Week 6 Southland FCS Football Game Breakdowns

Week 6 Southland Conference Game Breakdowns

The “Battle for Piney Woods”, involving Sam Houston State and Stephen F. Austin, highlights week six of the Southland Conference schedule. The league’s top team, Southeastern Louisiana, is out of town this week in a non-conference matchup. Southland play continues this week for all teams except Southeastern Louisiana and McNeese State. Let’s take a look at this week’s games:


Southeastern Louisiana at UAB, Saturday, 2:00

After an 0-3 start to the season with losses to Missouri, South Dakota State and Tennessee-Martin, Southeastern Louisiana righted the ship with wins over McNeese State and Lamar to start the Southland season. Both wins were close, with McNeese by one point and Lamar by 10 points. Does that suggest Southeastern Louisiana is truly the best team in the league? The Lions have struggled in recent weeks, but they should have a breather this week against an Alabama-Birmingham squad that has dropped all of its games this season. UAB (0-4) has passed for 290.3 yards per game this season, 28th among Division I programs, and the Blazers do have two close losses to Troy (39-29) and Tulsa (49-42). The Lions should win in the first meeting between the two schools, but this could be close.

Projected score: Southeastern Louisiana 32, UAB 26


#7 Sam Houston State at Stephen F. Austin, Saturday, 3:00

The Battle for Piney Woods marks the 87th meeting between the two schools, and this is the third time the game is at Reliant Stadium, the home of the National Football League Houston Texans. The Bearkats won last year’s meeting, 45-10, breaking a two-game losing streak in the series and holding a commanding lead in the overall series. Sam Houston State has won six of the last eight meetings, with Stephen Austin winning the other two on the way to Southland championships. Sam Houston State slammed Texas Southern last week, 50-6, behind Brian Bell’s 208 yards passing and three touchdowns. Sam Houston State (2-2, 0-1) faces Stephen Austin (2-3, 1-0), broke a three-game losing streak last week with a 42-37 win over Central Arkansas. This is the last game for Stephen Austin prior to a bye week on Oct. 13.

Projected score: Sam Houston State 29, Stephen F. Austin 17


Lamar at Northwestern State, Saturday, 6:00

For the 15th time these two teams meet and Lamar has a 7-6-1 lead in the overall series following a 37-17 loss to Northwestern State last year in Beaumont, Texas. This is the second year in a row the teams have played each other in conference after a long dry spell. Prior to last year, the teams hadn’t played each other since 1979. Both teams sport 2-3 records (0-1 in Southland play). Lamar lost last week, 31-21, to Southeastern Louisiana as Ryan Mossakowski was held to 168 yards passing and two touchdowns as the Lions nabbed four interceptions. Herschel Sims was the leading rusher at 36 yards; you can tell the Lions defense had Lamar’s number. Northwestern State fell 30-22 to McNeese State despite 287 yards and three touchdowns by Brad Henderson.

Projected score: Northwestern State 34, Lamar 20


Nicholls State at #16 Central Arkansas, Saturday, 6:00

Nicholls State returns to action following its second bye week in five weeks (last week’s was scheduled, but the team’s Sept. 1 game with Oregon State was postponed due to the effects of Hurricane Isaac). The Colonels rolled over Evangel, 73-17, to break a 12-game losing streak. The last team Nicholls State beat was Evangel, in the 2011 season opener, so you can bet the Colonels were glad to see this team. Nicholls State rolled up 751 yards total offense, something that will be a little harder this week against a tough Central Arkansas squad. Central Arkansas (3-2, 1-1) saw its three-game win streak broken at the hands of Stephen F. Austin as prolific quarterback Wynrick Smothers was picked off twice and held to 115 yards passing. Central Arkansas should return to form this week.

Projected score: Central Arkansas 40, Nicholls State 23


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