SoCon Week 10 FCS Football Game Breakdowns

George Hammond

 Week 10 Southern Conference Breakdowns

The losing streak is over for Western Carolina, thanks to a second-half comeback and a 27-24 overtime victory on Saturday against Elon. The Catamounts (1-4, 2-7), which had lost 33 straight NCAA Division I contests and 26 consecutive Southern Conference games, earned the triumph when Richard Sigmon booted a 39-yard field goal in OT. Western Carolina had tied the score with nine seconds remaining in regulation when quarterback Troy Mitchell hit Karnorris Benson for a 6-yard touchdown. “What a night,” said Western Carolina coach Mark Speir, during the post-game news conference. “I am so proud of these guys to finally get that win and taste that victory. This was a great way to give back to all our fans and former players who came back here for homecoming and how the Catamount Nation has hung with us. This is just a culmination of a lot of things.” The Catamounts are idle this week before visiting Georgia Southern on Nov. 9. Another losing streak ended this weekend as well as Appalachian State (2-3, 2-6) enjoyed success with a surprising one-sided 38-14 victory over Georgia Southern. The triumph snapped a four-game losing streak and avoided what would have been a program-first five-game home losing streak. Scott Satterfield, the Mountaineers’ first-year coach, was all smiles afterward.  "I thought our kids just had a little something about them this week,” said Satterfield, to the Winston-Salem (N.C.) Journal. “We talked about how today was the day, where everything was going to come together.” App State, which had scored just 10 points in each of its last two games, scored on six straight possessions in this one. There’s a limited schedule this weekend as only three games are scheduled:


Furman at Georgia Southern, 1:30 p.m.

At least for one half, Furman (2-2, 3-5) showed it could play with the big boys. The Paladins trailed LSU by just 20-16 at halftime on Saturday before the Tigers rolled to a 48-16 victory. When it was over, LSU had piled up nearly 700 yards total offense. “In the second half, physically, they were just able to take over the game with their offense,” Furman coach Bruce Fowler said. “We just had trouble stopping the run and when you mix in the pass that is an offense that is hard to stop.” Four games remain for the Paladins and all will be difficult, starting with this weekend. Georgia Southern (2-3, 4-3), meanwhile, hopes to bounce back after a disappointing loss to Appalachian State. The Eagles lost the Southern Conference’s leading rusher Jerrick McKinnon to an ankle injury early in the game and his absence was felt. The Eagles were held to 363 yards offense, 128 yards below their SoCon-leading average of 491 yards. Last year, Georgia Southern trailed 7-3 at halftime only to cruise to a 38-17 victory.

Projected Score: Georgia Southern 31, Furman 17


#16 Samford at The Citadel, Saturday, 2 p.m.

The Citadel ‘s (2-4, 2-6) record is obviously disappointing, but Samford (4-0, 6-2) shouldn’t expect an easy time of it in Charleston, S.C.  Samford, coming off its big 34-27 victory at Wofford, controls its own destiny. It is the only unbeaten left in the SoCon, and it’s in line to receive a high bid in the FCS playoffs – provided it keeps winning. Led by quarterback Andy Summerlin, who has thrown 17 touchdown passes, the Bulldogs are 13th nationally in passing offense (302.1 ypg). In addition, running back Fabian Truss leads the nation in all-purpose yards so Samford has many weapons. The Citadel will try to control the clock with its triple-option attack. It is fourth in the nation in rushing offense (275.4 ypg) and is the least penalized team in all of FCS. Last year, Samford prevailed, 38-7.

Projected Score: Samford 34, The Citadel 17


Chattanooga at Appalachian State, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

A difficult four-game homestretch begins this weekend for Chattanooga (4-1, 6-2) as the Mocs still are in the running for the league title and a possible playoff berth, but it won’t be easy. Besides Saturday’s tussle in Boone, N.C., Chattanooga still must face Wofford, Samford and Alabama. So this game is basically a must-win situation for the Mocs. Last Saturday’s 28-24 victory over The Citadel wasn’t easy, either. The Mocs trailed 24-21 with 3:42 remaining, but quarterback Jacob Huesman engineered the winning drive to give Chattanooga its fourth straight victory. Meanwhile, App State (2-6, 2-3) played its best game of the season with a 38-14 victory over Georgia Southern. Kameron Bryant completed 27-of-33 passes for 381 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for two scores. Last year, App State erased a 10-point deficit to defeat Chattanooga, 34-17, for its eighth consecutive win in the series.

Projected Score: Chattanooga 27, Appalachian State 24


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