Old Dominion Football 2017 Match Preview Prediction and Players: The Old Dominion Monarchs are No. 64 in the Orlando Sentinel 2017 preseason college football rankings. The Monarchs must adapt to a new quarterback, but they return a strong offensive line and rushing attack that should help them contend for a Conference USA title. After early setbacks on the road against Appalachian State and NC State, Old Dominion rallied to put together one of the best seasons in school history. The Monarchs closed the 2016 campaign on a six-game win streak, tied for first place in the Conference USA East Division with a 7-1 league record and made their first bowl appearance. ODU posted a 24-20 win over Eastern Michigan in the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl. The Monarchs, who have only been playing football since 2009, became the youngest program to win 10 games in a season since the NCAA formed Division I in 1978.
Key losses: QB David Washington, WR Zach Pascal, OL Troy Butler, DT Rashaad Coward, LB TJ Ricks, LB Anthony Wilson, S C.J. Bradshaw, CB Aaron Young. OL Nick Clarke, WR Jonathan Duhart, RB Ray Lawry, CB Brandon Addison, DE Bunmi Rotimi, DE Oshane Ximines. Old Dominion has a remarkable home-field advantage, selling out 54 home games in school history. The team has posted a 41-13 record in those home games and went 6-0 games played in Norfolk, Va., last season.
Old Dominion Football 2017 Match Preview and Players
Senior RB Ray Lawry returns after posting seven 100-yard games last season. He broke his own school record with 1,255 rushing yards and ran for 11 touchdowns, becoming the school’s all-time touchdown leader with 40. Junior RB Jeremy Cox also rushed for 732 yards and a team-best 13 touchdowns. Old Dominion set a single-season team rushing record with 2,595 yards. The offensive line, which returns four starters, finished second in C-USA with 19 sacks allowed. Junior Oshane Ximines and senior Bunmi Rotimi are both back at defensive end. Ximines led the team with a single-season record 7.5 sacks in 2016, while Rotimi is tied for the ODU career record with 13.5 sacks.
Old Dominion Football 2017 Match Schedule
Weaknesses: The Monarchs lost a solid offensive leader in QB David Washington, who exhausted his eligibility. Blake LaRussa, Drayton Arnold and Jordan Hoy are all expected to compete for the starting job during the summer. Coach Bobby Wilder said he was encouraged by what LaRussa and Arnold were able to do during the spring game. Hoy is a junior college transfer joining the team this summer. “They’re on par with what David Washington did last year as far as completion percentage and protecting the ball, and that’s what we’re asking them to do,” Wilder told the Daily Press when asked about LaRussa and Hoy after the spring game. “And they’re performing well.”
Old Dominion Football 2017ODU loses some solid performers on defense and has the most room to improve in red-zone defense after tying for No. 93 nationally in the category. Outlook: Old Dominion has the ingredients to keep competing for a Conference USA title. The combination a strong returning group of linemen, a powerful rushing attack and an elite home-field advantage should help bolster the Monarchs in 2017. Source Link