Georgia State looks to conclude its encore season on a positive note as the Panthers host Campbell for Senior Day Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Georgia Dome.
The Panthers (2-8) have suffered three straight heart-breaking defeats, including last Saturday's 30-23 loss at West Alabama, in which GSU had moved inside the UWA 20-yard line in the final minute with a chance for the tying score before fumbling to end the game. Before that, the Panthers had dropped consecutive overtime games in which they had led in the fourth quarter. The three straight losses have been by a combined 13 points.
Campbell (6-4) had a school-record five-game winning streak snapped with a 34-31 loss at Valparaiso Saturday. Like Georgia State, Campbell is a relative newcomer to football after resurrecting a long-dormant program in 2008. This year's six victories are the most in the Camels' modern era.
Georgia State and Campbell are meeting for the second straight year. On Sept. 25, 2010, in the first road game in GSU history, the Panthers defeated Campbell, 24-21, on Iain Vance's 30-yard field goal with one second left. Vance's field goal capped a 10-play, 63-yard drive after the Camels had tied the game with a touchdown with 3:14 to play.
The two teams have played one common opponent this season in Old Dominion, which defeated Georgia State, 40-17 on Sept. 10, after knocking off Campbell, 41-14, one week earlier.
GSU Radio Network, including Atlanta flagship WCFO-AM Newstalk 1160. Announcers are Dave Cohen (play-by-play), Harper LeBel (analyst), Sam Crenshaw (sideline).
The Georgia State program will say farewell to 20 seniors who are playing their final home game at the Georgia Dome.
Of the 20, seven have been part of the program since the Panthers began practice in 2009 (Ben Jacoby, Brandon Jones, Michael Hall, Deron Jordan, Robert Truitt, Kevin Thompson, Cliff Ibarrondo), while the remaining 13 arrived prior to the 2010 season.
The group of 20 includes four starters on the offensive line, two starters on the defensive line, and two starting linebackers, plus starters at tight end and safety.
Four seniors previously played at FBS schools (Joseph Gilbert, Clyde Yandell, Ben Jacoby and Bailey Woods) and one at an FCS program (Jocquez Fears), while others arrived from a variety of places, from Mars Hill College in North Carolina to Navarro College in Texas to Palomar College in Calif.
HILL SETS RECORDS
Quarterback Kelton Hill displayed his multi-talents when he set the Georgia State single-game rushing record while collecting a career-high in passing yards against West Alabama (Nov. 12).
The sophomore from Douglasville, Ga., rushed for 152 yards on 19 carries to surpass Donald Russell's record of 136 yards, set earlier this season against South Alabama. Included in his total was a 53-yard touchdown that is the longest scoring run in school history. He also scored on a two-yard run to tie the game in the fourth quarter.
Hill also set career highs with 19 completions for 228 yards, including a 33-yard TD pass to Albert Wilson. He totalled 380 yards of total offense.
ANOTHER 1,000-YARD RECEIVER
Albert Wilson had another productive outing against West Alabama (Nov. 12) with a career-high eight catches for 120 yards, his third 100-yard game of the season, including a 33-yard touchdown catch.
Wilson became the second Panther in as many weeks to reach the 1,000-yard mark for career receiving yards. He is Georgia State's career leader with 1,058 receiving yards on 55 catches. That's an average of 19.2 yards per catch. His eight touchdown receptions are also the school record, while his 55 catches rank second only to Danny Williams.
On the season, Wilson is the Panthers' leading receiver with 36 catches for 764 yards and six touchdowns. He ranks eighth in the nation in punt returns (11.9), 10th in receiving yards per game (95.5) and 17th in all-purpose yards (146.4).
JAKE MAKING PLAYS
Outside linebacker Jake Muasau is closing his senior season with a bang. Over his last three games, Muasau has collected 22 tackles, five tackles for loss, including three sacks, and two interceptions.
Saturday against West Alabama, he had six tackles, two tackles for loss and an interception.
The senior with the famous mane earned honorable mention recognition as National Linebacker Performer of the Week by the CFPA for his play against UTSA (Oct. 29), when he collected a career-high 10 tackles with two sacks and an interception.
Muasau also made a huge defensive play in the Oct. 22 win over South Alabama when, on the game's final play in the second overtime, he pressured the quarterback into an errant throw that resulted in Mark Hogan's game-ending interception.