Football preview: Tech and Tennessee State on Haunted Homecoming 2009

The Tennessee Tech football team sets its sights on the Sergeant York Trophy this week as it hosts rival Tennessee State for homecoming on Saturday. The Sergeant York Trophy is the only travelling trophy in all of collegiate sports that involves more than three teams, including Austin Peay, TSU, Tech, and UT Martin.Prior to this year, Tech was a combined 1-5 in the competition since its inception in 2007.

The Golden Eagles (4-3, 3-2 OVC) has won three of its last four games and are the only team in the Ohio Valley Conference to be undefeated at home this year (3-0), outscoring its opponents at Tucker Stadium 110-49.

“We’re looking forward to the game,” said head coach Watson Brown. “We’re playing an outstanding football team,” he added.

Tech comes into the game averaging nearly 25 points per game, but will face the 2nd stingiest defense in the conference as TSU allows just 18 points per game. “This is the best defensive team we’ve played except for Kansas State, but I think TSU is very close to them,” said Brown. “The defense is just unbelievably good.”

The Golden Eagles are still in the hunt for the OVC Championship, just one game behind the first place teams. “I think with two losses it would be very hard to win this league,” Brown said. In fact, no team has won the OVC with two conference losses since 1971 when there were only eight teams in the league. “We have to beat TSU this week for us to have that opportunity,” he said.

Senior quarterback Lee Sweeney is moving up in the Ohio Valley Conference records books, needing just five more completions to surpass Tony Romo and Brady Wahlberg and move into third all-time with 585. Sweeney has already set Tech career records this season for most passes attempted, most passes completed, most touchdown passes, most touchdowns responsible for, most passing yards and most yard of total offense.

Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. and the game will be broadcast live on Magic 98.5 as well as online via Teamline.