1. Bouncing back
A sign of good coaching is how a team handles adversity, and Southern is strong here. Both teams had a bye week but Southern has a better sense of itself and the staff has learned what will work and what won’t. Having the game tape will allow the defense to be more prepared for what’s coming and with the Tigers struggling behind center, the advantage is with Southern. The Jaguars have their own quarterback issues but have two seniors vying.
2. Catch it and keep it
Coach Dawson Odums counted seven dropped passes in last week’s loss, one on a crucial third-down play and another in the end zone. It’s agonizing when a team gets the protection, a good route and a good throw only to have to punt or kick a field goal. With all the quarterback difficulties, the receiver corps needs to wake up and get its act together, whether through concentration, assertiveness or even putting something sticky on their hands.
3. Jump start
The Jaguars will try to leave the last game result behind in Baton Rouge but must not forget to bring its energy from the opening kickoff on. It’s especially true for the defense, which finally pulled it together after falling behind by 19 points last time out. It’s up to the leaders to light the fire early and get the whole team playing with intensity, especially on the road. A big play or two early in the game can set the tone for the rest of the night.
4. Last chance?
Ladarius Skelton has had multiple opportunities to solidify his grasp on the quarterback job but continues to let it slip away, like the ball when it occasionally just falls from his hands. The way John Lampley played against UAPB and the other backup, Bubba McDaniel, getting healthy should be a pair of warning bells. Skelton is the most talented of the three by far. That doesn’t matter, though, if he can’t harness his ability or his attitude.