If last week started to show weaknesses in Georgia Southern, this week did not do much to assuage those fears, as it took nearly 60 full minutes for the Eagles to put away a bottomfeeder UL Monroe team that has yet to win a conference game this season.
After taking advantage of some timely turnovers by the Warhawks, 4 in total in fact, the Eagles jumped out to a big 31-7 lead with 2:01 left to go in the first half behind the legs of Jalen White on offense.
For the first time seemingly since Clay Helton took over, Southern was happy to ride White and the running game, and the tailback did not disappoint, finishing with 164 yards and two second quarter scores when all was said and done.
However, the Eagles then either decided to play too conservatively, (or fell asleep, it’s hard to tell which), allowing UL Monroe to inch themselves back into the game while the Eagles had four drives of 5-or-fewer plays after halftime.
ULM slowly got back into the game following a Georgia Southern fumble with 6:52 left in regulation, and Hunter Smith punched in a 20-yard rushing score to cut Southern’s lead to 31-28.
Two drives later, it took a defensive score to seal the game for GS, as Tyrell Davis picked off Jiya Wright and returned it 28 yards and set the final score at 38-28.
It seems that this Georgia Southern offense has lost its mojo after putting up 38 on Coastal Carolina a few weeks ago. The biggest change has been the inefficiency of Davis Brin this past two games, as he finished the game with as many interceptions as touchdowns, with two apiece.
In the last two weeks, Brin has faced off with two bottom-10 passing defenses in the country and hasn’t had much to show for it. His totals against James Madison and ULM have been 51 of 88 (58% completion) for two touchdowns and four interceptions. Woof.
On the UL Monroe side of things, Blake Murphy had a solid game against an Eagles secondary that has also shown deficiencies as of late, as the Warhawks signal caller split series with Wright, but still threw for 320 yards with 1 touchdown and an interception.
ULM will try to rebound and pick up their first conference win against Arkansas State next week, while Georgia Southern will have to be much better if they hope to not get blown out against in-state opponent Georgia State on Thursday night.