Gameday: VMI at No. 8 UTC

Gameday: VMI at No. 8 UTC

October 22nd, 2016 by Gene Henley in Sports - College
Alex Trotter runs the ball during the first day of football practice for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015, in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Alex Trotter runs the ball during the first...

Photo by John Rawlston /Times Free Press.

Virginia Military Institute (3-3, 1-2 SoCon) at No. 8 UTC (6-1, 4-1)

2 p.m. > Finley Stadium, Chattanooga

96.1 FM/SoCon Digital Network

THE MATCHUP

VMI's defense ranks last in the Southern Conference and 115th out of 122 Football Championship Subdivision teams against the pass, allowing 295.7 yards per game. The Mocs will be looking for opportunities possibly to tilt the Keydets off balance with short throws early, only to spring deep passes by Alejandro Bennifield to big-play threats in C.J. Board and Xavier Borishade, as well as James Stovall through the seam.

ONE TO WATCH

With Derrick Craine hobbled, it's "next man up" for the Mocs, and that guy is junior Richardre Bagley. His season high of carries is 16 against Mercer when Craine was first injured, and he should get his first crack at being the featured back today against a solid Keydets run defense. The 5-foot-9, 195-pounder has 195 yards on 49 attempts, with a season-long 55-yard run against Presbyterian in the second week of the season.

IN THE END

Contrary to outside belief, UTC's season didn't end last week in the loss to The Citadel. The Mocs still are good — really good — and perhaps a little upset that some people are writing them off after a road loss to a top-10 team in the country. The Keydets will battle early, but expect a big second quarter to get over a small hangover and a healthy victory by the superior team.

Prediction

UTC 49, VMI 20


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