Corn’s CSU Game Preview

Charleston Southern Game Preview by Dustin Corn

Make no mistake–this is the best team we’ve played all year. While they run a similar style of offense..their offense is based from the gun. We will both understand tendencies, reads, etc. of the option which should make for some strange familiarity and an interesting coaching match up. Both teams aren’t afraid to throw the ball as well. Fortunately they have been prone to turnovers throughout the season.. unfortunately they seem very good at overcoming those mistakes. They soundly defeated Liberty last week on the road..who soundly defeated us at home.

On the bright side we will be beyond amp’d for this opportunity. I would expect a great, focused week of practice. We also seem to thrive as the underdog..and make no mistake..we are most definitely the underdog here. In order to win we have to contain them on special teams. We can’t give up big returns. When I look at both teams Special Teams is the most decisive advantage they have over us in my opinion.

They will have a little extra focus as well as this senior class really brought CSU to where they are. I’d expect a little extra emotion from Austell, Korn, Hollaway, and Hammond tomorrow. Hopefully this actually plays in our favor and they continuously try to do too much. While they have some extremely talented seniors they also have some standout underclassman. Kameron Brown is a redshirt freshman WR that is built a lot like Sumpt. Their qb will be a redshirt freshman that has been impressive.. but I hope we can force into some mistakes. On defense the biggest obstacle is #8 (Anthony Ellis). He’s essentially unblockable when focused…however he seems to take plays off as well. When he’s dialed in he can dominate a game (ask LIberty). With a playoff bid on the line I’d expect him to be ready to go. I hope we option at him quite a bit. Leave him unblocked and read him. While he caught a pitch when we tried this last year I think that Chandler is better at this portion of the game than Trey was. They also have last years Big South Freshman Defensive player of the year in #34 Solomon Brown who is always around the ball..and a solid pass rusher.

Keys for the Owls

–Play our game. They are talented across the board so we can’t focus too much on matchups against individuals. Play the numbers. If they put 8-9 in the box we have to throw. If they are 7 in the box we have to get the inside game running.
— Can we get outside? They were able to control this last year, but our perimeter blocking is the biggest improvement we’ve made from year one to year two imo. This has opened up the passing game tremendously.
–Take some shots. 2nd and short and we need to push the ball downfield. If they are doubling Sumpt lets get Harper going. Bring back some hitch routes..we go deep so much their corners should be looking to bail early.
–Obviously protect the ball. Turnovers, missed kicks, etc. can make this game ugly in a hurry.
–They are decent through the air but we can’t let Hollaway and Hammond beat us. Make your reads and we have to tackle on contact. Second chance opportunities will make this a long day. 

–We have to let the corners compete. Korn and Brown are good, but we can’t give help to the corners all day. We have to hope we can make plays with our corners and pinch down on the ball
–Play focused..hustle..create your own luck..and let the chips fall where they may. We should have 0 plays where we watch film and knock guys for a lack of effort. #44 was very good in this game last year… #26 is a due a pick…
This obviously won’t be an easy one. We have a lot of talent and have made some tremendous strides as this year has progressed. I don’t think confidence will be an issue.. all comes down to execution and ….luck.. hopefully the ball bounces our way. I’ll be in there in person to help cheer us on. Last year these guys celebrated a title in our stadium– hope that’s never forgotten. Go Owls.


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