COLUMN: No more cheat codes for the Georgia Southern offense

McClain Baxley

STATESBORO At the end of Georgia Southern’s 55-3 loss to LSU, the two head coaches met at midfield.

Ed Orgeron told Chad Lunsford that the Tigers had been preparing for GS’ triple option offense and Lunsford said he could tell.

LSU did everything they could to disrupt a GS offense that averaged 345 yards per game a season ago, completely blocking the running holes, showcasing their “DBU” by locking down the passing game and only letting the Eagles cross midfield once.

GS finished with 98 total yards.

Quarterback Shai Werts didn’t play the second half. Wes Kennedy III, the most experienced back for GS, is still suspended for being academically ineligible. Oklahoma State transfer J.D. King gained 23 yards on 11 carries. There were only four completions for 24 yards.

“It was fun. It was a great experience and they’re very talented,” wide receiver Colby Ransom said at Monday’s press conference. “We saw a lot of things on offense that we can build on.”

This week, the challenge of Maine won’t be as great as the No. 6 team in the country, and we will finally be able to see what the 2019 version of Bob Debesse’s offense looks like and what things the offense built on. 

Maine won’t have All-American junior linebacker Deshawn Stevens, who ruptured his Achilles in the Black Bears’ win against Sacred Heart.

Not only will Maine not have their leader on defense, but they won’t have nearly seven months to prepare for the triple option. That plays into the magnificence of the run-style offense.

Just ask the team three hours north.

In their first game after the Paul Johnson era, Georgia Tech took on the defending champs and managed to score just 14 points while allowing Clemson to score 52 points. The Tigers, whose defense is in the same ballpark as the Tigers from Baton Rouge, had all preseason and offseason to prepare for GT. Sure, they weren’t facing a true option offense, but if any good defense has more than four months to prepare for an offense, it’ll be easy to stop.

That’s what happened in Baton Rouge last week. 

GS has looked at Maine film and understands that this test isn’t just your everyday FCS team here to collect a check and head home. The Black Bears boasted the top rushing defense in FCS in 2018, allowing just 79.2 rushing yards per game. 

But even after a game where they failed to break 100 yards, there’s uncertainty at quarterback and their opponent is good, the Eagles are staying confident on offense. And it’s fun…for now. 

“I feel like we always have something to prove,” Ransom said. “Just because we didn’t get a trip to the endzone last week, I feel like we’re still going to play hard. We’re definitely going to get into the endzone this week.”

McClain Baxley, The George-Anne Editor-in-Chief,