Standout performers for each OVC football team


Sandy King | Eastern Athletics

Eastern safety Jordan Vincent (1) prepares to make attempt a tackle on a Dayton ball carrier in Eastern’s 17-10 loss on Sept. 11.

Adam Tumino, Sports Editor

Conference season for the OVC football teams starts this weekend, and each team has players that performed well nonconference play. 

Let’s take a look at one of the top performers for each OVC team as they prepare for the games that matter the most. 


Tennessee-Martin, RB Peyton Logan

Tennessee-Martin went 2-1 in nonconference play, and their wins were in large part due to the Skyhawks’ running game, which is led by senior Peyton Logan. 

He has 301 rushing yards so far this season and is coming off a performance against Northwestern State where he ran for 179 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. 

He is also averaging over 10 yards per carry so far. 


Austin Peay, QB Draylen Ellis

The No. 19 Governors have been the best team in the OVC so far, and sophomore quarterback Draylen Ellis has been the top quarterback in the conference as well. 

Ellis was named OVC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year and is living up to that prediction. 

He is 67-of-109 passing for 898 yards, 8 touchdowns and just 2 interceptions. He leads the conference in passing touchdowns by 4 and passing yards by 302. 


Murray State, QB Preston Rice

Rice has struggled passing so far this season for the Racers. He is tied for the conference lead with 6 interceptions and has yet to throw a touchdown.
However, he is tied for the OVC lead with 5 rushing touchdowns. Four of these scores came in one game for Rice, a 35-0 win over Mississippi Valley. 

He became the first quarterback in Racer history to run for 4 touchdowns in a game. 


Tennessee State, K Antonio Zita

Zita has been one of the best kickers in OVC history. Unsurprisingly, his 4 field goals this season lead the conference.

Last weekend against Kentucky State, Zita became just the fourth kicker in OVC history to make 50 career field goals, and his 62-yarder last season is the longest in conference history and 1-yard shy of the FCS record. 


Southeast Missouri, LB Jacob Morrisey

The Redhawks’ defense has struggled as a unitso far, allowing the most points and yards per game in the conference this season.

But sophomore linebacker Jacob Morrisey has performed well, tied for the OVC lead with 2 sacks and ranking 14th with 5.7 tackles per game. 

His 22 sack yards are the most in the conference.


Tennessee Tech, DB Josh   Reliford

The OVC’s leading tackler this season is Tennessee Tech defensive back Josh Reliford. 

The redshirt junior is averaging 9 total tackles per game. He had 11 tackles in the Golden Eagles’ opener against Samford and in their most recent game against Tennessee.

So far, he has doubled his tackles per game from last season.

He also has 3 pass breakups this season, tied for second in the OVC.


Eastern, S Jordan Vincent

Vincent started all six games last season and recorded 25 total tackles. In four games this season, he already has 29. 

He ranks fourth in the OVC with 7.2 tackles per game and had 12 tackles in the Panthers third game of the season against Dayton. 

His 21 solo tackles this season are the most in the conference, three more than the next closest player. 

He also has 1.5 tackles for loss this season and a pair of pass breakups. 


Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]