Game Time: 7 pm Saturday November 9th 2019
Location: Williams-Brice Stadium, Columbia South Carolina
Radio: Appalachian Sports Network
Previous Meeting: SC won 35-9 in 1988
All Time: SC leads all time 8-1
Spread: -6 SC, O/U 51
The Appalachian State Mountaineers will walk into Columbia licking their wounds after a 24-21 loss to Georgia Southern last Thursday night in Boone that saw the Mountaineers lose their chance at the Cotton Bowl along with their top 25 ranking for the second year in a row. Weather along with an open gate of a defense led to the downfall for the Mountaineers on Halloween night and now they find themselves behind the eight ball.
Zac Thomas was so-so to the tune of 25-51 for 271 yards and 3 TDs a week ago, but a lot of drops and bad throws spelled doom on the offensive end. Georgia Southern stacked the line of scrimmage and limited App State to a season low 152 yards on the ground. It wont get any easier this week because South Carolina has 6-foot-6, 310-pound defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw leading the SC D-line.
Senior linebacker T.J. Brunson leads the Gamecocks with 66 tackles on the season and fellow Linebacker Ernest Jones is on the same level this season with 65 tackles. Cornerback Israel Mukuamu has four interceptions on the season and is the best secondary player for the unit.
App State saw a run heavy team in Georgia Southern a week ago and now will line up across from a South Carolina team that is about as balanced as a team can get. The Gamecocks are averaging 27.2 points, 224.7 passing yards and 184.6 rushing yards per game and QB Ryan Hillinski has played well with 10 TDs to just 3 INTs. On the ground South Carolina has had 5 different guys enjoy 100 yard days this year but Tavien Feaster has led the way with 625 yards and 5 TDs.
South Carolina poses different challenges than what North Carolina brought to the table back in September but just the experience along with success against a Power 5 opponent will help. South Carolina hasn’t been stellar this season, as losing lopsided to Tennessee and beating Vandy a week ago is about as up and down as it gets.
Hopefully App State having the extra few days to prepare will help but SC still has the athlete advantage and in the end I think that’s what will play the difference. It’s close and App plays well but in the end SC walks out with the W.