Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University’s football team put one big hurdle behind them September 16th, 2017 with its victory over Morehead State, at Fortera Stadium, to end the nation’s longest overall losing streak at 29 games, but now they must refocus and get ready for Ohio Valley Conference play and a couple of another streaks they want to put to bed as soon as possible.
The others are a current 21-game losing streak in OVC contests, dating back to October 18th, 2014, when the Govs handed Murray State a 20-13 loss in Clarksville, while they also have a 45-game losing streak in road games – dating back to September 18th, 2010 — when the Governors handed Tennessee State a 26-23 setback at the then LP Field.
But while the Govs were picked to finish last in the conference’s preseason poll, this season’s Govs have shown already they aren’t the same team that carry those current streaks – of which one has already been dispatched.
And there would be not better way to end both streaks than this coming weekend, September 23rd, as the Govs travel to Murray State.
While both teams enter the matchup with identical 1-2 records it’s the Govs that carry the momentum coming off a win, while Murray State has lost two straight – including blowing a 10-point lead in a 28-21 road loss to Missouri State last Saturday.
And if an Austin Peay-Murray State matchup isn’t enough, the contest will also be a matchup of the two highest scoring teams in the conference.
Coming into the game, Murray State leads the OVC in scoring by putting up an average of 33.7 points per game in its first three games, while the Govs are second in the conference – averaging 31.0 points per game.
But while both teams have put points on the board this season, it will be the Govs defense that may give Austin Peay an advantage, with APSU giving up less than 24 points per game – including two of those games coming against FBS teams, while Murray State has given up just over 25 points per game and 40 more yards per game to opponents.
And while getting off to a good start to conference play would be big in of its self for the Govs, the Murray State game is also big in the fact that Austin Peay’s next three opponents could be argued are the three toughest they will play in OVC play with Tennessee Martin coming to town on September 30th, followed by games versus nationally-ranked Jacksonville State and Tennessee State to follow.
While none of these games — including the Murray State game — will be easy for the Govs this year’s team has shown so far that they are up to the challenge and should be competitive week in and week out in OVC play and in that see two more unwanted streaks come to an end.