2. ETSU has the more proven quarterback.
You could maybe debate Keller Chryst here. But Logan Marchi is definitely more proven than Jarrett Guarantano, and at least with his current team, he’s more proven than Chryst. Last year, with the Temple Owls, Marchi didn’t have a great completion percentage or touchdown to interception ratio.
However, he did throw for over 300 yards in his final two games, so he was getting better. And he had 245 yards against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Marky Billson, Host of Tri-Cities Sports NOW on 1420 NBC Sports Radio Tri-Cities, wrote on Medium earlier this week that Marchi would be the best quarterback on the field Saturday.
Say what you want, but this is significant. If Tennessee football has all the issues facing it right now, the difference at the most important position on the field could be the difference. At the very least, it could become the equalizer.
Now Marky, whom I have regular conversations with on his radio show, is a bit too hard on Guarantano by my estimation when you look at everything Guarantano has dealt with. However, there’s no denying the fact that Marchi is more accomplished and more proven to this point.
As a result, the Vols could be in big trouble Saturday if a few things go against them and quarterback play becomes relevant. And that’s just another major advantage for ETSU and a huge reason they could upset UT. Heck, even with Chryst in the game, Marchi has a chance to be the better player behind center.