- Associated Press - Thursday, November 6, 2014

No. 23 Marshall (8-0, 4-0 C-USA) at Southern Mississippi (3-6, 1-4), 7 p.m. EST (American Sports Network)

Line: No line.

Series Record: Southern Miss leads 5-4.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Marshall is trying to continue its demolition of Conference USA and attract some national attention. Coach Doc Holliday’s bunch has won its eight games by an average of nearly 30 points. Southern Miss is improved this season after winning just one game in 2013, and would love nothing more than an upset win over Marshall.



KEY MATCHUP

QB Rakeem Cato vs. the Southern Miss defense: Cato has thrown for 2,130 yards, 20 touchdowns and six interceptions while also running for five touchdowns. Southern Miss has given up more than 30 points in four out of the last five games.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Marshall: RB Devon Johnson. Cato gets most of the attention for Marshall, but the 6-foot-1, 243-pound Johnson has been a bruising force for the Herd, running for 1,203 yards and 15 touchdowns this season.

Southern Miss: DL Rakeem Nunez-Roches. The 6-foot-2, 305-pound junior has been a force in the middle of the Southern Miss defensive line this season. He is third on the team with 50 tackles and also has 12½ tackles for a loss.

FACTS & FIGURES

Marshall’s Johnson has a knack for the big play, with six rushes for more than 50 yards this season, including a 66-yard against Florida Atlantic in the Herd’s last game. … Cato has thrown a touchdown pass in 40 consecutive games, which is an FBS record. … Marshall is 8-0 for the first time since 1999, when the Herd finished 13-0 and won the Motor City Bowl. … Marshall leads the country in margin of victory, averaging a 29.4-point spread. The offense has scored at least 35 points in every game. … Marshall is the second ranked opponent Southern Miss has played this season. The Golden Eagles lost 52-12 to Alabama in September. Southern Miss also faced current No. 1 team Mississippi State in the season opener, losing 45-0, but the Bulldogs were not ranked at the time.

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