Eagles Face Undefeated #25 Samford on ESPN3
VIDEO: Preview Interview with Coach Jeff Monken
STATESBORO, Ga. - After returning home to earn their first Southern Conference win of the season, the 10th ranked Georgia Southern Eagles will play their second-straight home game at Allen E. Paulson Stadium Saturday against the undefeated #25 Samford Bulldogs on ESPN3. Kickoff for Family Day, Hall of Fame weekend and Coaches to Cure MD is set for 6 p.m. EDT.
“They have got a really good football team. I know Pat [Sullivan] feels like its the best team they have had since he has been there,” Head Coach Jeff Monken said on the SoCon Teleconference. “They have a really balanced attack on offense. Truss is a terrific player and is one of the best kick returners in the nation.”
Georgia Southern (2-1, 1-1) remains one of the top rushing teams in the SoCon and the FCS after rushing for over 300 yards for the sixth time in the last seven games. GSU, who ranks second in the league behind Wofford, is averaging 403.7 rushing yards per game and has 12 rushing touchdowns on the year. Ezayi Youyoute, who leads the team with 371 yards on the ground, is the first Eagle quarterback since Jayson Foster in 2005 to rush for 100 or more yards in his first three career starts.
The Georgia Southern defense leads the conference in total defense, allowing just 263.3 yards per game. The Eagles are also second in both scoring defense (15.3 ppg) and rushing defense (107.7 ypg). The GSU defense has been able to get off the field without giving up points thanks in part to six interceptions. Sophomore cornerback Valdon Cooper has two of those picks, including an interception of Elon's Thomas Wilson in the third quarter last weekend.
The Samford (4-0, 2-0) defense, however, leads the league with nine interceptions on the year. The Bulldogs have allowed the third fewest points in the conference this year and are fourth in the SoCon with 31.8 points per game.
Pat Sullivan's squad is off to a great start to the year after defeating Furman 24-21 in the season opener. The Bulldogs are currently in one of their toughest stretches of the year in which they play their third-straight game on the road before returning home on October 6th against The Citadel. Samford has gone 2-0 so far on the road trip, defeating Gardner-Webb and Western Carolina.
The Bulldog offense is led by Southern Conference Offensive Player of the Week, Fabian Truss, who has rushed for 448 yards and seven touchdowns this season. Truss was a big part of Samford's fourth-quarter comeback against the Catamounts Saturday. Truss ran for 180 yards and two touchdowns, including the game-winning score with five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
The Eagles have a Southern Conference Player of the Week of their own this week. Freshman kicker Alex Hanks was named by the league office the Special Team's Player of the Week after connecting on the game-winning field goal in the final minutes Saturday.
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- Category: Football
- Published on Tuesday, 25 September 2012 13:42