Troy’s football team started its 2014 season off on the wrong foot, losing 48-10 on the road to UAB on Saturday, Aug. 30.
The game began with promise as the Trojans were the first to put the ball in the end zone within the first three minutes of the first quarter. However, this would be Troy’s first and only time scoring a touchdown.
Thanks to sophomore running back Jordan Chunn and sophomore kicker Ryan Kay, who kicked a 47-yard field goal, Troy was not completely shut out.
“We were totally ill-prepared for what we faced, and the other team was 100 percent prepared for what they faced, and the outcome is one that’s not very good for us, Troy people, Troy University,” said head coach Larry Blakeney.
The Trojan defense struggled to slow the well-oiled machine of junior quarterback Cody Clements and sophomore running back Jordan Howard.
The Blazers glided up the field, collecting first downs with relative ease. Out of the 12 drives that UAB had, eight resulted in points, from either touchdowns or field goals.
On the other hand, Troy had 13 drives during the game and ended up punting six times. The game included a fumble for both teams, and UAB even had a pass intercepted by junior defensive back Montres Kitchens, but Troy squandered the opportunity by not being able to pick up a first down.
Redshirt freshman Brandon Silvers started in the UAB game as Troy’s new quarterback. He passed for 153 yards and completed 16 passes out of his 23 attempts.
The second quarter was rough for Silvers, as he was sacked three times for a total of 21 yards. Junior quarterback Dontreal Pruitt came in and played for brief periods in the second and third quarters. He threw four for six for 39 yards.
“I don’t think we’re ready to lay this loss off on the quarterbacks,” Blakeney said. “They didn’t give up 48 points. They (UAB) drove the ball on us, ran the ball on us, play-action passed on us, and we didn’t stop them.”
Troy’s defensive line lost three of its starters and its two starting safeties, Cam Hudson and Chris Pickett, this season. The defense is now composed of relatively young players, and this could be a reason the team struggled to put a stop to UAB’s advances.
“I saw them grow a little, bit but they’re still young, and they gotta understand that when it’s your turn to go you can’t be surprised,” said junior defensive tackle Lonnie Gosha. “You gotta go and give it your all.”
The Trojans will take the field at home against Duke on Saturday, Sept. 6, at 6 p.m. The game will also be televised on ESPN3.