COLUMBIA — If South Carolina State wants to get back on top of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, coach Buddy Pough said it has no choice but to knock off Bethune-Cookman today.
The Wildcats have won 16 MEAC games in a row, including a 27-14 win over the Bulldogs last season that acted as sort of a passing of the torch from an S.C. State team that won the league title three straight years.
In other games today involving South Carolina’s Football Championship Subdivision teams Wofford hosts Samford; The Citadel travels to Chattanooga; Furman is at LSU; Coastal Carolina hosts VMI; Charleston Southern hosts Charlotte; and Presbyterian hosts Point.
S.C. State (5-2, 3-0 MEAC) is in Daytona Beach, Fla., to face the Wildcats (6-1, 3-0), the only other undefeated conference team. The records aren’t a fluke. The Wildcats and Bulldogs are first and second in total offense and total defense in the MEAC.
The Bulldogs are coming off a bye week and played the Thursday before, meaning it’s been 16 days between games..
The Southern Conference race should come more into focus as Wofford (5-2, 4-0 SoCon) takes on Samford (5-2, 3-0) in Spartanburg,
The Terriers and Bulldogs are the only remaining unbeaten teams in league play. Everyone else in the SoCon other than Chattanooga has more than one conference loss.
Wofford is using three quarterbacks and has changed its starter in the last two games.
The Citadel (2-5, 2-3 SoCon) heads to Tennessee with designs on improving against Chattanooga (5-2, 3-1).
This was supposed to be a solid season for The Citadel too, but the Bulldogs just haven’t been able to finish games. In four of their five losses, they have been tied or leading in the fourth quarter.
Furman (3-4) heads to Baton Rouge, La., for only the second time in school history to take on LSU (6-2).
The Paladins have beaten Football Bowl Division teams five times in 29 tries, but LSU has won 44 straight regular season games against nonconference opponents – the longest streak in the country.
Furman’s quarterback situation seems to have settled back down. A combination of injuries and ineffective play have led the Paladins to play five people at QB so far this season, but Reese Hannon, the sophomore who started the year as the top quarterback, but has been injured, will be back behind center for the second game in a row.
Coastal Carolina (7-0, 2-0 Big South) is at home, hoping not to suffer a letdown against VMI (1-6, 0-2).
The Chanticleers will be without starting quarterback Alex Ross, who sprained his foot. Moglia said the team has three capable backups, who may all see action Saturday.
We feel good about the three guys and what they can do,” he said.
Charleston Southern (7-1) is in North Charleston to play its final nonconference game against Charlotte (4-3).
Although the first-year 49ers program does seem like a part of the Big South. Charlotte has already beaten league members Presbyterian and Gardner-Webb and will play Coastal Carolina next week.
Presbyterian (2-4) is in Clinton, where it will try to win back-to-back games for the first time since 2011 against Point (3-4) from the NAIA.