Scouting the Jaguars

Robert George

South Alabama is coming off the biggest win in the history of their program after shocking Mississippi State in Davis Wade Stadium on Saturday. They’re playing with a lot of confidence and are talented enough on offense to hang with a lot of teams. The game may come down to how much they can slow down Georgia Southern’s option offense.

Offensively against Mississippi State, the Jaguars were led by sophomore quarterback Dallas Davis. He threw for 284 yards on 24 completions and added 45 yards on the ground. He’s athletic enough to extend plays and pick up first downs with his legs if he has to.

TE Gerald Everett and WR Josh Magee are dangerous in the passing game and both are capable of making big plays. Everett caught the game-winning pass against the Bulldogs, and Magee finished with 113 yards and a touchdown as well. This will be the first big test for the young GS secondary, and the Jaguars may take some shots down the field early in the game to test them.

“They got some longer guys that are tough to defend from a matchup standpoint,” Tyson Summers, GS head coach, said. “We’ve got to make sure we’re preparing the way we need to.”

Defensively, Summers talked about how the secondary stands out as a unit. Junior cornerback Jeremy Reaves will be one to watch. He finished with seven tackles and a break up last week, and he’ll likely match up with either BJ Johnson or Montay Crockett on the outside. Senior safety Devon Earl also had a good game last week and will provide help in stopping the Eagle’s stable of talented runners.

The Jaguars have a solid corps of linebackers that will be all over the field on Saturday. Roman Buchanan, Darrell Soggy and Bull Barge (what a name) will have the tough task of tackling Matt Breida, Favian Upshaw and others while also defending their zones when the Eagles drop back to pass. Upshaw and Kevin Ellison combined to go 12-15 against Savannah State and they’ll likely air it out a little more this week.

“Mississippi State is certainly a hard offense to defend,” Summers said. “They play sound and they play hard. You don’t see a lot of yards after contact when their linebackers hit people.”

Up front, the Jaguars got some great play out of their ends against the Bulldogs. Chason Milner and Randy Allen combined for 10 tackles, a sack and a tackle for loss. The Jaguars will need these two to cause some chaos in the backfield if they plan to slow down the Eagles attack.

The Jaguars will be looking to build off their historic win and hold off the Eagles in their stadium. This stadium, however, is the same one where the Eagles ran all over Bowling Green on their way to the GoDaddy Bowl trophy. They’ll look to repeat some of that success this weekend and pick up their first conference win of the season.