Preview: Murray State vs. UT-Martin

MurraySports

UT-Martin Skyhawks (1-3, 1-0 OVC)

at Murray State Racers (0-3, 0-0 OVC)

Saturday, September 29 6:00 p.m. CT

Roy Stewart Stadium (16,800) Murray, Ky.

TV:...................................................................... ESPN+

Live Stats: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=229570

Series Record:........................ Murray State leads 36-20-1

Last Meeting:................. Murray State won 13-10 (10/7/17)

Jason Simpson at UT Martin:..................... 79-62 (13 yrs.)

Jason Simpson Overall:........................................... same

Mitch Stewart at Murray State:..................... 10-26 (4 yrs.)

Mitch Stewart Overall:.............................................. same

UT Martin Last Week:............ W, 37-7 vs. #21 Austin Peay

Murray State Last Week:............................................ Idle

GAME NOTES: Rivals located just 50 miles apart will meet for the 58th time on the gridiron on Saturday night in Murray. Until last year, the series had seen a lot of offense with the winning team having scored at least 38 points in each of the previous 24 meetings (1993-2016). Last year's game, however, saw the two teams combine for just 23 points as Murray State ended a six-game winning streak in the series for UT Martin.  UTM won 11 of 12 from 2005 through 2016, which had followed a 12-game winning streak from MSU (1993-2004). Last year the teams combined for only 496 yards of total offense and no offensive touchdowns. The fourth quarter saw a lot of action with UTM's Kahlid Hagens returning a punt 67 yards for a touchdown while Murray State's DeQuan Dallas recovered a fumble for a score to tie the game with 4:34 to play. UTM fumbled on the first play of the ensuing possession and seven plays later Murray State's Gabriel Vincente connected on a 32-yard field goal to win the game.

SCOUTING UT MARTIN: After starting the season 0-3, UT Martin pulled off a big win in week four, blowing out No. 21 ranked Austin Peay 37-7. A year ago the Skyhawks lost to the Governors by a 7-0 margin, and this year APSU held a 7-6 advantage at halftime. But this year the second half was all in UTM's favor, as the Skyhawks scored 31 unanswered points on its way to the win. Austin Peay entered the game averaging 465.3 yards of total offense per game but were held to just 272 total yards and 27 points below its season scoring average. From the start of the second quarter to the 1:14 mark of the fourth quarter, Austin Peay managed just 17 total yards of offense on 42 plays. Senior linebacker Garrett Wall, who had just 11 total tackles in three combined games entering the week, was named OVC Defensive Player of the Week after tallying 13 tackles, 3.0 tackles-for-loss, 0.5 sack, forced a fumble and had a quarterback hurry. Overall, the UTM defense had 15 tackles-for-loss, which tied the school's Division I record in that category. Quarterback Dresser Winn completed 21-of-28 passes for 199 yards and a touchdown while also rushing for a score. Winn ranks 10th nationally in completions/game (24.25) and 12th in passing touchdowns (8). Sophomore Peyton Logan returned a kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown and currently ranks fourth nationally in kickoff return yards (33.6/return).

SCOUTING MURRAY STATE: Murray State is coming off its bye week, but two weeks ago played at FBS opponent Kentucky. After having eight turnovers in its first two games of the season, the Racers committed just one turnover against the Wildcats (a late game interception). That allowed the team to be competitive, as the Racers trailed 17-3 at halftime. Kentucky pulled away with 17 third quarter points, but the MSU offense did not give up, using a nine-play, 75-yard drive at the end of the game to score and make the final margin 48-10. That drive was capped by redshirt freshman quarterback Preston Rice who scored on a 21-yard run; he also completed a pass for 37 yards. Starter Drew Anderson was 15-of-32 for 118 yards. Rodney Castille carried the ball eight times for a team-high 58 yards while D.J. Penick added 27 yards on the ground. On defense, Preseason All-OVC selection Kenney Wooten recorded his first sack of the season, forced a fumble and added a pair of tackles. Marquez Sanford had seven tackles and forced a fumble. Through three games, Quincy Williams leads the Racers with 27 tackles, including 2.5 tackles-for-loss. Murray State leads the OVC and ranks 14th nationally in net punting (39.65).

The Massey Ratings make UT-Martin a 28-17 favorite.

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