2017 Prespring Rankings: No. 86 Troy Trojans
The 2017 prespring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Troy Trojans
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No. 86: Troy Trojans
Troy Trojans Prespring Status
In one of the biggest shockers of the 2016 season, Troy didn’t just make the jump up from 4-8 to 10-3, it was really, really good. Any why? The offense cranked it up several notches, averaging close to 50 yards per game more than it did last year with an improved ground game and a dangerous, efficient passing attack that didn’t make a whole slew of mistakes. But was it all for real?
Only three starters are gone off the high-powered offense, and just four are done on D, but the team didn’t beat a whole slew of strong teams other than Appalachian State and Ohio. However, it pushed Clemson really, really hard, and now the expectations are there going into spring ball to win the Sun Belt, come up with another double-digit win season, and be even stronger.
Troy Trojans Biggest Issue
The defense that’s been so strong over the last few years – the Troy D was miserable not all that long ago – loses a bulk of its top tacklers. Safeties Kris Weatherspoon and Cedarius Rookard are back – they were second and third on the team in tackles, respectively – but six of the top eight tacklers are gone including linebackers William Lloyd, Terris Lewis and Justin Lucas. Considering the run defense allowed just 120 yards per game, and with that one of the keys to the season, this is sort of a big deal.
Troy Trojans Biggest Positive
The passing game should be unstoppable. Brandon Silvers had one of the quietest big seasons by any quarterback in college football, throwing for 3,180 yards and 23 touchdowns with 12 picks – while also rushing for four scores. He’s back along with all of his top receivers – all of them. There wasn’t one senior among the 18 players who caught passes last year, including leading target Emanuel Thompson and dangerous No. 2 man Deondre Douglas.
Really, Why Are The Troy Trojans Ranked Here?
Can the defense hold up? It’s not just the passing game that’ll be amazing. RB Jordan Chunn returns – he ran for 1,288 yards and 16 scores – but three offensive linemen are done. It shouldn’t matter – the O will be terrific. The D, though, will be the key for a team that has to go to Boise State and LSU before October. It’ll be Sun Belt title or bust.