Thursday, October 9, 2008

Wofford's Terriers more than pesky so far

Wofford's ninth-ranked football team is off to a strong start; the Terriers are 3-1 and in their only loss played South Carolina tough before falling 23-13. But coach Mike Ayers thinks they can be a whole lot better.

Asked about the performance of his offense, which is averaging 36.5 points a game, Ayers said, "Not as good as we'd like; I don't think we've been as consistent as we need to be. We've had three football games where we should have put the game away early and didn't."

Ayers may have a point when discussing Wofford's first two games, a 38-21 win over Presbyterian and a 41-23 decision over Charleston Southern, but it's hard to find fault with the Terriers' last outing.

They went to Georgia Southern, a place where almost no one but Georgia Southern ever wins, and knocked off the Eagles 38-37. Then they took last week off, preparing for Saturday's game at undermanned Chattanooga (1-5, 0-2 Southern Conference).

Coaches, though, have to stress things their teams need to improve on. Wofford is good but young, and Ayers is trying to keep his team's attention.

"On a scale of F to A, we're probably a C+," he said of his squad. "And we have to be a lot better than that to compete in the conference."

Still, Wofford's ground game has been fearsome so far. The Terriers are averaging a league-leading 329.5 yards per game and claim two of the SC's top three rushers, senior Dane Romero (86-yard average) and freshman Mitch Allen (72.7). (That's Romero above, taking the ball from quarterback Ben Widmyer.)

"We're still a work in progress," Ayers said. "The league is really strong and we have to improve a great deal in order to be successful."

--Stan Olson