It’s time for another Southern mailbag.
The Jaguars are 1-1 and 1-0 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference after beating Mississippi Valley State 50-13 in its SWAC opener last Thursday in Itta Bena, Miss.
Now, Southern plays its home opener when it faces Jackson State at 5 p.m. Saturday in Mumford Stadium. It will be the SWAC opener fore the Tigers (0-2 overall).
We solicited questions from you on Twitter and here’s what we got:
I guess if you’re looking for an individual, it would be William Broussard, who signed the contract when he was athletic director. But as a practical matter I would think most people in the athletic department would consider it a good idea since it will earn the Jaguars $650,000.
Football coach Dawson Odums might not be crazy and about going on the road to play the No. 7 team in the country, but even he realizes the necessity of generating significant funds that can’t be found anywhere else.
By the way, the Southeastern Conference announced Monday that the game, which will be played Sept. 26, will kick off at 11 a.m. CDT and be televised on the SEC Network.
It’s definitely both and I’m not sure I can pick which is the more relevant answer because I think they’re about equal. In a lot of ways, Southern looked like the team most people expected in terms of playmakers on offense and in the return game and speed and play-making ability on defense.
Now there’s no doubt that Valley’s shortcomings made it easier for the Jaguars to show off those attributes. My guess is both teams are about what they were projected to be – Southern a championship contender and Valley a likely last-place finisher in the East.
From a talent standpoint, the game against Jackson State this week will be a better gauge of where Southern is.
I’d say there will be reason for concern if either of those issues repeats itself. I think there were two big returns and one was called back because of a penalty, so we’re talking about breakdowns on one return.
The missed PAT came when Greg Pittman’s kick hit the left upright and bounced back.
So at this point we’re talking, I think, about isolated incidents. But both areas bear watching because similar problems Saturday would definitely be cause for concern.
Too early to tell if Jamar Mitchell (hamstring) or Ki-Jana Curtis (shoulder) will play this week. We might know more after coach Odums’ news conference Tuesday. Neither injury appears to be a long-term issue.
But the converted LB situation figures to continue regardless of the status of Mitchell and Curtis. As long as Rhaheim Ledbetter is ineligible, and there’s no indication he’ll be back, then Martin Henry and Roshaud Turner figure to be playing nickelback.
Each gave up a big play in the passing game, but didn’t play poorly overall. The more experience they get, the better they should be. That will be a position to keep an eye on again Saturday.