BLUE RAIDERS starting linebacker Christian Henry has a special connection to Marshall University.
Henry's father Charles was a freshman linebacker of the 1971 "Young Thundering Herd," the first following the 1970 plane crash that killed 75 players, coaches, staff and boosters. He led the team in tackles in 1971 and 1972, still holds the team record for tackles in a game - 30 versus Miami (Ohio) in 1972 - and was inducted into Marshall's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006.
Christian Henry, a 6-foot, 224-pound redshirt junior, entered Thursday's game third on the Blue Raiders with 47 tackles. He has 1.5 tackles for loss, a sack and two forced fumbles.
THURSDAY'S GAME was designated a "blackout" for Middle Tennessee and its fans. Players wore black uniforms and fans were asked to dress in black for the game. There was a lot more aluminum than black, though, as the MTSU crowd was pretty sparse.
Regardless, Marshall Coach Doc Holliday said earlier this week that gimmicks like blackouts weren't very important to the outcome of a game.
"I never felt that uniforms made a whole hell of a lot of difference, to be honest," he said. "I saw some blackouts last week and they all got their (tails) beat. I think it's all about preparation and preparing to go play. If I've got to put a uniform on a football team to motivate them, they've got the wrong coach.
CLINT VAN HORN, a redshirt sophomore from Beckley, made his first career start Thursday at right tackle ... Cato's touchdown pass to Jazz King in the first quarter marked the 25th consecutive game in which he's thrown a touchdown. That's one behind Fresno State's Derek Carr for best active streak in the nation, and one behind Chad Pennington for the top streak in Marshall history ... Cato also passed Michael Payton in the first half to move to third on the career pass attempts list, giving him 1,126.
Contact sportswriter Derek Redd at derek.r...@dailymail.com or 304-348-1712. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/marshall. Follow him on Twitter @derekredd.