Marshall coach Doc Holliday with Quarterback Rakeem Cato and Defensive Lineman James Rouse were on hand for Conference USA’s 2014 Media Days. In his 5th year at the helm, coach Holliday had his team believing they should expect nothing less than an Conference USA Championship. Let the chips fall where they may as the Thundering Herd are looking to shake up the College Football Landscape in 2014.
They have a favorable schedule to once again make the conference championship game and who knows if they can crash the inaugural College Football Playoffs. They have last year’s Conference Champs Rice at home on November 15th and play old familiar MAC foes in Miami (Ohio), Ohio and Akron.
Some of their key starters returning for the 2014 campaign include reigning Offensive Player of the Year QB Rakeem Cato, WR Tommy Shuler, C Chris Jasperse, Freshman of the Year DB Cory Tindal and DL James Rouse.
Quarterback Rakeem Cato will look to continue his fantastic career after compiling 3,916 yards passing, with 39 TDs (294 rushing yards, with 6 TDs) in 2013. Cato was also the 2012 C-USA MVP. The Marshall Senior has been named to the Walter Camp Award Watch List for its 2014 National Player of the Year award.
When asked about the pressure of being Conference USA’s favorite and going undefeated, defensive Lineman James Rouse responded,
“What matters is how we start. It goes from the first game until the last. We have to take it one game at a time. We are bringing back some key players and I know that we will play like the team we believe we are. Our guys study a lot of film and coach makes sure that all parts of the game including Special Teams does their work.”
Rouse also added that he welcomes the pressure of being the leader on defense for the Thundering Herd,
I embrace my role of being a leader and am excited about getting on the field being 100% healthy.”
Quarterback Rakeem Cato added,
“We have to take care of business with our first game against Miami (Ohio). We kind of have a bitter taste as they were thinking they were going to run up the score against us.”
Well they didn’t and Cato threw for 5 TDs and Marshall scored 37 unanswered points. I am betting the Thundering Herd comes out the gates swinging as they look for a repeat performance against the Redhawks.
I have not come out with all of my Conference predictions yet, but I will let you know that Marshall are my clear choice to win the Conference Championship. We are…!
QB Rakeem Cato and DL James Rouse