Mocs show improvement with Cole Copeland leading offense

Staff file photo by Matt Hamilton / UTC quarterback Cole Copeland started for the first time since 2017 on Saturday as the Mocs won 20-0 at North Alabama.

FLORENCE, Ala. - Six games into his freshman season in 2017, Cole Copeland found his way into the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga lineup as the starting quarterback due to injuries to Alejandro Bennifield and Nick Tiano.

The offense had been pretty lethargic to that point, failing to reach 100 rushing yards in four of the first five games and finishing shy of 200 total yards twice, and it's not as though the Mocs suddenly became explosive on offense or started winning all the time with Copeland. He passed for 1,177 yards and 11 interceptions to just seven touchdowns, and UTC went 2-4 in his starts to finish the season 3-8 overall and 3-5 in the Southern Conference.

But he galvanized and energized the team, which went 2-2 in the final four games: a six-point loss to The Citadel, a win at No.