Previewing Georgia State vs. Old Dominion

Three storylines for Saturday’s game between Georgia State and Old Dominion at the Georgia Dome:

1. Can the offense keep the ball? Offensive Coordinator John Bond said his group needs to stay on the field to keep Old Dominion’s high-powered offense on the sidelines. The Panthers have held the ball longer than their opponents three times this season, but trail in that category by more than five minutes per game this season. The Panthers will need the running backs to hold onto the ball and the wide receivers to catch passes when they hit them in the hands. Both have been issues this year. Running back Travis Evans, taking over for the injured Donald Russell, fumbled away the ball on the first play last week and wide receiver Albert Wilson, normally sure-handed, has dropped passes in each of the past two games.

2. If it can’t, can the defense hold up? The Monarchs average 84.5 plays per game, and lead the FCS in scoring (44.6) and total offense (565.5) and are third in passing (400.3). Georgia State coach Bill Curry said the Monarchs’ offense grinds opposing defenses down. That’s a dangerous description considering the Panthers have had to resort to moving some offensive players to defense in order to overcome injuries and get 11 players on the field. Also bad news, the Panthers are giving up 35.6 points and 446.8 yards per game. The good news is the defense had what coordinator Anthony Midget described as its most complete game in last week’s 28-21 loss at James Madison. Some of those injured players, including end C.J. Stephens, could return this week.

3. Will the fans show up? It’s the final home game for Curry and 12 seniors. There will be a few ceremonies honoring both. In addition, Georgia Tech is on the road. It will be cold outside and the Dome will obviously be warm. Georgia State’s last three home games have been attended by an average of 10,390 fans.

A win for Georgia State would …

Be its second of the season.

A win for Old Dominion would …

Be its third consecutive over the Panthers.

Tweet of the week

I’ll be at the dome Saturday for coach Currys last home game and the seniors I salute you…

– Oshay Carter, a Georgia State recruit

@CarterOshay

Jeff Schultz predicts

OK, here’s a good sign for a 1-8 team (if that’s possible): The Panthers got down 28-7 to James Madison last week and rallied with two fourth-quarter touchdowns to make it close, which at least shows they haven’t quit on the season. Will it make a difference this game? No. ODU doesn’t have a great defense but the offense is averaging 534 yards and 37 points in conference games. Prediction: Georgia State loses.

Other headlines

Curry to be honored before and during Georgia State’s game on Saturday against Old Dominion

Georgia State’s seniors talk about their final home game

Pearson talks about playing offense and defense for Georgia State

Isaiah Howard dismissed

A few thoughts about GSU’s win over Life in hoops

Hurricane Sandy not affecting ODU’s preparation for Georgia State

– Doug Roberson, AJC. Please follow me on twitter @ajcgsu

20 comments Add your comment

GaDawg

November 2nd, 2012
8:29 am

Any word on who might be the next head coach?

Orlando Panther

November 2nd, 2012
10:38 am

Doug, Can you look into the rumors of Lorenzo Ward possibly being the next GSU coach and let us know what you find?

GSU Alumni

November 2nd, 2012
10:41 am

Our football program inspires other to follow http://www.ajc.com/news/sports/small-team-with-big-hearts/nStkh/

It is great and warm story folks!!! We are truly number one.

Go State!!!

5150 UOAD

November 2nd, 2012
10:42 am

Doug Roberson

November 2nd, 2012
10:54 am

Other than what i tweeted this morning, i’ve heard no rumors. Gsu keeping a tight lid on things

Orlando Panther

November 2nd, 2012
11:47 am

Thanks for the info

Doug Roberson

November 2nd, 2012
12:03 pm

Ward doesnt have the hc experience that levick says she wants. However, i’ve heard that he is very similar to hunter, which is the type of energetic, intense coach levick has said she would like to hire.

Chicken Bone

November 2nd, 2012
12:31 pm

Doug, will Danny Williams play against ODU?

Orlando Panther

November 2nd, 2012
12:42 pm

Doug, He was a HC of a high school football team in Atlanta, does that count as HC experience? Passing on Ward b/c he hasn’t been a college HC would be the biggest boneheaded move of all time.

Steve Nash's Pick and Roll

November 2nd, 2012
1:10 pm

It will be 72 and sunny tomorrow Doug. It will not be cold.

Doug Roberson

November 2nd, 2012
1:47 pm

Danny practiced

GSUALUM

November 2nd, 2012
2:38 pm

29 point dogs – oh my

GODAWGS

November 2nd, 2012
10:51 pm

Don’t worry, Georgia State is going to the Sun Belt next year. That automatically means they’re the best football team ever. They’re definitely going to beat ODU! Go Panthers!

RidgeRunner

November 3rd, 2012
7:30 am

Win one for the coach!

Mary McElroy

November 3rd, 2012
8:18 am

Why can’t the AJC find a phito of a GSU football helmet for the sports page, just like the Tech and UGA links? Lazy?

StateMan

November 3rd, 2012
9:12 am

Win or lose Coach Curry is awesome and we are thankful and proud for all he has done. The great news is God willing, this is that last time we have to see John Bond’s ridiculous play calling. Cheryl, If he is here next year I canot continue to follow.

StateMan

November 3rd, 2012
9:13 am

Thanks coach Curry for all you have done. You have shown great character through adversity and have made true Panther fans proud.

StateMan

November 3rd, 2012
9:16 am

Goodbye Coach Bond. I cannot blame you for your incompetence, only your unwillingness to acknowledge it.

Go Panthers!!

November 3rd, 2012
7:37 pm

LOL @ StateMan

Go Panthers!!

November 3rd, 2012
8:57 pm

Looked up Lorenzo Ward.

Interesting quotes from Steve Spurrier in that they see eye to eye on things. Spurrier even praised Ward’s ability to reduce mental mistakes.

If there is one thing that will fix this team, it would be eliminating mental mistakes.