In 2022, Old Dominion football went in an opposite direction from 2021. Fans hoped to see Old Dominion carry the end-of-season momentum over to 2022, but with the Sun Belt changes, it just didn't happen. The Monarchs also lost some key players, such as WR Ali Jennings and QB Hayden Wolff.
OLD DOMINION FOOTBALL 2023 PREVIEW
THE CONF.: SBC Sun Belt Conference
2022 RECORD: 3-9 overall, 2-6 Sun Belt
CONF. FINISH: 7th in the East Division
HEAD COACH: Ricky Rahne, 3rd year, 9-16
FIVE ALL-STAR CANDIDATES: Jason Henderson, Jr./LB (186 total tackles); Terry Jones, Sr./S (63 total tackles); Javon Harvey, Jr./WR (558 YDS, 4 TD); Tahj Ra-El, Jr./S (40 total tackles); Denzel Lowry, Soph./DT (35 total tackles)
THE NEWCOMER: Sayyid Stevens, redshirt junior/LB (played 3 games with Duke in 2022)
The quarterback situation is probably the most concerning element within Old Dominion football. Hayden Wolff went to Michigan and both Brandon Clark and DJ Mack are finished. Grant Wilson comes from Fordham, proposing one option. There's also the chance that someone new comes along, or that Jack Shields gets in some games.
Amongst the list of departures are OT Nick Saldiveri and OT Khadere Kounta, who leave room for Keshawn Wicks to shine. The Monarchs also said goodbye to playmakers TE Zack Kuntz and WR Ali Jennings III. With all these losses, there is a glimmer of hope. WR Ahmarian Granger may see an opportunity open here. There's also new offensive coordinator Kevin Decker from Fordham. He could be a gift to the offense, as he led Division I in offensive yardage last season.
The defensive line had some players peace out too, like DT Alonzo Ford and DT Chazz Walace. DT Jahlil Taylor transferred from North Carolina which may help fill that gap. LB Jason Henderson is a solid piece too, as he led the nation in tackles per game. If the defensive line can build up some depth, it could be promising. There will just be a lot of pressure on the starting lineup.
THE KEY GAME AND WHY
The schedule is a tough one. Many losses are easy to predict, though the game against Georgia State (Nov. 25) may be an interesting one. It's the last game on the schedule and could be a win for ODU. Although, if Georgia State fixes what caused them to have so many close losses last season, it could go the other way.
THE TOUGHEST GAME AND WHY
One of the toughest games will be at Marshall (Sept. 30). They have a much stronger defense and will likely make offensive improvements also.
THE CHANCES OF OLD DOMINION MAKING CONF. TITLE GAME
This will be Old Dominion's second season in the Sun Belt Conference. It's certainly a stacked conference, which doesn't do ODU any favors. With games against Appalachian State, Marshall, and James Madison, it is unlikely that Old Dominion football will see the championship.
Old Dominion will go 3-9. The biggest determining factor will be the quarterback situation, along with depth that needs building.
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