Appalachian State Mountaineers Preview 2022: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Appalachian State season with what you need to know and keys to the season.
Appalachian State Mountaineers Preview
Head Coach: Shawn Clark, 3rd year at ASU, 20-7
2021 Record: Overall: 10-4, Conference: 7-2
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Keys To The Season | Season Prediction, What Will Happen
Appalachian State Top 10 Players | Schedule
Appalachian State Mountaineers Preview 2022
No, it wasn’t a Sun Belt championship season, and the bowl game blowout to WKU stunk, but it’s hard to argue with a ten-win season with two of the four losses to Louisiana.
Now the Mountaineers have to deal with a far tougher schedule – both in non-conference play and in a tougher expanded Sun Belt – but they should be able to keep up the production.
Head coach Shawn Clark has been kept the pipeline of talent going, there’s enough talent back to expect even more consistency, and this should be another good run for a possible conference title. Again, though, the schedule might make that tough, but more on that in the end.
Appalachian State Mountaineers Preview 2022: Offense
The offense is terrific, and it’s full of enough talent to be every bit as good. The Mountaineers run a pro-style scheme with good balance and efficiency, finishing second in the Sun Belt last year in total offense and scoring. It’ll all continue and could be even stronger if …
The receiving corps has to come together. The top three receivers are gone with the top returning target – Christian Wells – catching just 12 passes for 243 yards. There’s a Next Man Up aspect to the attack, but losing Corey Sutton, Thomas Hennigan, and Malik Williams really, really hurts. However …
Everything else is there. Chase Brice is a veteran quarterback who settled into the job, and he’s working behind the best line in the Sun Belt. All-star C Baer Hunter is gone, but everyone else is back from a group that was great in pass protection and almost as strong for the ground game.
The All-Sun Belt running back combination of Nate Noel, Camerun Peoples, and Dietrich Harrington is fantastic.
The offense has to be outstanding, because …
Appalachian State Mountaineers Preview 2022: Defense
The defense that’s been a killer over the last few years should be solid again. However, it has to replace a ton of star talent that’s been a big part of the production over the last few years.
The Mountaineers were among the best in the nation at generating tackles for loss, they led the Sun Belt in run D and was amazing overall right up until WKU went off in the Boca Raton Bowl. Now there will be a whole lot of new faces.
Second leading tackler Trey Cobb is back at his inside linebacker spot, but there are a whole lot of missing parts with five of the top seven tacklers done. The linebacking corps is hardly starting from scratch – Nick Hampton and Brendan Harrington are good ones on the outside – but there’s missing star power.
Hampton is the team’s best pass rusher, but a whole lot of production in the backfield from last year has to be replaced. Jordon Earle is a 290-pound veteran on the nose, but there’s not a lot of size on the line. It’s going to take a rotation to hold up, and the linebackers will take care of the rest.
The secondary loses top corner Shaun Jolly, but Steven Jones is back on the other side for another all-star year, and the safeties are good enough. They all need the pass rush to keep on going.