Mocs Beat the Odds to Stay in the Race For a Share of SoCon Title

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Chattanooga-(WDEF-TV) Didn’t appear to be a lot of promise for the Mocs football team this year.
New head coach.
Several transfers.
Daunting schedule.
But good things happen when you keep fighting.
Now Chattanooga enters their regular season finale with a 6-5 record and an outside shot at a piece of the conference title.

Mocs head coach Rusty Wright introduced himself at his introductory press conference by saying”I’m home.”
While Wright declared he was home, he didn’t have a home for spring drills thanks to flooding at Scrappy Moore Field.
Said Wright:”Last spring. Traveling all over North Georgia and Chattanooga. I was oof. Wasn’t sure I had made the right decision to come down here.” (Chuckles)
Then after the Mocs second game against Jacksonville State, Wright questioned things even more.
Said Wright:”Because when we played Jax State, I told them in the locker room that I didn’t think we were a football team. I thought we were a bunch of guys out there just playing football.”
Said Mocs quarterback Nick Tiano:”Kind of built week-by-week. Obviously we started out with such a tough schedule. Every flaw we had was exposed early by good teams. It took us a few games to kind of figure out who we were as a team. I think now that we have come together and kind of learned our identity, we’ve become pretty good. Pretty tough to beat. I’m proud of the way we have all handled it.”
Mocs learned to fight to the end, and it paid off with their come from behind victory over the Citadel last weekend.
Said Wright as he went crowd surfing into his players after the win:”I was a little worried I was going to get dropped. I wasn’t sure we had enough in there to pick me up when it was all said and done.”
If the Mocs beat VMI and the Citadel beats Wofford, Chattanooga would share the SoCon title.
Said linebacker Marshall Cooper:”He doesn’t want our minds being on making the playoffs. He wants us to just win tomorrow. Go win the practice tomorrow.”

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The Mocs and VMI kick at 1pm. Coach Wright also said freshman running back Ailym Ford will miss spring practice after undergoing knee surgery last week. Ford rushed for over 1,000 yards this season before hurting his knee against Samford.

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.