Oregon Football: Three Golden Eagles On Defense


The Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles recorded four tackles for loss and two interceptions in the 42-14 win over North Greenville. They also forced and recovered one fumble.

September 3, 2011; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Mika

The Golden Eagles should be an easy opponent for Mariota, Barner, and Thomas, but Oregon has had some trouble in the second half this season. This will be the last game for the Ducks to tune up the offense before they start Pac-12 competition against Arizona next week. Here are some Golden Eagles that the Ducks will need to watch out for this week.

Howard Griffin (#33, linebacker)

  • Senior from Nashville, Tennessee
  • 6-foot-1, 220 pounds

Howard Griffin seems to be a tackle machine for the Golden Eagles this season. In their last game against North Greenville, Griffin recorded just eight tackles and increased his season total to 20 tackles. He also has a half of a tackle for loss.

In 2010, Griffin suffered a season ending ankle injury, but was granted a medical redshirt. The following season he proved he was back from the injury and started in ten out of eleven games for the Golden Eagles. The Tennessee Tech media guide says that he is a “solid player with middle linebacker skills and mentality.”

Austin Tallant (#14, defensive back)

  • Sophomore from Alcoa, Tennessee
  • 5-foot-10, 190 pounds

Tallant is entering his second season with the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles. In the game against North Greenville, Austin Tallant recorded eleven total tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss. This brings his season totals after two games to 18 total tackles and 2.5 tackles for loss.

Last year as a true freshman, Tallant had to step in early for the Golden Eagles because of an injury to Marty Jones. After Week 1, he started every single game. He totaled 92 tackles to lead the team, including 34 unassisted stops. His best performance came in the Golden Eagles’ playoff game against Central Arkansas during which he had 16 total stops.

Tyler Hennigan (#10, defensive back)

  • Senior from Cookeville, Tennessee
  • 6-foot, 190 pounds

According to the Tennesse Tech media guide, Tyler Hennigan is one of the most versatile athletes on the roster. This is kind of surprising because of the fact that he has not always played on the defensive side of the ball. Hennigan use to play wide receiver, but made the move from wide receiver to free safety. The 2010 season was his first full season at the free safety position. He has recorded nine total tackles and an interception this season.

In 2010, Hennigan mostly played in the back-up role for the Golden Eagles and did not start until 2011. He only played in nine games and had 14 tackles on the year and one forced fumble.

The Oregon Ducks should not have a problem beating the Golden Eagles on Saturday, but the question is about the second half. Can they stay as strong in the second half as they are in the first half of the game? They will need to be to get ready for Pac-12 play next week.

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