The 2020 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl features 5-4 Louisiana Tech against the 7-5 Georgia Southern Eagles. Here is the 2020 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl Preview.
Louisiana Tech Bulldogs (5-4)
Louisiana Tech dealt with a lot of games being postponed and canceled, but were still able to finish 5-4. They won games against UAB and North Texas, who both finished the season above .500. All of their losses came to teams who were above .500 this season.
The offense was decent this season, as they averaged 29.3 points per game. They passed for 227.4 yards (ranked 67th) and rush for 97.7 yards per game (ranked 120th).
Luke Anthony has had a solid year at quarterback for the Bulldogs. He has passed for 1,479 yards, 16 touchdowns and five interceptions on 62.4 percent completion. He is out for this game after suffering a gruesome leg injury against TCU. Aaron Allen will step in after passing for 561 yards, four touchdowns and five interceptions on 64.9 percent completion. Eight different receivers have over 100 receiving yards for Louisiana Tech this season. Adrian Hardy leads the team with 440 receiving yards on 33 catches for four touchdowns. Smoke Harris, Griffin Herbert and CeeJay Powell all have over 250 receiving yards on the season, giving Anthony a lot of different weapons to utilize.
On the ground, Israel Tucker has 129 carries for 125 yards and four touchdowns. Justin Henderson has chipped in with 75 carries for 252 yards and two touchdowns. Greg Garner gets in on the action as well and has 111 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
The Bulldogs have given up too many points this year, allowing 34.3 points per game. They give up 240.4 passing yards (ranked 75th) and 184.6 rushing yards per game (ranked 85th). Linebackers Tyler Grubbs and Trey Baldwin have led the defense with 84 and 74 tackles respectively. Milton Williams leads the team with 4.5 sacks. In the secondary, Bee Jay Williamson has three interceptions and three passes defended, while Cedric Woods has five passes defended and two interceptions.
Georgia Southern Eagles (7-5)
Georgia Southern got a full 12-game season in this year. They were able to beat one bowl eligible team in Florida Atlantic. All five of their losses came to teams who are bowl eligible, meaning they won the games they should’ve won.
With their option offense, the Eagles have put up 26.3 points per game. They only pass for 102.3 yards per game (ranked 124th), but they rush for 262.5 yards per game (ranked fifth).
When asked to pass, Shai Werts has done solidly. He finished the season with 936 passing yards, seven touchdowns and six interceptions on 60.3 percent completion. Werts may not play with a shoulder injury. If he can’t go, Justin Tomlin will step in. He has 161 passing yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions on the year. The Eagles have five receivers who have over 100 receiving yards this year. The go-to-guy is Malik Murray who has 20 receptions for 258 yards and one touchdown. Wesley Kennedy, Khaleb Hood, Logan Wood and Beau Johnson have also been reliable targets for Georgia Southern.
Werts leads the team in rushing as well with 649 rushing yards and eight touchdowns. Six running backs have above 195 rushing yards on the season. J.D. King has 625 yards and five touchdowns, but will miss this game with a knee injury. Logan Wright has 565 rushing yards and four scores. Kennedy has had success finding the end zone with six touchdowns to go along with 447 rushing yards. The offense is hard to stop because it is hard to key on just one player.
The defense has done well this year to only allow 22.3 points per game. Georgia Southern allows just 112.1 rushing yards (ranked 16th) and 221.4 passing yards per game (ranked 48th). Linebacker Rashad Byrd has led the team in tackles with 75. He also has two sacks, four passes defended and two interceptions. Safety Anthony Wilson has made an impact with 61 total tackles and seven passes defended.
Preparing for the triple option on short notice is not easy. Georgia Southern has a veteran quarterback running it in Werts, which should mean that they will be efficient and not make many mistakes. Even if he can’t go, Tomlin has the system down. The Eagles will control the clock, play solid defense and win a relatively low-scoring game. With Anthony out for the Bulldogs, the Eagles will take advantage.
Georgia Southern Eagles 24 Louisiana Tech Bulldogs 19
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