Improvement for Georgia State defense

Greetings, all-

Hope you’re well. A couple quick things. Hopefully I’ll have more today after going to practice and then the press conference.

1. I think something important happened with the defense last week. Safety Brandon Jones said defensive coordinator John Thompson challenged his unit, asking players what was it going to take for them to be the defense they want to be.

Players responded with a good week of practice and by doing things like putting in extra time studying Campbell’s offense.

Said Jones, “A lot of guys, we got to know a lot of routes that we saw out there (Saturday) on the field. We actually understood what they were going to run.”

The defense had six three-and-outs in the first half, as many as it had had in the previous three games, and seven total. The Panthers held Morehead State to 98 yards in the first half, when the game was decided, and a lot of the 280 yards that the Eagles accumulated were pretty empty.

I think the team is making a jump in its maturity and understanding of what it takes to win consistently. It’s a given at established programs, but, and it’s been said a whole lot, it’s hard to know what it takes when a team doesn’t have a lot of experience winning at the college level.

2. This coming week will present a different kind of challenge. As the Panthers been up and down in level of effort, up against Shorter, down against Lambuth, up against Jacksonville State, down against Campbell, up against Morehead State, they have plenty of reason to believe they can just show up and blow Savannah State off the field.

This is just not a good football team. The Tigers have a coaching staff in flux – it’s never a good thing when you start a season with an interim head coach, as Savannah State has with Julius Dixon – and they’ve been outscored 48-211. The defense ranks dead last in FCS in scoring and rushing and is third to last in passing efficiency. The offense is No. 112 (out of 117) in total offense and No. 114 in scoring.

After the game, I asked Bill Curry if he thought with the Morehead State game that the team had turned a corner. He did not, saying he wanted the team to have a string of games with consistent effort.

“Next week is going to be a big test,” he said.

The next couple weeks will be important in that respect. The Panthers have two winnable games, Savannah State and North Carolina Central, before the final four-game stretch – Old Dominion, South Alabama, Lamar and Alabama. I’d contend that Old Dominion might be the most meaningful game of the year.

It’s against a team that started last year, has been playing well, will be in the CAA and it will likely be a pretty intense atmosphere.

Two good weeks of practice and playing would pay dividends – confidence, development, getting backups into games – that GSU will likely need against Old Dominion.

Thanks. Follow me on Twitter for GSU updates.

13 comments Add your comment

GStateBen

October 5th, 2010
8:55 am

Ken,

Good write up! Did BJones and the D study Morehead’s offense instead of Campbell’s?

Thanks again for coverage!

Time for more of the same this Saturday. Heavy hitters!

GSU_MEX_PANTHER

October 5th, 2010
8:55 am

Looks like a game we should win on paper! Curry is right we need a string of consistency!

Go panthers!

jtaylor27

October 5th, 2010
9:13 am

The fact is that we need to win these next 2 games soundly. We need to get reps for guys who are going to be rotating in for the ODU and USA games. ODU and USA will our true measuring sticks. Yes, we played JSU for all they were worth, but these teams will show us how we stack up against opponent who we know are 1) not taking us for granted, and 2) trying to make a name for themselves as well. Furthermore, I imagine–particularly with USA–that many recruits are getting the same treatment (i.e. “Come to our school and you’ll be a part of something from the ground up, from day 1, etc, etc, etc.). These are vital for the direction and “head turning ability” of our program.

Panther Prowler!

October 5th, 2010
9:40 am

Agreed: ODU will be the next big test, especially since we’ll see much more of them in the future.

English

October 5th, 2010
11:01 am

Every game shouldn’t be taken lightly. We’ve got a chance for our first 3-game winning streak and if we overlook them a loss will be deflating than anything. We need to focus every week on what’s in front of us and let the coaching staff worry about the horizon. Let’s go State!

Go Panthers!

Ken Sugiura

October 5th, 2010
11:51 am

English – it’s funny. i bet if you asked the coaches, they’d say the exact opposite – we’re going to focus on this week and let the fans worry about the horizon. it’s remarkable how zoned in they can get to the point sometimes they forget who they’re playing the week after.

i didn’t answer a question on the last blog from GSU Tax Accountant – interesting thought about the backs. i confess i don’t really know or have thought a ton about the best way to use the backs. i will make a point to ask Curry today.

As for Star, I’m pretty confident he’ll be better as the season goes on. To tag on to what i wrote in the post, he’s a guy that could get a good bit of time in the next couple of games to tighten up his game. i don’t see him cutting into drew little’s playing time much as long as he keeps playing the way he does, but he has some dimensions of his game, agility, probably arm strength, that little doesn’t have.

as for eduardo curry, that’s an easy one. he had an ankle or leg injury in fall camp and has yet to play. but he would be a great help, certainly.

panama

October 5th, 2010
11:53 am

This is where we Cowboy Up and show character. We could easily walk into Tuscaloosa 8-2 or just as easily 5-5. We have two big humps to get over. First to prove that we can beat the teams we should beat the next two weeks and then a very challenging two week stretch of challenging away games in what should be hostile enviroments.

itsmeagain

October 5th, 2010
12:49 pm

I would love for it to be 8-2 come Bama time though i think that might be a little wishful thinking. I do wish that we played some away games closer to Atlanta so i could actually go. The only one i could have gone to was the Bama game but the tickets were on a lottery system and while i got picked, my girlfriend didn’t, and so i had to give up the chance:( At least it’ll be on ESPN.

GStateBen

October 5th, 2010
2:49 pm

Ken good points on Star and I definitely see the opportunity for he and Hill to get significant time.

I’d be suprised if Eduardo Curry doesn’t take a medical redshirt this season. With 4 defensive lineman set to be seniors next year (Christo Bilukidi, Khiry Karriem, Kalan Jenkins and Dion Perry) we need another body for another year. If he can maintain his size and get stronger, he can be a very good rotation guy with Terrance Woodard at NG spot.

GStateBen

October 5th, 2010
2:51 pm

For anyone that want Alabama tickets, there will be thousands available. They only allotted us a certain number but the Alabama folks are unloading them left and right. Check EBay, StubHub or the Alabama Rivals.com site: http://www.Bamaonline.com and hit their message boards.

There are ticket available and there are many Tide fans who will not be there.

5150 P.O.A.D

October 5th, 2010
5:00 pm

I know you have a coach that knows how to win and what it takes to win. Now, the players just have to listen to a Man that has been there and done that so to speak. Good luck and Safe game to G. State.
Doing great Ken keeping people informed.
Don’t know how to get you more blog hits, but look at Tech hits. I read all the posts I just don’t comment. I do read the UGA posts because I am a Tech fan and it is fun to Banter back and forth. UGA just has so many fans and haters that just love to talk trash.
KEN maybe you need to get on the schools G State plays and start talking crap so they will do the same on your blog.

5150 P.O.A.D

October 5th, 2010
8:40 pm

Ken nice write up on Yandell and Gilbert. I hope thoes guys do GREAT for G STATE. I know they will learn much from Mr. Curry about Life and some football too. HAHAHAH.

Ken Sugiura

October 5th, 2010
9:39 pm

thanks. two guys who seem glad to be where they are and are doing bang-up work for gsu.