Georgia Southern appeared only in principle on Thursday night against maybe the worst (or second-worst with the Eagles included) Sun Belt team, and essentially slept-walked through a double overtime win against South Alabama by a score of 20-17.
Before I get into the breakdown of this game, I just want to go on the record and say that Eagles’ offensive coordinator Bob DeBesse should have been fired before he left Mobile last night.
Athletic Director Tom Kleinlein looks at this stage like he is 1-for-3 on successfully hiring head coaches, and ran off the one successful head coach he lucked into hiring by refusing to pay Willie Fritz. Kleinlein somehow decided that money was better spent on paying Tyson Summers not to coach Southern after losing 10 straight games in 2017, leading to what we have seen this season.
I would have some hope that Kleinlein could potentially be fired, but Georgia Southern’s university president seat resembles more of a turnstile at a theme park than it does a stable job.
The Eagles were embarrassing in nearly every facet of the game, holding the ball for over 40 minutes of game time and only scoring 20 points while having to go into two extra periods since its offense is so stagnant and inept.
South Alabama’s quarterback play had been dreadful through four games so far before last night, and GS’s secondary made Jaguars QB Cephus Johnson look like a clone of Patrick Mahomes on a pair of throws.
I’d love to dive more in depth with this game, but there’s not a lot to get into. South Alabama scored 14 of its 17 points on just two long plays, with Johnson hitting Kawaan Baker and Jalen Tolbert for a pair of long passing scores. The Jaguars did little of anything else other than watching Southern’s offensive skill players bang into their own offensive linemen.
With all of this said, Eagles quarterback Shai Werts looked like he was playing a game of 1 against 11, with none of the offensive line or wide receivers really helping him out over the course of 60-plus minutes. Werts gutted out 102 yards on 20 carries, leading the team in rushing.
In the two games he has been back, Werts looks like the only player on the team that seems concerned whether they win or lose on a weekly basis. Either this team is simply untalented, or maybe it just does not care.
The defense of Southern waited until the second overtime period to force the first turnover of the game, as Randy Wade Jr. stripped the Jaguars’ quarterback, and Eagles kicker Tyler Bass nailed a 37-yarder to win the game after previously whiffing on two other attempts on the night.
From here, South Alabama will most likely win another game or two against Texas State and/or Georgia State, topping out at 3 wins at most this season.
Georgia Southern resembles more of the 2017 team that lost 10 consecutive games and got Summers fired than it does last season’s 10-win squad.
Ideally, the Eagles should be looking for a new athletic director, maybe a new head coach and definitely a new offensive coordinator in that order.