Following a tight first quarter that saw Georgia Southern and Georgia State tied at 7-7, the Eagles seized control and steamrolled a hapless Panthers defense to the tune of 352 total yards and a 38-10 win for Southern.
Running back J.D. King has to be the game’s most valuable player in this one, rushing for 107 yards on 16 carries (6.7 yards per carry) and three touchdowns to help anchor the Georgia Southern offense in the blowout win.
Eagles signal-caller Shai Werts was almost equally valuable, completing 70 percent of his passes for 73 yards, while also rushing for 55 yards and a touchdown in the 28-point victory. Wesley Kennedy III was also a major factor in Georgia Southern’s offensive attack, rolling up 78 yard and a score of his own on 11 carries.
On the other side, Panthers quarterback Dan Ellington did what he could with his bum knee, throwing for 182 yards, but showed an inability to push the ball down the field and take advantage of the safety play of Southern, which had been a sore spot for GS in the previous few weeks.
Running back Tra Barnett was a factor on the opening drive for Georgia State, but was quickly bottled up on subsequent drives, finishing with 53 yards and a touchdown on the ground in the loss.
It looked as though State would get out to a hot start following a opening offensive drive that ended in a trip to the end zone, but as had been the case all year at Paulson, the Eagles defense began stacking up and preventing the Panthers from doing much of anything on offense, and held State under 300 offensive yards.
On the Georgia State front, the Panthers should also get a bowl bid, and it has to be assumed Ellington will try to gut out one final try behind center in his final collegiate game.
All-in-all, it was a great win for a Southern team that had gone 1-2 over its previous 3 games, and the Eagles close the season with a victory having completely shut down the Panthers. GS will head to a bowl yet to be determined, but if it plays with this same fire it brought in this game, it should come away with a win.