Preview: Murray State vs. Morehead

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Morehead State Eagles (2-1, 0-0 PFL) at Murray State Racers (1-2, 0-0 OVC)
Saturday, September 21 6:00 p.m. CT
Roy Stewart Stadium (16,800) Murray, Ky.
TV:...................................................................... ESPN+
Live Stats: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=264915
Series Record:........................ Murray State leads 40-16-1
Last Meeting:............... Murray State won 63-13 (10/14/95)
Rob Tenyer at Morehead State:.................... 27-44 (7 yrs.)
Rob Tenyer Overall:................................................ same
Mitch Stewart at Murray State:..................... 16-31 (5 yrs.)
Mitch Stewart Overall:.............................................. same

Morehead State Last Week: W, 73-34 vs. Kentucky Christian
Murray State Last Week:........................ L, 45-0 at Toledo

GAME NOTES: In-state foes Murray State and Morehead State will meet on the gridiron for the first time since 1995 on Saturday night. The last meeting came during Morehead State's final year of playing football in the OVC; the Eagles now play non-scholarship football in the Pioneer Football League (PFL). The teams have played 57 prior times with Murray State holding a 40-16-1 all-time advantage, including 22-6 at Stewart Stadium. The Racers have won three in a row and 10 of the last 13 in the series.

SCOUTING MOREHEAD STATE: Morehead State, off to a 2-1 start for the first time since 2009, fell behind 14-0 in the first quarter but exploded to top Kentucky Christian 73-34 on Saturday at home. The Eagles tallied 535 yards of total offense, including 283 total yards on the ground. The rushing attack was led by Issiah Aguero who had 115 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries while Jovan Smith added 106 yards and three scores. Aguero now has two 100-yard rushing games this season and is averaging 94.7 yards/game on the ground. Sophomore quarterback Mark Pappas tossed a pair of touchdowns and finished the game with 252 passing yards. Aaron Turk returned a kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown, marking the second-straight year he has accomplished that feat. MSU converted 8-of-16 of third down while holding KCU to just 1-of-17. Andrew Foster averaged 49.2 yards on four punts (with a long of 58 yards); he currently ranks 13th nationally in punting (44.2 yards/punt).

SCOUTING MURRAY STATE: Murray State played its second-straight FBS foe last week, falling to Toledo 45-0 a week after losing 63-17 at No. 3 Georgia. The loss ended a streak of 156 consecutive games without being shutout, a mark that ranks ninth-longest in FCS history. Prior to Saturday, the Racers had not been shutout since September 24, 2005 against Illinois State. Despite not scoring, MSU did tally 331 yards of total offense but never reached the red zone. Sophomore quarterback Preston Rice completed 26-of-36 passes for 180 yards and rushed for a game-high 87 yards on 17 carries. It was the most rushing yards by a Racers quarterback since 2013 when Maikhail Miller had 134 yards against Jacksonville State. Through three games Rice ranks sixth nationally in completion percentage (71.7%) and 35th in total offense (233.0 yards/game). Rodney Castille added 24 yards on the ground and caught seven passes for 29 yards; he was one of 10 different MSU players to catch a pass in the game. Castille leads the team with 14 catches this season while DaQuon Green is the only other Murray State player with double-digit catches (10). Davonta Wilson had a team-best 11 tackles against Toledo while Anthony Koclanakis added 10. As a team Murray State ranks eighth nationally in fumbles recovered (4) and is tied for the best turnover margin in the OVC (+0.33/game).

The Massey Ratings predict a 45-22 Murray State victory.

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