Georgia Southern traveled to Atlanta on Saturday to battle Georgia State for the title of the real GSU. Quarterback Kevin Ellison returned to the starting lineup after missing the last game against the University of Louisiana-Lafayette last week. After missing the last four weeks due to injury, Quarterback Favian Upshaw saw some playing time as well. GSU started the game out on fire, but the Eagles managed to fight their way back into it. In the end it wasn’t enough, losing 30-24.
With Ellison back in the lineup, GS reverted back to their option attack. Ellison ran in a 24-yard touchdown in the first quarter to give GS some life. Upshaw started the second quarter at Quarterback and on the first play Matt Breida ran in a touchdown from 3-yards out. After trailing 30-17 with five minutes left in the fourth quarter, running back L.A. Ramsby ran it in from one yard out to cut the deficit to six points. Ellison finished the game with 31 yards passing and 101 yards and a touchdown on the ground. In his first game back since Georgia Tech, Upshaw finished the game with 91 passing yards and 4.9 yards per carry on the ground.
The Eagles gave up three early touchdowns in the first quarter. GSU Quarterback Conner Manning attacked early an often through the air. His throws put the Panthers in prime position to score those touchdowns. Manning exposed the secondary of the Eagles, Wide Receiver Robert Davis caught two huge passes with one of them going for a 28-yard score. After allowing 20 points in the first, GS shut them out the remainder of the first half. The Panthers came back out firing in the second half. GSU drove the ball down the field 75 yards and capped it off with a 29-yard touchdown pass. Safety Jay Bowdry was ejected in the third quarter because of a targeting personal foul. Targeting is when contact is initiated to the head or neck area of a defenseless player. A play like this sums up what has been a disappointing season for GS. Ironhead Gallon finished the game with 10 total tackles and Ukeme Eligwe finished with seven.
Georgia Southern will play their final game on December 3 against Troy. The game is scheduled to kick off at 1:00 P.M.
With this loss, the Eagles are ineligible for bowl contention. This marks the second straight loss to Georgia State in as many years. The next game at Troy will be a game for the Seniors. It will be their last home game and they will want to go out with a win.