It is a Thursday night battle between the Sun Belt East Georgia Southern Eagles (4-1 Overall, 2-0 Sun Belt) and the Sun Belt West Texas State Bobcats (1-4 Overall, 0-2 Sun Belt). Georgia Southern is tied for second with Appalachian State in their division. The Texas State Bobcats are last in the Sun Belt West. The Eagles come to this game with a two-game winning streak, while the Bobcats have lost three in a row. Our 2018 Georgia Southern plays Texas State pick has the Eagles at -17.5 and the over/under at 52.5.
Eagles Run Against Weak Bobcat Ground D
The Eagles average a mere 80 yards per game in passing, however, they rush for 275.2 YPG. Sophomore QB Shai Werts has eight rushing TDs. He’s run for a total of 454 yards over 85 carries while averaging 5.3 YPA. At the same time, he’s completed 19 of 35 passes for 363 yards, four TDs and no INTs. Two seniors serve as the team’s primary running backs. Wesley Fields (70 ATT, 379 YDs, 5.4 YPA, 3 TDs) is the main guy who handles the ball, and Monteo Garrett (44 ATT, 253 YDs, 5.8 YPA, 3 TDs) comes in a close second. Plus, there’s sophomore Wesley Kennedy III (13 ATT, 155 YDs, 11.9 YPA, 1 TD), who leads the team in receptions with seven. Kennedy is averaging 21.7 YPC.
We expect the Eagles to do well against the Cats rush D. The Bobcats 168.4 running yards per game. Texas State will look to LB Frankie Griffin to control the Georgia Southern ground attack. He leads the team with 5.5 TFL. The team has 25 TFL. They’ve also posted seven forced fumbles, recovering three. Texas State is allowing 32.6 YPG, while the Eagles are averaging 30.8 YPG on offense.
Texas State Passing vs. Stingy Georgia Southern Defense
Of Texas States 352.2 yards per game of offense, 215.6 has been through the air. Although the Bobcats have averaged 24.4 PPG, they are going up against a defense that is allowing 18.2 YPG. The Eagle defense has defended 21 passes and made six picks. They’ve also forced seven fumbles and recovered five. They’ve also posted 11 sacks and 22 TFL. This is a fairly tough defense.
State features two QBs, sophomore Willie Jones III (59.1 COMP%, 3 TDs, 2 INTs) and freshman Tyler Vitt (69.1 COMP%, 5 TDs, 3 INTs). Jones and Vitt are also the team’s top rushers. Each has one scoring run. Senior TE Keenan Brown (23 REC, 346 YDs, 15.0 YPC) and junior WR Hutch White (19 REC, 157 YDs, 8.3 YPC) are the go-to pass catchers. Brown has four TD catches and White two. We think that the Bobcat offense will have a tough time moving the ball consistently against the Georgia Southern defense.
Eagles and Bobcats Trends
Georgia Southern and Texas State have met twice before with the Eagles winning both contests. The average margin of victory has been 12.5 points and the average number of points scored has been 51.5. GS is 5-0 versus the spread in their last five games, but they are 1-9 ATS in their last 10 games on the road. The Bobcats are 1-5 ATS in their last six games at home. Also, the total has gone over in their last five home contests.
Our 2018 Georgia Southern Plays Texas State Pick
We do think that Georgie State will persevere tonight. But in creating this 2018 Georgia Southern Plays Texas State pick, we wonder about the spread. Is it a bit too high? We project the Eagles to be good for about 45 points tonight. At the same time, we expect State to score around 13. In our 2018 Georgia Southern Plays Texas State pick, we are going with GS at -17. We think points will be scored and suggest the over at 52.5.