It’s just three weeks into the regular season, but several Southern Conference quarterbacks are banged up and have been nursing their share of bumps and bruises.
Appalachian State’s Armanti Edwards dressed but didn’t play in the Mountaineers’ 48-7 win over Division II’s Lenoir-Rhyne last week. ASU coach Jerry Moore said Edwards could have played, but Moore preferred he rest the shoulder he bruised during the season-opening win at Michigan. Trey Elder filled in admirably, and Edwards is day-to-day for ASU’s upcoming home game against Northern Arizona of the Big Sky Conference.
“We’ve got nine games left, and we are just going to make sure he’s well before we put him out there,” Moore said. “He’s not completely healed up, but he’s close.”
The Mountaineers (2-0) are looking to extend their 16-game winning streak – the longest in Division I. ASU has also won 28 straight home games, the second-longest run in the nation.
In Spartanburg, S.C., Wofford senior QB Josh Collier didn’t start last Saturday for the first time since 2004, ending his streak of 23 straight starts. Collier’s nursing a separated shoulder, which has limited his range of motion.
Like Edwards, Collier hasn’t missed any practices and could have played last week. Backup Ben Widmyer took Collier’s place and led the Terriers (2-0) to a 52-24 win over Charleston Southern. Collier should be back for Saturday’s game at North Carolina State, said Wofford coach Mike Ayers.
“We understand that it’s going to be tough,” Ayers said of the trip to NC State. “But in the past, we’ve enjoyed playing these games. If we go there and play hard and execute we might have a shot.”
Chattanooga is also without its starting quarterback, Antonio Miller, who missed the Mocs’ 33-19 loss at Jacksonville State Saturday. With Miller out, Chattanooga’s off week this Saturday is well-timed said Mocs’ coach Rodney Allison, who thinks Miller should be 100 percent when UTC (0-2) visits Paulson Stadium Sept. 22.
Weekend of big matchups
Along with Wofford’s visit to N.C. State, three other SoCon teams will face major Football Bowl Subdivision schools this weekend as Furman plays at Clemson, Western Carolina travels to Georgia and The Citadel heads to Wisconsin.
After Appalachian’s upset of Michigan two weeks ago, FBS schools are perhaps less likely to overlook FCS opponents.
“(The Mountaineers) didn’t come tapping on the door,” Ayers said. “They kicked the door down. Anytime somebody kicks the door down, you know there’s a red alert out, and I’m sure every coach is going to refer to that anytime they’re playing a school from our level.
“We are not going to sneak in town. They know we are coming, and they are going to be ready.”
Alex Pellegrino can be reached at (912) 489-9413.