Believe it or not, it was the Eagles' second 55-14 loss in a row (East Carolina rang them up by that score in Greenville). They have yielded 55 or more points four times, but also have lost the games in which they yielded 22 or 24 points.
Alas, that included a 22-13 loss to Texas State and a 24-23 loss in the "Pillow Fight" against Florida International. In the latter game, Corey Acosta's last-play field goal was blocked, the fourth of his six consecutive misses.
This has been painful to witness.
Saturday's game should be one of the most interesting on the Herd's home schedule. Instead the Herd may face the worst league opponent at Edwards Stadium since entering Conference USA in 2005, and the worst in any league since Buffalo's 2002 visit in the Mid-American Conference days.
And remember, this Southern Miss program is two seasons removed from a C-USA championship and an end-of-season 20th ranking. It hasn't suffered back-to-back losing seasons since 1933-34, for Pete's sake!
Monken is mopping up for the uber-disastrous hiring of Ellis Johnson, who succeeded Larry Fedora and lasted just one year. Fedora shouldn't get off the hook, either - exactly three starters and five reserves from the 2011 C-USA title game showed up on Saturday's participation sheet.
Of the 74 who had played in the first six games this season, 38 are listed as redshirt sophomores or younger, with 14 true freshmen playing. I'm betting those numbers rise next year, as Monken can't help but recruit better players than he has.
Improvement can't come soon enough for a team with one of the top four fan bases in the 2014-and-beyond C-USA lineup. And it can't come fast enough for C-USA, which needs its soon-to-be-lone charter member to be one of its strongest.
The resurrection can't come soon enough for strength of schedules, as well. Do you realize Marshall likely will own victories over 0-12, 0-12 and 1-11 teams (Southern Miss, Miami of Ohio and FIU)? Not the Herd's fault, but still ...
This is really tough to watch. God bless Monken, for he needs much patience.
Finally, one observation:
If football officials were calling the final play of World Series Game 3, they would have assessed Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks a 15-yard penalty for leg-whipping Cardinals runner Allen Craig.
A textbook case of obstruction, first inning or ninth, unless you're an addled Red Sox fan or Skip Bayless. C'mon, people.
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130, dougsm...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/dougsmock.