Previewing Georgia State’s ninth opponent: Texas State

(Nelson Chenault, USA TODAY Sports)

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(Nelson Chenault, USA TODAY Sports)

Georgia State won’t open summer camp until August, so it’s a perfect time to start looking ahead to the teams the Panthers will face during the upcoming season.

I’ve already done:

Let’s turn to Texas State, the third of six consecutive conference opponents. The Bobcats destroyed the Panthers 54-31 in the Georgia Dome in last year’s season finale.

The Panthers will travel to San Marcos for the Nov. 14 game. Kickoff is TBA.

Texas State

2014 record: 7-5, 5-3 Sun Belt Conference.

Coach: Dennis Franchione, seventh season.

Starters returning: Seven on offense: quarterback Tyler Jones, offensive linemen Adrian Bellard, Ryan Melton and Felix Romero, receivers C.J. Best and Brandon Smith and Jafus Gaines, running back Robert Lowe.
Six on defense: Defensive tackle Mershad Dillon, nose tackle Dallas McClarty, linebacker Trey McGowan, defensive back David Mims, safety Aaron Shaw and free safety Demetrius Woodard.

Offensive system: Spread.

Defensive system: 4-2-5.

Three significant stats last year:

  1. The Bobcats averaged 33.8 points and 464.3 yards per game last year.
  2. They surrendered 27.7 points and 446.1 yards per game.
  3. Five players were named all-conference: Bellard, Jones, Lowe, Melton and Mims.

Key starters returning:

  • Lowe rushed for 1,091 yards and 12 touchdowns.
  • Jones passed for 2,670 yards and 22 touchdowns, and rushed for 539 yards and six more touchdowns.
  • Best caught 37 passes for 355 yards and two touchdowns.
  • Smith caught 36 passes for 414 yards and a touchdown.
  • McGowan had 80 tackles and three passes broken up.
  • Mims had five interceptions.
  • McClarty had three sacks.

How does Georgia State match up

Well, it’s yet another team that returns a lot of its offense meaning that Georgia State, which also returns a lot of its offense, may be in for a shoot out.

I think I’ve written that for every game so far.

So much will depend upon those two truisms in football: can Georgia State’s offensive line sustain blocks, and can the defensive line shed blocks?

If they can, they will be able to run the ball and can keep the offenses for teams like Texas State on the sidelines.

Easy to write. Easy to read. Hard to do. The Bobcats rolled up more than 600 yards of offense last year.

Georgia State’s offense almost matched the Bobcats yard for yard with 516. The difference was the three turnovers by Georgia State, two interceptions and a lost fumble.