The Akron Zips football team will host the Troy Trojans at InfoCision Stadium on Saturday.
The game (3 p.m. ET start time) won’t be on regular TV anywhere, but you can watch it right here on ESPN+, the digital streaming service from ESPN that has exclusive coverage of most Sun Belt and MAC football games every week, other college football and live sports, all the 30-for-30 documentaries and additional original content (both video and written) all for $4.99 per month.
You can sign up for ESPN+ right here, and you can then watch Troy vs Akron live on your computer via ESPN.com, or on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or other streaming device via the ESPN app.
Troy vs Akron Preview
The Trojans pounded the Campbell Camels 43-14 in their season opener, then fell to the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles 47-42 their last time out.
Senior running back B.J. Smith, the Sun Belt’s preseason offensive player of the year, suffered a knee injury in the defeat. On Tuesday, head coach Chip Lindsey announced the injury would require surgery and keep Smith out for the season.
“That’s a huge blow for us because he’s a great player, but an even better person and leader for our team,” Lindsey said, according to the Dothan Eagle. “He’ll still be a very good leader for us and doing all that, but we’re heartbroken over his injury.
“At the same time, it’s college football and the next man has to be ready. We have some guys who will get some opportunities now. We wish B.J. the best in his recovery and hopefully we can get him back healthy as soon as we can, even though it won’t be this year.”
Troy will turn to redshirt sophomore DK Billingsley as their first-string back. Against the Golden Eagles, he ran in a 2-yard touchdown and led the team with nine carries and 41 rushing yards, adding a pair of catches for 20 yards.
“I hate it that B.J. got hurt. I was bummed about it just to see my buddy go down,” Billingsley said, per the Dothan Eagle. “He was going to have a really great season. He’s definitely in my prayers and the prayers of the other guys, too.”
The Zips are winless in three tries, having sandwiched road losses to the Illinois Fighting Illini and the Central Michigan Chippewas around a home defeat to the UAB Blazers.
Akron has averaged 257 yards through the air per game, tied for 54th out of the nation’s 130 FBS teams. But they’re 129th in both rushing yards per game (46) and yards per carry (1.4).
“We’re looking at it from a coaching perspective and different things we can do to help the running game,” Zips head coach Tom Arth said, according to Ohio.com. “That’s an area you have to keep on working on. Unfortunately, with the situations our games have gotten into, that ability to keep running it has gotten away and we hopefully won’t put ourselves in a position like that.”
He added: “At the end of the day, we have guys fighting their tails off week in and week out, and I don’t know what everyone expects, what everyone expects from them, but what I expect is them to play as hard as they can play and they’re giving us that.”