The Campbell Fighting Camels take a big step up in competition on Saturday when they open the 2019 football season against a Troy squad coming off their third-straight 10-win season under Neal Brown.
The game (6 p.m. ET start time) won’t be on regular TV anywhere, but you can watch it live right here on ESPN+, the digital streaming service from ESPN that has exclusive coverage of most Troy and Sun Belt football games every week, other college football and live sports, all the 30-for-30 documentaries and additional original content (both video and written) all for $4.99 per month.
You can sign up for ESPN+ right here, and you can then watch Troy vs Campbell live on your computer via ESPN.com, or on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or other streaming device via the ESPN app.
Campbell vs Troy
Emerging from the depths of the Division 1 non-scholarship Pioneer League, Campbell posted a winning record in their first scholarship season. While they stumbled mightily after an impressive 5-1 start, the foundation is in place for Campbell to continue to improve and establish themselves as a perennial playoff contender in the FCS. Standout quarterback Daniel Smith recently transferred, leaving Campbell in an awkward position offensively as the rising junior had two years of eligibility left and figured to be an integral part of the Fightin’ Camel’s future plans.
Campbell had one of the best defenses in the FCS last year and held opponents to an absurdly low 122.5 yards per game through the air. Especially with question marks at quarterback, they need a similarly strong performance from the defense in order to help keep games close and give the offense and chance to make some plays. Most importantly, the defense returns nearly every single contributor from the line and secondary, giving reason to believe that there could even be a further improvement on an excellent 2018 season.
Troy enters 2019 with one of the most battle-tested rosters among non-power-five teams. With multiple capable quarterbacks alongside a 1,000-yard rusher in B.J. Smith and a mostly intact offensive line, Troy’s offense looks ready to do some damage in 2019. Troy has won double-digit games each of the past three seasons and with another loaded roster in place, it seems likely that the offense should be able to carry their weight as the Trojans look to match that feat under new head coach Chip Lindsey.
While the Trojan defense struggled when matched up against their toughest test of 2018, Boise State, they otherwise looked like one of the nation’s strongest units. Despite losing heaps of talent on defense, the Trojans also return a surprisingly large number of playmakers in 2019. The defensive line was a highlight of last season and looks to be one of the few positions left relatively unscathed by departures. With a pair of excellent edge rushers and a stable of capable interior tackles, the Trojan defensive line has the depth to keep key contributors fresh while consistently collapsing the pocket and closing up running lanes.
Troy enters the matchup as the heavy favorite by far, and rightfully so. While Campbell looked impressive in their inaugural FCS season, they didn’t face too much stiff competition. When they did, they struggled mightily on both sides of the ball. Until Campbell shows otherwise, expect more of the same with Troy putting a beatdown on the new addition to the FCS subdivision.
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