So. Let me show you a series of offensive plays and tell me if you notice a trend.
What you are witnessing here is an offensive scheme commonly known as "wait out the pass rush just long enough for the secondary to lose track of or get beat by the tight end.
This is how you wind up allowing a tight end who came into this game with 45 career receptions to rattle off 10 catches for 154 yards. Keith Rucker was repeatedly wide open either from just running past his man or making a quick cutback to the ball.
Rucker was one of three Georgia State receivers to average at least 13 yards per reception as Nick Arbuckle tossed his way to 29 completions for 368 yards and two scores. Toss in 29 carries for 138 yards for Glenn Smith and Taz Bateman and you've got yourself some strong offensive production.
O.K., let's try that video challenge again.
O.K. So just one video this time, but you saw Brandon SIlvers just launching the ball on a go route to Ismail Saleem, who had caught one pass in the last six games and was never at any point open. Granted, that's as much a good play by Jerome Smith as anything, but I'm not sure why you would just throw up a prayer to such a green receiver that early on in the game.
The game was full of similar miscues for the Trojans, which started with forcing a fumble on the Panthers' opening possession and then doing nothing with the ball but losing three yards and then missing a long field goal.
At the half it was still close, as Troy had now missed two field goals but trailed by only ten points, but that was as close as it would get the rest of the way. Troy is still young and inconsistent - a large part of why they are 3-8 now - but there are still numerous things to build on for next week and next season
Meanwhile, holy crap, folks. Georgia State stays alongside New Mexico State in the "undefeated in November" category, and they can now achieve bowl eligibility with a win over Georgia Southern next week. The Eagles will likely still be favored, but a Panther team on a three-game win streak and that has given up more than 21 points only once in its last six games has a non-zero chance in this one. Which is more than we've ever been able to say before.