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Doug Smock

Staff writer
  • Phone 304-348-5130
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  • Dep Sports

NIU QB Hare quietly gets it done


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Northern Illinois quarterback Drew Hare doesn’t have to be like Jordan Lynch. He knows that, his coach knows that, his center knows that.


Hewitt closes Herd career with MVP season


BOCA RATON, Fla. — It seems like an eternity ago, but Neville Hewitt entered his senior season with one hefty question mark hovering over him.

That question took on the sha...

Boca Raton Bowl notebook: Doc, Pitt unlikely to fit


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Let the record show that Doc Holliday is on Florida soil and he’s wearing kelly-green Marshall gear.

That latter is very likely to remain the...

Herd with momentum as basketball road trip begins


After a 4-6 start in games mostly played in the state of West Virginia, Marshall’s basketball team begins its mini-tour of America today at Arkansas State.

Tipoff time is 3 p.m. at the 10,038-seat Convocatio...

Herd’s Johnson, Hewitt win C-USA media awards


Yes, Conference USA champion Marshall was well represented in the first media all-league and awards vote in nearly a decade, but there were significant differences from the coaches’ all-conference awards from last...

Low ticket prices for Boca Raton Bowl a plus for Herd fans


Traveling to south Florida to see their team’s appearance at the Boca Raton Bowl might be challenging to Marshall fans’ budgets, but the ticket prices will help.

The Thundering Herd could well bring 3...

Kopp had positive effect on MU athletics


The Marshall University community is trying to come to grips with the death of president Stephen J. Kopp, and that sentiment definitely extends to the athletic department.

Dr. Kopp, who was serving in his 10th year...

NIU looks a lot like Herd did during MAC dynasty years


HUNTINGTON — The more one looks at Northern Illinois’ football program over the last five seasons, the more it looks like Marshall, circa 1997-2002.

More than a decade ago...

MU football notes: Cato. Johnson earn All-America mention


HUNTINGTON — They were responsible for 5,836 yards and 61 touchdowns, and Rakeem Cato and Devon Johnson are earning some national “pub” for it.

Cato and Johnson wer...

Herd holds off King


HUNTINGTON — In a contest that resembled more of a “Horse” contest than a basketball game, Marshall finally shed its losing streak.

It wasn’t easy, though, a...

Herd’s Haig coming back home


HUNTINGTON — The first and only time Marshall played a game at Florida Atlantic, Justin Haig kicked the game-winning field goal and proceeded to “shush” the home crowd in...

Herd hosts King tonight


HUNTINGTON — Marshall’s basketball team, loser of six straight games, can use a win against anyone, anywhere, any time.

If it comes against a Division II school, so be it....

Capital Classic: Foul trouble eventually caught up with Herd


Marshall committed so many fouls in the second half, players and coaches lost count.

Literally, in one case.

The Thundering Herd may have committed 24 turnovers in its 69-66 loss to West Virginia at the Civic...

Capital Classic: Herd must limit mistakes against pressure defense


HUNTINGTON — The buzz-phrase in the Marshall camp in the past week has been: “Be strong with the ball.”

Coach Dan D’Antoni can probably spot a weak pass with...

Riverside boys debut with lopsided win


In his first basketball coaching gig in four years and his first high school heading coaching assignment ever, Craig Albright was feeling euphoric over his 1.000 winning percentage.

“Isn’t this fun?&#...

Herd lands 10 on All-CUSA 1st team


Marshall’s dominance in Conference USA was underscored Tuesday, as the Thundering Herd placed a record 10 players on the all-conference first team.

The Herd, which came within a point of a 13-0 record, had t...

First look at Northern Illinois shows potent ground game


HUNTINGTON — When Marshall defenders see the stat sheet from Northern Illinois’ pillaging of Bowling Green in the Mid-American Conference championship game, one number will leap...

Marshall’s Hamrick defends Boca decision


HUNTINGTON — Mike Hamrick knows there are fans who are balking about Marshall’s just-accepted decision to go to the Boca Raton Bowl.

And he knows there are fans who are be...

Marshall-NIU: Champion vs. champion in Boca Raton Bowl


A first-year bowl couldn’t ask for anything more than landing Marshall and Northern Illinois, teams receiving major poll votes with a combined record of 23-3.

And Marshall athletic director Mike Hamrick does...

4th-quarter rally brings Marshall C-USA crown


HUNTINGTON — Through four turnovers, a blocked punt and several scoring opportunities squandered, Marshall was never out of the Conference USA championship game.

And finally, wit...

Marshall football notebook: Haig unlikely C-USA championship MVP


HUNTINGTON — By his own reckoning, Justin Haig never expected to be the Most Valuable Player of the Conference USA championship game.

The four-year field-goal kicker simply hasn&...

Nittany Lions hand Herd its 5th straight loss 73-69


HUNTINGTON — Marshall lost another basketball game Saturday night, its fifth in a row, but the picture didn’t look quite as dim.

For one thing, the Thundering Herd lost 73...

Herd tries to ring one up at home in C-USA title game


HUNTINGTON — If Marshall wants to uphold its historically daunting home-field advantage, today is the day.

The Thundering Herd blew through its league opponents so well this seas...

Newbill leads streaking Penn State against Herd tonight


HUNTINGTON — D.J. Newbill is making his return to Cam Henderson Center, though it will take the hardest of hardcore Marshall basketball fans to remember his first visit.

It was J...

Marshall notebook: Edge goes to Herd in experience


HUNTINGTON — Marshall and Louisiana Tech compare favorably to each other in several ways, from offensive prowess to defensive stats to their 7-1 Conference USA records.

But when ...

Petersen back at MU, this time as visiting coach


HUNTINGTON — There’s one man whose fingerprints are all over the upcoming Conference USA championship game, from the east sideline to the west, from Huntington to Ruston, Louisi...

Herd’s D’Antoni still looking for right combination


HUNTINGTON — With Dan D’Antoni only seven games into his college head coaching career, so much of his knowledge — and postgame stories — come from the high school ...

Petersen: Get in Cato’s head


HUNTINGTON — As Rakeem Cato’s former position coach at Marshall, Louisiana Tech offensive coordinator Tony Petersen has a little inside info on the 13,000-yard career passer.

Herd’s bowl date still a guessing game


At this point, a gallon of window cleaner and a squeegee might not be enough to clear up Marshall’s bowl picture. That guessing game might go deep into Sunday afternoon.

Shoot, if Marshall defeats Louisiana ...

Butler did it: He took charge


HUNTINGTON — The truest barometer of how far Steward Butler has come is this: When Devon Johnson left early in Marshall’s game against Western Kentucky, it was Butler who entere...

Holtz makes quick mark at Louisiana Tech


As folksy and talkative as ever, Skip Holtz is back in Conference USA. And again, his team is one step from winning a league championship.

Now 50, the son of former Notre Dame coach and ESPN commentator Lou Holtz i...

Marshall notebook: Blitzin’ Bulldogs: La. Tech will pressure Cato


HUNTINGTON — The number is 53 percent, and it is a rare figure.

In these ultramodern days of video cut-ups, it’s easier than ever to determine tendencies of upcoming oppon...

Gamecocks hand Herd fourth straight loss


HUNTINGTON — Dan D’Antoni promised a bumpy ride in the process of trying to bring his Marshall team along in his first season, and South Carolina made sure that process got a li...

Louisiana Tech leads nation in takeaways


HUNTINGTON — The first thing you need to know about Louisiana Tech’s defense is who is running it.

The defensive coordinator is Manny Diaz, who ran the Texas defense for M...

Marshall notebook: Title-game loss still stings Herd


HUNTINGTON — As Marshall players finished the post-mortem on their first loss of the season, they couldn’t get rid of that bad taste. Or bad tastes.

The 67-66 overtime los...

Herd to host C-USA title game


The road to Conference USA football supremacy runs through Marshall, as Joan C. Edwards Stadium has been named the site of Saturday’s championship game.

The Thundering Herd (11-1 overall, 7-1 C-USA), East Di...

Herd begins difficult stretch tonight vs. South Carolina


Whether Marshall is ready to enter the beefiest segment of its early schedule is debatable, but this much is certain: The Thundering Herd gets not one, but two rare opportunities against a “power conference”...

Marshall to face Louisiana Tech in C-USA title game


Marshall now knows its opponent for the Conference USA championship game after Louisiana Tech waylaid Rice 76-31 for the West Division crown.

The Thundering Herd, which clinched the East Division championship two w...

WKU dashes Herd’s dream of perfect season


HUNTINGTON — After a combined 1,446 total yards, an NCAA-record 15 passing touchdowns and six interceptions between Marshall and Western Kentucky, the Thundering Herd’s undefeat...

Marshall notebook: Cato takes blame for loss


HUNTINGTON — Rakeem Cato strolled to his chair in the interview room, sat down, faced the media and gave a straightforward, emotional mea culpa.

Cato threw for 417 yards and seve...

Herd seeks 12-0 regular season against explosive WKU


HUNTINGTON — One last step remains to 12-0. It could be one long, wacky step.

Marshall is looking to polish off its 12th and final victim of the regular season as Western Kentuck...

Herd back to work tonight vs. Cleveland State


HUNTINGTON — Marshall’s basketball team spent its Thanksgiving day like any other day before a game, but a considerable dose of soul-searching was added to the practice regimen....

 Morehead jumps on Herd, wins 77-68


HUNTINGTON -- Sean Woods was delighted, Dan D’Antoni was despondent, and to listen to both you’d think Morehead State beat Marshall by 40.

But really, Morehead’s 77-68 win Wednesday night boile...

Herd hopes to apply Louisville lessons vs. Morehead


HUNTINGTON — Having learned a few lessons from its experience last weekend at Louisville, Marshall players will try to put those to work this week against a pair of teams more like wha...

WKU’s Doughty will test Herd secondary


HUNTINGTON — It took quarterback Brandon Doughty exactly one late-August night and nearly one-third of a mile to make an impression on the rest of Western Kentucky’s new confere...

‘Toppers want Herd to throw more?


The emergence of Marshall’s running game has shot past the threshold of surprising, but the respect opponents give Devon Johnson keeps raising eyebrows.

This assessment, coming from Western Kentucky coach Je...

‘Excited’ Jasperse takes blame


HUNTINGTON — Chris Jasperse pleads guilty as charged: Sometime he just gets a little too antsy before snapping the football.

And that’s why the senior center, the otherwis...

MU’s dream season still alive after narrow win over UAB


BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — On the 17th play of what could have been a bubble-bursting drive, Marshall’s defense finally earned a rest.

A long, joyful rest.

The Thunder...

 Herd survives UAB, 23-18


BIRMINGHAM, Ala., -- Marshall's defense not only scored the go-ahead touchdown, but got the game-winning stop at its 11-yard line as it survived with a 23-18 win over Alabama-Birmingham.

Jermaine Holmes was credite...

Herd hopes to avoid repeating UAB pitfalls


BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Marshall has taken the best shot from 10 opponents and has fired back with proverbial Hellfire missiles. But in an odd way, the Thundering Herd may meet the st...