SportsFootballSouthern Miss Football looks to avoid ninth consecutive loss

Southern Miss Football looks to avoid ninth consecutive loss

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After fighting neck and neck with undefeated UTSA, Southern Miss travels to Ruston to take on the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. Although the Golden Eagles once again open as double-digit underdogs, they are confident going into Friday’s game.

Head Coach Will Hall made significant offensive changes going into the UTSA game as Frank Gore Jr. surprisingly made his first start at quarterback. Gore, who was the starting running back prior to Saturday, completed two passes on three attempts for 33 yards and rushed 20 times for 123 yards, including a nine-yard touchdown.

Things were going well for the Golden Eagles until Gore left the game in the third quarter. Antavious Willis, who took some snaps earlier in the game, took over and turned the ball over three times on the team’s final offensive possessions.

According to Hall, Gore is “in treatment” and his status is unknown for Friday’s game. Whether or not he plays, the game plan remains similar for the Golden Eagles.

“[We are] just wanting to give our guys the best chance to win. [We want to] milk the clock and play sound football…just archaic, old school football,” said Hall Monday. “It’s very simple football. It’s what you’ll see at any 1A high school football game.”

“Is it what we want to be? No,” said Hall about the offense. “There will come a day when we light this scoreboard up here. We’ll have to replace all the bulbs in it.”

And even with the unprecedented amount of quarterbacks the team has played this season, Hall looks to involve more players at the position.

“We got a lot of guys we’re gonna play in there this week…we may play six or 7 of them back there…We’ll play a bunch of people back there this week. It’ll be fun. We will look like the cavalry running in there,” Hall said.

Willis marked the tenth Golden Eagle to play under center this season following injuries to Trey Lowe and Ty Keyes. Jake Lange has started most of the season, but the offense hasn’t seen the desired production with him at the helm.

Hall said that Lange has “played his tail off” this season, but “he doesn’t move around so well.” 

The Bulldogs may not boast a great record (3-7), but they have suffered close losses against good teams this year. The tight defeats include 35-34 at 25th ranked Mississippi State, 39-37 against 8-2 SMU and 34-27 at 20th ranked North Carolina State. Louisiana Tech defeated Charlotte last week 42-32.

Southern Miss looks to end the eight-game losing streak and avoid a season with double-digit losses. A victory against the Bulldogs would create momentum as the Golden Eagles end the season against fellow 1-9 team FIU.

 Southern Miss wants to do three things Friday: control the time of possession, play sound defense and have no turnovers on offense.

 If the Golden Eagles are able to do all three of these things, Friday may be a successful night. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. in Ruston, La Nov. 19. The game will be available to watch on CBS Sports Network.

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