CFN Take: Georgia State Shut Out By Clemson

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Nov 22, 2014


Georgia State Panthers 2014 ... Head Coach: Trent Miles

2014 Georgia State Panthers

- VOD: College football breakdowns on Campus Insiders
2014 Schedule
Record 1-10

Aug. 27 Abilene Christ W 38-37
Sep. 6 New Mexico St L 34-31
Sep. 13 Air Force L 48-38
Sep. 20 at Washington L 45-14
Sep. 27 OPEN DATE
Oct. 4 at La-Lafayette L 34-31
Oct. 11 Arkansas State L 52-10
Oct. 18 at So Alabama L 30-27
Oct. 25 Georgia Southern L 69-31
Nov. 1 at Appalachian St L 44-0
Nov. 8 at Troy L 45-21
Nov. 15 OPEN DATE
Nov. 22 at Clemson L 28-0
Nov. 29 Texas State

Nov. 22 at Clemson 28, Georgia State 0
And You Care Because … Clemson had no problems on either side of the ball, getting two first quarter touchdown runs from Tyshon Dye from three and six yards out, and two second quarter scores on a nine-yard Wayne Gallman run and, with 34 seconds left, an eight-yard Mike Williams catch from Cole Stoudt, who had a much better game than he did against Georgia Tech. Georgia State managed just 155 yards of total offense.
What Else? Clemson QB Cole Stoudt completed 19-of-29 passes for 132 yards and a score with a pick
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 13-of-29 passes for 115 yards and three picks
- Clemson RB Tyshon Dye ran 20 times for 124 yards and two touchdowns
- Rushing yards: Clemson 209 – Georgia State 40
Game Rating: D

Nov. 8 at Troy 45, Georgia State 21
And You Care Because … With the game tied at seven, Troy took control with Brandon Burks running for a three-yard score and Brandon Silvers throwing a 31-yard touchdown pass to Bryan Holmes and running for a 38-yard touchdown on the way to a 28-7 lead. After GSU got within 14 on a Lynquez Blair catch, Troy was at it again with 24 straight points with Jordan Chunn and Khary Franklin each running for touchdowns.
What Else? Troy QB Brandon Silvers completed 17-of-21 passes for 111 yards and ran five times for 54 yards and a score
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 23-of-37 passes for 293 yards and three touchdowns with two picks
- Troy RB Brandon Burks ran 13 times for 118 yards and a touchdown
- Fourth down conversions: Troy 3-of-3 – Georgia State 1-of-1
Game Rating: C-

Nov. 1 at Appalachian State 44, Georgia State 0
And You Care Because … The Appalachian State defense came up with a gem, holding Georgia State to 62 yards, while the offense took care of the rest with Marcus Cox running for three scores and Taylor Lamb taking off for a nine-yard score. Georgia State couldn’t make anything go in the snow, and ASU took advantage with four sacks and seven tackles for loss, allowing just eight rushing yards.
What Else? Appalachian State RB Marcus Cox ran 29 times for 250 yards and three scores
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 8-of-17 passes for 47 yards and a pick
- Appalachian State RB Ricky Ferguson ran 14 times for 123 yards and a score
- Rushing yards: Appalachian State 469 and six touchdowns on 66 carries – Georgia State 8 yards on 26 carries
Game Rating: D-

Oct. 25 Georgia Southern 69, at Georgia State 31
And You Care Because … Georgia Southern ripped off 613 rushing yards with 11 different players combining for production led by Matt Breida’s four touchdown dashes including a 75-yarder. Georgia State stayed in the game on two of Nick Arbuckle’s four touchdown passes to Donovan Harden, but the Eagles ripped off 28 straight points before Harden scored from 35 and 36 yards out. The Panthers never threatened in the second half.
What Else? Georgia Southern QB Kevin Ellison completed 5-of-6 passes for 47 yards and ran 15 times for 115 yards and a touchdown
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 24-of-38 passes for 408 yards and four touchdowns and an interception
- Georgia Southern ran 12 times for 201 yards and four touchdowns
- Georgia State WR Donovan Harden caught 11 passes for 186 yards and four touchdowns
Game Rating: B

Oct. 18 at South Alabama 30, Georgia State 27
And You Care Because … South Alabama got an 18-yard touchdown catch from Danny Woodson with just over four minutes to play for a 30-27 lead, and the defense held on for the win. The Jaguars got three field goals from Aleem Sunanon and two touchdown passes and a scoring run from Brandon Bridge, but Georgia State wouldn’t go away. Nick Arbuckle threw three touchdown passes including two to Donovan Harden from 44 and five yards out, but he couldn’t engineer one final scoring drive.
What Else? South Alabama QB Brandon Bridge completed 11-of-32 passes for 126 yards and two touchdowns, and ran 15 times for a team-leading 137 yards and a score
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 23-of-40 passes for 311 yards and three touchdowns
- Georgia State WR Donovan Harden caught ten passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns
- Rushing yards: South Alabama 321 – Georgia State 90
Game Rating: B

Oct. 11 Arkansas State 52, at Georgia State 10
And You Care Because … Arkansas State ripped off 24 first quarter points and never let Georgia State get in the game. Fredi Knighten threw three touchdown passes and ripped off a 51-yard scoring run, and Michael Gordon ran for scores from 50 and 11 yards out as the Red Wolves had no problems. GSU managed a second quarter field goal but didn’t get into the end zone until a Gerald Howse two-yard run in the final minutes.
What Else? Arkansas State RB Michael Gordon ran 18 times for 188 yards and two scores
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 18-of-36 passes for 162 yards
- Arkansas State QB Fredi Knighten completed 20-of-26 passes for 215 yards and three touchdowns, and ran 12 times for 93 yards and a score.
- Total yards: Arkansas State 618 – Georgia State 269
Game Rating: D-

Oct. 4 at Louisiana-Lafayette 34, Georgia State 31
And You Care Because … Alonzo Harris ran for two one-yard touchdowns in the second half and Jamal Robinson caught touchdown passes from 19 and 21 yards out as ULL held off the Panthers. GSU took the lead with just over six minutes to play on Marcus Caffey’s third touchdown run of the day, but ULL marched bac finishing with Robinson’s second touchdown. GSU had one last shot, but the drive stalled.
What Else? Penalties: ULL 13 for 115 yards – GSU 10 for 79 yards
- ULL QB Terrance Broadway completed 20-of-26 passes for 216 yards and two scores, Jamal Robinson caught eight passes for 119 yards and two scores
- GSU RB Marcus Caffey ran 27 times for 90 yards and three touchdowns, and caught two passes for 14 yards
- GSU LB Joseph Peterson led the game with nine tackles with a tackle for loss
Game Rating: B+

Sept. 20 at Washington 45, Georgia State 14
And You Care Because … In a strange game, Georgia State completely and totally dominated the first half on the way to a 14-0 lead. Nick Arbuckle found Keith Rucker for a two-yard touchdown and Robert Davis on a nine-yard scoring play, and then a different Washington team came out of halftime scoring 45 unanswered points. Cyler Miles threw three touchdown passes, Jeff Lindquist ran for two short scores and John Timu returned an interception for a score.
What Else? First half yards: Georgia State 231 – Washington 73
- Second half yards: Washington 263 – Georgia State 42
- Washington QB Cyler Myles completed 19-of-27 passes for 154 yards and three scores
- Turnovers: Georgia State 4 – Washington 0
Game Rating: C-

Sept. 13 Air Force 48, at Georgia State 38
And You Care Because … Jacobi Owens and Kale Pearson each ran for two touchdowns, but Air Force had to fight to put away Georgia State. The Panthers bombed away, with Nick Arbuckle throwing two touchdown passes and running for one, but they got down 31-10 going into halftime and couldn’t make it all the way back. Pearson salted the game away on a 22-yard touchdown pass to Garrett Brown, but GSU pulled within ten with just under five minutes to play to make it interesting.
What Else? Air Force QB Kale Pearson completed 12-of-15 passes for 224 yards and two scores, and he ran nine times for just five yards and two touchdowns.
- Air Force RB Jacobi Owens ran 25 times for 122 yards and two scores.
- GSU LB Joseph Peterson made 13 tackles, but the D only came up with five tackles for loss.
- GSU QB Nick Arbuckle completed 26-of-42 passes for 414 yards and two touchdowns with a pick.
Game Rating: B-

Sept. 6 New Mexico State 34, at Georgia State 31
And You Care Because … Tyler Rogers threw his third touchdown pass of the game, finding Teldrick Morgan for an 11-yard touchdown with just 15 seconds to play to give New Mexico State the win. Georgia State scored the first 17 points of the game highlighted by a 68-yard Donovan Harden catch on the team’s opening drive. The Aggies roared back with a 40-yard Rodney Butler interception return for a score and helped by Morgan’s first touchdown catch, coming from 36-yards out, as part of a 27-7 scoring run. Down three, Georgia State went 86 yards in 15 plays, finishing with a one-yard run from Nick Arbuckle, but Rogers led the team back for the game-winning score.
What Else? NMSU QB Tyler Rogers completed 25-of-44 passes for 241 yards and three touchdowns with a pick.
- Georgia State’s Krysten Hammon ran 25 times for 123 yards and two scores.
- Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle completed 21-of-37 passes for 294 yards and a score with two interceptions and a rushing touchdown.
- The two teams combined for seven turnovers, four from Georgia State and three from New Mexico State.
Game Rating: A

Georgia State 38, Abilene Christian 37, Aug. 28
And You Care Because … It was a thriller to open up the season. It might not have been Texas A&M-South Carolina on the Must Watch scale, but the rest of the first weekend should be so lucky to get a game with this sort of finish. Nick Arbuckle led Georgia State to ten unanswered points in the final 4:38, culminating in a 26-yard Wil Lutz field goal with four seconds to play.
- The two quarterbacks were unstoppable. ACU’s Parker McKenzie picked apart GSU for 403 yards and four scores, while GSU’s Nick Arbuckle completed 31-of-47 passes for 413 yards and four touchdowns with two picks. Old Dominion may be an FBS member, but the D is still very much at an FCS level.
- It’s just one game, but where is GSU’s firepower going to come from without Albert Wilson? Joel Ruiz caught seven passes for 111 yards and two scores.
- GSU LB Joseph Peterson came up big when he had to with an interception and a key quarterback hurry to go along with a game-high 11 tackles.
- Penalties were almost disastrous for GSU committing ten for 99 yards including a hold that negated a late long touchdown pass.
Game Rating: A

2014 Preview

Just call it a time for head coach Trent Miles and the Georgia State program to build things up, set the foundation, and hope the success will start to trickle in. But first, it could get uglier before the fun starts to come.

Started from nothing by former Alabama head coach and legendary Green Bay Packer, Bill Curry, in 2010, Georgia State has a lot of big things going its way with the Atlanta location, an enrollment of around 25,000 students, and with the location and potential to get some of the trickle-down recruits who want to stick around the city, there are plenty of big selling points. But as last year showed, it’s going to be a long, long road.

The Panthers were able to beat Rhode Island on the road in 2013, but over the last two seasons, they’ve gone 1-22 – but there are several signs that the turnaround might be coming this year – at least a step forward.

After a horrific 2012, with only one of the ten losses by closer than double-digits, last year wasn’t pretty to start with three of the first four losses coming to FCS teams with blowouts to UT-Chattanooga and Samford along the way. But a funny thing happened after Alabama took it easy on the outmanned Panthers – the games became more competitive.

There weren’t any wins, but GSU gave Troy a hard time, battled with Texas State, and gave Arkansas State all it could handle in a 35-33 loss. There were still blowout losses to ULM, South Alabama and others, but at least the Panthers were able to stay on the same field – it’s not like there were a slew of brutally ugly performances after the first part of the season.

Unfortunately, just four starters are back on each side of the ball, and it’s not like there’s a ton of depth to draft from. The team’s one superstar weapon – WR Albert Wilson is done – and there are issues in the quarterback derby, on the O line, and in the backfield for a ground game that didn’t go anywhere. The defense that was so mediocre has to replace most of the top tacklers with eight of the top ten gone.

There won’t be a Sun Belt title this year, and it’ll take something big to come up with a win after the opener against Abilene Christian – and even that’s not a sure thing by any stretch.

Anything positive this year will be important. It’s not easy to create a college football program, but Georgia State continues to be on its way.

What to watch for on offense: Considering the overall production and the way the season went, the offense was a wee bit better than the stats might indicate. The biggest key going forward will be to find reliable weapons and playmakers. Last year, when in doubt, get the ball to Albert, but now he’s gone. Albert Wilson caught 71 passes for 1,177 yards and eight touchdowns, and finished second on the team with 251 rushing yards and a score. Who can take his place? It’ll be a battle for the starting quarterback job between Nick Arbuckle and Ronnie Bell, and they need weapons to help out last year’s No. 2 receiver, Robert Davis. The Panthers just need to figure out how to move the ball better, and they need to identify players to build around.

What to watch for on defense: Is it possible to generate any sort of a pass rush? It’s not that hard – if there’s no disruption in the backfield, and no hitting the quarterback, the rest of the defense struggles. The Panthers came up with a mere 11 sacks and 62 tackles for loss, and the problems showed with just six picks and way too many easy third down chances for opposing offenses. The line was handled way too easily, and it’s going to take a little bit of manufacturing from the linebacking corps to start changing things around – offenses can’t be hitting 50% on third downs again.

The team will be far better if… the Panthers do absolutely everything right and don’t make mistakes. It’ll be hard enough for them to be solid on both sides of the ball to also have to deal with overcoming a slew of problems. Opponents only committed 51 penalties last year – GSU committed 77. With the lack of big plays on defense, the team was -7 on the year in turnover margin was on the plus side just once, and it showed with the close-call loss against Troy after coming up with three takeaways and only giving it away once. GSU was even five times, and negative six times. Win the turnover battle, don’t commit a slew of penalties, and that might be just enough to keep most Sun Belt games closer.

The Schedule: It’s going to take a big upset to come up with a win or two after the opener against Abilene Christian and New Mexico State in the first two games. However, a 2-0 start would make this a successful season no matter what happens next. Three of the next four and six of the next eight games are on the road before closing out against Texas State, and it’s not like the home dates against Arkansas State and Georgia Southern will be breathers. Can there be a win at Appalachian State? How bad will the carnage be at Washington and Clemson? There will be several low points, but there should be a shot at three wins.

Best offensive player: Sophomore WR Robert Davis. While no one’s expecting him to be another Albert Wilson, the 6-3, 190-pounder has excellent size and showed he could thrive at times when targeted. The team’s second-leading receiver last year, he was steady with three or more catches in every game, but now he’s the No. 1 guy everything will be working around. The line has to get the starting quarterback time – no matter who that is – and a good running back has to emerge, but as long as Davis is stretching the field, and if he can come up with 60 catches or more, the rest of the offense should work better.

Best defensive player: Junior LB Joseph Peterson. One of the better tacklers in the Sun Belt, he’s small, but he can pop and he’s fearless when it comes to taking on a ball-carrier. One of the team’s best pass rushers last year, and the best open-field tackler, he was the key to the defense on the inside, and while he won’t need things to be funneled his way, he’ll come up with the big numbers when everything revolves around him. It’s his defense, and he’ll get plenty of chances after a 103-stop season.

Key players to a successful season: Sophomore DE Shawayne Lawrence. The Panthers have GOT to generate some semblance of a pass rush, and while the linebackers on the outside will do most of that, it would be nice if the 6-4, 270-pound Lawrence could start to be more of a threat in the backfield. His job will mostly be to hold up well against the run in the 3-4, after coming up with 25 tackles last year, but he only made one sack with 3.5 tackles for loss. On the plus side, he led the team with four quarterback hurries – he needs to grow into one of the team’s dominant forces.

The season will be a success if ... Georgia State wins three games. A win over Abilene Christian is a must, and beating a weak New Mexico State at home would be a huge boost just as the season is taking off. And then it would do wonders to come up with one more win along the way, but, considering the Panthers should be underdogs the rest of the way, it’ll have to take a special effort to get it. After the disasters of the last two years, three wins would be great, anything more would be sensational.

Key game: Sept. 6 vs. New Mexico State. The Aggies are getting into Sun Belt play and hoping to come up with a win against one of the league’s weakest teams, but Georgia State has to be thinking the same thing. No matter what happens in the opener against Abilene Christian, a win against NMSU would be terrific – the Panthers can’t give away home games. The road dates are coming up and they’re going to be nasty. NMSU is a very, very winnable game.

2013 Fun Stats:
- First Quarter Scoring: Opponents 125 – Georgia State 47
- Sacks: Opponents 32 for 189 yards – Georgia State 11 for 55 yards
- Rushing Touchdowns: Opponents 28 – Georgia State 9

- 2014 Georgia State Preview - What You Need To Know & Top Players