Every game in college football is important, but every year there are always certain games that just mean more than others. Whether it’s a conference foe or an in-state battle, certain games take on a special role and drives the fan bases in by the bus loads to cheer their hearts out for their team to have bragging rights or recruiting pulls towards better prospects.
App State has 4 games in 2019 that stand out. Early non-conference battles against in state foes Charlotte and North Carolina stand out, along with a Halloween showdown at “The Rock” against arch rival Georgia Southern, and a late season battle against South Carolina from the SEC round out the four most invested games outside of a possible Sun Belt Championship or bowl game for 2019.
Lets look at what a win and a loss would mean for Appalachian in each matchup. I want to hear from you the fans at the end about which game you want to win the most.
Sept. 7th - Charlotte
With A Win - A win against UNCC does not do much if anything for Appalachian State on a national level, however on a state level it means a lot. The two fan bases are always chirping back and forth on social media and with recent AAC expansion talks things have heated back up between the two. App should always win a game against Charlotte, and last year proved that right now App State is just better, no matter how 49er fans try to size it up. Recruitment plays well with a win here too, as both schools recruit the Charlotte metro area.
With A Loss - A Loss to Charlotte would be a complete gut shot to the 2019 season for App State. Losing to a team you shouldn't is never a good thing but after beating this same team 45-9 a year ago with 80% of the same players returning, anything other than a three score win could be worrisome. A loss also fuels Charlotte’s “We belong in the AAC over you” banter, and would also be a big feather in the cap for UNCC on the recruiting trail.
Sept. 21st - @ UNC
With A Win - The game I am personally most excited for is this matchup against the Tar Heels. Everybody knows App tried to get UNC to play them while the Mountaineers were in the FCS and the Heels never would agree out of fear of losing to a 1-AA team back in the mid 2000’s. Fast forward ten plus years and here we are with another chance for App State to take on an in-state ACC opponent. The power 5 games the past few years have been games that App State had been unable to close out when it mattered most and they have a chance to get over that hump again here. A win here boosts the claims of App State being the best team in the state, and hands a legendary and former App State head coach Mack Brown a loss to his alma mater, not to mention the free fall the UNC football program will continue to be in.
With A Loss - The narrative of the past three years remain that App State can hang with the big boys but can’t put them away. Carolina’s record and performance up to this game will depend on if they are favored at home against App or not. Carolina won’t gain a whole lot nationally with a win over a Sun Belt team, but it will give them an added boost before their big Thursday night showdown against defending national champs Clemson.
Oct. 31st - Georgia Southern
With A Win - We all know what a win means here, REDEMPTION. 2018 was a disaster for Appalachian when they went into Statesboro as the 25th ranked team in the country before losing their starting QB, LB and ultimately the program’s first top 25 ranking in a lopsided loss. This game is also big in the march towards a Sun Belt east division crown, as App and Southern are two of the top three teams in the division looking to host the Sun Belt championship game. Recruitment also plays a factor here as both teams are heavily focused on the Georgia and Florida areas of the southeast.
With A Loss - A loss means App probably won’t have a shot at a Sun Belt championship for 2019. Southern fans will also have back to back years of major bragging rights over App fans and Southern will take the driver’s seat in the East division. Also any chance at a possible NY6 Bowl game goes flying out the window and the Mountaineers are sent back to try and go for the New Orleans bowl at best for 2019.
Nov. 9th - @ South Carolina
With A Win - Another SEC foe sits on the docket for App State in 2019. The Mountaineers will try to do what they couldn't do at Rocky Top two years ago and pull the upset. A win here is a huge spark in the form of momentum heading into an upcoming Thanksgiving showdown with Troy in what could be for the Sun Belt east division championship. Any time you are a G5 school and you get a shot at an SEC upset you take it no matter where they rank in the conference. A win here also could be what sends Will Muschamp packing if the Gamecocks have had a rough season. A win could land App State in the top 25.
With A Loss - Refer back to my response for North Carolina to fill this out. The narrative stays the same. The one argument will be if South Carolina and App beats North Carolina early in the first game of the year this game would mean a little bit more with some regional bragging to be had outside of Clemson.
Again all games matter in college football but for App State I feel like these are four easy games to look at in 2019. Which one do you want to win more? Sound off below!
Which Game Do App Fans Want To Win More In 2019?
This poll is closed