When: Saturday, October 22, 6:00 p.m. CT
Where: Bobcat Stadium, San Marcos, Texas
TV Broadcast: ESPN3
Stream: Watch ESPN
Radio: AM1300 / 930AM / 89.9FM
Spread: -6 ULL, O/U: 66
Last Meeting: 49-27 ULL (2015)
Last time we left the Bobcats they were teetering on the edge of uncertainty in regards to their identity. Now after a near comeback 6 point loss at the hands of the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks the Bobcats must acquire a amnesiac’s mind and forget last weekend’s loss and turn their attention to their other Louisiana rival the Ragin’ Cajuns of Louisiana-Lafayette.
The first half of last week’s game vs. ULM echoed Texas State’s performance of two weeks ago vs. Georgia State— a fast start and a deficit at halftime. But the Texas State defense stepped up behind a pick six by Stan Kanu and a fumble returned for a touchdown by Damani Alexcee. The turnovers gave the Bobcats their best defensive performance by far this year. Tyler Jones added another touchdown run but the final drive of the game stalled and left the Bobcats with a six-point loss that ended the comeback.
Rushing Revolution or Rushing or Stalin?
Texas State came into last week’s game dead last in rushing in the nation and that enabled the Bobcats offense to become a pass happy threat but against ULM the tides turned. Behind sophomore running back Stedman Mayberry’s season best 87 yards and quarterback Tyler Jones’ 2 rushing touchdowns the Bobcats showed a side they hadn’t shown all year, a solid ground game. Mayberry actually had 87 yards last week but it only took him 11 carries against ULM as opposed to 26 carries against Georgia State. Tyler Jones finally looked like the, well, Tyler Jones of last season by having a steady rushing performance. Louisiana-Lafayette’s defense has been giving up 129 rushing yards per game which is good for 25th in the nation. For the Bobcats to have an advantage over ULL they must have another consistent rushing performance.
Defense has been inconsistent in San Marcos for quite a while hence the cheese reference (as in swiss cheese) as exemplified in the ULM game last week. Missed tackles, soft coverage and too much time given to quarterbacks have plagued the Bobcat defense. Monroe quarterback Garrett Smith was injured in the second quarter and backup William Collins came in relief and threw an incredible touchdown on his first throw. It seems no matter who they face quarterbacks have been able to play Texas State and have career games. But gasp! The Bobcat defense had two takeaways for scores which prompted the Bobcat comeback. A lesson taken away from last week’s game is that no matter how the offense is rolling the defense showed the ability to score at will.
In order for Texas State to win they must not turnover the ball as they did against ULL. The offensive line must play well as they have consistently all year and battle in the trenches to give the offense a chance to succeed. ULL has a stud in Elijah McGuire (560 yards, 3 touchdowns) and the Texas State defense must not only plug the holes against a dangerous back but also be more consistent on tackles. Tyler Jones only passed for 189 against ULM but look for Texas State to get back to what they are best at, passing at a fast-paced rhythm and giving the defense second guesses and no second wind. Texas State 36-17.