SI Vault
September 23, 1957
HERMAN HICKMAN SAYS: In this loose-knit conference stretching from Morgantown, W. Va. to Charleston, S.C., a champion should emerge at last because the two top teams, Virginia Tech and West Virginia, play each other for the first time since 1953. In the second section of the Southern Conference—classified only as contenders—can be found George Washington, VMI, Furman and Richmond.
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September 23, 1957

Southern Conference

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COLORS: Black and red
BASIC OFFENSE: T with split ends and flankers
1956 RECORD: Won 5, lost 3, tied 1
WATCH FOR: Darting runs of Paul Barbee

THE DOPE: The Wildcats, hard hit by backfield graduation, are casting their lot with a pair of untried quarterbacks and a junior scatback. The shortback problem, with good Passers Dick Belton and Dyke Little graduated, is severe. Coach Bill Dole has two nonlettermen to choose from: Sophomore Charlie Benson, a southpaw, and Junior Tom Cutting. Dole rates them about even. About his scatback, Dole is more effusive. "Paul Barbee is the best back I've had here. He's a wonderful runner, an excellent blocker; he can throw and he's outstanding on pass defense." About a junior, that's golden talk, but Barbee did average 4.9 yards a carry last season. At the other half is another scatman, Ralph Setzler, who was out last season after an injury in the opener. Dave Warden, a 200-pounder with a year's experience, is the plunging fullback. These three, however, are the only lettermen backs. The line is deep and steady. At least one veteran returns to every spot. Best bet to shine is senior Center Bill Price, the captain. Price, a varsity player since he was a freshman, weighs only 187 but is rugged. Dole won't get the passing mileage he had last year, but the running and defense should be improved.

1957 SCHEDULE (1956 score):

SEPT. 20 Catawba at Charlotte, N (20-6)
SEPT. 28 at East Carolina, N (no game)
OCT. 5 Citadel (7-34)
OCT. 12 at VMI (13-13)
OCT. 19 West Va. Tech (no game)
OCT. 26 Presbyterian (26-6)
NOV. 9 Wofford (14-27)
NOV. 16 at Richmond (7-0)
NOV. 22 at Furman (13-27)

Greenville, S.C.

COLORS: Purple and white
BASIC OFFENSE: T, with variations
1956 RECORD: Won 2, lost 8
WATCH FOR: Slashing runs of Jerry Penland

THE DOPE: The Purple Hurricane, after huffing and puffing through two bad seasons, is ready to blow down a few rivals this year. Coach Homer B. Hobbs has a half dozen fine players and a long list of lettermen to do it with. The 'Canes were shut out three times and averaged only a touchdown a game last season; this year they're mounting a slashing running attack. Halfback Jerry Penland is the hub; he rushed 579 yards for a 4.7 average last year. To aid him on this attack is veteran Jimmy Grant, a 205-pound fullback. Quarterback is Billy Baker, who jelled into a poised player last season. If the running offense goes lame, he can pass. Up forward, the end and center spots are strongest. Ray Siminski and Dick Pfeifer are a pair of rugged flankers who have five varsity letters between them. Buddy Walton, a 205-pound junior, is solid at center. The biggest trouble is over tackle. Ronnie Brown, a good-sized senior, has nailed down one spot. The other is open, but it looks as if the upstart Sophomore Virgil Gambrell will get the nod. This means Hobbs would bench Don Markofski, a two-year veteran and starter last season. Such foresigns are cheering up the folks at Greenville.

1957 SCHEDULE (1956 score):

SEPT. 14 East Tennessee, N (no game)
SEPT. 21 at Florida State, N (7-42)
SEPT. 28 at Villanova (no game)
OCT. 5 George Washington, N (0-10)
OCT. 12 at South Carolina, N (6-13)
OCT. 19 at Wofford, N (6-18)
OCT. 26 at Citadel, N (7-0)
NOV. 16 Chattanooga (no game)
NOV. 22 Davidson (27-13)
NOV. 30 Clemson (7-28)

Washington, D.C.

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