Virginia Military Institute looks to maintain its perfect start to the season as it hosts 3-1 East Tennessee State on Saturday.
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The game (1:30 p.m. ET start time) won’t be on TV anywhere, but anyone in the US can watch ETSU vs VMI football live on ESPN+ right here:
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ETSU vs VMI Preview
VMI is off to a 5-0 start and looks to add another win to its resume against Eastern Tennessee State on Saturday. VMI can clinch the Southern Conference football title with a victory — it’s first since 1977 and eighth overall in program history.
“The way I look at it, and I believe the team looks at it, is that every week is for the championship. I believe that in order to guarantee that you win the championship, you got to win every game in conference that you play. So each and every week this year to me, it’s been a conference championship game,” VMI coach Scott Wachenheim said. ”
The success comes after some lean years for VMI, winning just eight games from 2014-18 before a 5-7 campaign in 2019. Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, although the program has managed to continue its upward trend.
“I don’t know if I ever thought they might make a change. I just understood that in this business, they had the opportunity to make a change,” Wachenheim said. “I’m just appreciative that they gave me the opportunity to finish my contract out and then renewed me, too. Because I like this team. I like the young men that our staff and I’ve recruited.
“It wasn’t showing up and wins and losses, but anybody that watches us play, watches us compete, and watches VMI football from before I got here, could tell that this was a much better football team in all phases – offense, defense, kicking game, academics, military and off-the-field performance.”
Eastern Tennessee State has won two in a row after dropping a tight contest to Furman, 17-13.
“I told them they may be the luckiest players ever in the history of college football,” ETSU coach Randy Sanders said. “You get to play potentially eight games in the spring and then 11 more games in the fall. Who plays football just for practice? Who plays football just to go to the weight room? Who plays football just to run? We get to play and right now we’re having a blast playing football.”
Quay Holmes led the way for the Buccaneers in their most recent win, rushing for 197 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a 24-17 win against Western Carolina.
VMI is a 2.5-point favorite for the contest. The total is set at 47.5 points.
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