Start Time: 3 p.m. EST, Nov. 13
Location: Bobcat Stadium, San Marcos, Tx.
Weather: 69 degrees and sunny, 5 mph winds
Records: Georgia Southern 2-7 (1-5 Sun Belt), Texas State 3-6 (2-3 Sun Belt)
Betting Line: Texas State -2; O/U 53.5
Georgia Southern Outlook
Last week’s ugly blowout loss to a visiting Coastal Carolina squad was a perfect example of how Georgia Southern’s season has unfolded thus far.
In a home game with weather that looked like The Perfect Storm, the Eagles surrendered 28 to the Chanticleers, despite Grayson McCall being injured and never taking a snap. 21 of those points given up came before halftime. It’s one thing for Southern’s worst-in-the-country secondary to get beat for touchdowns, but Coastal just punched GS in the mouth on both sides of the ball for nearly four full quarters.
Bryce Carpenter only needed to throw for 85 yards against the Eagles to secure a 20-point win, and Georgia Southern’s only real bright spot was a touchdown drive orchestrated by freshman quarterback Cam Ransom, which came with the game firmly out of reach.
According to interim coach Kevin Whitley, Ransom has presumably done enough to earn an outright start over Justin Tomlin — in game 10 of a season that was decided when the team mailed in an effort against South Alabama earlier this year.
I truly believe Ransom gives the Eagles their best chance to win this game outright, but even if he doesn’t — who cares?
Does the difference between a 2 or 3 win season really matter to anyone at this point?
Because Southern isn’t defeating either BYU or rival Appalachian State over the next two weeks. They might as well get the younger, higher ceiling player some game reps so the program can assess him heading into 2022 with a new coaching regime taking over.
Offensively, coordinator Doug Ruse should be ready to pull out all the stops against a Bobcats team that signals the Eagles final chance to win a game this season.
Texas State Outlook
It’s been a very uneven season in San Marcos, as Texas State has sandwiched 3 wins in between consecutive losses multiple times this year. If the pattern that has developed holds, the Bobcats should lose their next 3 games in a row to close out the year.
The quarterback position has been a point of contention all year, as Brady McBride has fought injuries and apparently lost his starting spot to dual-threat signal caller Tyler Vitt, at least for the time being.
Vitt has been better with his feet than his arm so far this year, rushing for 6.2 yards per carry while completing just 50 percent of his passes. His first start of the season against Louisiana was particularly challenging, finishing 6-of-13 for 47 yards and an interception in a 45-0 blowout loss.
The new QB rebounded well in last week’s 27-19 win over UL Monroe, and should be able to find open throwing lanes against the aforementioned worst passing defense in the FBS this Saturday.
The one sticking point for Texas State is that their defense has not done a good job of keeping opposing offenses off the scoreboard this season, allowing 33.4 points per game — good for 111th in the country this year.
Georgia Southern’s defense is not good either, surrendering 31.8 points per contest (106th), so expect to see some points scored in this matchup.
Since Ransom is starting, I think the Eagles do enough to pull off the upset. Texas State looks similar to Georgia Southern’s only conference win this year (Arkansas State) from a defensive perspective.
From a betting standpoint, I feel fairly confident taking the over of 53.5. I think this one is a track meet for both teams.
Final Score: Georgia Southern 31, Texas State 28