Marshall Football Set for Opener Against Purdue


The college football season kicks off around the state this weekend with games in Huntington, Morgantown and around the Mountain East Conference. Marshall’s football team opens their season Sunday against Purdue.

A season after finishing 13-1 and being among the leaders in many statistical categories offensively, Marshall is beginning a fresh campaign with a new quarterback. Gone is four-year starter Rakeem Cato, replaced by James Madison transfer Michael Birdsong.  Thundering Herd Head Coach Doc Holliday said there are many similarities between the two quarterbacks. 

“Yeah, they’re both very competitive and they both love football, it’s very important to them,” Holliday said. “When they go out on that football field, they love being out there and that’s one of the biggest traits of that quarterback position is the intangibles and being that guy that guys rally around and respect and he’s got all those things going on for him which should help him on Sunday.”

Purdue finished 3 and 9 last season. Holliday said despite Purdue’s lackluster performance, you’re never sure what they’ll have for this year. 

“First games are just so many unknowns on both sides, Purdue has a lot of unknowns about us and we sure have a lot of unknowns about Purdue until you actually get that out there,” Holliday said. “That’s why you have to be able to do a great job of making adjustments as a staff because there are so many unknowns.”

 The Boilermakers won the only other meeting between the two teams, 51-41, in 2012.  The Herd and Boilermakers kickoff Sunday afternoon at 3pm on Fox Sports 1.