With their 45-17 victory over the North Texas Mean Green, the Trojans garnered five points in the AP Top 25 poll for Week 9 to come in at 37th in the nation.
“I am not voting this year, but I know how hard it is to sit down and vote each week,” Troy head coach Larry Blakeney said. “You have to take so many things into consideration, so I am excited about getting some votes in the AP poll. But I just hope we come up first in Monroe this Saturday night.”
The Trojans received three points in the AP poll last year after a 45-7 thumping of Middle Tennessee State on ESPN2 in Week 13. Before that the last time the Trojans received votes in the AP was early in the 2004 season, when they received six votes after a 24-14 upset of No. 17 Missouri in Week 3.
A conference victory came at the cost of a quarterback again for the Troy Trojans Saturday. Backup signal caller Tanner Jones is out for the year with torn ligaments in his knee.
Blakeney said it is tough to lose another player to injury, but the team will move forward nonetheless.
“The loss of two quarterbacks hurts, but it is part of the game,” Blakeney said. “But it is an ugly part of the game and one we don’t like to deal with. But this team has been resilient and we will get a good game plan together and have a good week of practice.”
Trojan sophomore receiver Jerrel Jernigan also left the North Texas game early with an injured knee.
He is questionable for the game Saturday.
Blakeney said the Trojans need to focus on the road trip to take on the 2-6 Warhawks of the University of Louisiana-Monroe. Blakeney said the Trojans will not take ULM lightly.
“They have struggled to put wins together, but they are capable of winning the big game a la last year with Alabama,” Blakeney said. “Charlie (Weatherbie) is a damn good football coach and he will have them ready.”
Jernigan is the Trojans’ deep threat and Blakeney said the Warhawks have a player much like Jernigan. Jernigan has lined up behind center some since starting quarterback Jamie Hampton went down for the season and Blakeney said the Trojans may see a little of that on the other side this week.
“They have their own No. 3 and he is a lot like ours,” he said. “They will put him at quarterback also. They like to run a lot of misdirection.”
Blakeney said the Trojans will have to play a lot better than the last time they traveled to face the Warhawks.
“We lost in good fashion last time and that was a bad day,” he said. “We will have to play a lot better than that because these guys (ULM) are a lot better this year.”
Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. in Monroe, La.