Other ponderings from the Herd's setback:
I'm not sure Grooms would have done much better than his fellow tailbacks, who gained 27 yards on 16 carries. Cato was the most effective runner by far, netting 32 yards despite two sacks.
In using tailbacks, there are other considerations.
"He needs to get in more. We need to get Grooms in, we need to get Butler in the game," Holliday said. "It wasn't a coach's decision; I think it was just the flow of the game. We got toward the end there, there was a lot of pass [protection] and some things that had to take place. I think JuJuan [Seider, running backs coach] went with the two older kids that he felt more comfortable with, as far as pass pro goes."
Snipes-Booker and Butler are doing as well as can be expected in today's snooze-inducing kickoff game, averaging 21-plus yards between them. Snipes-Booker has the team long of 28, though.
He has a 6.4-yard average on seven punt returns - a long of 19 and not much else. The Herd is going to need to do better in the coming weeks.
By the way, Ohio suffered a brain cramp in attempting a "pooch" kick. When you kick off from the 35 and have the school's best placekicker, pooches should only refer to dogs.
And if you must pooch, don't kick it to Alex Bazzie. His 14-yard return not only gave Marshall its best post-kickoff field position of the game, the 39-yard line, but it might have struck fear in a Bobcat or two. Bazzie has vaulted up the depth chart at defensive end by (a) getting ripped in the weight room and (b) playing angry.
The good: The Owls are not known for their defense, and the first three games have done nothing to prove otherwise. After yielding 609 total yards Saturday, they are averaging 531.3, 117th of 120 teams. (Interestingly, cross-town rival Houston is 118th.)
The bad news: There is that Texas thing. I'll go light on it this week, but the Herd has played eight games in the Lone Star State, and have either imploded late or generally stunk it up every time.
Let's put it this way: Out of 480 minutes, Marshall has led just 34 minutes, 56 seconds - and not since the first half of the 2007 Houston game.
Yep, Herd players and coaches should just look ahead.
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com.