Dukes embracing challenge of road game at Chattanooga

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HARRISONBURG, Va. -- The No. 2 James Madison football team is preparing for a road game at Chattanooga.

Led by head coach Curt Cignetti, the No. 2 James Madison football team is preparing for a road game at Chattanooga.

The Dukes (2-1) are coming off back-to-back blowout wins at home over Saint Francis and Morgan State. JMU was a heavy favorite in both contests but is now preparing for a different challenge with the Mocs.

Chattanooga is 1-2 on the season and coming off a 45-0 loss at SEC opponent Tennessee. The Mocs are led by first-year head coach Rusty Wright and have a former SEC player at quarterback in Nick Tiano, who transferred to Chattanooga from Mississippi State.

"It's a road challenge," said JMU head coach Curt Cignetti. Any time you go on the road and play a capable team, you gotta play extremely well and do the things you have to do to be successful. I think our guys understand that this team is capable."

Saturday's game against Chattanooga is the first of three straight road contests for the Dukes. JMU will play at Elon in the CAA opener on Sept. 28 before a trip to Long Island, New York to take on Stony Brook on Oct. 5.

"This is the start of a three-week trip where we have to deliver three knockout punches," said Cignetti. "But it's all about (Chattanooga) right now."

Kickoff between JMU and Chattanooga is scheduled for 4 p.m. Saturday at Finley Stadium.