ULL takes another shot at SBC title
The Sports Xchange
NCAAF Team Report - Western Kentucky - INSIDE SLANT
Louisiana-Lafayette will play a virtual conference championship game Saturday when the Ragin' Cajuns travel to Mobile, Ala., to face South Alabama.
At 5-1 in conference play, ULL can become the only team to win six games in 2013 with a victory over the Jaguars (5-6, 3-3). The title could have been wrapped up last week if not for a 31-28 loss at home to rivals Louisiana-Monroe.
"It's going to be a tough duty," ULL coach Mark Hudspeth said. "(South Alabama) has a very fine football team. Very talented team, they got a quarterback that can really make a lot of plays. They've got a group of talented receivers. They create a lot of problems with what they do defensively and I just think they got an outstanding team."
South Alabama could become bowl eligible for the first time in program history with a win. The Jags have won two straight after a three-game losing streak that dropped them to 3-6 midway through November.
Five of South's losses in 2013 have come by a combined 12 points. In five wins, USA has scored at least 31 points.
"They have two great running backs, probably the best running back tandem in the league," USA coach Joey Jones said of ULL. "Really big up front and got good skill players outside. You can tell why they're one of the top offenses in the league. It's going to be a great task."
That contest will take center stage because it's the only being played on the first Saturday of December. The league's six other teams all finished their season's last week, filtering down to a final resting place in the conference standings.
Arkansas State (7-5, 5-2) will end the year either in second place, or will claim a co-championship should ULL fall to South Alabama. Troy (6-6), Western Kentucky (8-4) and Louisiana-Monroe (6-6) will all finish in a tie for third at 4-3. South Alabama (5-6) could join them, or fall back to alone in sixth at 3-4.
Texas State (6-6) lost three straight to end the year and will wind up in seventh. George State (0-12) went 0-7 in its inaugural season as an SBC member.
Should South Alabama win Saturday, the SBC would have seven of its eight members bowl eligible. The Sun Belt has tie-ins to only the GoDaddy.com Bowl and New Orleans Bowl and ULL has already selected a bid to the latter and Arkansas State to the former.
Arkansas State (7-5, 5-2)
THIS WEEK'S GAME: Regular season over.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
--QB Adam Kennedy completed 69.4 percent of his passes in his one and only season as State's starting quarterback. The senior transfer from Utah State threw 11 touchdowns and 2,349 yards and also rushed for 514 yards and four scores.
--LB Qushaun Lee built a campaign for conference player of the year in 2013. The senior made 119 total stops, six tackles for loss and forced two fumbles.
--WR J.D. McKissic will return in 2014 the Red Wolves' primary offensive weapon. The sophomore totaled 1,472 all-purpose yards and led the lead with 73 receptions.
Georgia State (0-12, 0-7)