QB Graham Gochneaur

2003 Statistics

Coach: Bob Pruett
88-17, 8 years
2003 Record: 8-4
at Tennessee LOST 24-34
at Kansas State WON 27-20
at Troy State LOST 24-33
at Buffalo WON 26-16
at Western Michigan WON 41-21
at Miami OH LOST 6-45
at UCF WON 21-7

2003 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

2004 Outlook

The Herd is playing its last season in the MAC before moving to Conference USA. Since elevating the program in 1997 to Division I-A and moving into the Mid-American Conference, Marshall has established high standards. The Herd's success is measured by titles and bowls, and 2003 produced neither for the first time in those six years. They will soar in 2004. This is a squad awash with talented players and athletes, perhaps the finest in the MAC. It's enough for Marshall to regain its rightful place atop the league standings. It would be surprising if Marshall doesn't run the table in conference play.

They'll be led by Hill who is a risk-taker at quarterback. But how much of that fearless play will remain as he recovers from his ACL injury? There are few questions about the Herd's ground game, however, and Charles may be the best tailback in the league. Defensively, Marshall is much improved over recent years when teams kept pace with the Herd with big play after big play. If Haynes doesn't have a big season, the progress they made against the run could regress.

Pruett needs to develop depth in some key areas like the offensive line, wide receiver and running back, but overall this is a much better team than in '03. Marshall opens up at Troy State before taking on the challenge of Ohio State and Georgia. Those matchups should prepare the Herd well for MAC play and they'll leave the league with at least their conference's East crown.

Projected 2004 record: 7-4
QB - 4 DL - 3
RB - 4 LB - 3.5
WR - 3 DB - 3.5
OL - 3 ..

Passing: Stan Hill, 191-133-7, 1767 yds., 15 TD

Rushing: Earl Charles, 205 att., 1039 yds., 12 TD

Receiving: Josh Davis, 66 rec., 823 yds., 6 TD

Scoring: Earl Charles, 12 TD, 72 pts.

Punting: Klint Rose, 22 punts, 38.5 avg.

Kicking: Nick Kelly, 4-7 FG, 0-0 PAT , 38 long

Tackles: Kevin Atkins, 102 tot., 69 solo, 7 TFL

Sacks: Jonathan Goddard, 6.5 sacks; Reggie Hayes, 6.5 sacks

Interceptions: 3 Players with 1 INT each

Kickoff Returns: Earl Charles, 13 ret., 23.2 avg.

Punt Returns: Tremel Guillory, 30 ret., 7.1 avg.


DE Jamus Martin
OFFENSE: Butchie Wallace-RB, Darius Watts-WR, Jason Schroeder-WR, Nate McPeek-OT, Luke Salmons-OG, Joey Stepp-C, Jason Rader-TE, Ben Lewis-K/P
DEFENSE: Maurice McKinney-DE, Paul Sinclair-DT, Toriano Brown-NT, Charles Tynes-WLB, Gladstone Coke-ROV

The staff is concerned over the health of Stan Hill and backups Graham Gochneaur and Adam Black. Hill had knee surgery in November to repair an ACL, worked out this spring, but was limited to non-contact drills. Hill appeared in just six games last season but played well, completing nearly 70 percent of his passes. Hill's backup, Graham Gochneaur, had seven starts and was behind center when the Herd upset Kansas State. But Gochneaur was limited in the spring with a sore shoulder. Black is out with an inner ear problem, so expect many young QBs to get reps. But if Hill is healthy, he's the starter.

Running Back
The only question is who will backup do-everything tailback Earl Charles. Charles will receive the bulk of the carries and has the durability/size to handle such. True freshman Marcus Fitzgerald, the younger brother of former Pittsburgh All-American wideout Larry Fitzgerald, could be shifted to wide receiver. One of the bigger backs on the team, sophomore Tank Tunstalle, adds a different element than the more-shifty Charles because he runs primarily with power. The running game will thrive with a loaded and experienced backfield. Charles has to stay healthy to carry most of the load, while Fitzgerald, Tunstalle and Donte Newsome, a converted linebacker, will all see work. Expect a bit less from this unit than last year's 20th national ranking, for the line needs work.

Wide Receiver
Josh Davis is one of the more productive receivers in the nation. He has remarkable breakaway speed and is the Herd's deep threat, but is also tough enough to be making plays across the middle. Now that Darius Watts is gone, Davis is the go-to man. The rest of the corp, nevertheless, is inexperienced. Senior Brad Bates will get the first crack at starting, but he's been plagued by injuries. Tremel Guillory is a tremendous athlete and could turn into a top receiver in the slot. Not even Davis is good enough to carry them all - some new stars have to emerge. It should be an interesting battle this spring and the competition will be wide open.

Tight End
The Herd will look to junior Jeff Mullins, along with Joe Deifel, Brian Shope and Matt Morris. A good receiver and a physical blocker, Mullins will remain the team's long snapper as his role on offense will increase.

Offensive Line
Lots of holes to fill with the loss of three starters. Miami transfer Zac Elcess should start at center. RT Nate Griffin had to replace tackle Steve Sciullo on the left side and was solid. RG Toby Bullock is as good as they come in terms of run blocking. Still, the line has to be rebuilt for the second consecutive season. Graduation and injuries have been damaging, but as usual, the staff has some respectable prospects. Don't expect this to be as good as it's been, but it isn't going to be a glaring weakness.

The former pass-happy Herd will hit the ground running again. They will run more than usual, to take advantage of Hill's mobility and the slashing running style of Charles. Running it will be Marshall's best bet, but a healthy Hill will make passing all the rage in Huntington (Davis is gunning for All-American honors). The key will be a rebuilt offensive line. The Thundering Herd barely missed being one of a handful of teams to average 200 yards per game both running and passing, and their 18th rank in total offense reflects this. But ranking 39th in scoring shows the frustrations and inconsistencies of this offense in 2003, a sure omen for this campaign, especially with the unsure status of their field generals.


RB Earl Charles


QB Stan Hill
Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Stan Hill-Sr (6-3, 210) Graham Gochneaur-Sr (6-4, 218)
RB Earl Charles-Sr (6-1, 215) Tank Tunstalle-So (6-1, 218)
WR Josh Davis-Sr (6-1, 185) Wilbur Hargrove-Jr (5-10, 172)
WR Tremel Guillory-Sr (5-10, 185) Mandell Smith-Jr (6-3, 190)
WR Hiram Moore-So (6-0, 185) Brad Bates-Sr (5-11, 171)
TE Jeff Mullins-Jr (6-3, 253) Joe Deifel-Sr (6-3, 231)
OT Nate Griffin-Sr (6-5, 334) Dave Ziegler-Fr (6-5, 280)
OG Toby Bullock-Jr (6-4, 335) John Inman-Fr (6-5, 310)
C Zac Elcess-Jr (6-5, 285) Nate Howard-Fr (6-4, 275)
OG Ryan Baynes-Jr (6-2, 324) Jesse Saito-Sr (6-2, 299)
OT Seth Cook-So (6-4, 298) Josh Blakey-Sr (6-4, 310)
K Nick Kelly-Jr (6-0, 215) Ian O'Connor-So (6-2, 185)



Defensive Line
When Jonathan Goddard became serious about the game, he transformed into a dream defensive end. Jamus Martin should once again be one of the premier pass rushers in the MAC. His size will scare off some NFL scouts, but he's blessed with remarkable speed off the edge while he more than adequately contains the run. Inconsistency is no longer an issue for defensive tackle Reggie Hayes, who has began to reach his vast potential. All three returning starters fore-mentioned are somewhat interchangeable, having jelled for an oft-found initially strong push. Their stat lines look similar, and even crazier is that they are three of 2003's top six tacklers for Marshall. Hayes is arguably a better run stuffer than those that provide the depth at end, but all are qualified and worthy. Jamaal Whyce has the quickness and instincts of an end and should get the nod to move inside.

A former special teams performer, Kevin Atkins emerged as the unit's top player and led the Herd in tackles. Senior J.T. Rembert, however, is more talented from sideline-to-sideline. Both are excellent in coverage and are often used in nickel packages. Like Atkins and Rembert, senior Dionte Wilson has the size and speed of a defensive back. Playing time will be hard to come by for backups, but smart money is on a rotation so that next year's vacancies are readily filled. Garrett Morrison is rangy and has the quickness to move into the secondary.

Defensive Back
Everyone is back from a unit that led the MAC in pass defense. In his first year as a starter, Willie Smith, who ranked among the league leaders in passes broken up, is the biggest corner on the team. He'll continue to matchup well with taller and more physical opponents to make big plays. At 5-9, Roberto Terrell is smaller than Smith but is a heavy hitter and has the quickness to make up for errors. If Smith is the heart of the secondary, Terrell is the pulse. Junior Chris Royal, a converted strong safety, and senior Renaldo Williams, perhaps the team's quickest corner, will backup Smith and Terrell. At 6-2, strong safety Moriah Anderson is the biggest of Marshall's defensive backs. He has the speed of a corner and can make plays all over the field. Free safety is up for grabs between Cutis Keyes, Lonnie McCowan and Geremy Rodamer.

The staff worked hard to add more speed and athlete and make this more or a bend-but-don't-break unit. The Herd returns eight starters from a unit that ranked No. 1 in the MAC in total defense and pass defense, while limiting opponents to a league-low 184 first downs. The line will have less problems against the run due to their nice, deep rotation. Goddard and Martin's pass rushing skills are superb. Marshall has experience at linebacker, but no stars. Size is a pervading concern. The overall level of quarterbacks is down in the MAC so the secondary won't get tested as much. Though the secondary was strong (10th ranked unit in the country), they weren't so hot as a pass efficiency defense (ranking 59th) - this is a bad sign of overagressiveness, like on the line. This is why, similar to the offense's inconsistencies, they ranked 24th in total defense, but 47th in scoring defense. If you don't give up yards, how is it that so many points are scored? The team's poor turnover margin is part of this, but the defense has to tighten up at those critical times, or again they will earn the team four (or more) losses.


LB Kevin Atkins


Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Jonathan Goddard-Sr (6-0, 246) Damarcus Thomas-Jr (6-1, 241)
DT Reggie Hayes-Sr (6-3, 288) Adrian Davis-So (6-3, 249)
NT Jamaal Whyce-Sr (6-2, 280) Roger Garrett-So (6-1, 265)
DE Jamus Martin-Sr (6-2, 224) Marcus Hairston-Sr (6-3, 236)
SLB Dionte' Wilson-Jr (6-2, 221) Carlos Morgan-Jr (5-10, 237)
MLB Kevin Atkins-Sr (6-3, 245) Jason Kaminski-Fr (6-3, 225)
WLB J.T. Rembert-Sr (6-1, 235) Dennis Thornton-Jr (5-11, 205)
CB Roberto Terrell-Sr (5-8, 175) Ivan Clark-So (5-9, 180)
CB Willie Smith-Jr (6-0, 194) Renaldo Williams-Sr (5-9, 184)
ROV Curtis Keyes-So (6-0, 187) Geremy Rodamer-Fr (6-0, 190)
FS Moriah Anderson-Sr (6-2, 188) Chris Royal-Jr (5-9, 176)
P Klint Rose-So (6-2, 206) ..




Junior Nick Kelly, who hit 4 of 7 field goals, was only one-of-four outside the 40. Now that he will be the only PK, look for him to mature and contribute on a higher level, and he has the potential to deliver with much more distance.

Inconsistency plagued sophomore Klint Rose and he averaged only 38.5 yards per punt. Kelly is the only one currently on the roster who could challenge him. But the red flag we see is the net punting from '03 - it ranked 116th and meant they only pinned their foes back 29 yards on average. Defensive depth will equal more here.

Return Game
Considering the collection of athletes on the roster, the return game is mediocre at best. After surprising the staff last season with his acceleration, Charles may get the opportunity to return kicks and punts as well.


The Herd was without their top three QBs, so a handful of youngsters took their lumps. RSF Bernard Morris showed great potential for the future, being compared to Byron Leftwich. The offense had some problems hanging onto the football, but that's a problem that will dissipate once the regulars get back into the lineup. Trying to win a spot in a new group of receivers is RSF Shawn Lauzon. At 6'6", Lauzon offers a big-time target for Hill and Gouchneaur. The others were a bit inconsistent and must get eliminate the drops they experienced. Tight End Brian Shope has worked hard and performed well enough to garner the backup spot. New starting C Zac Elcess drew praise from coaches and teammates for his improvement and emergence on that offensive line.

This is a relentless "D". The pass rush didn't allow the QBs any time to throw the ball and the run defense was superb also. You're looking at the top unit in the MAC. The depth up front will get a boost once All-American wrestler Floyd Wright arrives. Wright, a JUCO transfer, will use his agility and strength (from years of wrestling) to fit right in with this strong, quick D-line. Backup NT Roger Garrett also came on in the spring game, plugging even more depth in the trenches. Even after having a delightful spring, sophomore Matt Couch felt threatened by the promise of stud recruit, Jason Kaminski, a product of the famed Hargrave Academy. So, Couch has decided to transfer to Cincinnati, and Kamisnki will backup Atkins at middle backer. Donte' Wilson did well in dropping back in pass coverage, adding to his run defense talents. One of the few "inexperienced" places on the defense is FS, where Moriah Anderson will get the nod. The senior appeased coaches with his play in the secondary, further strengthening what will be a very tough defense. Sophomore Ian O'Connor has handled the punting duties and will take over for Klint Rose. There's still a lot of work that needs to be done in the kicking game.

LB Jason Kaminski (so)
WR Shawn Lauzon (rsf)
DE Floyd Wright (jr)
WR Mandell Smith (jr)
WR Marcus Fitzgerald (fr)