HUNTINGTON - When FX begins the introduction of the Marshall-West Virginia game Saturday, Thundering Herd and Mountaineer fans know who will be mentioned in the opening minute.
Geno Smith, yep. Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey, yep.
If Aaron Dobson isn't Marshall's first name mentioned, that will be an upset. Quarterback Rakeem Cato's name could pop up quickly, but the man wearing No. 3 carries the Herd's star power.
And remember, the Dunbar native had his breakout play two years ago in the WVU game.
It was in the second quarter at Joan C. Edwards Stadium, with the Herd up 7-3, when Dobson sneaked past cornerback Keith Tandy, caught a bomb from Brian Anderson and turned it into a 96-yard touchdown.
Keep this in mind: Tandy went on to be named first-team All-Big East twice, and then was selected in the sixth round of this year's NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. A Tampa Bay Times article Thursday gives him a good shot at making the 53-man roster.
Also, remember this: Dobson was playing his second game as a true sophomore. He had just 18 career catches to that point, and it was uncertain if he was the Herd's answer at the traditional "X" receiver position.
Dobson said he figured the ball was going to him. Reading the coverage, he knew a safety would help cover Antavious Wilson, leaving him one-on-one against Tandy.
"That was big. That was real early in my sophomore year, after we played Ohio State," Dobson said. "It was a big confidence builder - that was against a great cornerback. He's in 'the league' right now.
"Just playing against him and Brandon Hogan, it was good. I remember me and Antavious Wilson, we were walking in and I remember exactly what I said: 'Man, we've gotta ball, bro. You know what I mean?' He had two touchdowns, I had the 96-yarder, so we came up big in that game.
"We fell short in the game, but that was a big confidence builder for me."
Jeremiah Taylor, a 24-year-old junior defensive end, is a second-year starter and one of the veterans on the Herd defense, but will start against WVU for the first time.
He missed last year's game after being suspended for one game by the NCAA for failing to complete a form certifying his amateur status when he joined the program in 2010.
Hailing from nearby South Point, Ohio, he knows enough about the rivalry and how much a victory would mean for Marshall followers. He also knows what kind of task he faces against the Mountaineers' veteran offensive line.
"Their O-line is big and nasty," he said. "If you just run down the middle on them, they're going to lock you up, sling you all over the place. Their O-line seems fundamentally sound, they've got good running plays, passing plays. Stout all the way around."