Tag Archives: Duke vs Middle Tennessee State

Duke Will Survive Road Challenge With Focus

The Duke Blue Devils travel to Middle Tennessee State this weekend where both teams hope to end the contest with a winning record.  The game will kick off around 7:00 and will be carried by Facebook Live.

About Middle Tennessee State

Firstly, the Blue Raiders have a potent offensive attack.  They scored 21 points in a loss at Michigan to open the season before bouncing back with a 45-26 win over Tennessee State.

Rick Stockstill has built a solid program in Murfreesboro and his teams have scored 30 or more points 74 times under his watch.  This years team is led by quarterback Asher O'Hara (runs and throws effectively) and wideout Ty Lee.  Both are talented players who are but a small part of the offense which also poses a strong ground attack.

Middle Tennessee ran the ball effectively a week ago after a slow start in Michigan.  They went undefeated at home a season ago and the last time they faced an ACC foe, they upset Syracuse on the road two years ago.

On defense, the Blue Raiders start six seniors and three juniors which provide experience.


This weekends contest will be their annual blackout game where fans are asked to wear black.  The Blue Raiders are 8-3 in these contests reserved for their better opponents.

The weather will be hot.  It is plenty humid in the Triangle this time of year, but also very much so in the middle of the state of Tennessee.

Duke must stay aggressive throughout the whole game for looking at the Middle Tennessee schedule the past few years, shows they are capable of putting up big points in the late quarters.  In other words, they adjust well after the half.

About Duke

The Blue Devils will try to be more consistent on both sides of the ball this week.  On offense, they need to start faster than in their first two games.  On defense, they need to limit big plays and third-down opportunities.

Last week, Quentin Harris was fabulous against the Aggies.  This week he faces an opponent in between the talent of Alabama and N.C. A&T, so all eyes will be on how he performs.

Duke has multiple injuries and some key players or starters will be out for this game.  While the Alabama game was technically played on a neutral field, this will be the Blue Devils first road contest.

Our thoughts on the outcome

This is more or less a must-win game for Duke if they want to keep bowl hopes alive.  On the other side, Middle Tennessee State is looking at this as one of their biggest opportunities to knock off a power five school at home.  Both teams face a difficult schedule in the future after this game.  Middle Tennessee will travel to Iowa a week later and Duke preps for the ACC opener at Virginia Tech after an off week.

Look for Duke to get the Blue Raiders best shot and they are not a team that will wilt as mentioned earlier.  That said, Duke needs a good start and to play resilient and match their opponent's emotion.

I feel there will be an emphasis on getting the running game going for Duke this week, but it the game will come down to playing opportunistic defense and the passing game.

Middle Tennessee will give Duke some trouble with their offensive schemes, but the Blue Devils defense should stiffen up enough to allow the offense a chance to win the game.

The pick here is Duke 35 Middle Tennessee State 21

My season prediction record to date is 2-0 overall and 2-0 vs the spread.  Last week I had the exact point differential of 32 in the win over NC A&T.  

Duke Football Notebook 9-10

The Duke Blue Devils evened up their season record to 1-1 with a lopsided win over North Carolina A & T and they hope to build on their momentum this week versus Middle Tennessee State.

Bobo practicing

Jake Bobo has returned to the practice field per Duke Coach David Cutcliffe.  While he will not play this weekend, Bobo has seemingly made Duke look into adjustments that would allow him to be on the field at the same time as freshmen breakout talent Jalon Calhoun.  Cutcliffe has high praise for Calhoun who had a stellar game against the Aggies.

Injuries Piling Up

A season ago Duke was plagued by injuries and that trend is continuing this year.  Cutcliffe said that his team had 13 scholarship players out after the win over the Aggies.  He ruled Gunnar Holmberg out for the year today, giving the team two scholarship quarterbacks to work with.  DL Ben Frye has returned to practice and is rounding back into playing shape.

Penalties, film and discipline

Cutcliffe said some of the penalties called against his team may not have been as obvious on film review.  On the other hand, he said there are discipline penalties that they will try to correct.

Duke will stay in Nashville

The Blue Devils will stay in Nashville for their game with Middle Tennessee State.  That makes the trip all the more attractive to the fan base who will be traveling with the team.  Cutcliffe said he had some good relationships with Middle Tennessee coaches and that his wife would entertain the family during the visit.

Cut warns fan base that Middle Tennessee is a Solid Program

The Blue Raiders can play and they have an established football program.  Cutcliffe spoke of his opponent with high praise.  They lost to Michigan by 19 on the road in their opener and bounced by with a 45-26 win over Tennessee State this past week.  The program is known for their offense, but more on that in our preview out this Thursday.

Duke has a bye week coming

The Blue Devils have a bye week after this weekends contest and before they travel to Virginia Tech for their ACC opener.

Facebook Live

The game will be telecast on Facebook Live, but we have yet to see if there is an application to stream this to TV or if any station will carry the game.  The rights are owned by Stadium but the game will not be on their streaming service.  I hoe to have more information when I release the game preview.  Speaking of previews, we are 2-0 vs the spread on the season and 2-0 overall and had the exact point spread at 32 this past week.

The game is huge for the Blue Raiders

The Red Raiders will have a "blackout," for the game where fans are asked to wear black.  The current line is Duke by 6 in the contest.