Start Time: 7:00 pm. Saturday, December 19
Location: Citrus Bowl, Orlando, FL
TV: CBS Sports Network
Line: San Jose State -3; Over/Under 56
When Georgia State has the ball
Georgia State has grown up so fast. To think, 2010 marked the first season in program history. Then, they moved up to FBS in 2013. Now, just two short years later, the Panthers find themselves in the postseason for the first time ever.
The 2015 season has already been wildly successful for Georgia State, so making the Cure Bowl is just gravy at this point.
Offensively, quarterback Nick Arbuckle leads the Panthers. Arbuckle has thrown for 4,160 yards and 26 touchdowns on the season. The Spartans have the best pass defense in the Mountain West, allowing only 153.6 yards per game, but Arbuckle and the Panthers represent a big step up in quality. His main targets are receivers Penny Hart (71 rec, 1095 yds, 8 TD) and Robert Davis (60 rec, 979 yds, 6 TD). The fun doesn't end there for the Spartan defense, as they'll also have to contend with running back Kyler Neal. Neal has rushed for 323 yards and five touchdowns on the year.
When San Jose State has the ball
This might come as a surprise, but the Spartans have been a little inconsistent this season. They average just 28 points and 414 yards per game, which ranks them third from the bottom in the Mountain West. Luckily, the Georgia State defense has struggled at times as well this season.
Much of the inconsistency this season for SJSU was due to a quarterback carousel, with senior Joe Gray getting most of the snaps early in the season before turning the job over to junior Kenny Potter. Potter has been serviceable behind center, throwing for 1895 yards and 14 touchdowns compared to just six interceptions.
The Spartans best weapon has been running back Tyler Ervin, and he'll be central to SJSU's plans tomorrow. Ervin has rushed for 1469 yards on 264 carries for 13 touchdowns this season, while Potter has added six rushing touchdowns of his own.
The advanced stats seem to indicate a fairly even matchup, which should make for a pretty exciting game. Georgia State's offense can light it up, and even though the Spartans have one of the better defenses in their conference, they haven't faced anyone the caliber of Arbuckle all year long. More importantly, the Panthers are simply the hotter team right now, with the added motivation of looking to win the program's first ever bowl trophy. All that adds up to a Georgia State victory.
Georgia State 31 - San Jose State 17