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Georgia Southern’s comeback bid falls short as Troy upends Eagles, 27-24

It turns out being down 21 in the third quarter hurts your chances of winning. Who knew?

Georgia Southern v Arkansas Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Georgia Southern tried to overcome a stinker of a first half and rally from a 24-3 third quarter deficit against Troy on Saturday night, but came up just short, falling by a 27-24 final score when it was all said and done.

The Eagles struggled to run the ball all night, mustering just 82 yards on the ground as a team, led by Gerald Green with 33. Georgia Southern quarterback Justin Tomlin was not good in this game at all, throwing 3 interceptions, including 2 on Southern’s penultimate and final drives of the game to help seal the win for Troy.

I still do not know what offensive coordinator Doug Ruse is doing by letting Tomlin chuck the ball 22 times in a game when a superior passer in Cam Ransom is standing on the sideline. This loss should serve as a wake up call for this team that the 2021 season is a over, and Ransom should start moving forward to get valuable game experience while GS is competing for a low-tier bowl game at best.

On the other side of the field, Troy named Gunnar Watson the starter in this one, and Watson started the game off hot and ended up throwing for 270 yards and two scores in the victory.

Trojans running back Jamontez Woods gashed Southern’s defensive front to the tune of 98 yards on just 9 carries, including a 34-yard touchdown scamper in the second quarter to set the 17-3 halftime score.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 21 Middle Tennessee at Troy
Gunnar Watson got the start for Troy in place of Taylor Powell, and tossed 2 TD’s in the win.
Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The home team had the visiting Eagles team looking helpless in the first half, building up a 14-point advantage heading into halftime. Once again, Southern’s secondary looked absolutely lost for the first two quarters of the game and that, shockingly, can hurt a team’s chances of winning.

Someone should tell them that.

The Eagles began to show some life starting midway through the third quarter, as Logan Wright cashed in on a 1 yard touchdown run. Southern eventually ripped off 21 unanswered, but two disastrous final drives led by Tomlin dropped GS to a 2-4 record for the season.

Again, this season is essentially over for Southern. The only thing the team from Statesboro can hope to do is get its younger players experience in game situations and to maybe play spoiler to a superior team later in the year while it waits on its next coaching regime to be put in place.

Hopefully the next head coach in place for the Eagles has a cohesive view of what he would like the offense to be, because as of right now Ruse and company have a mish-mash of concepts and decision-making that does not compute to a regular viewer of the sport.

For Troy, this win may have helped stave off the hot seat for Chip Lindsey for another week, although defeating a team that fired its head coach 4 weeks into the year shouldn’t be hailed as some grandiose accomplishment.