Postgame Notes from UT Game

September 7, 2002 · MT Media Relations
Rashada Gets Pick: Junior Muhammad Rashada picked off a Casey Clausen pass in the endzone in the first quarter for the Blue Raiders' first interception of the year. It was the second INT in Rashada's career and the first for the Augusta, GA, native since the 2000 season.

First Fumble Recovery: Middle Tennessee forced and recovered its first fumble of the season in the second quarter of tonight's game. Junior Tony Sutton knocked the ball away from UT running back Cedric Houston and Junior Brandon Lynch recovered the ball for the Blue Raiders. The fumble recovery was the third in Lynch's career.

Lynch Gets Sack: Junior Brandon Lynch recorded the first Middle Tennessee sack of the season when he dropped Casey Clausen in the third quarter. It was the second sack of Lynch's career.

Block That Kick: The Blue Raiders blocked their first kick of the season tonight when senior Kareem Bland stopped a field goal try in the third quarter. It was the fifth time that the Blue Raiders have blocked a kick attempt under Andy McCollum, all of which have come in the past three seasons. It also marked the second time under Coach Mac that the Blue Raider defense has blocked a field goal attempt.

More on Bland: Tonight's blocked field goal by senior Kareem Bland marks the third time that the Conley, GA, native has turned in a blocked kick in Andy McCollum's tenure. Bland has now blocked two field goals and a punt. Bland has also converted four defensive touchdowns during his career.

Mr. Consistency: Junior Brian Kelly drilled a 45-yard field goal attempt in the fourth quarter to continue the Blue Raiders' consistency in the kicking game. Kelly has now connected on eight of his last nine field goal attempts and has not missed in 2002. Kellyï¾’s kick was the second-longest of his career. The kick was the 20th field goal in Kelly's career, putting him only two field goals away from tying Archie Arrington for fifth place on the career field goal list at Middle Tennessee.

Off to a Hot Start: Heading into the season, senior receiver Tyrone Calico was looked upon as the leader of a talented receiving corp. Calico has not disappointed with 13 catches in the Blue Raidersï¾’ first two games. Calico has now tallied 105 yards receiving during this span.

Hines Leads Rushing Attack ... Again: Junior quarterback Andrico Hines led the Blue Raiders in rushing with 63 yards against Tennessee. Hines is the team's leading rusher on the season with 112 total yards. He rushed for 49 yards against Alabama, turning in the team's second-best effort on the ground against the Crimson Tide.

That's a Lot of Folks: Tonight's announced crowd of 107,672 is the largest contingent to ever witness a Middle Tennessee football game. The throng eclipses the previous high of 88,249, set when MT visited LSU last season. Last week's crowd of 80,091 at Alabama is the largest opening day crowd that the Blue Raiders have ever played in front of, making the combined attendance of 187,763 the largest back-to-back crowds the Blue Raiders have played before. The announced attendance is the sixth-most in UT history.

SEC Tour Resumes Against Kentucky: Tonight's game against Tennessee is the second straight game for the Blue Raiders against a Southeastern Conference foe. The Blue Raiders will take a well-deserved week off next week before resuming their tour of the conference with a game at Kentucky. The Blue Raiders complete their SEC run with a game against Vanderbilt on Oct. 12. There is no truth to the rumor that the Blue Raiders will draw a bowl revenue check from the league at the end of the year.

Quick Hitters: Middle Tennessee's freshman deep snapper John Crawford, who attended Karns High School, is the lone Knoxville native on the Blue Raider roster ... #4 Tennessee is the highest ranked opponent the Blue Raiders have faced in the I-A era ... Sophomore linebacker Alvin Fite made his first career start tonight ... Junior ReShard Lee continued to display his versatility with his first reception, a 22-yard gain in the second quarter, of the season tonight ... Senior David Youell extended his streak of consecutive games with a reception to 24 tonight ... Senior Louis Kemp made his second career fumble recovery in the second quarter ... Redshirt freshman Chris Henry of Kingsport started the second half at receiver ... Junior Don Calloway started the second half at tailback ... Middle Tennessee failed to score a touchdown for the first time since being blanked by Florida on Sept. 9, 2000, a span of 21 games ... Junior safety Will Martin recorded 11 tackles to lead the Blue Raiders and junior linebacker Randy Arnold tallied a career high 10 stops to lead the Blue Raider defense.

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