Sun Belt Showdown: Appalachian State Mountaineers at No. 15 Georgia Bulldogs
The Appalachian State Mountaineers nearly ruined the lives of every Tennessee Volunteers fan to open the 2016 season. Scott Sattersfield’s crew couldn’t close the deal then. Will they take out their anger on Georgia?
Appalachian State is going 12-0, y’all! Oops, except No. 15 Georgia is standing in the way, and the honeymoon is over for the Bulldog’s head coach Kirby Smart, who would likely not react well to a loss to the Sun Belt, even if it is to the defending SBC co-champions. Can the fully-loaded Mountaineers put Smart on the hot seat. Perhaps!
SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 2ND, 5:15PM ON ESPN @ Athens, GA
This is why the Mountaineers are starting the season 1-0.
Taylor Lamb is a good QB and Georgia’s pass defense is generous
Check out Taylor Lamb’s passing percentage in three years as a student athlete in Boone: 61.4, 60.1 and 60.6%. Meanwhile, Georgia allowed quarterbacks to complete 59% of their passes. Look for the Sun Belt’s version of Mr. Consistency to receive plenty of time behind the SBC’s best offensive line, allowing him to pick Georgia apart with shots to his stud WR Shaedon Meadors (716 yards, 2 TDs in 2016)
Jalin Moore Is A Very, Very, Very Good RB
Mountaineers’ rushing legend Marcus Cox is gone, but Jalin Moore has taken up the mantle, gaining 1,402 yards and 10 TDs in 2016, earning him the Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year Award. If Lamb has trouble with the Bulldogs secondary, he merely needs to hand it off to Moore and let the offensive line that features 3 preseason All-Sun Belt offensive linemen do the heavy lifting.
Scott Satterfield is Smarter Than Smart?
Maybe? Since 2013, Satterfield is 32-18 as head coach at Appalachian State. A hiccup against the Troy Trojans spoiled the Mountaineers’ chance for a solo Sun Belt championship, but there’s no questioning Appalachian State is one of the elite teams in the conference. Meanwhile, Kirby Smart is still attempting to prove himself worthy after breaking from Nick Saban at Alabama. Smart notched an 8-4 (4-4) season in 2016, and that isn’t bad. But this is only his second year as a head coach. Satterfield has the edge with experience.
Why Georgia thumps Appalachian State, tho
The AP Top 25 is never wrong, right? Listen, Georgia will pit SEC depth, size and speed against the Mountaineers, who has SBC depth, size and speed. Smart knows Appalachian State nearly shattered the Volunteers last year. He’ll be ready. And so will RB Nick Chubb and QB Jacob Eason and WR Terry Godwin and the rest of the Bulldog All-Stars. Sorry, App. You’re way out of your depth.
Screw it. This is the Mountaineers year, and you just have to accept it.
28-24, Appalachian State
Jeremy Harper is a professional writer and Chief Instigator for Storm the Castle Creative. He spends his free time staring blankly into space.