The Mocs just had a three-game winning streak snapped with a tough overtime loss to No. 2 Georgia Southern last weekend. With only two losses in league play, UTC is still in the hunt for at least a share of the SoCon title. Chattanooga needs to win out and have No. 14 Appalachian State beat No. 1 Georgia Southern at home this weekend to have a shot at a piece of the SoCon Championship.
Western Carolina is looking for its first SoCon win of the season. They defeated Mars Hill in the season opener (42-14) but have dropped their last eight. The Catamounts have lost 21-straight SoCon games, dating back to a 24-13 win at The Citadel on Oct. 2, 2010. That was also their last win against a Division I opponent.
RADIO & ONLINE BROADCAST
Fans can catch the game on the radio on the Mocs Sports Network. The flagship station is ESPN Radio 105.1 FM in Chattanooga. Jim Reynolds is in his 33rd year as the play-by-play man for the Mocs. Todd Agne has the color commentary with Will Poindexter as the sideline reporter. A link for a PPV video broadcast is available on GoMocs.com.
SEASON NO. 105
The Chattanooga Mocs are in their 105th season of football in 2012. The University of Chattanooga was founded in 1886 and football began play in 1904. No teams were fielded in 1917 and 1918 due to World War I. There was also a two-year hiatus from football action during World War II in 1943 and 1944. The Mocs have an all-time record of 492-502-35 (.495) and have won 10 conference titles.
COACHES AT A GLANCE
Russ Huesman is 21-20 in his fourth year at Chattanooga after being hired as the 22nd head coach at UTC on Dec. 22, 2008. A 1983 graduate of UTC and a former defensive back, Huesman guided Chattanooga to a 6-5 mark in 2009, equaling the number of wins UTC had seen in the previous three years combined. The Mocs are 1-2 against Georgia Southern under Huesman.
Prior to his return to Chattanooga, Huesman spent the 25 seasons building a reputation as one of the top defensive-minded assistant coaches in the country. He spent five seasons as the defensive coordinator at the University of Richmond before joining UTC and also coached at Memphis (1998-2003) and William & Mary (14 yrs), serving as the Defensive Coordinator for the 1996-97 seasons. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Huesman played prep football at perennial power Moeller High School, where he lettered for four years under head coach Gerry Faust.
Mark Speir returns to Cullowhee after spending nine seasons at Appalachian State where he was a part of three-consecutive FCS National Championships from 2005-07, serving as the program's recruiting coordinator since 2004 while also most recently coaching the inside linebackers. In 2009, Speir was tabbed as the NCAA Division I FCS Assistant Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA). Prior to Appalachian, Speir also made coaching stops at both at Presbyterian (1997-99) while the Blue Hose were a NCAA Division II member institution, and at Elon (2000-02) the year after the program made the transition to a NCAA Division I school. A native of Kannapolis, N.C., Speir broke into coaching while an undergraduate at Clemson University, working as a student assistant from 1986 through 1989, and helped the Tigers to three Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Championships during his four years.
NOTES TO KNOW ABOUT THE MOCS
- The Mocs are 13th in the nation in total defense, allowing 310.5 yards per game ... that is good for No. 2 in the Southern Conference behind Georgia Southern (279.9).
- UTC is No. 21 in the nation in third-down defense (33.0%).
- Chattanooga is No. 10 in the nation and third in the SoCon in Time of Possession (32:26).
- UTC is No. 13 in the nation in passing defense, allowing just 165 yds/gm.
- The Mocs are one of the least penalized teams in the nation at 39.6 penalty yards per game. That ranks No. 13 overall and No. 2 in the SoCon.
- UTC is +6 in turnovers, second in the SoCon and No. 22 in the FCS. The Mocs are tied with Wofford for the fewest turnovers in the SoCon (4 fumbles, 3 INTs).
- Sophomore DE Davis Tull leads the SoCon and is tied for No. 7 in the nation with 8.0 sacks ... he also leads the SoCon with 12.5 TFLs.
- Freshman QB Jacob Huesman has a UTC freshman record 118 completions on the year ... his 10 TD passes are No. 2 on the Mocs' all-time freshman list. He needs four more to pass Kenyon Earl (1991) for the top spot on that list.
- Sophomore K/P Nick Pollard is No. 2 in the SoCon and No. 21 in the nation, averaging 42.3 yards per punt. He is using the same rugby-style punting as Joel Bradford did last year.
- Chattanooga is No. 16 in the nation and third in the SoCon with a 37.9 net punting average.
- Two-time All-SoCon defensive back Kadeem Wise has nine career interceptions and is tied for No. 6 all-time at UTC with - among others - head coach Russ Huesman (1978-81).
- UTC is coming off a 5-6 2011 record which included five losses by a total of 12 points. The Mocs lost three games by a 28-27 tally.
- UTC has three members of its defense on various preseason All-American teams, including junior linebacker Wes Dothard, senior defensive lineman Josh Williams and junior defensive back Kadeem Wise.
- UTC is picked to finish fourth in the SoCon by the league's coaches and media.
- Chattanooga had eight players named to the preseason All-SoCon teams, including three on the first team defense (Williams, Dothard, Key).
- Despite returning 17 starters, UTC is still a very young team in 2012 ... there are just seven seniors on the roster ... 13 starters on the current two-deep are sophomores and freshmen.
NOTES TO KNOW ABOUT WESTERN CAROLINA
- Western Carolina has lost 21-straight SoCon games, dating back to 2010.
- Head coach Mark Spier is in his first season at WCU.
- Western Carolina is last in the SoCon in total defense, allowing 524.8 yards per game, and last in scoring defense, allowing 39.4 points per game.
- Western Carolina is last in the SoCon in pass efficiency at 109.8.
- The Catamounts are No. 2 in the SoCon and No. 15 in the nation in net punting at 38.0 yards per kick.
- Punter Clark Sechrest is No. 22 in the nation and third in the SoCon with 41.8 yards per punt.
- Linebacker Rock Williams leads the SoCon and is No. 2 in the nation in tackles at 14.1 per game...he also leads the nation with four forced fumbles.
- The Catamounts lead the league and are No. 15 in the nation in Red Zone Offense (27/30 - 90%).
- Freshman WR Spearman Robinson is fifth in the SoCon with 39 receptions.
NOTES TO KNOW ABOUT THE UTC-WESTERN CAROLINA GAME
- These two teams are last in the SoCon in total offense. Western Carolina is No. 8 at 360.2 yards per game while UTC is ninth at 334.1 yards per game.
- Western Carolina and Chattanooga have allowed the most sacks in the SoCon at 21 and 20, respectively.
- Quarterbacks Jacob Huesman (UTC) and Troy Mitchell (WCU) are both two-time SoCon Freshmen of the Week.
UTC-WESTERN CAROLINA CONNECTIONS
- Mocs sophomore LB Muhasibi Wakeel is a graduate of Southwest DeKalb High School in Georgia along with WCU senior WR Jacoby Mitchell senior RB Michael Johnson.
- Chattanooga senior LB Shane Heatherly hails from Waynesville, N.C., about 30 miles from WCU. He was teammates with Catamount senior kicker Leo Gomez at Tuscola High School.
NOTES TO KNOW ABOUT THE WESTERN CAROLINA SERIES
- This is the 39th meeting in the series that dates back to 1973.
- UTC owns a 22-16 overall advantage.
- The Mocs are 9-10 on the road.
- UTC has won five of the last six and three in a row.
NO. 2 GEORGIA SOUTHERN 39 AT CHATTANOOGA 32 - OCT. 27, 2012
- UTC is 4-22 all-time against Georgia Southern ... 3-10 at home and 2-6 in Finley Stadium.
- The Mocs gave up a season-high 372 rushing yards to the Eagles...it was actually below Georgia Southern's season-average 389.3 yards per game...GSU came into the game No. 2 in the nation in rushing yards.
- The last time UTC was in an OT game was a 45-38 win at Georgia Southern on Sept. 23, 2007.
- Sophomore Marquis Green lost a fumble on a kickoff return in the first quarter. It was the first turnover for the Mocs since the Appalachian State game on Sept. 22. The Mocs lost two fumbles on special teams tonight.
- After giving up a season-high 21 points in the first half, the Mocs held Georgia Southern to just three in the second half. Georgia Southern had just 114 yards of total offense in the second half.
- QB Jerick McKinnon ran for 141 yards and three TDs on 28 carries...it was the most yards and TDs the Mocs have allowed to an individual this season...the last time the Mocs allowed three TDs to an individual was to Taylor Martinez against Nebraska on Sept. 3, 2011.
- McKinnon's 40-yard pass to Zach Walker, who had an outstanding one-handed catch on the play, was the longest pass play the Mocs have allowed this season.
- Georgia Southern's 39 points and 427 yards of total offense were the most allowed by UTC this season.
- The Mocs' 31 points are the most allowed by Georgia Southern this season...the Eagles came into the game ranked No. 4 in the nation in scoring defense, allowing just 14.4 ppg.
- Jacob Huesman's 170 rushing yards are the most allowed to an individual by Georgia Southern this season...he also had the first multi-TD game against the Eagles in 2012.
- Toyvian Brand (DL - So.) - Career-high seven tackles.
- Wes Dothard (LB - Jr.) - Tied a career-high with a game-high-tying 15 tackles ... Third game this season with 10+ tackles...eighth of his career.
- Shane Heatherly (LB - Sr.) - Career-high nine tackles.
- Jacob Huesman (QB - So.) - Career-high 170 yards and two TDs on a career-high 26 carries..second most rushing yards in a game by freshman in UTC history...James Roberts had 202 against ETSU on Oct. 14, 1989 ... most rushing yards in a game by a UTC player since Bryan Fitzgerald had 181 at Presbyterian on Sept. 19, 2009 ... Huesman was also 11-20 for 102 yards and one TD...second game this season with 100 yards passing and rushing ... caught one pass for 16 yards.
- Russ Huesman (Head Coach - 4th Year) - 21-20 overall...15-14 in the SoCon ... 1-3 vs. Georgia Southern ... 5-12 against ranked FCS opponents.
- D.J. Key (DB - Jr.) - 11 tackles and a PBU ... third game this season with 10+ tackles...seventh of his career.
- Derrick Lott (DL - Jr.) - Career-high and game-high-tying 15 tackles ... nine were solos.
- Davis Tull (DE - So.) - Career-high 12 tackles ... career-high and game-high 3.0 TFLs ... most TFLs by a Moc this season.
CHATTANOOGA 51 VS. WESTERN CAROLINA 7 - OCT. 15, 2011
- The Mocs 51 points are the most of the Russ Huesman era ... it is the most scored by UTC since a 59-56 win over Appalachian State on Oct. 30, 2004...UTC's 31 points in the first half are the most since scoring 42 in a 72-17 win over Mississippi Valley State on Sept. 16, 2000.
- The 44-point margin of victory is the biggest win since a 73-0 victory over Kentucky State on Nov. 24, 2001...it is the third largest margin of victory for the Mocs in a Southern Conference game and the biggest since a 55-10 win over VMI on Oct. 11, 1980.
- Of the Mocs 388 yards of total offense in the game ... 233 yards were gained by freshmen.
- Mocs recovered two fumbles in the first half. UTC came into the game leading the SoCon and tied for 8th in the nation with eight fumbles recovered.
- Chattanooga allowed a season-low seven points.
- UTC gave up 264 yards of total offense...the Mocs have only allowed 300+ yards of total offense twice this season.
- Chattanooga picked off a season-high three passes.
- With three INTs and two fumbles recovered the Mocs collected a season-high five turnovers.
- Chattanooga ran the ball a season-high 55 times for a season-high 265 yards...it is the most rushing yards since posting 271 in a 35-25 loss at No. 12 Appalachian State on Oct. 29, 2005.
- Chattanooga logged a season-high five sacks.
- LB - Wes Dothard - SO - Six tackles ... tied a career-high with three TFLs ... added a pair of PBUs.
- RB - Marquis Green - FR - Career-highs with 16 carries for 94 yards ... 34-yard run in the first quarter is the longest of the year for the Mocs ... 2nd TD run of the year.
- RB - J.J. Jackson - JR - 22-yard TD in the 3rd quarter ... second rushing TD of the season...fifth of his career ... finished with nine carries for 39 yards.
- DB - D.J. Key - SO - School-record 85-yard INT return for a TD ... second INT of the year ... five tackles ... second sack of the season.
DB - Chaz Moore - SO - 1st career INT in the game ... tied a career-high with five tackles.
- WR - Ron Moore - FR - Second career TD catch in the first quarter ... has three catches for 147 yards and two TDs this season.
- DL - Keyon Reed - FR - Forced and recovered a fumble ... career-high four tackles ... added two TFLs, including his second sack of the season.
- QB - Terrell Robinson - FR - 7-11 passing for 123 yards and three TDs ... 14 carries for 72 yards ... first UTC freshman to start at QB since Matt Lopez at Gardner-Webb (L, 23-13) on Sept. 20, 2003 ... opened the game with a 32-yard run...was the longest of the year for the Mocs at the time.
- TE - Faysal Shafaat - FR - First career TD catch, 18 yards, in the first quarter ... finished with two catches for 29 yards.
- DL - Joshua Williams - JR - Added to his school record with two sacks...now has 17.5 for his career ... finished with three tackles and a QBH ... has six sacks on the year...second in the SoCon.
Of the 2,693 yards of total offense produced by the Mocs this season, all but 246 yards were put up by sophomores and freshmen. That means that underclassmen account for roughly 91% of the Mocs offense. Of the Mocs 25 touchdowns, 23 have been by freshmen and sophomores. With 17 total starters returning, the Mocs have a lot of experience back. However, UTC is still a young team in 2012. There are only seven seniors on the roster. Of the 62 Mocs that participated in a game last season, 22 were freshmen and another 17 were sophomores. There are 13 sophomores and freshmen who are listed as starters on the two-deep, including nine on offense, three on defense and two specialists.
IT'S ALL IN THE NAME
On first reference, it is acceptable to refer to us as the "University of Tennessee at Chattanooga". After that, we prefer to be called "Chattanooga" or "UTC." Our nickname is "Mocs."
ROSTER, DEPTH CHART AND BREAKDOWNS
An updated roster can be found on pages 10-11 of the .pdf of the game notes. There is a roster breakdown on page 12 and a list of the starters and letter winners returning and lost on page 13. An updated depth chart is on pages 14-15.
ROBINSON IS EVERYWHERE
Sophomore QB Terrell Robinson has shown off his versatility in the last four games, scoring four TDs and throwing for another. He had 97 rushing yards and a score on 22 carries to go with 4-5 passing for 73 yards and a TD at The Citadel. He got the start at QB against Furman and was 7-10 passing for 86 yards. He also had eight catches for 81 yards and two TDs while running four times for 29 yards and another score against the Paladins. Robinson is currently second on the team in scoring with five TDs (3 rec, 2 rush) and has thrown for two more TDs.
HUESMAN IMPRESSIVE AT QB
Freshman QB Jacob Huesman put up some impressive numbers this season. He has already set the UTC freshman record for completions and is 118-179 with 10 TDs and three INTs. He is four TDs shy of the UTC freshman mark and is second with 1,142 passing yards. He has also twice been named the SoCon Freshman of the Week.
In his first collegiate start at No. 24 Jacksonville State. He had 21 carries for 166 yards rushing and one TD. His 62-yard run on the first play from scrimmage is the longest rush by a Moc since Brian Sutherland's 62-yard run against Appalachian State on Sept. 4, 2010. He was also 18-30 passing for 181 yards and two TDs. His 347 yards of total offense is the most by a Moc since B.J. Coleman had 428 (432 pass/-4 rush) at Furman on Oct. 23, 2010, and the most ever by a UTC freshman.
He is currently No. 3 in the SoCon with a 135.5 pass efficiency rating and fourth in the league with 217.2 yards of total offense per game. He leads the team with 74.6 rushing yards per game. Against Glenville State, Huesman threw for 210 yards on 16-26 passing with two TDs. It was the most passing yards by a UTC freshman since Stan Nix put up 221 in a 16-14 win over Furman on Sept. 26, 1987.
Huesman was named the SoCon Freshman of the Week after putting up strong numbers in a 31-10 win at Furman on Oct. 13. He actually started at receiver where he caught three passes for 32 yards. He played most of his snaps under center and was 18-23 passing for 171 yards and two touchdowns. He also carried the ball 22 times for 59 yards in the win. Against Samford, Huesman was 19-25 passing for 165 yards and one TD. He arnfor 64 yards on 23 carries and caught one pass for six yards.
Huesman again earned the league's freshman weekly honor after rushing for 170 yards and two TDs on 26 carries against Georgia Southern. It was the most rushing yards by a Moc since Bryan Fitzgerald had 181 at Presbyterian on Sept. 19, 2009 and the second most rushing yards by a QB in school history (197 - Richard Manning at Ole Miss on Nov. 9, 1968). It was also the second most rushing yards by a freshman in school history (202 - James Roberts at ETSU - 10/14/89). He was 11-20 passing for 102 yards and a score and made one catch for 16 yards in the game.
DOTHARD NAMED TO BUCK BUCHANAN AWARD WATCH LIST
Junior linebacker Wes Dothard was named to the 2012 Buck Buchanan Award Watch List. Dothard is one of 20 players up for the top defensive honor in the Football Championship Subdivision presented by The Sports Network. He is also a consensus Preseason All-American. Dothard is coming off an outstanding sophomore season that included 98 tackles, five forced fumbles, two defensive scores and First Team All-American honors from the Sports Network. He currently leads the team with 67 tackles, including four for a loss, two forced fumbles and an interception.
WILLIAMS A CONSENSUS PRESEASON ALL-AMERICAN
Senior defensive end Josh Williams has been named to various preseason FCS All-American teams heading into 2012. He is the Mocs' all-time leader in sacks with 22.5 in his career. The Griffin, Ga., native led the SoCon in sacks last season (9.5) and earned first team honors from the league. He has started 37 of 39 games in his career. He recorded his first sack at Furman and has 16 tackles, three QBHs and recovered a fumble.
WISE NAMED TO PHIL STEELE PRESEASON ALL-AMERICAN TEAM
Junior defensive back Kadeem Wise joined Dothard and Williams on the Phil Steele FCS Preseason All-American team. Wise made the fourth team while Dothard and Williams were third team selections. Wise is a two-time All-SoCon performer with nine career interceptions. He was the 2010 SoCon Freshman of the Year and a second team all-league pick in 2011. He has started every game of his career at cornerback and is the only Moc to be named All-SoCon in his first two seasons. He is currently fifth on the team with 40 tackles. He was named the SoCon Defensive Player of the Week after logging eight tackles and a pick at The Citadel on Sept. 29.
POLLARD NAMED TO FRED MITCHELL AWARD WATCH LIST
Sophomore Nick Pollard is one of 44 student-athletes on the 2012 Fred Mitchell Place-Kicker Award Watch List the selection committee announced prior to the season. The annual Fred Mitchell Award is provided to the nation's top collegiate place-kicker among more than 750 FCS, Division II, III, NAIA and NJCAA football teams. Pollard (Smyrna, Tenn.) is coming off an outstanding 2011 season that saw him break the Mocs' freshman scoring record with 61 points. He connected on 31-of-33 PATs and was 10-of-14 on field goals, earning Southern Conference All-Freshman honors. This season he is 7-12 on FGs and 23-24 on PATs. He is also handling the punting duties and is No. 21 in the nation with 42.3-yard average per kick.
TULL ON A TEAR
Sophomore DE Davis Tull has four sacks in his last three games and is leading the SoCon with 8.0 on the year. He is tied for No. 7 in the nation in sacks and leads the SoCon with 12.5 TFLs. He is tied for eighth in the country in forced fumbles and leads the team with six QBHs. His recent play has put him No. 4 on UTC's career sack list with 13.0. Teammate Josh Williams leads that category with 22.5 and counting. Tull is threatening UTC's single-season sack record of 12.0 set by Tyler Unzicker in 2001 and matched by Josh Beard in 2009.