HUNTINGTON -- Marshall quarterback Rakeem Cato drummed his fingers across the table in the front of the interview room. Safety Dominick LeGrande shifted his weight from one foot to the other. The frustration was obvious in their actions, their faces and their voices.
It disturbed them to be forced answer the same questions after another loss, variations on a two-word inquiry - "What happened?" This time, it came after the Thundering Herd's 45-38 Homecoming loss to Tulsa, a game the Herd led in the fourth quarter despite trailing by as many as two touchdowns.
What aggravated them more was the fact they really couldn't offer a definitive answer. Marshall has the right ingredients, LeGrande said. It's just still searching for the right recipe.
"It hurts losing when you know you have everything there," he said. "It just comes down to making plays in the end and we have to make plays."
So, despite an offense ranked third in the Football Bowl Subdivision in passing, fifth in total offense and 16th in scoring, Marshall is 2-4 overall, 1-1 in Conference USA and headed into its bye week wondering how it can regain its footing.
While the players might not be able to put a finger on their woes, these statistics might be part of the problem:
In all three phases of the game against the Golden Hurricane - offense, defense and special teams - the Herd coupled big plays with crushing mistakes. Marshall gained 572 yards against Conference USA's top defense, led by Cato's 391 yards and three touchdowns on 31-of-44 passing. But the Herd's offense also committed three turnovers -including its third turnover returned for a touchdown in its last two games - and couldn't score a game-tying touchdown on its final drive with four shots inside Tulsa's red zone.