There were a lot of question marks heading into Troy’s Sun Belt Conference game with Florida International on Saturday. The biggest possibly was the production the Trojans would get from backup quarterback Deon Anthony.
The junior college transfer from New Iberia, Miss., has played regularly giving Troy a mobile alternative to starter Corey Robinson. What Anthony proved on Saturday was that he could carry the offense on his shoulder and more importantly lead the team to victory.
Anthony was 29-for-41 passing for 245 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran 19 times for 115 yards and two scores.
The most impressive showing by Anthony was during Troy’s final drive which started at the Trojans own 6 trailing 37-35. Anthony completed three of four passes included a critical 13-yard connection to Shawn Southward on a third and 19 to set up Will Scott‘s 42-yard field goal to give Troy its first and only lead of the game with 11 seconds left in the game. Anthony had taken a sack the play before putting Troy’s field goal hopes in jeopardy with 16 seconds remaining. With the team’s back against the wall, Anthony looked downfield, but thought better of forcing a deep throw. He dumped the ball off to Southward slipping out of the backfield. Southward them scampered to the FIU 25 and out of bounds.
“We never got down on each other,” Anthony said of the final drive. “The team had confidence in me and I had confidence in them. We knew we had to make plays.”
Anthony entered the game 20-for-30 for 281 yards in six previous contests.
In the first quarter, Anthony took off on a quarterback draw. He would score from 33 yards out marking the longest rushing touchdown of the season for the Trojans.
Troy head coach Larry Blakeney on Anthony:
“Well I’m glad he’s here. We’ve played him and I think the ability to play him in conjunction with Corey has given him a chance to warm up to the level of competition. His guys helped him, but he made all kinds of plays. I’m sure our team is proud of him to help us get in a position to win the game.”
FIU head coach Mario Cristobal on Anthony:
“He breaks sometimes and the other ones we’ve got to wrap up and get a chance to get him on the ground. Credit him for being a tough athletic guy making a play.”