Feb 21 / Rob

Three Thoughts on JMU 52 – Morehead State 0

JMU opened the 2021 (Part 1) season with a convincing 52 point shutout over Morehead State. As the score might indicate, the game was never in doubt. The Dukes scored touchdowns on their first three drives and turned the game into laugher early. JMU’s defense overwhelmed the Morehead attack, limiting it to only 98 yards. The JMU offense on the other hand, moved down the field at will to the tune of 556 yards. None of us expected the game to be anything more than an early season tune-up, and that’s all it was. Here are three quick thoughts on the win.

That was fun.

It was nice to watch JMU play football again, right? That’s really the only takeaway I’ve got from this one. JMU ran all over Morehead and it wasn’t really a fair fight. But it was really cool to sit on the couch, watch Cignetti and the boys play ball, and goof around on JMU Twitter. Everyone has their own reason for watching the Dukes, but for me it’s because I love sharing experiences with the JMU community. While we’ve enjoyed watching both hoops teams play, there’s really nothing like a Saturday afternoon football game to bring out the masses. We’d really missed it. After missing games in the Fall, watching the Dukes get back out there was extra special.

Kris Thornton has wheels.

After losing Brandon Polk and the Stapleton brothers to graduation, we weren’t really sure who was going to step up and be a threat in the passing game. Well, Kris Thornton eased our concerns on Saturday. Yeah, it was against an overmatched opponent, but our guy has game-breaking speed. He looks like a guy who could take it to the house on any given play. His counterpart, Scott Bracey also looked solid. Overall, we’re pretty confident about the guys catching balls.

It’s very clear that JMU is going to pound the ball on the ground with it’s four headed backfield. The passing offense might have promise though. Cole Johnson probably didn’t wow most fans, but he looked more than competent for a guy making his first start since 2016. We’re looking forward to watching CoJo and the receivers gel. For this team to succeed, they’ll likely pass just enough to keep defenses honest. In the opening game of the season with temps in the 20s, CoJo and company looked capable of doing that.

That running game though.

We knew they were good, but wow. Save the caveats about it being Morehead State. The JMU running backs are a problem. Percy Agyei-Obese, Juwon Hamilton, Latrelle Palmer, and Solomon Vanhorse could all start for most FCS teams. They each ran for over 60 yards Saturday. They were aided by an offensive line that was opening up holes you could drive a truck through. We’re going to see some absolutely gaudy numbers with this ground game this Spring. The Dukes had 19 first downs running the ball and racked up 369 yards. The sky is the limit for this group.


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  1. Deacon Danny / Feb 22 2021

    Very fun to watch and extremely happy to have JMU football back in action even if I can’t be there in person. Not that they had much reason to do so this past Saturday given the effectiveness of the running game, but in the upcoming game against Bobby Morris, I would like to see CoJo hit a few medium to long passes before we can get into conference games. All in all a very impresive showing by the Duke! Go Dukes!

  2. The Fly / Feb 22 2021

    Wait, we’re calling him CoJo? After three years of Baby Giraffe (BaGi)? I wasn’t even sure who this CoJo was. He hasn’t put on much weight, either. I say keep him at Baby Giraffe just for the scouting reports alone.

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