Football loses second straight

The Jackets fell at home, 49-28, to Middle Tennessee State this past weekend, falling to 2-3 overall and fourth in the ACC’s Coastal Division.

Tech put up 425 yards of total offense, with 238 on the ground. Redshirt senior quarterback Tevin Washington scored all four touchdowns for the Jackets on rushing plays. The Jackets averaged 4.5 yards per carry on the ground and 7.2 yards per pass, but it was not enough to secure the victory.

Redshirt freshman quarterback Vad Lee also saw the field and played well in limited action, completing all four of his pass attempts for 41 yards and rushing for 23 yards on two carries.

The offense struggled to maintain possession of the ball, giving up turnovers through three fumbles and an interception on one of Washington’s pass attempts. None of the fumbles resulted in points for the Blue Raiders, but MTSU was able to capitalize on the interception in the fourth quarter.

Defensively, the Jackets allowed 510 total yards, split fairly evenly between passing and rushing plays. The Blue Raiders averaged 10.7 yards per pass and six yards per carry. Two of the MTSU touchdowns came after the offense turned over the ball on the Tech half of the field, but the Blue Raiders were able to chain together a number of drives as well as a few explosive plays.

Tech struck first after redshirt freshman inside linebacker Jabari Hunt-Days intercepted a pass from MTSU’s Logan Kilgore. Washington carried the ball in himself on the resulting drive to put the Jackets on the board. The Blue Raiders responded with a 12-play, 75-yard drive that ended in a short passing touchdown to even the score.

To begin the second quarter, MTSU scored on the first play, a 60-yard rush by Benny Cunningham, but the Jackets tied the game at 14 soon afterward. The two teams went into the locker room tied at 21-21 after another touchdown from each.

The Blue Raiders began the second half and scored on their first drive. On the next Tech possession, redshirt junior A-back Robert Godhigh fumbled the ball for a turnover.

After forcing the Blue Raiders to punt, the Jackets turned the ball over on downs on an attempted passing play from fourth and twelve. On the first play of the next MTSU drive, Kilgore completed a 75-yard pass for a touchdown to put the Jackets 14 points in the hole.

The Jackets rebounded and scored on the drive to open the fourth quarter, and the defense was able to force a punt on the next MTSU drive, but the offense turned the ball over again on the next play. Washington’s pass was intercepted and returned to the Tech 15-yard line and MTSU scored four plays later.

The Jackets gave up the ball again after a sack and a delay-of-game penalty put Tech in a fourth-and-22 position, resulting in a turnover on downs. The Blue Raiders went on to score the final touchdown of the game, putting the score at the final of 49-28.

The Jackets resume ACC play next week against No. 15 Clemson on Saturday, Oct. 6.