the year. Running back Dante’ Thomas and guard Kareem Edwards also made the preseason all-OVC team. Jeremy Perry returns at quarterback after throwing for 1,469 yards and nine touchdowns in 2010. Fifth-year tackle Donte’e Nichols returns to help Council anchor the stingy Tigers defense.

SCHEDULE

* Conference game

Sept. 3 Southern, 7 p.m.

Sept. 10 vs. Jackson State (in Memphis), 7 p.m.

Sept. 17 at Murray State, 7 p.m.*

Sept. 24 at Air Force, 3 p.m.

Oct. 1 at Austin Peay, 7 p.m.*

Oct. 8 SE Missouri State, 7 p.m.*

Oct 15 at Tennessee Tech, 2:30 p.m.*

Oct. 22 at Eastern Kentucky, 3 p.m.*

Nov. 5 at Eastern Illinois, 2:30 p.m.*

Nov. 12 UT-Martin, 6 p.m.*

Nov. 19 Jacksonville State, 3 p.m.*

about Jim Tanner...

Jim Tanner has worked as assistant sports editor at the Times Free Press since late 2006. He started at the Times Free Press in 2001 and worked as a news copy/design editor from 2001 through 2006. In addition to working as a night and weekend editor producing local and national sports coverage for print and online readers, Jim occasionally writes local sports and outdoors stories. Jim grew up in Ringgold, Ga., and is a graduate ...

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