Decent race and probably your best bet for a fast race in West Virginia being flat and expected cooler temps (not in 2017 though). Really nice Asics half-zip shirt (despite angry people on Facebook that it wasn't a jacket) and nice medal. They even hand you a football to carry across the goal line for the finish. I fumbled mine as it was patent leather material and I was a sweaty mess at that point. Award winners just collect their award outside the stadium. Age group place scored me a glass leaf bowl thingy. I suppose it will get more use than a medal or plaque, maybe.
Course was extremely flat with only 2 notable hills of maybe 15ft. There is a lot of 2 way traffic on along the course, including a tight section on the riverwalk, and you can catch slower half marathoners on the 2nd loop. There a nice gravel trail section miles 6-9 and 19-22 that was quite pretty, especially with the leaves falling. Most of the rest of the course is forgettable.
The section through the college (marathon only) was a bit confusing both times, but the course was fairly well marked. There were at least a couple of guys that thought you run the 2nd loop backwards though.
It should be a very good setup for fast times. Unfortunately the weather was unseasonably warm in 2017. 65F at the start and almost no cloud cover during the race. Temps reached close to 80F for the 4+ hour marathoners. The gravel trail was the only area with shade.
They had a free pasta dinner that ended at 5:30? It was about what you'd expect from a free pasta dinner. Stayed at Fairfield Inn just a few minutes outside of town. Arrived at the stadium to park around 6am and got a spot within 100yds of the start line. Need to keep you stuff in your car as there is no gear check.
By EMR about 2011
Great small town marathon. Carrying a football and running the final 100 yards on Marshall Football field is nice touch. Very moving dropping a flower on the memorial within the Marshall campus. Indoor bathrooms before race. Grilled burgers after race.
It is a flat two loop course. There is a lovely 3 miles section (run twice thru Ritter Park) that is great. I dressed warmly fior the cold start then peeled off clothes and dropped them on my car at the half way point.