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UD-DSU face off to kick-off 2016 football season

Delaware Public Media

The First State college football season gets underway Thursday night with Delaware welcoming Delaware State to Newark.

Both teams are looking to turn things around after disappointing 2015 campaigns.

UD went 4-7 a year ago, while DSU finished at 1-10. 

The Hornets responded by totally revamping its roster with 46 new faces.

Preparing such an unknown quantity could be difficult, but Blue Hen head coach Dave Brock says he doesn’t see it as a major issue. 

“It certainly provides challenges that are unique," said Brock. "But I think in the opening game with the number of practices we’ve had we’ve really tried to put ourselves in a position to focus on us and really fine tune exactly the things we want to do to make sure we can play as fast and as physical as we cam play and execute as well as we can execute.”

The series between the two prpgrams has a fairly limited history.  The Blue Hens and Hornets’ first meeting didn’t come until 2007 when they were paired up in a NCAA playoff game.

They’ve faced off five other times since, and UD has won all six meetings by an average of nearly 26 points

Those stats are just part of the reason DSU head coach Kenny Carter says he won’t call this a “rivalry.”

“Usually it’s a rivalry because there’s mutual respect, and both sides win (games).  And that’s not the case here.  They won’t come play us (in Dover).  So, it’s really not a rivalry," said Carter.  "We’re playing a team that’s in-state that the legislature really wants us to play.  And we don’t mind playing them.  We’ll play anybody. We don’t care. But I don’t see it as a rivalry.”

But Carter adds it would be a big deal to beat UD since DSU has never done that in football, though he notes after having just one win last year – any win is significant.

Delaware State tangles with Delaware at 7 pm Thursday night at Delaware Stadium in Newark.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.