Snapshot: first thoughts on Georgia Southern

Okay, other than the fact that they cut block like demons, what else do you know about this week’s opponent?  Here are a few tidbits to consider:

  • GSU is currently ranked sixth in the FCS.  Georgia is the only D-1 team the Eagles face this season.
  • GSU is ninth in total offense in the FCS.  Given the offense run, it won’t surprise you to find that it breaks down to first in rushing and, well, somewhere south of fifty in passing.  (They’ve only attempted 65 passes all season.)
  • On defense, the Eagles are good, but not as good:  18th.  (30th against the run and 28th against the pass.)
  • Sagarin lists GSU 92nd, with a strength of schedule ranking of 180.  That power ranking is better than three teams Georgia has played this season:  Kentucky, Florida Atlantic and Buffalo.  (Before you ask, Sagarin ranks Auburn 84th.)  That doesn’t necessarily mean that Southern is substantially better than those teams, but it likely means that it’s not substantially inferior to them.

One last thing, at least for the moment – being ranked sixth and tied for the lead in the Southern Conference, the Eagles are a lock for the outsized FCS playoffs.  Does that mean they’re going to rest some of their key players in a meaningless bout against a D-1 opponent?  Judging from this story, that seems unlikely.

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32 Comments

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32 responses to “Snapshot: first thoughts on Georgia Southern

  1. Uglydawg

    I would really like to see GSU and GT play each other. I think it would be one of the most interesting match ups you could hope for. It would be great for both teams, as it would give Tech a rare chance to pack it’s stadium.
    It would give both coaches, possibly, a pang of guilt as they realized their own defensive players were in peril of suffering the injuries that they perpetuate weekly on opposing teams………nah!
    But if GSU were to win, this is what Mark B.would take from it…”This proves PJ is a genious. Even he couldn’t figure out how to stop the triple option.
    Seriously, it’s one GT game I would watch…on TV…I wouldn’t go up to ATL and pay.
    I also think GSU would stand an excellent chance of beating GT..and that’s why we’ll probably never see it.

    • I also think GSU would stand an excellent chance of beating GT.

      Why, exactly?

      • Uglydawg

        MTSU…+50 by UNC..Intangables, ie GSU’s tradition.

        • Uglydawg

          I’ll qualify “excellent”. The chances of an upset would be pretty high.Maybe not 50%, but higher than Tech would be comfortable with and high enough to catch my intrest.

        • When’s the last time GSU beat a D-1 team?

          MTSU is a Sun Belt team, BTW, not 1-AA.

          • The984

            It appears the reborn Eagles have never beat a I-A team. They do have a win over Miami back in 1932. Closest thing to a victory over a I-A team was a 2004 win over I-AA Florida International, the year before the Panthers upgraded to I-A.

          • Uglydawg

            The main point of my comment wasn’t to measure GSU’s chances, but to say I think the match-up would be fun…much more competitive than GSU/UGA (I pray!).
            As far as PJ’s chances of still being at GT in 2015, I haven’t noticed any groundswell to get rid of him. (But then, Tech has been pretty good at keeping it’s turmoils under wraps). But If he is gone, Tech will be facing a major overhaul of it’s system that will most likely come with some major adjustment problems. A tripoption is designed around a specific type of player at every position. It’s not easy to turn over a program that is built that-a-way…so any desire to fire PJ is going to be dampened by that problem. There is usually an adjustment with a new coach bringing a new system, but this rebuilding would be monumental..
            Maybe PJ IS a genius. Replacing him could mean moving from perpetual mediocrity to a time of just plain bad.
            Still, my point is the game, if both teams run the trip-op, would intrigue me.

            • The984

              I’ve heard some grumblings (which exist for every coach). However, if he posts two more 6-6 years without beating UGA after this season, he might just well be gone from Tech come 2015. The biggest issue wouldn’t be the offensive transiation but the cash-strapped athletic department paying him out also.

              • Mayor of Dawgtown

                You’d think the Nerds would have learned from the previous basketball situation not to have a coach’s contract with a huge buyout. Some folks never learn, though.

              • Will (the other one)

                There was quite a bit of grumbling after they were shut down on both sides of the ball against BYU. If the UNC game turns out to be a fluke and (let’s all hope) Duke pulls the upset, then we get the honor of denying them even a trip to a crappy bowl.
                There’ll be audible howls from the Trade School if that happens.

    • Jeff Sanchez

      Fish Fry was all butthurt when he was coaching at GSU that the big boys in the state wouldn’t play him. Interesting he hasn’t scheduled a matchup with them now…

  2. AthensHomerDawg

    Interesting stats here in this PDF about knee injuries among college footballers and which positions have been the most vulnerable. I was a little surprised by the fact that 54% of the players that showed up at the 2005 NFL combine had a hx of knee injuries. That and the stat that TE’s have so many knee problems. Have we ever had a TE blow a wheel at Georgia?
    http://www.amjorthopedics.com/PDF/037060310.pdf

    • SSB Charley

      I believe Randy McMichael did his freshman and possibly redshirt freshman years. NaDerris Ward may have too, but he never saw the field before he transferred.

  3. Nate Dawg

    Do people/teams/fans in the D-2 arena complain and/or have concerns about GSU blocking like we do about tech? Anybody know? Just curious here…
    Seems to me if GSU could get a gig with tech every few years and keep the one they have with us – that would be some good “straight cash hommie” for them and maybe win a recruit or 2 that was leaning toward tech – perhaps? And if they could sneak in a win, well then…

    • Go Dawgs

      I don’t see any recruit with a shot at a scholarship at a BCS conference school instead taking a scholarship at an FCS school unless there’s a hardship reason such as a sick mother that lives 15 minutes from the FCS campus.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        So you don’t think that a good but not great player who might be able to play at a BCS doormat like Illinois wouldn’t accept a full ride from an FCS school that wins championships like the Montana Grizzlies? Or Richmond? Or App State?

  4. Go Dawgs

    I hope Georgia brings the same intensity that they’ve brought since the Florida game into this one. These Southern guys embarrassed Alabama last year.

    Now, make sure you’ve got my meaning clear, they didn’t beat Alabama nor did they come close to beating Alabama. But they did embarrass the Crimson Tide by putting up 21 points, big stats and hanging in long after they should have been dispatched. Georgia’s not an undefeated team and as much as Richt is averse to piling up style points (Georgia could have put up 60 on Auburn if he’d wanted to), we definitely need to at least avoid being unstylish if that makes any sense. I don’t want there to be any memories of Georgia sleepwalking through a game against the SoCon champions if it somehow comes down to Kirk Herbstreit doing a live remote from his living room telling voters who to pick for a title game appearance.

    • AthensHomerDawg

      The Eagle’s nearly 8 yards a carry average was more that 2x what anyone else got against Bama’s D. I hope CTG has those boys head in the game.

    • Biggus Rickus

      Maybe you and I define ‘embarrass’ differently, because beating someone by 24 shouldn’t qualify as an embarrassment.

      • Will (the other one)

        The #2 Div1-A team in the country needing to keep its QB in until the final drive of the 4th quarter against any Div1AA school is kind of embarrassing. Not Michigan hosting App State embarrassing, but still. Shouldn’t happen.

    • I recognized your attempt at qualifying embarrassed, but quite frankly, they came nowhere close to that. The game is and was what it was, which is an oddball offense that has simultaneously eliminates ANY chance of winning while also ensuring that it gains enough yardage to put a few points on the board. they are 0-19 against FBS schools Assuming we don’t have a debacle equivalent to UF-ULL or UT-Troy, I tend to think style points this week will matter quite a bit less. That said, given the fact that we basically face the same offense in a game where the score will be scrutinized, I get the sense that our preparation is focused and diligent such that it probably will actually be reasonably stylish. the range of outcomes here is anywhere from 45-10 to 52-21ish kind of scores. I would be shocked if they strung more than 3 TD drives together. Keep in mind this offense has a LOT of fumbles. that is one of the reasons it is no longer mainstream.

      I probably wasted your time reading and my time typing…the bottom line- they are on the schedule. The game almost certainly helps us in our preparation for Tech, but the real prize as we all know is in the Dome in two weeks.

    • Bryant Denny

      We played without our starting NT and that had a big impact on our DL play and our DBs wanted nothing to do with their run blocking.

      Playing GS means playing assignment football and we seemed less than interested last year.

      In my opinion, someone needed their head examined before scheduling them. Me likes Western Carolina a lot better. :)

  5. DawgPhan

    at least the game will be over with quickly…the clock probably wont stop running the whole game.

    would love to kick @ 1 and be listening to post game @ 3:30.

  6. Macallanlover

    Southern will get their rushing yeards against us, probably not as many as they got against Alabama because we have more experience against the TO. Their problem is the same as GT’s not enough diversity on the offensive attack, and the defense isn’t strong enough to limit our offense. It can be an ugly, frustrating game but UGA is better prepared to beat GSU decisively than any other D1 school. I think about 41-17 sounds about right, with playing time for our backups who need that opportunity.

    I have no problem with us playing them at home every 4 years but do not understand how the media in the state of Georgia can give GT a pass for not doing the same. inexcusable, and obvious cowardice. Tech could use the ticket sales that a MTSU pairing doesn’t bring, and it might be more competitive.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      Plus the money goes to another University System of Georgia institution rather than an out of state school. I think we ought to play Southern every year instead of importing cupcakes.

      • The984

        We should definitely try and schedule only Georgia school I-AA programs. Southern (for however long they stay down there). Savannah State. KSU and Mercer (even though not a USG school) once their programs start up. I’d say Georgia State too, but they’re moving up. Keep Georgia money in Georgia.

  7. SouthGa Dawg

    I’ve seen GSU play this year being down here in South Georgia. They run the PJ option better than Tech right now. They believe in it and do it well. Their defense is better than it has been in several years also. Their Achilles Heel this year is fumbles. They have rolled it on the ground a lot this year. I see this game being similar to the Ole Miss game. The first quarter will be interesting…the other three will not.

    • Cojones

      Thank you for a sobering reality post. I’ve heard too much about how we are going to play carefully so as not to get a starter injured, how we can cruise after a while, sub frequently for 2nd and 3rd string experience, etc. This is unusual to look ahead this much and we should tend to the bidness at hand in a serious manner or post an “L” for what many think is a gimme game.

      I’m sure we can find the same confident posts just before the Boise St game last year that were predicated on us kicking their ass and laughing them out of the Dome just as we had done at home several years before. Then, Welcome to the start of our nightmare in Atlanta! We STILL have to worry about showing up unprepared mentally even for this team.

      Someone had better review the games we had with them in the past and see how that translates into lately. That wasn’t a gimmick vs Bama who had a better team last year.

      What happened to Scorpio Jones? Haven’t seen a post in a while from our extra-careful imitator. He had better show up soon or I’m going to do some Fing Scooter business on here. Our “Packin’ Pork” Model will be introduced in Ark soon. Wait until you see the extras.